Understanding Flood Water Damage: Risks, Historical Data and Preventive Measures

Flood water damage is the most damaging of all kinds of water related residential/commercial damage. Flood waters can be caused by a number of factors. One of the most common is caused by the clogging of city drainage due to garbage, soil deposits and ineffective drainage systems. When natural disasters happen like hurricanes, the volume of water can increase radically, causing dangerous floods. Floods are usually fast moving streams of water and can lift up cars due to its immense volume and speed. On top of that, it carries earth, garbage and other materials from one point to another. Understand that a lot of cities and communities are at risk of flooding including low lying areas. Hurricane paths are mostly affected by such conditions and it is everybody’s obligation to understand how to address flood water damage and mitigate the situation.

Notable floods

Throughout the years, there have been high profiles flooding incidents that have been recorded across the US. Some of the notable ones are as follows:

– The 1889 Johnston PA flooding resulted to a death toll of 2200. This is due to the heavy rainfalls that instigated the collapse of South Fork Dam.
– The 1937 Mississippi Valley flood has taken the lives of 1100 people flooded the river and displaced around 600,000 people.
– In 1913, heavy rains across the Ohio River caused severe flooding with a death toll of 700 people.
– In 1997, the notable Red River Flood affected North Dakota and Minnesota. It affected several cities including Fargo, Winnipeg, East grand Forks and Grand Forks. The disaster caused billions of dollars in total.
– In 2005, the now infamous Hurricane Katrina caused significant damage in the New Orleans area as it has flooded a massive area of the city, resulting to 700 deaths and the displacement of thousands of people.

The National flood insurance program

Most commercial insurance programs do not cover such a disastrous peril and that is why flood water damage is a very costly thing for many home and business owners. That is why in 1968, the US Congress created the National flood insurance Act that gave birth to the National flood insurance program. This allowed those people affected by floods to buy insurance from the government to get coverage from the perils of floods. This an alternative to the already escalating costs of disaster assistance. Since 2010, millions of homes have already benefited from this program.

Finding flood water damage support

The program offers information about recovering from flood and preparing before, during and after the event. They also are connected to organizations like Better Business Bureau to find qualified contractors that can do repairs and address the renovation and remediation of molds. Flood water damage needs to be addressed as soon as possible. If the families can still fix the home, given that the overflow of water has already subsided. They offer links and resources from the official website about various methods to rebuild the home and keep it stronger, prevent the formation of mold and understand if you are at risk for future flooding.

Flood water damage and other related damages can wreck havoc to individual homes, communities and cities. It is necessary that homeowners inform themselves of the various information about keeping the house solid and protected against the dangers of flood waters. The government and other agencies as well as water damage experts are willing to extend their help by providing information and support to those whose homes were damaged caused by the forces of nature. By prior preparation and risk management, cities and individual homes will be able to address the potential dangers of river overflows, hurricanes and other sources of floods.

Minimizing Water Damages From Wind and Rain Storms

Springtime in many parts of the country is well known for stormy weather and tornado activity. Recent weeks brought massive rain, wind and hail storms throughout parts of the United States. These storms have proved destructive on many fronts, causing extensive property damage due to strong winds, heavy rains, flooding and overflowing storm drains.

Tornadoes are usually accompanied by brutal winds, hail and unrelenting rain. These storms damage roofs, skylights, trees, fences, buildings, and anything else that is in their way. Agile winds toss cars and trucks as though they are mere cardboard boxes. They hurl roof shingles off homes and let rain and hail cause wet carpets, ceilings, floors and furniture. Rainstorms flood basements and crawl spaces bringing about tremendous water damages and financial woes to property owners. The end results of tornadoes, massive winds and rainstorms are oftentimes pathways of destruction and disaster stricken communities.

Not all water devastation from these storms can be completely avoided. However, there are ways to minimize potential water damage in your home. Most importantly, homeowners need to know that regular home maintenance and storm preparedness are the first steps in property and personal safety. Although it is impossible to prevent wind and rain storms, it is possible to lessen the impact of water damage stemming from these storms.

Before the rainy season begins and after each significant wind, hail or rain storm, inspecting both outside and inside the home and making necessary repairs may determine how well the home fares in a future storm situation. Outside the home, checking the gutters to make sure they are not blocked with dried leaves and debris should be included in a basic home maintenance routine. Homeowners should examine the roof to ensure there are no loose or missing shingles. Roof inspection also includes checking the flashing around the chimney to make sure it is tight and will not let water leak in. In addition, the ground around the house should be sloping away from the home, otherwise rainwater will pool around the house, potentially damaging the foundation, causing flooding and water damage to occur. Cracks both externally and internally should be caulked and sealed well, to prevent water from seeping in.

Inside the home, checking and maintaining appliance water line connections, such as washing machine, dishwasher, and refrigerator hoses on a regular basis goes a long way toward minimizing the potential for water damages. Toilets, sinks, showers and bathtubs need to be regularly checked for leaks as well as mold discoloration and musty odors. Any discoloration on walls or ceilings must be investigated and attended to because it could be indicative of water leaks. Water heaters last an average of eight to twelve years. However, they may become rusty and may leak at any time, so a drain pan leading to an external outdoors drain is a must. In fact, calling a professional water damage restoration contractor to inspect the premises and offer advice and suggestions about necessary repairs is a wise and worthwhile investment.

Not all water damages from storms and flooding will be completely eliminated with a home maintenance routine, but regular care will certainly go a long way in most cases to decrease potential damage. Tornadoes and the massive wind, hail and rain storms that accompany them can cause tremendous damages to homeowners, towns and municipalities. Taking responsibility for one’s home will decrease many unpleasant storm and flooding scenarios. However, when faced with water damage emergencies, professional water damage restoration companies can remove, dry and clean up floods and repair the premises to pre-emergency condition.

Water Damage Clean Up – Not Just From Storms

When most people think of water damage in a home or business, scenes of area wide flooding showing continuously on 24 hour news channels is likely to come to mind. But actually, a small percentage of water damage losses are related to storms or flooding.

It’s true that these losses get more publicity because they happen in bunches and tend to be more severe, but it is much more likely that if you suffer a water damage loss it will be from a plumbing problem. That’s the good news, because there is nothing you can do to prevent storms, and little you can do to prevent storm damage, but there are things you can do to prevent water damage from plumbing problems.

Water Damage from Plumbing Mishaps

The most severe incidents usually occur in a home or business when there is a water line break and no one is there. This is a common occurrence at businesses, where a broken water supply line can spew out water all night or all weekend before it is discovered. The culprits include: blown fittings on water heaters located above the office areas; automatic coffee machines that malfunction and continue filling and overflowing the pot all night; broken lines to a sink, toilet, or ice maker; malfunctioning fire sprinkler systems; and even water main breaks in the ceiling.

In homes, similar problems with supply lines are common, but other common occurrences in are: the hot or cold water hose to the washing machine rupturing; dishwashers and washing machines continuing to fill and overflow when the float ball malfunctions; toilets that are flushed, stop up and continue to run; and bathtubs that are being filled and are forgotten.

Preventive Measures

As you can see from all of these examples, the easiest thing you can do to limit or prevent water damage in your home or business is to turn off the main water line when you will be away for an extended time. Some of worst days for water damage losses are right after major holidays or popular vacation times when people are returning home. That’s when they discover that water has been leaking for who knows how long, and when the damage is severe and the clean up and repairs extensive. How long you are willing to be gone without turning off the water to your home or business depends on how big of a risk you are willing to take.

But even simpler and smaller steps than turning off the water main to your home can be taken to avoid common water damage situations. For instance don’t leave your home with the dishwasher or washing machine running, or with a toilet that hasn’t stopped running. Also, if you are going to be gone for more than a day, at least turn off the hot and cold water to your washing machine. That in itself will eliminate a common cause of water damage.

And one last thing, if the water service to your home is ever interrupted, make sure to turn off every faucet and shower that was on when the water went off. Severe water damage can occur when faucets and showers are inadvertently left on and the water service is restored while the homeowner is gone. So you can see that many water damage losses, and the grief that goes with them, are very preventable if you are willing to take a few simple precautions.

David A. Selter is the President of DRYMORE Company in Houston, Texas, with decades of experience in emergency water damage services in the Gulf Coast area.

DRYMORE is an A+ BBB rated company with experience that includes removing water and drying structures damaged by tropical storms, broken water pipes, and local flooding rains. We have dried and restored everything from a partially wet room in a home, to entire department stores, hotels and other large commercial properties.

Repairing Water Damage – Simple, Yet Important Inquiries to Ask Your Contractor

Repairing water damage is a task by damage contractors that specialize in identifying, fixing and preventing damage caused by various water sources. However, finding the right contractor can be a pain. That is why you should make sure that you do your research well. Doing so will be helpful in discovering the most compatible team that can really provide high quality results.

The two faces of water
Water is quite dualistic in nature it is helpful and devastating at the same time. Water damage can result to high risks to any place especially to your home. The damage can be as simple a small drip outside the house, creating discolorations on the painted surface. It can also be highly destructive like floods or sewage water backing up into the pipes. The damage brought by water can also seep through deeper on to the house foundations, affecting its stability.

For any kind of damage caused by water, getting experts to handle the task is a necessity.

Search for IICR Certification
When in search for a contractor for repairing water damage, look at their certification. They should have an IICRC or the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification. This is given by the organization that focuses regulating companies venturing in mold and water damage repairs. The certificate is provided to companies that are insured and they also hire technicians that are certified also by the IICRC.

Knowledge and skill
When dealing with a company for repairing water damage, ask them the extent of the damage. They should be able to know with careful analysis if what you have at home is a simple issue only or if it requires specialized tools for repairs. It is necessary for them to be able to identify the damage so that they can suggest and implement the proper ways to keep the space dry. Related to that, the contractor should be able to identify the source/s of the damage. Water damage can be quite tricky. It could be caused by problems with the foundation itself or you might be having leaks on the piping system across the house. If they can identify the issue, there is a good chance they can put a plug on it.

Understanding of equipment
The contractors repairing water damage should also be able to provide concrete number regarding the dehumidifiers that you would need and other specialized tools that will be implemented to make the space dry. If they cannot give a concrete number of items to be used, then chances are they do not know what they are dealing with. Too much or too little can be detrimental for your home. Related to that, how will the contractors know if the whole area is dry? Contractors need to explain the tools they use to detect moisture content in the area that will help them in determining if the space is dry.

Of course, you have to know the items/chemicals they will use inside. There are some companies that use chemicals that are quite hazardous and could even linger longer than expected. Always ask them for the MSDS or the data sheet for materials safety. Aside from this document, what other paper works is needed? They should be able to offer an invoice. This will serve as proof that the company served you and they can break down the procedures done and items used.

In a nutshell, you are expected to be open to the ones repairing water damage at home. As much as they are expected to fix the problem with precision, you are also expected to be on this project to make the procedure fast and to your advantage.

Addressing Water Damaged Floors – Keep Your Floor Looking Great After the Damage

A water damaged flooring can be your worst enemy especially hardwood floors. Wood and water can never mix. If your floor was waxed or sealed, the floor can get stained if the water just sits on the surface even for a few minutes, imagine the extent of the damage if it were a flooded area. It is necessary that you are fast when dealing with the problems caused by water damage. It is not just on the surface in which you can have a problem; you can also run the risk of soaking the underlying structures. If you are on a multilevel home, damaged floors can also affect the walls and ceilings of underlying levels. Water damage is a problem that could happen in any home. It is necessary that you know the proper ways to mitigate the said issue and make sure that your home is protected from risks like these.

Step 1
You need to remove as much water from the surface of the floor. You also need to remove the water and moisture that is present on the sub-floor. If you have plywood flooring, it would be much difficult to reach the sub-floor due to the waterproof quality of plywood. Drying it as soon as possible will prevent the wood surface from warping but more importantly, it will reduce the chances of mold and mildew build up.

Step 2
if you have a big fan or if you can rent an air blower, set them up on the affected area and point it to the area that is water damaged but keep the windows on the other room open slightly, around 2 inches. If the damage is above another structure like a basement or the ground floor, the fan should be also blowing but upwards to ensure that the floor is dry on the sub-floor and above the ceiling. This will prevent the water from reaching the ceiling and causing even greater damage. Since we are talking about wood floors, it would be best to expect that the panels will expand. One way to address this is to remove a couple of panels in order to ventilate the underside as well.

Step 3
Damaged floors can lead to white stains. To remove these stains, you need to get a soft cloth and a very mild abrasive such as toothpaste mineral oil and tobacco ash mixture or a compound for auto polishing. Gently rub the affected surface until the stain is gone. The damage can also create dark spots caused by white water. First, the surrounding floors should be masked with masking tape. Once you have done that, remove the wax and other finishes on the surface. Saturate oxalic acids on the water until it cannot dissolve anymore. Pour it on the affected area and then brush off the solidified crystals.

Step 4
It would be best that if you have water damage that extends a wide area of the house, you go to a water damage contractor; they can make assessments about the extent of the damage and help you in checking if the moisture levels are in check.

Damaged floors can be quite a pain to address especially after a devastating flood or when chemical related damage. It is necessary to address the issue with the help of reliable experts. This is to ensure that the home is perfectly dried out, preventing any health risks to some people as well as to protect the structure of the home from long term structural issues. A dry floor is a healthy floor so keep it dry with the help of these very useful methods.

3 Steps of Water Damage Clean Up

When water damage affects you in your home or business, you need to keep in mind that you will be dealing with three phases of restoration and getting your life back to normal.

1. Water Removal

This will typically involve extraction to remove the standing water, and the removal of saturated materials that hold water such as; carpet pad, damaged sheetrock, and insulation. A professional repair and restoration contractor will have the proper vacuum equipment and the manpower to handle the extraction and the removal of the materials retaining water, which will get you quickly on to on to phase 2.

2. Drying

Fast drying through the use of dehumidifiers and air movers is critical for mitigating the effects of water and moisture laden air during remediation. Generating super dry air, through the use of dehumidifiers and directing that air with powerful air movers, draws the moisture out of structural materials hastening their drying. The dehumidifiers also prevent secondary damage to areas that weren’t originally affected. High moisture levels in the air can cause paint to peel, building materials to warp, and mold to grow in areas that were untouched by the water. Drying the wet structural materials and removing excessive moisture from the air is extremely important for limiting the damage during clean up.

3. Repair

Once the structure has been tested by a water damage contractor to ensure that it is completely dry, you can begin repairing the damage to get things back to normal. Typically a water damage remediation company will have removed baseboards or cove base and drilled holes along the bottom of the walls to facilitate the dying of the wall cavities. Pad, and possibly carpet will have been removed. Damaged sheetrock in the ceiling that may have sagged and broken from retaining water will have to be repaired. And any items permanently damaged from water, such as; insulation, items damaged by water coming from the floor above, or wood floors that are beyond repair, will have to be replaced. Most contractors who perform water removal and drying will also offer water damage repair. If you are happy with how they handled the clean up, you may want to consider them for the water damage repair as well.

Just to recap, the three critical steps of water damage clean up are:

Emergency Water Removal – the sooner the better
Fast Drying – with dehumidifiers and air movers
Repairing the Damage – to get your life back to normal

David A. Selter is the President of DRYMORE Company in Houston, Texas, with decades of experience in emergency water damage services in the Gulf Coast area, including water removal and drying structures damaged by tropical storms, broken water pipes, and local flooding rains. We have dried and restored everything from a partially wet room in a home, to entire department stores, hotels and other large commercial properties.

Water Damage – Prevention and Cure

There are many ways that your home can be damaged by water. Most homeowners avoid houses located in flood plains in order to prevent the likelihood of flooding and the higher insurance premiums that accompany living in a flood plain. They may also choose to avoid areas that are subject to weather extremes which may also result in damage to the home.

If your home is damaged by water, there are water damage restoration companies that can help with cleanup, but some possessions are irreplaceable, and most homeowners would rather avoid the hassle of dealing with a problem by preventing the problem in the first place. Unfortunately, there are still sources of damage in and around the home.

Swimming Pools as a Source of Water Damage

An above-ground swimming pool is a refreshing thing to have on a hot summer day, and they’re made to be quite durable. But all it takes is one leak to quickly send a huge amount of water into your home’s basement. Even if you’re standing right there, you can’t stop the water.

Cold Weather as a Source of Water Damage

In cold weather, water pipes can freeze and burst. Since the coldest hours are usually in the wee hours of the morning, you might not find the leak for several hours. Depending on the location of the leak, there may be significant damage to a lot more than water pipes. For this reason alone, a broken water pipe is among the worst sources of water damage in the home.

Appliances as a Source of Water Damage

Dishwashers and washing machines are among the real workhorses of the modern home. Day after day, they perform their tasks. But they can be a source of a huge, inconvenient mess when a pipe breaks, a fitting comes loose, or a drain becomes blocked and the machine overflows. Fortunately, this usually happens when someone is operating the machine, so it’s likely to be noticed fairly quickly.

No matter what the source of the damage, quick action is imperative. The sooner you address the situation, the better your chances of being able to prevent further disaster, like mold and mildew.

Your first call should be to your insurance agent. He can determine if the damage is covered by your homeowner’s insurance, and start the procedure for filing a claim. Next, it’s a good idea to take pictures of the damage. And list all the property that was damaged by the water.

No matter what a homeowner does to prevent flood damage to his home, there may still be an occasion when your home suffers water damage. By calling in a professional you can be sure that the cleanup is thorough and complete.

Be sure that you have called a water damage restoration expert, not just a carpet cleaner. The carpet cleaner won’t be able to repair structural damage, damaged personal property, or furniture. On the other hand a water damage restoration professional is equipped to handle all kinds of flood damage promptly and efficiently.

Water Damage to Your Home

Many people have no clue as to what types of water damage is covered under their home or business insurance policy. Homeowners and business owners are becoming confused, hearing about mold insurance claims getting denied, and lots of questions arise about water damage to their homes. This article will go on to explain what types of damage is covered by your home insurance or your business policy and what you should do if your house has damage.

What Water Damage will your Home Insurance Policy cover?

Homeowners policies don’t cover damages from a flood, you would need to purchase flood insurance if you want to be specifically covered for water damage caused by a flood. Your home insurance policy would pay for damage from rain coming through a hole or a window if the hole had been caused by strong storm winds. But if you have a pipe leaking inside your house that created water damage over time, that wouldn’t be covered. It simply comes down to if your water damage was caused by a covered event such as a storm or if the water damage happened because you failed to keep your house repaired which would not be covered. If you are unsure as to what kind of water damage is covered, carefully read through your home insurance policy or call your the company.

Avoid Mold: Cleaning Up After a Disaster

It is very important you take steps to repair your water damage because if you let the damage linger it could cause further damage as well as health risks. Don’t ignore obvious signs of a water problem in your house! You need to immediately try to find any leaks and repair them from the source. When you let water leak in your house, moisture builds up and mold will grow. Mold will eat through the building’s structure and gradually cause health problems that could become serious. Mold exposure causes a wide variety of health effects such as coughs, nosebleeds, runny noses, sinusitis and congestion and even more serious upper respiratory problems such as bronchitis and asthma. Many insurance companies don’t cover mold damage but it might be covered if it was caused by a covered peril such as a storm. As soon as you discover any water damage, report it to your insurance agent before it gets any worse.

Water Damage Caused By a Storm

When there is a storm, if water gets into your home, you need to dry up all the wet areas and set up air circulation to help everything dry. Water can come into your house or place of business from roof damage, or damaged gutters, or from a leaking basement. To prevent additional damage, cover all areas with a tarp. By drying, covering and dehumidifying all wet areas you can attempt to minimize the chance that mold will form from the water damage. Flooding can happen if a storm causes a river level to rise. Of course, always contact your insurance agent as soon as possible so that you can begin the homeowners insurance or business insurance policy claims process.

Moisture Damage Over a Period of Time

If you find water or moisture damage that appears to be from a leakage existing for a period of time, mold might have developed and the chances your claim will be covered are very slim. In this situation, trying to cleanup the mold now will spread the mold spores and cause more property damage and increased health risks. Mold is extremely dangerous to your health and it is crucial that you have a professional restoration expert come to cleanup the damage. Obvious damage from flooding can be cleaned up but mold growth isn’t always apparent. Moisture behind drywall can be detected using specialized equipment from a certified disaster restoration contractor. Typically insurance policies have a cap or limit of what the insurance company is willing to pay towards mold removal. Prepare to cover at least some of the clean up expense out of your pocket, that means shopping around on search engines to select a competent disaster restoration company in your area. Contact your home insurance company to check if any of the damage is covered with your policy and call a professional disaster restoration company immediately.

Water Damage Restoration – When You Need it, You Need it Fast

The single biggest purchase you’ll probably ever make is your home. And if your home is damaged by fire or water, you may be overwhelmed at the scope of the damage. While there are some similarities between the two, fire damage is usually even more extensive than water damage alone. Fire damage is often accompanied by water damage due to the efforts to put out the fire. So there are some overlaps, with different tools and procedures for each form of damage.

Water damage can come from three possible sources, each creating a different set of challenges for the cleaning professional. Category 1 is clean water, like from broken water lines. Category 2 is water from a source which may be contaminated. And category 3 is “black” water-water which may contain sewage, as from a sewer backup.

Fire damage may also be classified in three categories. The first is minor damage, small in size, with no structural involvement. Second is a larger fire, and may cause structural damage to a small area of the home. Finally category three represents significant structural damage, and will most likely require professional repair.

No matter which type of damage your home has suffered, the damage doesn’t just stop after the incident. Mold and mildew can grow on damp surfaces, even behind walls where it can’t be seen. This can represent a significant health hazard, especially if a family member has a history of respiratory problems.

Untreated mold or mildew can make a home uninhabitable, destroying its value.

So when your home has been damaged by fire, water, or both, time is an important factor. The quicker repairs are done, the less chance there is for growth of mildew or mold, or further aftereffects of structural weakness.

While some people elect to do their own repairs, using tactics like opening the doors and the windows and running air conditioners at full blast, water damage restoration professionals have special equipment to hasten the drying process. You may research the process of repairing water damage to learn more about do-it-yourself options. But if boots, rubber gloves and disinfectants aren’t your thing or if damage is more than minor, you’ll probably ve best calling a professional.

Many carpet cleaning companies advertise water damage restoration services. While very good at cleaning carpets, these companies lack the equipment and expertise to deal with the other aspects of fire and water damage: damage to personal property, furniture damage, and especially structural damage.

Still other companies advertise restoration services, but use unaccountable undertrained subcontractors with little or no equipment or training to perform the work. If the contractor doesn’t show, or does a substandard job, you might not have a local contact if the company is based on the Internet hundreds of miles away.

Choosing a qualified local professional for water damage restoration may be your best bet for getting your home back to normal and protecting the value of your assets that are even more valuable than your home-your family.

The Potential Hazards of Water Damage

Millions of Americans must deal with the adverse effects of water damage to their home or property each year. Thousands will find that had they been proactive and arranged for restorations immediately it would have been cheaper in the end or in extreme cases had saved their residence. Water damage is one of the leading causes of loss of property in the United States. It is vital that homeowners be able to identify possible water damage and more importantly find experienced and certified professionals to assess the damage and restore their home. There are several dangers associated with water damage that can put the property and the residents at risk. Often times the severity of water damage is underestimated leading to one of several unfortunate scenarios which will be discussed at a later juncture. There are also several health risks that will also be addressed that homeowners need to be aware of. The goal of this article is to reinforce the absolute importance of hiring an experienced and knowledgeable team to examine any water damage immediately upon discovery by the residents.

There are several causes of water damage, each of which carry a different severity and set of risks. Malfunctioning appliances have been known to cause damage and range in severity based on the particulars such as the nature of the appliance and its location. Dishwashers and washing machines can leak or overflow leading to damages. Broken pipes or cracks in the foundation of a home can cause water to accumulate in unseen locations and often go unnoticed until water spots appear on walls or on the ceiling. Broken sump pumps and overflowing toilets are a common cause of water damage and can be among the most hazardous. Natural disasters and bad weather are some of the most destructive causes of water damage and are largely not preventable by routine maintenance. No matter what the cause is, untreated water damage can result in massive expenses and headaches for homeowners and that is why it is important to understand the risks of damage associated with these occurrences.

Many homeowners are not aware just how damaging household disasters involving water can be. Often times simply fixing a leak or the source of the water is not enough to resolve many unforeseen issues. When wood is exposed to water for significant amounts of time it can begin to rot, damaging the structural integrity of a home. Many times large sections of affected wood must actually be replaced to prevent future collapses which can occur months or even years after the initial contact. Water can also cause delamination of household building materials which can also compromise structural integrity which often results in a higher price tag down the road. The severity of water damage is often underestimated simply because water can seep down into unseen locations and cause damage in areas that only an expert would know to check. Many homeowners will not call in the experts soon enough because they don’t want to pay for restoration which ends up costing much more than the initial repairs. If the damages are severe enough and the residence is deemed unfit to live in it can result in total loss of property. Because some forms of water damage are not covered by standard insurance policies it can also cause a loss of principle investment in the home. It is important to have an insurance policy that covers flood damage in areas that are prone to flooding because flood damage repairs can often be quite costly. Some areas that are vulnerable to flash flooding include Denver, Colorado Springs, Boulder, Fort Collins and the surrounding area. In many cases hesitation to call in an experienced water damage restoration contractor cannot only cost residents more money but it can take a toll on their health and the health of their family as well.

There are numerous health risks associated with water damage that many people may not be aware of. One common risk associated with water damage, especially in unseen locations is the growth of toxic mold. There are countless strains of mold which can grow in affected areas which pose serious health risks to humans. Many short term effects are quite unpleasant such as fatigue, coughing and rashes. The long term effects of mold can be far more frightening than in the short term as long term mold exposure has been linked to several different cancers and severe, possibly life threatening infections. Aside from mold, water damage can bring humans into contact with a variety of extremely harmful micro organisms that can cause severe illness and even death. Water leaks within a home are rated in three categories. Category 1 consists of water from water supply lines. This can be either a broken or leaking supply line or the malfunction of an appliance which is fed from one of these lines. Category 1 water is considered relatively clean and posses little health risk. Category 2 water, often termed “grey water,” can carry micro organisms and often backs up due to a sump pump failure or compromised dishwashers or similar appliances. Water of the Category 3 posses serious health risks to humans and carries a range of life threatening fungi, bacteria, viruses and other microbes. This water contains sewage backed up from septic tanks or toilets or could originate from groundwater, nearby bodies of running water or stagnant surface water. Due to the possible health risks associated with the latter categories it is important that a professional is brought in to assess the severity of the situation.

In conclusion, water damage can be a very serious issue for a variety of different reasons. Untreated damages can lead to elevated expense of repair down the road or even total loss of property and investment as some damages are not covered by insurance. Damages can bring with them unforeseen health risks that can range in severity based on the category of water. For many people a home is the largest investment they will make. It is important that homeowners protect their investment and call in an expert at the first sign of water damage. Homes can often be replaced but families cannot. It is also vital that homeowners not put the health of their families at risk by trying to categorize and assess the dangers of household disasters themselves. Calling a certified water damage restoration expert is the safest way to go about restoring ones home after a disaster has occurred. Don’t take chances with your home or your health, call in an expert, it might just be the most important call you ever make.