How Long is Too Long? Recovering from Water Damage
November 21, 2016
Water damage alone is devastating. Consider the potential damage caused by damages caused during a storm. Thunderstorms cause power outages, leaks and roof damages, and it’s important to micromanage any wet areas before the storm passes. If you don’t, you might face hefty roof replacements, exterior painting jobs and even wood siding repair. The damage might’ve already been done, but it shouldn’t be allowed to get worse. Check out our tips for in-storm water damage recovery.
Tip One: Put up a Makeshift Trench Drain
If your home gets an unwanted introduction from driveway runoff water, you’ll need to make a trench drain immediately. First, find your driveway’s negative pitch towards the house. Then, create a makeshift trench drain to direct water runoff. You can do this by wrapping two-by-fours in durable trash bags. Place these against any spill-in areas, and divert flowing water to your home’s side area.
Tip Two: Use a Wet/Dry Vacuum
Next, you’ll need to remove standing water quickly. To do so, hook up a wet/dry vacuum. Make sure the wall outlet is free of moisture, however, and remove any surrounding electronics from the area. These machines are incredibly useful for removing standing water, and they can be rented well before a storm to guarantee immediate use.
Tip Three: Clean Weep Holes at the First Sign of Trouble
As soon as water damage seems likely, clean any wall weep holes. These holes are designed to allow water drainage from walls, and they similarly grant air ventilation when necessary. If they’re clogged, however, rainfall can back up, cascade around them and create structural damages. Exterior painting can even be damaged if a home’s weep holes aren’t maintained, so scrub them well.
Tip Four: Protect the Furniture
If you think standing water may reach your living room area, you’ll need to protect your furniture as soon as possible. Even raised chairs and tables can suffer structural damages at the leg-level, so it’s important to protect them from the ground. Trash bags, again, will be your best friend. They’re designed to block in—or block out—moisture. Place them beneath any furniture legs, and check for wet spots before you do. Make note of these areas, because you’ll need to prevent mold growth later.
Tip Five: Reduce Sewage Usage
If the groundwater is high, you should refrain from using your home’s toilets. High groundwater can impact the efficiency of sewer and septic systems, resulting in waste overflow and in-house damages. Sure, you can use the bathroom if you need to—but avoid multiple uses in rapid succession.
Remember: It’s always safer to keep any electronics turned off. The storm will pass, but your personal belongings can still become damaged. Stick it out, stay dry as possible and contact a water damage professional as soon as the sun comes out.