STOP THE WATER
The first step in any water damage situation is making sure the source of water has been stopped. That’s the first, and most urgent, emergency. If it’s a plumbing leak, the initial solution may be as simple as turning off a water valve. To permanently fix the problem you may require a professional plumber. If the water is coming from outside, like a roof leak or foundation problem, then a licensed roofing or water-proofing contractor may be needed. Either way, the source of the water must be stopped so that further damage is avoided and so drying efforts can be effective.
ASSESS THE DAMAGE
Once the source of the water problem is contained, it’s time to assess the extent of the damage and decide how to fix it in the safest, but most cost effective, manner. One important consideration is the type of water involved.
The three types of water are:
- Type 1 – Relatively clean water from rain, fresh water pipes, condensation, etc.
- Type 2 – Gray water from sources like dishwashers, washing machines, clean toilets, etc.
- Type 3 – This is essentially sewage, as well as serious flooding from rivers and the like. This is the most laden with bacteria and other organisms and the most dangerous to clean up yourself.
Knowing the type of water that caused the problem helps in determining how you want to clean it up. The worse the type of water, and the longer it has been there, the more serious the problem, and the greater the extent of repair and disinfection necessary.
Obviously, if the space in question is still flooded, pumping the water out is the first step, after the source has been stopped.
DEMOLITION AND DRYING
This is the stage where those things that can’t saved must be removed, and the rest must be thoroughly dried, using ventilation and dehumidification. It’s also sometimes necessary to add heat to further accelerate the drying process.
Depending on the type of water involved and the length of time before drying, it may be necessary to treat for bacteria and/or mold. If you choose G&C Environmental, our product Oceanic® treats for both at the same time.