Flood Cleanup Services
Anyone who’s ever had to deal with a flood knows how devastating they can be to your home or business. Water damage is no joke. If it goes untreated or you don’t clean it properly, flood damage can cause unwanted mold growth, and even damage the infrastructure of your home. But whether a nearby river has flooded, or your home couldn’t handle the heavy rain, it’s important that you know what to do after a flood. Many people have no idea what they should do after a flood. Today, we’ll make sure you’re not one of them, and where to get flood cleanup services should you need them.
Flood Damage Categories
The first step in giving you a guide to flood cleanup services is showing you the different flood damage categories. It isn’t always obvious at first, but there are a few different kinds of floods. Some are more serious than others.
Category 1 flood damage is the least serious, though it can still have many negative effects. In this case, water originates from a clean source. If the water that floods your home is safe for human consumption, that means that it’s Category 1. Category 2 water damage is where things start to get more serious. This is when the water in your home has significant contamination and could make you sick if you drank it or came into contact with it. Lastly, there’s Category 3 water damage. This is water damage caused by grossly contaminated water that has dangerous pathogenic and toxigenic agents.
Generally, Category 1 water damage comes from things like broken supply lines or sprinkler systems. We often refer to it as “fresh water.” Category 2 water damage, on the other hand, often comes from things like ruptured storage tanks and is referred to as “gray water.” And the water that causes Category 3 damage, which most often comes from raw sewage, is often referred to as “black water.” One of the reasons it’s so important to get the water damage treated and flood cleaned up as soon as possible is that a flood can change from Category 1 water damage to Category 3 in a short period of time. Even if fresh water floods your home, if it sits in a warm, enclosed environment, it can develop harmful pathogens. Spores that weren’t harmful on their own can multiply into mold colonies and turn your flood into a serious problem.
Flood Cleanup Process
What should you do after your home has flooded? No matter what kind of flood it is, contacting 1-800 Water Damage of Western Colorado should be your very first step. We will help you determine if you should get your insurance company involved. At that point, your insurance agent and adjuster can help you make sure that the flood damage to your home or property is taken care of properly.
Whereas your insurance agent is really just there, in a claims process, to make sure you’re ok, your insurance adjuster has a much deeper role. Your insurance adjuster surveys damage, estimates costs, and act as an advocate of the insurance company. Once an insurance adjuster gets involved, they act as a source of communication to make sure everyone involved (such as your property restoration company) has all the information they need regarding your insurance policy, so repairs can begin.
Note that if you wait too long to contact a restoration company and your insurance company, it’s harder to assess damage, and the delay in taking action may affect your coverage.
Once it’s safe to come back to a flooded home, you should examine the exterior—or have someone examine it for you. Cracks in the walls or foundation can mean that it’s unsafe to go inside, but they aren’t always easy to spot. You should also make sure that your gas and electricity services aren’t running when you return home. If either of these are still running, it can be dangerous for you. You should also wear protective equipment like waterproof boots, gloves, and some form of eye protection. You can never tell at a glance what will be in the water in your home. Sometimes, animals like snakes will nest in or around your home during or following a flood, so be careful. And be doubly careful about opening doors; oftentimes, doors swell with water, and they may be holding up a structure that would otherwise collapse.
Interior Cleanup and our Flood Cleanup Services
Once you’ve inspected the exterior and determined that it’s safe to go inside, there are a few things you should start to do to minimize damage. Make sure that you open all the windows to help ventilate your home (if the weather is warm), and start removing any and all damaged furniture. You should also begin to remove all of the water-logged bedding and carpeting in your home; even if you dry your carpets with fans, it’s impossible to make sure that you’re fully drying the water beneath the carpet as well. Carpet padding has to go, and so do water-damaged mattresses.
You can’t always tell whether water is contaminated or not, so it’s better safe than sorry. But make sure you take pictures of everything that you throw away for insurance purposes. Once you’ve taken everything outside and removed damaged items, you’ll have to completely dry the floors and damaged walls, replacing where necessary. Of course, once you call in professionals, all these steps become much easier. These are simply good starting points while you’re waiting for help to arrive.
Even with a guide to flood cleanup services, we know that it’s a lot to do. Of course, 1-800 Water Damage of Western Colorado can help you with all of these steps. We offer 24/7 water damage restoration services because we know that it’s not always possible to do it alone. Our number one priority is to return your peace of mind. We have the training, experience, and equipment necessary to do jobs of any size. We can even help you fix ongoing problems, which can save you money in the long run. And since we offer mold removal services as well, there’s no need to worry. If mold becomes an issue (as it often does with water damage), we can help you take care of that, as well.