Water Damage Cleanup Checklist

The question is not “what will I do IF a water damage emergency happens in my home?” Instead, ask “what will I do WHEN I have a water damage emergency?”  If you have a home with running water it is inevitable.  Water damage can be the most destructive substance there is. Excessive moisture can quickly degenerate your belongings and structure. So, what is the first step when a frozen pipe breaks, a toilet overflows, or a dishwasher malfunctions?

Water damage losses are put into 3 categories by restorers. With those categories come different hazards and guidelines to follow. Let’s take a quick look at the categories…

Category 1 – Clean Water – clean water comes from a source that is relatively harmless, like a broken water pipe, or overflowing kitchen sink. In most cases, clean water is safe for individuals to handle.

Category 2 – Gray Water – gray water can contain bacteria and other contamination but is not the most harmful water source. Greywater typically comes from malfunctioning washing machines, dishwashers, and some flooding from outside sources.

Category 3 – Black Water – black water contains organic material, contaminants, and possible raw sewage. Blackwater typically comes from plumbing malfunctions, outside flooding from rivers or streams. All cleanup efforts pertaining to black water should be performed by trained professionals. Because black water can be harmful, protective gear and other safety precautions are required during cleanup.

So what is the first step? Finding and stopping the source of the water is critical in preventing further damage. Caution must be given when water is in direct contact with electricity. Shut off power before you come in contact with the water to protect yourself from injury. To prepare for such an event, find the main water valve and circuit breakers to your home or property before a disaster happens.

Next, remember the clock is ticking! The longer the water is allowed to stand in your home, the more extensive the damage can be. Timing is critical and it is best to get started on the water removal process as soon as possible. Mold can start to grow in optimum conditions within 24 to 48 hours. Not only can mold cause health issues but can damage your property beyond repair. Mold thrives in water damage homes, especially when it has a food source. Some of those sources are paper, products, cardboard, ceiling tiles, drywall, wood products, carpet fabric, and upholstery.  This includes most of the materials used in the construction of homes and office buildings.

CALL THE PROFESSIONALS!  In Waukesha and surrounding areas, call the certified professionals at White Knight Carpet Rescue. The right equipment and the expertise of our emergency restoration crew will extract, dry, and restore your home to its pre-loss condition. Our restoration team uses high-tech drying equipment and moisture detection tools to ensure adequate structural drying saving you thousands of dollars in mitigation losses. We are ready for immediate response day or night to help you in any water damage emergency you may experience.

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