Flood damage refers to different potential losses resulting from water penetrating in areas where it will allow destructive processes of an external material or mechanism such as rusting of metal, rotting of wood, growth of mold, de-lamination of building materials like plywood, iron, and others. It can also refer to damage caused by freezing rain that causes cracks in foundations. These damages can occur during any season at any location. While damage is often caused by a combination of factors like aging of the building materials, wear-and-tear of plumbing, electrical wiring, storm water run-offs and improper installation or improper use of equipment, water damage often occurs due to a breach in the physical barrier of the walls or flooring.
Mold has long been considered a silent but very deadly threat to property. Unfortunately it can be a silent threat when it comes to the hidden dangers of mold. In the case of water damage, mold spores are released into the air when they are exposed to damp conditions for a long period of time. These spores are inhaled and may cause allergic reactions to those who are sensitive to them. The only way to effectively prevent a build-up of mold is through prompt water damage restoration process to eliminate the moisture which allows the growth of mold. In the case of flooding this restoration process is usually very difficult because of the accumulation of water in the basement area, especially in houses built on higher levels.
A good quality flood damage restoration process starts with the removal of water from the affected area. This can be achieved with a variety of techniques; the most common include drywall scraping, water extraction, or with the application of a dehumidifier. It should be noted that the techniques used in the removal of water do not have much effect on the likelihood of mold growth; they just make the drying process easier. Once the standing water has been removed, the area should be dried as much as possible. This can be done using fans or with a ventilated space by opening doors and windows.
While it is impossible to completely remove all mold from a flooded area, flood damage restoration can significantly reduce the amount of mold present. This is because moisture is never completely removed from the air and mold spores always eventually find a way to enter the air stream. When this happens the mold spores find their moisture source and will reproduce exponentially resulting in a full-blown mold outbreak.
The longer that the mold spores are present and the longer the cleanup and remediation process, the more dangerous the situation becomes. When this happens the chances of having a negative health reaction increases exponentially. This is especially worrisome in the case of small children who cannot yet defend themselves against airborne chemicals. Even adults cannot effectively combat mold without proper protective gear and exposure to chemicals. For this reason it is imperative that flood waters are cleaned up and the cleanup process remediated as soon as possible.
It is also important for flood damage restoration to ensure that all drywall is removed from the walls. Wet walls produce more moisture than dry walls and when this water goes uncontrolled it can cause the formation of mold. In fact, certain types of mold are only found in full flooding conditions and drywall is not one of them. Therefore, removing wet walls right away is very important.