10 Things to Do After Water Damage in Your House

10 Things To Do After Water Damage In Your House

Water damage can be a devastating experience for any homeowner. Whether it’s due to a burst pipe, heavy rain, or flooding, the aftermath of water damage is not so easy to deal with. Aside from the obvious structural issues, there are also health risks that come with water damage, such as mold growth and potential contamination.

This is why it’s crucial to take action immediately after water damage occurs. In this guide, we’ll discuss ten things you should do right after experiencing water damage in your house and how they can help mitigate and prevent further issues.

1. Locate the Source of Water 

Do a thorough inspection of your house to try to find the source of water damage. Is it due to a leaky pipe? Is it coming from the roof or windows? Or is it because of an overflowing toilet? 

Water From Burst Pipe Behind The Wall
Water from burst pipe behind the wall

By identifying the source of the water damage, you can determine whether the water is clean or contaminated and take appropriate action. For instance, if the water is coming from a sewage backup, avoiding contact with it is essential, as it can be hazardous to your health.

If you can’t seem to pinpoint the source of water damage, it’s best to call in a restoration professional to assess the situation. Sometimes, the source may be hidden behind walls or under flooring, and a professional can use specialized equipment to detect it.

2. Turn Off the Water Supply

If the source of water damage is due to a burst pipe or an overflowing appliance, it’s vital to cut off the water supply immediately. This will prevent more water from entering more areas of your house and causing further damage. In most cases, the main water valve can be found outside your house or in the basement.

Turn Off Water Supply

It’s essential to know where your main water valve is located and how to shut it off in case of emergencies. If you’re unsure, contact your local water company for assistance.

3. Turn Off Electricity (In Extreme Cases) 

Often, water damage doesn’t reach electrical outlets or appliances. Rather, it stays concentrated in a specific area.

Turn Off Electricity

However, in extreme cases where water starts creeping toward electrical sources, it’s imperative to turn off the electricity to avoid potential hazards like electrocution. This can typically be done at the main circuit breaker.

If you’re unsure about turning off the electricity yourself, call an electrician or your utility company for assistance. It’s always better to err on the side of caution when dealing with electricity and water damage.

4. Contact the Insurance Company

Amidst the chaos of dealing with water damage in your home, filing an insurance claim may not be at the forefront of your mind. But you’ll want to eventually get in touch with your insurance company to inform them of the damage.

Call Home Insurance

While it’s unlikely that a basic home insurance policy will cover all forms of water damage, like natural disasters – you’re probably covered for sewage backups and burst pipes. It’s important to review your policy or contact your insurance agent to clarify what is covered.

Insurance agents can also provide guidance on what steps to take and recommend reputable mold remediation and water damage professionals.

 5. Document the Damage 

Document Water Damage

Before you start cleaning up the water damage, it’s essential to document the extent of the damage for insurance purposes. Take photos and videos of all affected areas, including furniture and personal belongings.

If possible, make a list of damaged items and their estimated value. This will help with the insurance claim process and ensure you receive proper compensation for your losses.

6. Remove Standing Water

The water damage restoration process should begin by removing any standing water from your home. This is typically done by professionals using pumps and vacuums to extract the water quickly and effectively.

Water Damage Cleanup

In rare cases, you may be able to DIY your own water damage cleanup. For instance, if your sink has overflowed and only a small area is affected, you can use towels, dehumidifiers, and fans to dry out the area. However, if done incorrectly, this can lead to mold growth and further structural damage. So, most of the time, it’s best to leave it to the experts – especially if the water is contaminated.

7. Dry Out Your House 

After removing the standing water, the next step is to dry out the affected area. This may involve setting up industrial-size fans and dehumidifiers to circulate air and reduce humidity. Thoroughly drying out all surfaces, including walls, flooring, and furniture, is essential.

Dry Out Water Damage House

If left damp, mold can begin to grow within 24-48 hours of exposure to moisture, so it’s critical to dry everything out as quickly as possible. A water damage restoration company will also use moisture meters to ensure all surfaces are completely dry before moving on with the restoration process.

8. Disinfect and Clean Surfaces 

Once the area is dry, it’s essential to clean and disinfect all surfaces thoroughly. This includes any furniture, flooring, and walls that were affected by the water damage.

Disinfecting And Cleaning Water Damaged Surfaces

Professionals use specialized cleaning products and techniques to remove any remaining contaminants and prevent mold growth. It’s crucial not to skip this step, as mold spores can cause severe health risks and further damage your property.

9. Repair or Replace Damaged Items 

Water damage can cause significant damage to your belongings, such as furniture, electronics, and personal items. Depending on the severity of the damage, some items may be salvageable with proper cleaning and restoration techniques. However, others may need to be replaced entirely.

Replace Water Damaged Carpet

For instance, if your carpet has been soaked through due to a major flood, it’s best to replace it rather than trying to salvage it. The same goes for furniture that has been severely damaged by water. Leaving these items in your home can cause mold growth, which can quickly spread to building materials and lead to costly repairs in the future.

10. Conduct Regular Maintenance and Inspections

Once the restoration process is complete, it’s essential to take steps to prevent future water damage from occurring. This includes addressing any underlying issues that may have caused the initial damage, such as leaky pipes or a faulty roof.

Regular maintenance and inspections can also help catch potential problems early on and prevent them from becoming major water damage incidents.

Water Damage House 10 Things To Do

Need Water Restoration Services?

In the event of water damage, it’s crucial to act fast and hire a professional water restoration company. They have the expertise, equipment, and resources necessary to properly assess the damage and provide prompt and effective restoration services.

At Drico Restoration, we understand the urgency of water damage and offer 24/7 emergency services to help minimize the damage and prevent further issues. Our team of trained professionals will work quickly and efficiently to restore your property back to its pre-damaged condition.

Contact us today for all your water restoration needs.

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Ali Wallace

Ali Wallace is the owner and founder of Drico Restoration, a Gulfport-based company specializing in water, fire, and mold damage restoration. With a deep commitment to her community, Ali has built a reputation for compassionate service and high-quality workmanship during times of crisis. Her dedication to transparency and client-focused solutions has earned the trust of countless homeowners and businesses throughout the region. With years of experience in the restoration industry, Ali continues to lead her team in restoring not just properties, but also peace of mind.