Water Damage Checklist (What you Should Do Immediately)

Water Damage Checklist (What you Should Do Immediately)

Water damage is one of the most frustrating and damaging events that can happen in your home. Water damage can result from a variety of different situations, like a leaking pipe from a second floor washing machine, broken appliance or a sewer backup. Each situation is a little different and can come with different clean up procedures. No matter what caused the water damage, there are some routine procedures that you must follow until a professional can assess the situation. Here is the ultimate water damage checklist to help you care for the short term and long term integrity of your home.

#1) Find the Source

The first thing you need to do immediately after you see standing water in any area of your house is to find the source of the water. To prevent further damage to your house and belongings, you should stop the water immediately. This may mean turning off all the water to your home or calling a professional right away. Stopping additional water entering your home is always the first step.

#2) Take Care of Your Home

To prevent further damage to your home, you need to take preventative steps to your house and your belongings. You should turn off the power in your home because if water gets into the outlets or reaches exposed wires, it could turn your home into a catastrophe. In addition, you will want to take all of your valuables to an area of the home that was not exposed to water or to a friend or family's house until your home is restored.

#3) Call Your Insurance Company

Once you have the situation under control and your home is no longer in immediate danger, you should contact your insurance company. Get the quote started so that you have an idea of what will and will not be covered. Ask them for companies that they may have contracts with to help you in your process. Be sure to take pictures of everything so that there is no question later about what was damaged or not.

#4) Start Repairing Water Damage

Water in the home can cause some of the most severe damage possible. Start the repairs as soon you can to prevent mold and structural damage to the home. You should contact a water damage restoration company like COIT Cleaning and Restoration to help you clean and repair your home properly. Professional companies have the experience necessary to fix the water damage issue and look for mold and other hazardous issues.

#5) Dry Your Home

You need to start drying out your home as soon as possible. This means removing water and using fans to get rid of the humidity present in the home. You can use a variety of different equipment like a wet-vac or dehumidifiers to help. You should let the fans run for a few days to remove all humidity and help get your home back to normal. A professional company like COIT would take care of this.

#6) Look for Mold

Mold only takes about 24 hours to grow. If your home is not dried out and repaired in this amount of time, you are risking exposure to mold. You should thoroughly inspect your house for mold in the carpets, walls, drywall, flooring and more. You should contact a professional mold remediation company like COIT Cleaning and Resoration to look for mold and help you remove mold, if you do see it. More on the mold remediation process can be found here. (Link to mold article)

#7) Moving Back In

During the entire repair and remediation process, you will likely need to stay at a hotel or with family and friends. It may take a few weeks to get your home back to normal. Try not to live or move back into your home until it has thoroughly been inspected for mold or structural damage. Once you are given the 'all clear' you can move back in.

If you have water damage that is left untreated it can cause severe health complications in addition to home damage. Water damage may not appear as a major issue right away, but should always be taken care of as soon as possible. Try using this guide to help you get through one of the most frustrating and overwhelming home situations you can experience as a homeowner.


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