10 Things of What Not To Do After Water Damage

what not to do after water damage

When water damage strikes, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and unsure of what to do next. Whether you’re dealing with a burst pipe, a leaky roof, or a flooded basement, the urge to take immediate action is strong. However, it’s just as important to know what not to do after water damage.

Water damage is every homeowner’s worst fear come to life. In the chaos that follows, it’s all too easy to make mistakes that can compound the damage and make the recovery process even longer. I’ve been in your shoes, and I want to help by sharing the 10 biggest no-nos after water damage.

Dealing with water damage is overwhelming and stressful. Making the wrong moves can cost you time, money, and headaches. Let’s explore what not to do after water damage.

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10 Things of “What Not To Do After Water Damage”

1. Don’t Wait to Address the Water Damage

One of the key mistakes to avoid is delaying water damage cleanup. 

The longer you wait, the greater the chances of structural issues, mold growth, and other complications. Swiftly addressing the problem can save you time, money, and stress in the long run.

Water damage may not appear as a major issue right away, but should always be taken care of as soon as possible. Call a professional water damage restoration company immediately to assess the situation and start the necessary water damage repairs and drying process.

To learn about water damage house repair costs, read here.

2. Avoid Using Electrical Appliances in Affected Areas

Imagine a burst pipe or flood damage just hit your place. Before using a hairdryer or vacuum on the affected areas, stop. 

Using electrical appliances before a professional’s approval can lead to serious safety hazards and further damage.

Avoid electrical hazards by steering clear of outlets or appliances exposed to water. Wait for restoration experts to give the all-clear before plugging anything back in.

3. Don’t Leave Standing Water Unattended

Quickly remove any standing water in your home after a water damage event to prevent structural damage, mold growth, and health hazards. 

Use a wet vacuum, mops, or towels to water extraction and begin drying. For significant amounts, call professionals with specialized equipment.

4. Refrain from Attempting DIY Water Damage Restoration

While it may be tempting to tackle water damage restoration yourself, it’s best to leave it to professionals. They have the specialized equipment and expertise needed for thorough drying and preventing future issues. 

DIY attempts can result in incomplete drying, hidden moisture, and mold growth. Hire a professional to handle the cleanup and water damage repairs properly.

5. Don’t Ignore the Possibility of Mold Growth

Mold can start growing within 24-48 hours of a water damage event, so it’s crucial not to ignore the possibility of mold growth. 

Keep an eye out for visible signs of mold, such as discoloration or musty odors, and address any mold issues promptly.

Don’t let mold take over your home and put your health at risk. Professional mold removal is essential to tackle this issue head-on. 

Act fast when you notice moisture buildup, as it can rapidly become a haven for mold spores to thrive.

6. Avoid Delaying the Drying Process

After removing standing water, start the drying process immediately. 

Open windows and doors, and use fans and dehumidifiers to promote air circulation. Prompt drying reduces the risk of further damage and mold growth.

7. Don’t Forget to Document the Damage for Insurance Claims

When water damage strikes, don’t forget to gather evidence for your insurance company.

Take out your camera and start snapping pictures and recording videos of all the affected areas. Oh, and make sure to jot down every single item that got damaged – you’ll thank yourself later.

Don’t let the claims process overwhelm you. Team up with a reliable restoration company and your insurance company/provider to gather the necessary documentation. This will be key to receiving compensation for the damages when filing an insurance claim.

8. Refrain from Handling Contaminated Water or Sewage Backup

If your water damage is caused by contaminated water or sewage backup, it’s essential to refrain from handling it yourself. 

Contaminated water can contain harmful bacteria and pathogens that pose serious health risks.

Always hire professional restoration company with the proper equipment and expertise to handle sewage backup and ensure a safe cleanup process. Severe water damage caused by dirty water requires specialized care and precautions.

9. Don’t Attempt to Salvage Unsalvageable Items

While it’s natural to want to save belongings after water damage, some items may be beyond repair. 

Porous materials like carpets, upholstery, and drywall soaked for too long may need discarding. 

Salvaging unsalvageable items can cause mold growth and contamination. Follow restoration professionals’ advice on what can be saved or replaced.

10. Avoid Neglecting Hidden or Hard-to-Reach Areas

When addressing water damage, it’s easy to focus on the visible areas and neglect hidden or hard-to-reach spaces. However, moisture can seep into walls, crawl spaces, and other concealed areas, leading to mold growth and structural damage.

Hire a professional restoration company with the tools and expertise to identify and address moisture in these hard-to-reach areas to ensure comprehensive water damage restoration services including mold remediation. 

Key Takeaway: 

After water damage, act fast but wisely. Don’t delay cleanup and avoid DIY restoration. Think twice before trying to save soaked belongings and don’t overlook hidden moisture spots.

FAQs About What Not to Do After Water Damage

What should I do immediately after water damage?

First, cut the power. Then, find and stop the water source. Snap photos for insurance claims before starting cleanup or calling a restoration company. 

How long does it take to dry a house after water damage?

Drying out a house typically takes about five days but can vary based on factors like humidity levels and the extent of damage.

How do you know if water damage is permanent?

If materials like wood are warped, swollen, or crumbly, or if there’s persistent mold despite efforts to clean it up, then the damage might be permanent.

what not to do after water damage

What Not To Do After Water Damage, Answers Unlocked!

Dealing with water damage is never fun, but by avoiding these 10 common mistakes, you can minimize the impact and get your home back to normal faster. 

Remember, safety should always come first. Don’t take any unnecessary risks, and when in doubt, call in the professionals.

Water damage may feel like the end of the world, but it doesn’t have to be. With the right knowledge and approach, you can navigate this challenge and come out stronger on the other side. So, take a deep breath, stay calm, and tackle this water damage head-on. 

With Reliable Restoration NM by your side, Albuquerque can always rise again. We build the future while restoring the past.

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