Water is a powerful element, necessary to fulfil your basic needs. But at times, it can be unpredictable.
Damage through water can be a nightmare scenario for every homeowner as well as for a property manager. People living in areas where monsoon rains and snow melts in spring, usually face water damage. Whereas, people living in relatively dry areas are somehow secure.
A broken sump pump, leaking pipes, cracks in your attic, and roof leaks, are common in many households. Even the reminder of coming home to a flooded living room raises blood pressure and increases anxiety. One must be prepared to deal with worse weather conditions such as flooding, all the time.
Water damage can cause severe damage to your property; almost 40 per cent of people have already faced it.
Additionally, it can affect your home in many ways but leaves behind the hectic task of cleaning up and repairing damages. The process of how to deal with water damage can be very frustrating and challenging.
Therefore, it is advisable to take preventive measures to save and prepare your home from flooding or any other subsequent water damage.
The following are some ways through which you can cope with water damage. With these remediation tips, you can keep your house free from flooding and water damage. It will ensure your safety as well as of all those involved.
1. Know Your Location
It is essential to locate your home and be aware of the weather changes. If you live in tropical areas that are prone to hurricanes and storms, you’ll have a greater risk of flooding. Keep checking weather updates and set reminders.
Make sure you are prepared for all the necessary preventive measures in case of seasonal flooding. Some states that are at risk of flooding include California, Virginia, New York, and New Jersey. If you reside in these areas, you know what you need to do.
Moreover, if you live in areas other than those with a risk of flooding, search for other potential water damage risks. You might need to research your town or state and take preventive measures according to it.
Your family’s safety should be a priority. You can also hire a water damage restoration and cleanup company to deal with water-related issues in residential plus commercial settings.
2. Look for a Flood Warning
While you are aware of all the weather updates in your town, you must prepare yourself for a flood. You should take the necessary measures to protect your family as well as your property.
Firstly, get in touch with the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) which is regulated by the federal government. They work for the benefit of people in areas that have higher possibilities of flooding. If you think your town or your area is more prone to water leaks, get insurance for your property.
Other than that, you can place sandbags to prevent water from moving into your space. It is an effective way, very useful in the event of a hurricane. Most communities give out sandbags. You can also make them on your own by filling sand or soil halfway in the bag.
3. Inspect Your Roof, Attic, and Siding
Keeping an eye on your roof is always a good idea. You should fix issues before they turn out into a costly repair project. For instance, if your roof and sidings are not sealed properly and prone to water leaks, you will have to deal with excess moisture.
The excess moisture can damage your property and might even be the reason for mould growth. However, it can end up in expensive repairs.
Moreover, properly inspect your roof and attic. If you don’t have an attic, look for spots in the ceiling that might indicate a water leak. Keep an eye on the roof shingles also. Make sure they’re installed properly with no space for moisture. If you detect a problem, fix it as soon as possible.
4. Proper Water Drainage System
A proper water drainage system in every household is a must. To make sure it is working perfectly, you can test your drainage system. Start by checking the pipes that remove excess water away from your home. They are also known as sump pumps.
Pour water slowly into the sump pumps and see how fast the water drains in. If the water stays in its place for a long time, you need to call a plumber or a professional water leak detection in Florida if you stay in Florida. They’ll help you unclog or fix it.
Other than that, you need a proper drainage system in your yard. There are many ways to grade and slope your yard. Techniques such as building up high points to keep the water at bay is an effective ways.
5. Check Your Gutters and Downspouts
When was the last time you checked and cleaned your gutters and downspout? You probably don’t remember. It is necessary to make sure your gutters are clean.
They can be backed up with dirt, needles, or rocks. Being stuffed with dirt means no proper drainage. You might not notice it during regular days, but it can be a huge problem during the rainy season.
Therefore, you need them clog-free. Any potential clog can interfere with the water draining through the gutters and resulting in the rainwater moving to your home’s sides and causing even more damage. So get your gloves, and a rake, and clean it now.
6. Identify Water Source
To ensure your home is free from water damage, first identify the source of the water leak. Look around your house for potential damages.
Inspect your attic and basement, if you find moisture chances are that there’s a water leak. Make sure to turn off the pipes that are supplying water to them. Similarly, look around all the dark spots in your home.
Besides, if you have vinyl flooring and you see them curling up, it might be a sign of a water leak. Make sure to fix it as soon as possible to avoid further damage.
7. Dry the Location
As soon as you spot a water leak or encounter flooding, it is necessary to dry the area. Water damage cleanup is necessary to prevent further loss.
Moulds and mildew can grow in spaces where the water is left standing. Move the water to the drains or soak it up using towels.
Furthermore, to ensure the water is dried up completely move things out of the space—for instance, your furniture and belongings. If the water damage is extensive, rent a few industrial fans to make sure the area dries completely.
8. Look for Hidden Moisture in Small Spaces
Once you’ve started the process of drying the area, don’t miss the hidden moisture. You should look for small places that may need damage repair. Even if you don’t suspect any water leak, you should still check them. For instance, inspect areas like ducts, vents, crawl spaces, and insulation.
Damage to these areas may lead to bigger issues in the future. Thus, checking them is important. Don’t forget to check under carpets, and floorboards and see if the water has entered these spaces. Use fans to make sure everything dries up fully.
9. Check Before Reentering
If your home has encountered water damage or flooding, be very careful when reentering. Electrical equipment that has come into contact with the water possesses the greatest danger.
Stay away from water that is coming through electrical boxes or light fixtures. They can be deadly and electrolyte a person when touched. Therefore, it is advisable to seek professional help in such cases.
If other electrical equipment such as a meter panel, circuit breaker box, or electrical box is affected by water, immediately shut them off. Seal off the meter and wires with caution tape after the electricity is shut off.
Moreover, during floods, usually, animals take shelter in their homes. If you return to your home and find an animal, call animal control and ask them to remove it.
10. Search for a Restoration Company
After you dry the area, you need to have restoration services. But for that, you’ll need to search for a reliable restoration company. With their help, you’ll fix the bigger damages to your property.
They will also help you detect problems that you might overlook. You can ask them for a thorough inspection of your home to look for any other troubles.
Once you have a list of all the damages, fix it as soon as possible. Moreover, look for a company with relevant experience and certifications.
You can also ask for referrals from your friends and neighbours. Other than that, do all the necessary paperwork as well.
Effective Ways of Coping with Water Damage
Water is essential for your living, but it can cause severe adverse effects on your property. Dealing with water damage is something no homeowner wants to spend time on. The longer it is left unattended, the more problems you are likely to face.
Here are some effective ways of coping with water damage:
- Know your location.
- Look for a flood warning.
- Inspect your roof, attic, and siding.
- Proper water drainage system.
- Check your gutters and downspouts.
- Identify water source.
- Dry the location.
- Look for hidden moisture in small spaces.
- Check before reentering.
- Search for a restoration company.
Although it is stressful and time-consuming, you need to deal with it. Take your time to make repairs and take help only from a professional.
In conclusion, you can’t control the weather conditions, but you can surely take measures to prevent yourself from it. Prepare yourself beforehand, so that in case you encounter unexpected flooding or any other water damage, you can fix it quickly.
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I am Adeyemi Adetilewa, a media consultant, entrepreneur, husband, and father. Founder and Editor-In-Chief of Ideas Plus Business Magazine, online business resources for entrepreneurs. I help brands share unique and impactful stories through the use of public relations, advertising, and online marketing. My work has been featured on the Huffington Post, Thrive Global, Addicted2Success, Hackernoon, The Good Men Project, and other publications.