Water Damage Remediation
Water damage can result from a number of factors ranging from simple rain leakage to flooding to drainage backup. Damage from water can also range from basic wood warping to potentially deadly mold and other contagions. A qualified water damage repair service can assess the damage to your home or business and estimate what, if any, water damage remediation and restoration is necessary. Different kind of damage can result from different types of incidents, and from different water sources.
According to the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC), there are three basic categories of water that can damage your home or business.
- Clean Water — Clean water is rain water or water that has been treated to remove any harmful chemicals and sediments. Clean water can come from rain or leaking pressure pipes in your home or office. Clean water is not harmful to people are animals, and is safe to work with and around during water damage repairs and damage restoration. If left untreated, however, even clean water can encourage mold and bacterial growth. If you spot damage from water, even clean water, you should contact a qualified water damage repair service to prevent potential health hazards.
- Grey Water — Grey water contains increased levels of impurities and contaminants that may cause minor discomfort or temporary health reactions. Grey water may contain detergents, household cleaning chemicals, bacteria, algae, or other mild to moderate impurities. Grey water can come from leaking or damaged toilet bowls, dishwashers, or washing machines. While grey water does contain potential health hazards, they are usually mild, temporary, and easily treatable. Working around grey water can be uncomfortable, as it may have mild chemical or biological odors. If you suspect grey water damage, you should contact a qualified water damage repair service to assess the damage and potential health hazards. Water removal and damage remediation are generally straightforward and non-hazardous with grey water.
- Black Water — Black water is water that is contaminated with bacteria, fungi, sewage, industrial chemicals, or other impurities that are hazardous to human and animal health. Prolonged exposure to black water can cause severe and lingering health problems, and can possibly result in death. Black water can result from industrial spills, sewage or storm drain backups, or even clean water that is left untreated for a long time. Black water damage remediation and repairs should only be undertaken by a trained professional water damage repair service. Extreme caution should be taken in the presence of black water damage to reduce the risk of infection or other health hazards.
It should be noted that, in spite of the color-coding scheme set forth by the IICRC, the water will probably not be grey or black. It may be difficult to tell by looking at it whether water damage is the result of clean, grey, or black water. For that reason you should always contact a qualified water damage repair contractor to assess the situation and handle the water removal, as well as coordinate the damage restoration.
Potential Sources of Water Damage
Water is one of the most powerful forces on the planet. It has wiped out whole cities and over time has carved the Grand Canyon. It can wash away homes and office buildings in a single, powerful flood, or can make a home unlivable with tiny drops over many years. Because people depend on water for drinking, sanitation, and work, we have developed a sophisticated infrastructure to move it in and out of our lives. But when that infrastructure breaks down, or when nature gives us more water than we can handle, damage from water can be catastrophic.
- Leaky Roofs — Roofs are designed to protect homes and offices from elements such as heat, cold, and water. Although modern roofing materials and techniques are very effective, roofs inevitably wear down, letting water leak in, usually just a few drops at a time. But that little bit can cause wood and drywall to warp, and can create an ideal medium for hazardous bacteria and mold to grow.
- Blocked Gutter or Downspout — Gutters or downspouts are designed to direct runoff from the roof to the ground. When they are clogged, water can back up and collect on the roof, seeping under roof shingles and soaking through wood and insulation. To prevent damage from water, you should check your gutters frequently to remove potential obstructions.
- Landscaping Changes — Changes in the landscaping around your building can shift the direction that water flows, directing it toward your foundation. Water can damage your foundation by eroding the ground beneath it or by seeping into cracks and eroding away the foundation itself. Damage remediation on water-damaged foundations can be very costly and time-consuming.
- Leaky Plumbing — This is the most common cause of water damage. Water-using appliances such as the toilet, sink, shower, tub, dishwasher, water heater, or washing machine can develop leaks, as can the in-wall water pipes that supply them. Minor leaks can go undetected for years until they have caused significant water damage. The backsplash on your kitchen sink can also cause water damage if it is cracked or if the seal has grown hard and cracked. Water damage repairs to walls and structure behind walls can be difficult and expensive.
- Natural Disasters — Floods and mudslides can cause water to build up and spill over walls and other barriers that are designed for moderate rainfall. Even when floodwaters have subsided, they can leave mud, dirt, and debris on your floors and walls. These conditions can cause hazardous bacteria, fungi, and mold to grow in your home or office, and can attract insects and other pests. Earthquakes can also cause cracks in foundations and walls that could allow water to leak into your foundation and walls. This can also create ideal growth conditions for bacterial and mold growth. Water removal is obviously the first priority in natural disaster situations, followed by damage remediation and damage restoration. Locally-based repair contractors such as Vital Restoration should be experienced with common causes of water damage in your area, and will be best equipped to help you fix water damage.
Our Water Damage Cleanup Options
Vital Restoration is a licensed and certified water damage repair service. Our multi-step process includes water extraction, damage remediation, and damage restoration. We have a crew of dedicated and experienced technicians to fix water damage in your home or business. Our process is designed to repair damage from water and leave your home or office looking like new. In some cases water damage remediation must also include fire damage remediation when the water damage is the result of a fire, causes can be sprinkler systems and fire hoses.
Some of the damage restoration methods we use include:
- Desiccant Dehumidification — This water damage remediation process filters the air and removes moisture from affected areas. We seal the room off and pump all of the air through a dehumidifier, removing the moisture in the air and condensing it as water. This process hampers the growth of mold and bacterial colonies in the affected area. Moist air can cause mold to grow on drywall, in carpets and carpet padding, and in unseen area behind furniture. Mold colonies can release airborne mycotoxins that are hazardous to human and animal health. They can also release airborne spores that can cause severe health problems. The water extraction process can also save documents from being destroyed. Extremely humid air like that left after water damage can cause documents to deteriorate and fall apart. Even documents that have been underwater but are still intact can potentially be recovered by the water removal desiccant dehumidification process.
- Freeze Drying — This process is conducted in a closed chamber to protect books, binders, and printed materials from water damage. This process is similar to desiccant dehumidification, in that it filters air through a dehumidifier and condenses moisture into a liquid, but the freeze drying process is done at a very low temperature in order to maximize the amount of water extraction from the books, binders and other printed materials. This is a very advanced process that many damage restoration repair contractors do not have access to.
- Detailed and thorough inspections — the water damage remediation experts at Vital Restoration conduct thorough inspections of the affected areas throughout the damage restoration process. We use sensitive tools to detect water, moisture, and mold spores at the level of parts per million. Drying out the areas you can see doesn't do much good if the hidden areas are contaminated by hazardous mold and bacteria. We know where moisture collects and where mold congregates, and we inspect every nook and cranny to find hidden water deposits or hidden mold colonies.
- Water Mitigation — When damage from water occurs to structural parts of your home or office, such as wooden frames, floorboards, or drywall, it can not only encourage the growth of hazardous mold and bacteria, but also weaken and even compromise the structure of your home or office. We use high-powered, efficient, and quick water removal dryers and blowers to blast moisture out of your walls, floors, and supports.
- Sewage Cleanup and Sanitizing — When drainage pipes burst or city lines back up into your home it can be a disaster. Damage from water can be the least of your problems when sewage has overflowed onto your floors. Vital Restoration can remove the sewage, and conduct thorough damage remediation and sanitation procedures. We have industrial-strength cleaning tools and chemicals to scrub the sewage, bacteria, and mold out of your home or business. We can also remove contaminated wallboard and carpets to leave your home or business cleaner and more sanitary than it was before the incident.
- Carpet Repair, Dyeing, and Stretching — Carpet is usually one of the first spots affected by damage from water, and because of its low position and absorbency it often takes the worst damage from water. Vital Restoration can dry your carpets out, repair any tearing or mold damage, and dye the entire area to a matching color. If your carpet has shrunk as a result of damage from water, our expert repair contractors can stretch it back out to cover its original area.
Damage remediation means stopping the damage before it can damage or destroy anything else. Water Damage restoration means restoring a damaged home or business back to its original condition. The water damage repairs professionals at Vital Restoration can use our years of damage remediation experience to fix water damage at your home or office to prevent further damage from water from occurring, and we can use our special damage restoration techniques to return your home or business to the healthy working condition it was in before.
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