I saw a note today from WLWT that says “Cincinnati has seen precipitation for 106 out of 169 days. That’s 63 percent of the year thus far.” Of course, after the last week, I might have guessed we have seen rain every day of 2019!
What’s worse, is that rainfall of 2-4 inches is expected before the end of the week and they are warning of potential flash flooding.
So, with the near-term forecast not looking any better, I thought it would be good to revisit how to try to prevent water damage, and when it happens, how to handle water damage restoration.
How to Prevent Water Damage
Okay, so ‘prevent’ may be too strong a term. As the saying goes, no battle plan survives first contact with the enemy as they get a say in how things go. And, in this case, the enemy is mother nature!
We can’t prevent all potential problems but we can at least make sure the easily avoidable issues are taken care of. The two top resources for those are this article on sump pump maintenance and this checklist for avoiding common water damage restoration emergencies.
Another quick action is to take a walk around your house and check to make sure your downspouts are draining away from your house. A friend of mine was having trouble with a leak in the front corner of his basement during very heavy rains. An inspection of the outside of his house showed an elbow at the bottom of the downspout had come off. This elbow diverted water around the corner to the side of the house where it flowed down a slope away from the house. Without it, water was pooling in front of the house until it built enough pressure to force its way through a small gap in the foundation.
Finally, check the slope around your house to make sure water drains away. In the situation above, all that was needed was a very minor bit of regrading. When the landscaping was done, the dirt at the corner was piled slightly higher. Water will take the path of least resistance, so it flowed along the front of the house until it soaked in. The fix was as simple as raking back the mulch, shifting some dirt from the corner to the front, and putting the mulch back. Now, should the gutter elbow come off again, the water will naturally (and harmlessly) flow around the corner instead of pooling in front of the house.
Water Damage Restoration Tips
Despite our best efforts, water still may find its way inside. The most recognizable is, of course, a flooded basement. However, backed up gutters or gaps in the roof/flashing can lead to leaks in other places. Telltale signs of leaks range from the obvious, such as damp carpet or water coming down a wall, to more subtle such as faint water stains on the ceiling, paint starting to peel, or a musty smell.
As noted a couple of months ago in a post on weather emergency planning, safety should be your primary concern. A flooded basement presents a potential electrocution risk and could have contaminated water. In this case, call in a professional who is trained to deal with the risks.
In situations where it is safe to attempt the water damage restoration process, we offer a printer-friendly guide outlining the key steps.
As always, I’m here to answer questions based on my 35 years of water damage restoration experience. Extra Effort is a father/son company that offers personalized service with the large-company capabilities to address mold, mildew, stain and moisture removal. We will work with your insurance company to return your home or business to its original state.
Elliott S. Fishman, Co-Owner
Extra Effort Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning, Inc.
About Elliott S. Fishman
Elliott Fishman, along with his son Brian, is the owner and operator of Extra Effort Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning, Inc. We serve the residents and businesses of Greater Cincinnati to include West Chester, Mason, Maineville, Loveland, Wyoming, Fairfield, Indian Hill, Montgomery, Hyde Park and Anderson Township. Elliott started this company in 1984, based on the belief that it takes Extra Effort to make each job a success. The father/son team puts the extra time, extra care, and extra effort go into every task they undertake – no matter how large or small the job. Extra Effort’s quality equipment, trained technicians and safe products have made the company a top choice for residential and commercial carpet cleaning, upholstery cleaning, water damage / water extraction, fabric protection, odor control and spot removal.