University of Southern California, to prevent mold growth, you must treat water-logged areas within 24 to 48 hours of water exposure. That's advice that a Gulf Coast construction company owner agrees with.Sloshing through your living room in rubber boots is a disheartening experience for renters and homeowners, but it's often seen after a major storm like Sandy. Long after the floodwaters dissipate, the effects of such an event lives on, sometimes as black mold. According to a fact sheet published by the
Kevin Bullock, owner of Bullock Renovation and Construction, knows something about water damage. As a contractor living and working along the Alabama coast, he says water damage, whether from wind-driven rain or rising floodwater, is a common but serious problem for homeowners. I asked, "So where do you start when dealing with water damage?"
"Start by making the call to your insurance company. Once you have the all clear, follow that with lots of photos of the interior, including pictures of any damage to furniture, carpet and appliances. Once that is complete, remove anything that's water damaged. That means everything. That will slow down the mold growth in the home. Those are the first steps I recommend." Bullock encouraged homeowners dealing with 'Superstorm' Sandy, "It's a long process but in most cases, you can overcome it. It takes a lot of work and quite a bit of time."
Remember these tips when dealing with damage from water:
- Freeze important wet papers and photographs. Stash them in a frost-freezer until you can deal with replacing them. You can make copies before you have to throw out the originals.
- Reduce humidity levels with a dehumidifier and fans when electricity becomes available.
- Don't attempt to handle exposed electrical lines in your home. Many people get hurt simply by stepping into a puddle near a live wire.
Once 48 hours have passed, you'll need to work with the local environmental companies. They can perform mold tests and recommend treatments to make the home safe for you and your family. Sandy was a record-setting storm, but if your home remains structurally sound, you can come back from water damage.