Feb 29, 2020 0

Do I need a restoration company to extract water and clean up or can I do it myself?

For minor flooding and water damage, you may be able to extract the water, clean the area, and completely dry your basement. However, it’s important to recognize the challenge – and the type of loss that you might suffer if the job isn’t done promptly.

If you intend on handling the problem on your own, here’s what you can expect:

  • You will need to use your sump pump and/or wet vacuums to remove water. Depending upon the amount of flooding, that could take anywhere from several hours to a day or more without commercial-grade equipment. Obviously, you will also need to be alert for potential electrical hazards.
  • After extracting the water, you will need to remove property from the area and try to clean as much of it as you can. Anything that cannot be dried and cleaned should be discarded. Costly items like carpeting may be able to be dried and cleaned, but beyond a couple of days and you could wind up with a serious mold problem if not completely dried.
  • You then need to thoroughly dry the area. This will require effective dehumidifiers of commercial grade, as well as air movers. Depending upon the size of the area, you may need multiple units to do the job – and even then, it may take several weeks to completely remove the moisture.
  • We recommend at least one commercial dehumidifier for every 400-500 square foot, and air movers every 10 feet,  with one in each confined or partially confined space. If the area is porous, then you may need one dehumidifier  at least every 300 square foot. 
  • You will also need a commercial grade HEPA air filter, and protection, deodorizing, and antimicrobial prevention spray. The airand building materials should then be tested for quality and moisture content.

In addition, you will need to properly dispose of destroyed items, and conduct a thorough cleaning effort to prevent mold from growing. And remember, mold can start to grow very quickly after a water disaster – so you have little time to properly clean any area and prevent an even bigger problem.

Please note that the removal of wet materials can sometimes be a dangerous endeavor. Water-soaked objects can become extremely heavy. Worse, they can lose as much as 90 percent of their structural integrity, which means that they could break and cause additional home damage if you’re not sure how to properly move them. 

Getting Professional Help

Obviously, responding to a flooded basement requires a great deal of time, effort, and expense. Even when you do it yourself, there are machines to buy or rent, safety equipment you’ll need to acquire, and a great deal of time expended on salvage and cleanup. That’s why so many homeowners turn to professionals to help them deal with this type of catastrophe.

A team of professionals can generally handle water extraction, cleanup, dry out, and protection in a matter of days rather than weeks. That’s because they have the right equipment, experience, and expertise to respond to disasters and protect your home and health before mold or other threats become an even bigger problem.

Finally, professionals know how to properly categorize damage. That’s vital to ensuring that the proper dry plan is implemented, while minimizing unnecessary asbestos, lead, mold, or aerosolized bacteria damage that could cost you tens of thousands of dollars.


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