Water Damage Clean Up Tips

water damage cleanup madison, water damage madisonAfter discovering water damage, a fast and organized response can reduce your losses and speed your progress. When the moisture goes unchecked, it quickly increases the potential for mold growth. While water damage is common, it can be complicated to correct. Here are some tips:


Unwelcome H2O can originate from sources inside and outside the home but a surprising amount can be attributed to plumbing leaks. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, 13% of all water used in U.S. homes is actually leaking somewhere in the home or yard. On average that is approximately 10,000 gallons per year wasted by leaks for each US home. According to Claims Magazine, cracked or broken pipes ranked second to hurricanes in terms of both the number of homes affected and the number of claims (on average $50,000 per insurance claim costs in the US.)

Common causes of household water damage are:

  • Worn fittings in washing machines, dishwashers, kitchen sinks, refrigerator ice makers, water softeners, and humidifiers.
  • Tub or sink overflows and broken toilet tanks
  • Sump pump and fire protection sprinkler failures
  • Rising streams, melting snow and falling rain

Clean Up Steps

Act fast and follow logical steps to stop, repair, and prevent water damage to your home:

Stop the flow. If the flooding has been caused by a burst pipe, shut off the main water line for your home. Contact an expert immediately if you cannot identify the source.

Turn off the power. If your home is flooded, cut off the electricity and gas from the street. If you would have to stand in water to turn off, consult an electrician.

Rescue your valuables. If you can, quickly find and remove important items such as heirlooms, money, jewelry, etc. Don’t spend too much time cleaning individual items, keep on task.

Eliminate standing water. As soon as it is safe, pump out any residual water. If dealing with a small amount of flooding, a wet-dry shop vacuum often only holds less than 5 gallons. Contact professionals for anything larger.

Allow electronics to air dry. Do not use any appliances or outlets until they have had enough time to completely dry. Check with each manufacturer for recommended action.

Detect the mold. Look everywhere; it can also grow in air ducts, crawl spaces, and between walls. Mold is very hazardous while being cleaned since disturbing the mold will cause it to release spores. Professionals will make sure that the area is well-ventilated and will always wear gloves, and a mask or respirator.

Clean all porous materials with proper chemicals. Upholstered furniture, clothing, bedding, rugs, carpets, books, and more are all porous items. If you can’t decide whether to keep a contaminated object or not, err on the side of caution and throw it out.

Contact The Experts

The longer water damage goes unchecked, the more the liquid will spread, the more harm done, and the greater the potential for mold growth. According to EPA.gov, it is important to dry these areas and items within 24-48 hours to prevent mold growth. If your problem is too large to handle quickly on your own, enlist qualified experts.

Remediation teams inspect the home with high tech equipment including probes and other infrared tools in order to determine the extent of area affected. Restoration services systematically dry the structure, sanitize any cross contaminated areas, and deodorize all affected materials. Industrial equipment including air movers, air scrubbers, dehumidifiers, and wood floor drying systems, are left in the home until completely dry. Vendors should return at regular time intervals, preferably every twenty-four hours, to monitor the equipment, temperature, humidity, and moisture content of the affected walls and contents.

Based in Madison, Wisconsin, White Knight Carpet Rescue serves residential customers with a one hour or less response time. The company offers a wide selection of services to protect your home including intense cleaning, refinishing and emergency flood response. White Knight Carpet Rescue will rescue you 24/7 from water emergencies at (608) 665-1742.