What Water Damage Does To You and Your Home

water-damage

The causes of water damage are as varied as its effects. It could spring from broken dishwashers, leaking pipes and even snow melting. Because the causes are common, it happens to almost every house owner. That’s why it’s important to know what damages it can cause, especially the health hazards. The effects can begin within minutes, and it only worsens as the days go by.

How It Damages Your Property

property-damage

 

  • After minutes

Damage begins the moment anything is submerged in water, and within minutes secondary damage spreads. Anything made of paper, like wallpaper or paintings, will swell, warp, then split. Furniture, especially antiques, will discolor, and anything with wood or metal will begin to transfer stains.

  • After hours

The odor becomes very prominent, especially if the space is entirely enclosed. Furniture which was once only discoloring will begin to delaminate, swell and warp. For any furniture with legs, it will show signs of splitting. The same will happen to anything that has finish, like the stairs, cupboards and shelves. Metal will continue to tarnish, as the drywall installations soak up the standing water.

  • After days

Anything with metal materials has already begun to rust, while the doors and windows swell, warp then split. Any form of electronics will be difficult to salvage and will most likely short circuit if you try to use them. A few days of soaking can already render your drywall installation useless because it will swell disintegrate in that short period. Water damage on pianos will begin to show because at the length being submerged in water, the components inside of it will swell.

  • After weeks

At this point, nothing can be done about wood or metal furniture or fixtures because it has already been destroyed on a chemical level. If in weeks, nothing is done about the water issue mold spores will spread. These spores will erode and ruin natural fiber, from paper to the actual foundation of the house. The best approach to this kind of damage is to demolish and replace everything to pass future home inspections.

 

How It Affects Your Health

health-damage

 

  • After days

Within a couple of days, water turns into gray water. What that means is that the water could be contaminated and carrying microorganisms enough to cause a variety of diseases to people. This has little to do with the amount of stagnant water because the same health hazards could happen with dishwasher leaks and an overflowing toilet. As long as the water has been there for days, it could have already bred bacteria, viruses, fungi or algae.

  • After weeks

After a week, stagnant water becomes black water, meaning it carries pathogens that compromise the health of individuals in close contact with it. The number of diseases it carries is comparable to water from the sewage, and this is true regardless of the color or severity of its odor. The quality of air is also so bad at this point that it requires proper protection before going anywhere near the area.

 


How To Rid Your Home of Molds

Mold infestation is a nightmare for any homeowner. Not only is the smell intolerable, but it’s also a health hazard for anyone living in a mold-infested space. It has a lot of adverse effects, from the headaches, irritated eyes, a runny nose and coughing to a life-threatening neurological problem. It’s needless to say that this issue has to be handled as soon as possible and in a very effective manner,else it can really harm you and your family.

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What you need to know though is that a mold infestation is often a sign of a bigger issue. It could anything from a moisture problem to a water leak. Whatever the cause is, you have to quickly decide how to handle it. You can either seek a professional mold removal company or do it yourself.

Doing It Yourself

A DIY is only effective and recommended if the you are sure that the extend of mold damage is mild, and will not be a threat to your health. That means that you have to check which parts of your home is affected, and in doing that, you have to wear protective gear and clothes that you’re okay throwing away after.

Once you’ve located that mold, prepare a 1 part bleach, 8 parts water solution which you will use to scrub any surface covered with mold. Not all areas will visibly show signs of mold infestation, so you’ll have assess areas close to these surfaces by following the musty scent or checking how mushy the wall is.

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As you’re removing the mold, you also have to worry about the spores. Make sure that your air conditioner and furnace are turned off, and your doors and ducts are sealed off. You can also spray all mold infested surfaces with water while it’s awaiting scrubbing to stop the spores from further spreading.

It’s also important to get rid of carpets, throw pillows, blankets and any other fixtures or design elements in your home that’s in close contact with the areas you are sanitizing. It’s best to wrap them plastic or put them in a bag, seal them and throw them out.

 

If you think that the mold infestation has breached the structure of the home and has spread throughout it, it might be best to call in professional help. They can sort out the source of the mold infestation, stir you and your family away from the possible hazards of a DIY solution, and make sure that they are able to drive out the mold from every part of your home, even those which are hard to reach.