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Water Damage Restoration


The goal of the Water damage restoration process is to transform an abnormally wet, potentially damaged structure into an environment of equal or better appearance and cleanliness than before the intrusion occurred, and to do so in the most economical and efficient means possible.

Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago Water affects materials indirectly. Excessive moisture leads to elevated humidity. Many building materials will absorb excess water vapor and suffer damage, especially when the air in the structure is allowed to remain above 60% relative humidity.

There are three types of damage the restorer will need to identify:

1. Pre-existing Damage
2. Primary Damage
3. Secondary Damage

Pre-existing Damage


Pre-existing damage is a condition that was present before the water intrusion that may or may not have been caused by moisture. Restorers can be held liable for conditions that are not a result of the restoration process.

Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago It is critical therefore, that pre-existing damage be identified, documented and communicated to all materially interested parties during the initial inspection.

From a restorer’s perspective, the most important forms of pre-existing damage to note are microbial growth (Mold) and carpet delamination (the separation of primary and secondary carpet backings).

Pre-existing carpet delamination is also a significant issue. When carpet delamination has occurred, further damage is very likely. When extensive delamination is discovered, technicians must call it to the attention of all materially interested parties and document the condition. Replacement of the carpet should be recommended.

Primary And Secondary Damage


Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago Water intrusion will affect building materials both immediately and over time. Damage that occurs immediately by direct contact with Water is referred to as primary damage.

Damage that occurs because material remains wet for an extended period of time is referred to as secondary damage. Damage from high humidity is referred to as secondary damage. Secondary damage includes dimensional changes, loss of structural integrity, microbial growth and staining.

Structure And Contents Evaluation


Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago Structure and contents must be evaluated for the presence of primary and secondary Water damage.

As with pre-existing damage, primary and secondary damage need to be properly identified, documented and communicated to the appropriate parties.

This process needs to include the necessary work to restore the appearance and performance of all affected material.

Psychrometry


Psychrometry is the system used to measure the temperature and humidity of air. It allows for careful analysis of these properties and their effects on the surrounding environment.

Drying is a pre-requisite to successful restoration. Part of a Mold remediation project is to be sure everything in the structure is dry. If not, once the Mold remediation project is completed and containment is removed, Mold spores will return to the site and Mold will begin to grow again.

Hygroscopic Materials


Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago Hygroscopic materials absorb moisture easily, whether from direct contact with Water or from exposure to high humidity. As a result, hygroscopic materials are very susceptible to secondary damage.

Such materials gain and lose moisture continually in an effort to equalize with the water content in the surrounding air. The more hygroscopic the material, the faster it will collect water vapor, and the easier it will suffer secondary damage.

Hidden Damage


Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago Hidden damage can occur that will require a more invasive method of inspection. One of the most common forms of hidden damage occurs with wall insulation.

When water intrusion results in standing water deeper than the wall plate (bottom plate), or when water intrusion occurs from above and results in Water running through wall cavities, insulation must be closely evaluated.

Permanent Damage


Removal of permanently damaged materials must occur promptly in the initial stage of restoration. If the material is removed without delay, the moisture contained in the material will also be removed. This will speed the drying of the remaining affected materials that can be saved, reducing the total restoration cost.

Prioritize The Response


Whether evaluating structure or contents, this triage process guides decision-making in the first moments inspecting the loss. Affected items are categorized into the three potential actions, and each action has its own set of potential deviations and considerations.

Prioritize affected items and structures into three types of actions:

Restore Immediately
Restore Later
Discard

Restore Immediately


This type of action requires the restorer to make more independent decisions. Communication with involved parties, such as the building owner, insurer or adjuster, is always preferred. Take immediate action when dealing with items highly susceptible to secondary damage.

Restore Later


Materials or structural components that have suffered minor but repairable damage should be low on the priority list. These items face little risk of secondary damage since they typically are not hygroscopic, are not wet, or do not suffer from short-term exposure to Water.

Examples include concrete, brick, structural lumber, synthetic materials, or any hygroscopic material that has not been exposed to high levels of abnormal moisture.

Do not spend time and energy in the first moments of the restoration response on these items. Any immediate attention to them will not greatly influence the outcome of restoration efforts.

Discard


Restoration of an item to pre-loss condition may not be possible when it has suffered irreparable damage due to contact with moisture, contamination, or physical damage.

During the initial inspection, most items fitting this description should be listed on a schedule of loss, set aside for review by an adjuster, and, if approved, discarded and replaced.

Documentation


Documentation plays an important role. Items needing to be restored immediately play a large role in either increasing or decreasing the overall loss severity. The value of the item significantly influences a decision to restore.

Pipe Freezing


If your pipes freeze, you’re lucky if the freeze occurs in a straight run of pipe; then you can let it thaw out naturally or thaw it out with heat and there will be no broken pipes. This is because when water freezes, it expands, and when Water freezes in a straight run of pipe, it expands at both ends, and there is no blockage to burst the pipe.

Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago Freezing occurs during a cold snap that lasts at least several days. In a day or two, you might get slush, which will come right out of the tap. In three or more days the slush will turn into ice causing the pipe to freeze.

Ice forming in a pipe does not typically cause a break where the ice blockage occurs. It’s not the radial expansion of ice against the wall of the pipe that causes the break.

Rather, following a complete ice blockage in a pipe, continued freezing and expansion inside the pipe causes Water pressure to increase downstream – between the ice blockage and a closed faucet at the end. It’s this increase in Water pressure that leads to pipe failure.

Pipe Thawing


To thaw an exposed pipe, turn the tap on and apply heat to the pipe. A hair dryer is sufficient; a hot-air gun is way too hot. Be sure to start thawing the pipe nearest the tap. This will allow melted Water to run through the tap, slowly but safely.

Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago If you thaw the pipe at the other end of the freeze, melted ice will be blocked by un-melted ice and you could have an explosion. You can also thaw pipes by wrapping them with cloth and pouring hot Water on the cloth. The hair dryer is still best.

You can also hang a 100-watt trouble light or two on the pipe; this will take longer to thaw, but once thawed, you can keep those lights on the pipes to help prevent future freezing.

Winterization


Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago In colder climates, frozen pipes can create additional challenges. If electrical power to a job site has been interrupted and heat is not available, all Water supply lines to the structure must be turned off as part of the initial emergency service.

Additionally, all Water should be drained from Water lines and Water reservoirs such as in the toilet Water tank, Water heaters, and any other Water storage areas. In places where standing Water remains, add recreational vehicle anti-freeze to prevent freezing. This anti-freeze should also be added into the sanitary drains to prevent freezing within the traps.

Ice Dams


Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago An Ice Dam is a hump of ice that forms at the edge of a roof under certain wintertime conditions. An ice dam can damage both your roof and the inside of your home. It will put gutters and downspouts at risk too.

There are several things you can do to avoid getting an ice dam or to reduce the risk of damage after one has formed, but there’s really only one cure: a combination of better sealing, insulation, and venting in the attic and eaves.

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Water Damage Restoration


Water Damage Restoration


The goal of the Water damage restoration process is to transform an abnormally wet, potentially damaged structure into an environment of equal or better appearance and cleanliness than before the intrusion occurred, and to do so in the most economical and efficient means possible.

Water affects materials indirectly. Excessive moisture leads to elevated humidity. Many building materials will absorb excess water vapor and suffer damage, especially when the air in the structure is allowed to remain above 60% relative humidity.

Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago

Pre-existing Damage


Pre-existing damage is a condition that was present before the water intrusion that may or may not have been caused by moisture. Restorers can be held liable for conditions that are not a result of the restoration process. It is critical therefore, that pre-existing damage be identified, documented and communicated to all materially interested parties during the initial inspection.

Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago

Structure And Contents Evaluation


Structure and contents must be evaluated for the presence of primary and secondary Water damage. As with pre-existing damage, primary and secondary damage need to be properly identified, documented and communicated to the appropriate parties. This process needs to include the necessary work to restore the appearance and performance of all affected material.

Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago

Psychrometry


Psychrometry is the system used to measure the temperature and humidity of air. It allows for careful analysis of these properties and their effects on the surrounding environment. Drying is a pre-requisite to successful restoration.

Part of a Mold remediation project is to be sure everything in the structure is dry. If not, once the Mold remediation project is completed and containment is removed, Mold spores will return to the site and Mold will begin to grow again.

Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago

Hygroscopic Materials


Hygroscopic materials absorb moisture easily, whether from direct contact with Water or from exposure to high humidity. As a result, hygroscopic materials are very susceptible to secondary damage.

Such materials gain and lose moisture continually in an effort to equalize with the water content in the surrounding air. The more hygroscopic the material, the faster it will collect water vapor, and the easier it will suffer secondary damage.

Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago

Hidden Damage


Hidden damage can occur that will require a more invasive method of inspection. One of the most common forms of hidden damage occurs with wall insulation. When water intrusion results in standing water deeper than the wall plate (bottom plate), or when water intrusion occurs from above and results in Water running through wall cavities, insulation must be closely evaluated.

Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago

Permanent Damage


Removal of permanently damaged materials must occur promptly in the initial stage of restoration. If the material is removed without delay, the moisture contained in the material will also be removed. This will speed the drying of the remaining affected materials that can be saved, reducing the total restoration cost.

Pipe Freezing


If your pipes freeze, you’re lucky if the freeze occurs in a straight run of pipe; then you can let it thaw out naturally or thaw it out with heat and there will be no broken pipes. This is because when water freezes, it expands, and when Water freezes in a straight run of pipe, it expands at both ends, and there is no blockage to burst the pipe.

Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago freezing occurs during a cold snap that lasts at least several days. In a day or two, you might get slush, which will come right out of the tap. In three or more days the slush will turn into ice causing the pipe to freeze. Ice forming in a pipe does not typically cause a break where the ice blockage occurs.

It’s not the radial expansion of ice against the wall of the pipe that causes the break. Rather, following a complete ice blockage in a pipe, continued freezing and expansion inside the pipe causes Water pressure to increase downstream – between the ice blockage and a closed faucet at the end. It’s this increase in Water pressure that leads to pipe failure.

Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago

Pipe Thawing


To thaw an exposed pipe, turn the tap on and apply heat to the pipe. A hair dryer is sufficient; a hot-air gun is way too hot. Be sure to start thawing the pipe nearest the tap. This will allow melted Water to run through the tap, slowly but safely. If you thaw the pipe at the other end of the freeze, melted ice will be blocked by un-melted ice and you could have an explosion.

You can also thaw pipes by wrapping them with cloth and pouring hot Water on the cloth. The hair dryer is still best. You can also hang a 100-watt trouble light or two on the pipe; this will take longer to thaw, but once thawed, you can keep those lights on the pipes to help prevent future freezing.

Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago

Winterization


In colder climates, frozen pipes can create additional challenges. If electrical power to a job site has been interrupted and heat is not available, all Water supply lines to the structure must be turned off as part of the initial emergency service.

Additionally, all Water should be drained from Water lines and Water reservoirs such as in the toilet Water tank, Water heaters, and any other Water storage areas. In places where standing Water remains, add recreational vehicle anti-freeze to prevent freezing. This anti-freeze should also be added into the sanitary drains to prevent freezing within the traps.

Mold Removal Chicago Water Damage Restoration Chicago

Ice Dams


An Ice Dam is a hump of ice that forms at the edge of a roof under certain wintertime conditions. An ice dam can damage both your roof and the inside of your home. It will put gutters and downspouts at risk too. There are several things you can do to avoid getting an ice dam or to reduce the risk of damage after one has formed, but there’s really only one cure: a combination of better sealing, insulation, and venting in the attic and eaves.

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