9 Emergency Water Damage Tips
As water damage mitigation and restoration professionals, we know firsthand that the first 24 hours after a water loss are the most critical for reducing and preventing damage. The steps you take immediately after a loss will determine whether the damage is minor or major, temporary or permanent.
That’s why, after you call us, we spring into action fast. We get to you ASAP to inspect the scene, provide emergency mitigation services, monitor drying and restore your home or business to preloss condition.
But what should you do when a water loss occurs? How can you spring in to action to prevent permanent damage? Here are nine simple tips.
- Do not enter area if water is exposed to electricity.
Before you rush in and get to work, make sure it’s safe. If there’s a chance that the water might be exposed to a live wire or an electrical source, do not enter the room.
- Do not enter area if ceiling is sagging, and do not turn on wet ceiling fixtures.
Similarly, don’t rush into the area if the ceiling is sagging – this might indicate more serious structural damage, and there’s no reason to put yourself in harm’s way. You should also avoid turning on any ceiling fixtures if the ceiling’s wet.
- Shut off the water source, if possible.
If you can safely access the water source, shut it off to prevent further water from coming into your home or business. If you aren’t sure how to access the water source, or you aren’t sure if it’s safe, call a qualified professional for help.
- If safe, turn off circuit breakers for wet areas.
If you’re able to get to them safely, you should also turn off the circuit breakers for the wet area to prevent the flow of electricity.
- Mop or blot as much excess water as you can.
In a water loss, every little bit counts! Grab your mop and whatever towels you can find and try to remove as much water as you can until the professionals get there.
- Place foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpet.
If possible, you can also remove the furniture from the room altogether.
- Move art, electronics, documents and valuables to a dry place.
Moving contents to a dry place is the first step to restoring them to their original condition. Start with art, electronics, documents and anything else that’s both especially valuable and susceptible to serious damage.
- Do not use a household vacuum to suck up water – this could shock or damage the device.
Some people try to use their vacuums as makeshift extractors. We don’t recommend it – you’re likely to damage your device irreversibly.
- Call us, we’re here to help!
No matter how fast you spring into action, there’s a good chance that you’ll need professional help to truly mitigate and restore serious water damage. Give SERVPRO of The Southtowns a call at 716-646-6684 – we’re here to help!