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Water leaks into the house, overflows from the toilet, or has been standing in the grout for far too long, now you’ve got water damage.

Water damage only occurs if water hasn’t been completely extracted and the area isn’t dry. If water is running down the walls or getting caught in the ceiling, the damage has already set in. You might not be able to notice the water problem unless you visibly see it.

We’re not talking about water that drips down the shower walls or stands on the countertops for a couple of hours. Damage by water typically occurs due to the amount of time the water is running or sitting on that surface.

Nowadays, it’s a common assumption that we can do anything so long as we have a tutorial online that can teach us how. But when it comes to water damage, it’s definitely not a DIY project unless you’re a licensed water damage restoration expert.

If done wrong, you can end up having health problems and create other unnecessary risks. People have tried water extraction methods before but have failed to fully extract the water from all sources, thus leading to bigger problems since the water is colonizing mold. We don’t want anyone injuring themselves or prompting health risks just because they didn’t fully understand what all goes into extracting water.

We’re going to explain why hiring a professional is so important when it comes to water damage so you don’t make the mistake of doing it yourself.

Why You Can’t Dry Out Water Yourself

Yes, you can dry out water, but it takes a lot of heavy-duty equipment to fully extract the water. This will depend on the surface material since porous/organic materials are more drastically affected by water damage.

Completely extracting water takes time, effort, expertise, and equipment such as HEPA vacuums, vacuum pumps, and air movers. Even if we showed you how to extract water from carpet, you’d still be wondering if it’s possible to also extract it from the drywall. This process is a little different.

It takes an experienced water damage expert to know which surfaces need water extraction and which surfaces can’t be saved. For instance, if you have bubbling paint on the wall or ceiling, that area is damaged and will need to be replaced. This is all part of the professional restoration process, something that takes care, precision and expertise, not just education.

If you wanted to dry out an area before it becomes damaged by water, all you’d need to do is use some towels, open a window, use a wet vac for carpets, and scan the area with a water monitor. But like we said, this process entirely depends on the material type the water is soaking into.

Also, it’s the last step that we mention that can lead to problems since you might not be viewing the right zone with the monitor. Using a water monitor after you dry up an area isn’t as productive as using it to find the source. You must find the source of the water damage first so it doesn’t spread and colonize mold or other damages.

For a more in-depth guide to water extraction, visit our guide on water damage.

What Happens if You Can’t Dry Out the Water?

If you can’t dry out water in time before it causes damages, time will tell what damages will unfold. Depending on the water category, you may have just mold and rotting wood or you could have hazardous waste with bacteria that builds, causing health risks in your home.

The longer water sits, the worse the problem gets. You might think that the water will just eventually evaporate, but damages can already take affect within 24 hours. Water left on wood, in fabrics, or under paint will soak into the organic materials and will start to formulate bacteria with the microorganisms in the air. You may need to just extract water or you might have to demolish and replace parts of your home.

Water Damage Restoration is Best Done by Professionals

Because of the arduous process of water damage restoration, it’s best to hire a local professional who can find the source of the problem, extract all of the water, and finish restoring your home with proper reconstruction. Doing all of this yourself takes weeks if not months to complete. You would also be doing yourself a disservice if you ever plan on contacting your insurance for the water damage or if you plan on selling your house.

If damage of this magnitude occurred and your insurance wasn’t notified, it could prove catastrophic in the event of your house going for sale. Why? Damages depreciate the value of a home unless they are properly dealt with. Your insurance would be happier if you chose one of their restoration vendors to assist with the restoration process, but you won’t be.

Unfortunately, insurance providers are penny-pinchers. They only want to hire companies that are inexpensive so the insurance company can save more money. Do your research and hire a local water damage restoration company that can take care of all of your needs. Preferably, you’d hire someone that can work through the harsh reality of insurance with you.

By all means, do what’s right for you, but there’s a reason why we’re in this profession and why you don’t hear of many success stories for homeowners doing their own water damage restoration. It just doesn’t go well.
If you’re in the Gunnison area, look us up and save us in your contacts list, we’ll be happy to help you if water damage becomes an issue. Give us a call at (970) 642-3004. Luckily, we’re an insurance-preferred business.