Water damage certainly is no laughing matter, but rather an expensive one. In fact, according to HomeAdvisor, the average homeowner spends between $1,071 and $4,100 to restore or repair water damage, with an average of $2,586. Because speed is essential when it comes to water damage, some homeowners may try to save a few bucks by performing DIY water damage cleanup themselves. However, this course of action is imprudent and can even be dangerous.
In this blog, we are going to look at some of the most common mistakes that happen when homeowners try to attempt water damage restoration themselves, as well as why you should leave the restoration process to the professionals.
Common Mistakes With DIY Water Damage Cleanup
Proper water damage cleanup is much more than soaking up pooling water with towels and using fans to dry the area. In order for an affected area to be thoroughly cleaned and dried, the proper knowledge, professional experience, and equipment are required. However, some property owners will still attempt to assess and clean the damages themselves, often leading to one or more of these few common mistakes made.
Mistake #1: Not Recognizing a Dangerous Situation
What’s so dangerous about excess water in your home? Quite a lot, actually. Even when the water damage does not look extensive, certain situations can be incredibly dangerous. One of the biggest mistakes homeowners make is failing to protect themselves when attempting to cleanup the mess and damages. It’s important to be mindful of structural damages, mold growth, and harmful contaminants like bacteria and viruses that are often found in raw sewage water after a sewage backup. Of course, you want to get your home back to its normal state as quickly as possible, but jumping right in without fully assessing the situation could make you susceptible to bodily harm or illnesses.
Mistake #2: Ignoring the Details
When trying to perform water damage cleanup, homeowners naturally want to get it cleaned up as quickly as possible, but this often leads to the issue of overlooking crucial details. This can include removal of carpet padding, keeping furniture and other belongings safe and secured, completely disinfecting and decontaminating everything in the affected area, or stopping the drying process too soon. Additionally, many people forget to check every place where the water damage may have occurred. Moisture can hide in the drywall and subfloor that is generally “out of sight, out of mind.”
Mistake #3: Using the Wrong Equipment
Popular methods and techniques for DIY water damage cleanup include the use of mops, towels, and even wet-dry shop vacs or sump pumps for more extensive damages. While these techniques may help get rid of visible water, the cleanup process is far from over. Proper techniques will dry out an affected area completely, and just soaking up water likely will leave hidden water trapped inside the structure that may only be found with professional moisture detection equipment. When hidden damages like these exist, they can lead to mold issues that will cause more damage over time. If you are going to attempt during the structure yourself, it is important to rent or purchase commercial-grade equipment, including dehumidifiers and fans, as the tools and equipment you have lying around your house will not get the job done fast enough to reduce the risk of further damages. However, rental costs can get expensive, and it is often better to just let a professional with the proper knowledge handle the situation.
Mistake #4: Waiting Too Long To Clean The Damages
After water damage occurs, the first 48 hours afterward are vital. This is when the greatest amount of damages typically occur. Let’s take a look at some of the potential damages that can occur if the situation is not addressed immediately:
- If your home is completely submerged, then the destruction could be total. At the very least you’ll be facing structural repair and a complete overhaul of the inside.
- All the primary systems could potentially be damaged. These systems include gas lines, the plumbing system, the furnace or HVAC system, and the septic system.
- Walls and structural damages may occur.
- Carpeting and flooring may be completely damaged and require replacement.
Basically, the longer water sits, the worse the damages, as well as the repair costs will get. Many of the items and belongings affected can be treated and repaired in a relatively short period if it’s taken care of immediately.
Reasons to Rely On Professional Water Damage Cleanup
DIY water damage cleanup can be very challenging, especially without the proper knowledge, experience, or equipment. That’s why, when water damage strikes your property, you should always attain professional water damage restoration services. Let’s take a glance at why you should choose professional restoration services over DIY techniques.
Reason #1: Professionals Possess the Proper Knowledge and Experience
There are numerous factors that must be considered during the water remediation process. Fortunately, professional water damage companies have the necessary knowledge and experience to complete crucial restoration processes, such as the minimization of structural damages and loss of keepsakes that results from flood damage or other water damage disasters. Additionally, professional restoration specialists understand that minor leaks can get into cracks and crevices, thereby causing unpleasant odors and numerous other issues throughout the household. Professionals use knowledge and hands-on experience to quickly and correctly eliminate these issues in both residential and commercial settings.
Reason #2: Professionals Use Professional Restoration Equipment
In addition to possessing the necessary training, knowledge, and experience to complete the restoration process, professional restoration companies use state-of-the-art equipment to expedite water extraction and drying of the affected area. Most of the commercial-grade equipment these companies work with include fans, dehumidifiers, and moisture-indicating tools. Most home and business owners do not have access to these types of tools and equipment, but reputable restoration companies will.
Reason #3: Professionals Offer 24/7 Emergency Water Damage Restoration
A water damage emergency can happen to anyone at any time. Because time is of the essence in order to avoid further damages, many reputable restoration companies offer emergency water removal and cleanup. Once you call, a team of restoration specialists will arrive on-site shortly after, equipped with the necessary tools, ready to asses the situation and begin the water remediation process. Professionals will be able to start and complete the process quicker than it would take an inexperienced and unequipped homeowner trying the do-it-yourself route.
Reason #4: Professional Companies Can Eliminate Mold
Mold growth is one of the risks associated with water damages that are not taken care of properly or in a timely manner. Damp floors, ceilings, walls, and other structures create the ideal environment for mold to thrive in. Unless you are an expert on water damage restoration and mold remediation, choosing to clean the damages yourself likely will not end well and lead to a mold infestation that can trigger various health complications. This is why you should always seek professional water removal services — professionals will know how to remediate mold quickly and correctly.
Once your property has been subjected to excess water, choosing professional water damage restoration services over DIY methods is a must. Attempting to remove water yourself can be very dangerous. In order to get the quick, precise, and reliable services you need to get your property back to its pre-loss condition, contact your local restoration company.]