When a property suffers flood damage, the water can impact not only the building’s structure, but also the belongings inside along with posing problems for the health of the occupants. Flood water contains many contaminants and a lot of mud which can damage a home’s systems embedded in the floor and walls like ducts, HVAC, plumbing and electrical circuits.
Flood Damage Repair
Flood Damage Repair for Walls
Water damaged walls can be repaired, but only after they have been completely dried from the inside out. This cannot be left to any visible signs of damp or wetness since even when the walls appear dry, the components inside may still be wet. This means any water damage repair can only happen when the walls have undergone structural drying.
Since structural drying is an integral part of any home flood damage and flood repair strategy, it will depend largely on the quantity of air that is allowed to flow through the wall materials.
- Drywall behaves like a sponge that draws water up above the flood level. It becomes easily breakable if it remains wet for prolonged periods and will likely fall apart if bumped. It cannot be contaminated and should be discarded.
- Laminated paneling and other wall coverings prevent thorough drying, so need to be removed and disposed.
- While plaster can regain its strength when dried, it cannot be decontaminated so should be removed.
- Wallboard drenched with dirty floodwater requires replacing. And if walls are covered with vinyl coated wall paper, it will have to be removed since it can restrict drying the flood damaged walls.
- With brick wall exteriors, brick masonry usually withstands flooding overtime. But if mortar is aged, then it becomes important to get an inspection done to determine the structural stability of the wall. Even small cracks may be indicative of a much bigger and expensive problem within the foundation.
Flood Damage Repair for Floors
After being completely submerged, floors will likely become soggy and ridden with moisture. When dealing with flooded house repairs, certain floors types such as wood, vinyl, linoleum and carpet must all be removed to let the subflooring dry completely.
- For wood floors smeared with mud, it is recommended to wash them with fresh water. Initially floorboards may start to warp while drying, but greater evaporation will help regain the original shape of the boards. Using shoring or weights during the drying operation may reduce the incidence of severe buckling and warping. Wood floors need to be dried steadily since rapid drying could trigger splitting or cracking. Hardwood floor boards may need to be removed to avoid buckling.
- Vinyl flooring and floor tiles may need to be removed to allow drying of subfloor.
- Pull out insulation and vapor barriers from under the floor to promote complete air circulation.
- Do not use heating, air conditioning or other forced air to promote the drying of wood floors since accelerated drying can cause floorboards to cup as the outer surface dries out quicker.
Remember that drying is a slow process and can take up to a couple of weeks or even a number of months, especially in case of extensive flooding. So be ready to allow flood damaged walls and floor dry for many weeks. Should restoration work begin before proper drying is completed, mold and mildew will survive and grow.
For many homeowners, flood damage repair costs can become a surmounting expense. To effectively treat your home’s walls and floors after a flood, get in touch with water damage specialists like Tidal Wave Response in Atlanta. We will use our professional grade water removal techniques to dry out the premises and restore your home to its former condition.