If you uncover a buildup of water or experience severe, sudden water damage in your home, it’s pivotal to your safety that you understand the proper steps to take. It’s true that prevention is essential but sometimes water damage happens. Read this article to learn more about water damage prevention.
If possible, shut off the water source. Also, if possible, get to your electrical panel and shut off circuits going to any rooms affected by the leak. Electricity poses a serious threat to you if there is standing water in your home. But if you can’t access the circuit breaker and you aren’t 100% sure it’s safe, don’t risk it. Just get out of the house and wait for a professional to arrive.
Do not come in direct contact with the water on the floor. It could be in contact with loose electrical wires. You could hurt yourself by slipping in it or by getting contaminated water in contact with an open cut.
Remove as much water as possible from the affected part of the home, if possible. Use mops, old towels and rags and a wet vac, if you have one. Remove any affected rugs and bring them outside to dry in the sun.
Wipe down wet furniture to remove excess water. Place aluminum foil between the furniture legs and the wet carpet. Open the windows and turn on any fans and/or air conditioners to circulate air and facilitate drying.
If the water is visibly contaminated with sewage, do not attempt to mop, blot or otherwise stop the spread of water. Instead, call a professional to remove the water immediately so that you can be sure your home is dry and you can begin to quell the spread of mold.
Take as many photos of the damage as possible. Before a professional arrives and any necessary steps are taken on repairing the home, take pictures. This is especially necessary if you’re going to file an insurance claim. You want as much proof as you can get to back up your claim.
Do not use a regular household vacuum to remove water. Do not use electrical appliances while standing on wet floor or carpet. Do not run a ceiling fan in a room where the ceiling is wet. Replace all damp insulation with new, dry insulation.
Do not go into a room where the ceiling is sagging from water damage. Instead, poke small holes in the affected ceiling to allow trapped water to drain. Use a bucket or pan to catch the water below.