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water damage restoration cleaner
We have been serving the Ardmore, Madill and Durant areas of South Central Oklahoma since 1996. We offer 24-hour emergency response for residential and commercial water damage services. Our professionally trained water extraction teams are IICRC certified, bonded and insured for our customer's protection. Cleaning up flooded homes, crawl spaces, basements, attics, buildings, schools and churches from water leaks, burst or frozen pipes, and hot water heaters are what we do. Sink, air conditioner drain, toilet, bathtub, washing machine overflows, backups and storm damage cleanup is our business. We specialize in drying wet carpet, furniture, walls, cabinets, hardwood floors and other items to their pre-loss moisture conditions by using the latest models of dehumidifiers and air movers. We use moisture testing equipment such as a thermo-hygrometer and a protimeter to monitor the drying process.
Customer preparations should include common sense safety precautions and taking care of precious items. Once we arrive and remove the standing water, we will leave drying equipment to minimize secondary damage, which is what happens after the flood. Many times people choose to use their homeowner's insurance policy for flood damage cleanup. Flooded crawl spaces and wet attics can cause a house to swell so that the doors will not close properly and even a small water leak can cause a mold problem.
When preparing for the water damage restoration team to arrive, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, try to remain calm. This can be a very stressful time for you. We understand that. It is easy to get in a rush and forget basic common sense. Simple safety precautions should be considered. Stay off wet carpet if there are electrical devices lying on the wet floor. Maybe turning the breaker off to flooded areas would be a good idea. The water source is also a consideration. If the water is from a toilet backup, do not walk around in it. If there are precious items that must be immediately retrieved from the contaminated water, use rubber gloves and rubber boots.
Small personal items on floors, dressers, end tables and other surfaces in flooded rooms will have to be moved at some time. It is easier to get off to a good start if these items have found a safe location by the time the technician arrives. Finding the proper locations for a lot of small personal items can be time consuming.
Sometimes people need help with moving even the smallest of items and we understand that. We can move everything upon the customer's request. We want our customer's to be happy. Any furniture like a dresser or a desk on wet carpet would have to be moved. If the dresser is covered with last month's wardrobe, it may take a little longer than usual. Dehumidifiers and air movers will be left to dry the walls, cabinets and floors.
When a home or building is flooded with water, this water will begin to evaporate into the air. While the water on the floor is causing damage (primary damage), the increasing amount of water vapor in the air can cause even more damage (secondary damage). The job of the water damage restoration team is to minimize secondary damage by using standard procedures within the guidelines developed by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification.
This process includes the use of dehumidifiers to reduce the actual humidity in a flooded home or building. Reducing the humidity increases the evaporation rate which means drying wet carpet, walls, cabinets, ceilings, furniture and other items can be done faster. The actual humidity level in the air is determined each day with the use of a thermo-hygrometer that gives the relative humidity and the temperature. These two numbers are plotted on the psychrometric chart and their point of intersection on this chart gives the actual humidity.
A dehumidifier is used to pull water vapor out of the air, reducing the humidity level in a flooded home or building. The number of dehumidifiers used on any particular job can be determined by knowing the cubic feet of air space involved and the type of materials that got wet. This information gathered by the water damage technician can be used to determine the required number of pints of water that should be extracted from the air on that day. The number of dehumidifiers required on the job each day will depend upon the number of pints of water that should be extracted.
air movers
When a home is flooded with water, this water will begin to penetrate into the carpet, walls, cabinets and other materials. Most of the time these items can be dried with little or no significant damage. The job of the water damage restoration team is to minimize secondary damage. After the standing water has been extracted, items that got wet must be restored to their pre-loss moisture conditions. Air movement is used to remove moist air away from wet surfaces.
Air movers move moist air away from wet carpet, walls, and cabinets and replace it with dry air. Dehumidifiers continue to produce dry air, and the air movers blow this dry air across wet surfaces. There are many types of air movers. Some are better at drying carpet, some are better at drying cabinets, some are better at drying walls, some are better at drying crawl spaces and some are better at drying attics.
The basic air mover is used for drying floors and walls. The number of air movers to be used on a particular job can be determined each day by knowing the amount of linear wall feet in the area that was flooded and the type of materials that got wet. After gathering this information, the water damage cleanup crew can determine the number of air movers required each day. Materials are tested with a protimeter daily. As materials dry, air movers are moved to areas that need more drying.
protimeter for mold detection
It is critical for the water damage restoration team to be able to measure the moisture in the materials that got wet in a flooded home or building.The protimeter is a very simple tool to use. It is placed on a surface in a certain manner that ensures consistency. This moisture sensor gives three different readings. It will give a digital readout, a beeping alarm, and a color-coded light indicator. The digital readout goes from 0 to 999. Higher numbers indicate more moisture. The sound alert beeps faster when more moisture is present, and the color-coded light indicator shows red to yellow then green with red revealing excessive moisture.
A target moisture level for each item can usually be established by testing materials that didn't get wet in the home and local area. Wet walls, wet cabinets, wet carpet and wet furniture are tested daily for moisture content with the protimeter. The daily progress is documented in a written report so that the drying process can be monitored. As items dry, the air movers are moved to areas that need more drying according to the moisture sensors.
The protimeter is a vital tool for drying expensive items in flooded homes and buildings. Walls, cabinets, floors and ceilings can appear to be dry by the touch and still be in danger of getting mold. The only way to know for sure about the proper moisture content in a flood cleanup is to use a protimeter or something very similar. The protimeter not only tells when pre-loss moisture conditions have been reached, but it also allows the ability to monitor progress and flag problems areas.
thermo-hygrometer for measuring water vapor
It is very important for the water damage restoration team to measure the amount of water vapor in the air inside and outside the home or building. This is done with the aid of a thermo-hygrometer. It gives the relative humidity and the temperature. These two numbers are plotted on the psychrometric chart, which will reveal the actual humidity in the air also known as the specific humidity expressed in grains per pound.
For example, in a flooded home or building where the relative humidity is 60% and the temperature is 70 F degrees, the actual humidity would be 65 grains per pound. If the temperature remained the same the next day and the relative humidity was now 50%, that would be 55 grains per pound. This indicates a decrease in the amount of water vapor in the air. If the water damage technician comes in the next day and the actual humidity has risen, that might indicate that not enough dehumidification is taking place.
The thermo-hygrometer allows the water extraction team to monitor the drying progress daily. Each day the actual humidity is tested and documented. If there is any problem, the results of this routine analysis should flag the problem. When things are not drying properly, there is a reason why. The humidity level should eventually head toward a target moisture level that was set at the beginning of the water damage restoration process. As long as the humidity is at a satisfactory level, the drying process should show progress unless there is insufficient evaporation or air movement. Either way, without a thermo-hygrometer it is impossible to tell for sure where the problem lies.
water damage floor and dry wall
During a flood, water will travel across the floor, under the walls and into other areas. Once it has had time to go as far as it's going to go, up to that point the water damage is considered primary damage and after that secondary damage begins to happen. The greatest solutions in the world can't prevent what has already happened, but we try to prevent what has yet to occur. So, we try to keep the damage that has yet happened to a minimum.
In a flood, the obvious part of the problem is too much water. The not too obvious is water vapor. As the floors, walls and cabinets are soaking in standing water, the air is filling with water as well. When the relative humidity gets above 60%, mold becomes active and begins to grow. If a home continues standing in water for very long, it can begin to swell. When the doors don't shut properly, it could be a sign of swelling. Too much swelling can cause deformation. We can take a home or building that is so wet its floors are buckling and bring it back from the dead. The floors will flatten back out and the doors will shut like they did before the flood.
Drying wet carpet and drywall is easy, while some other materials are more stubborn. The actual humidity in the air must be below 40 grains per pound to dry hardwood or concrete in any kind of timely manner. That means when the room temperature is 70 F degrees, the relative humidity has to be below 37% to restore hardwoods or concrete to pre-loss moisture conditions anytime in the near future. It takes a certain kind of dehumidifier to get that job done. The dehumidifier must have low-grain technology to continue drying below 40 grains per pound. Refrigerant dehumidifiers will not continue drying air below 40 grains per pound.
flood insurance
When someone comes home to a water-filled house, the water extraction alone is usually too much to handle. Many times it takes three or four days to dry and sometimes it takes even longer. It is wise to make sure that the homeowner's insurance policy covers all types of water damage. Water-leak cleanup to busted or frozen pipes is almost always covered, especially leaking hot water tanks. From water-overflow cleanup to overflowing sinks, overflowing bathtubs and overflowing washing machines, is usually covered also.
Water or sewage backups are usually covered, but sometimes certain policies may not cover a backup where an overflow would be; this does not apply to all policies. These are some things that have been noticed. It's a good idea to make sure a backup is covered on the homeowner's insurance policy and it would be nice if it was covered before the flood. Any type of accidental water damage is typically covered on most insurance policies. Again, these are things that we have noticed, but it does not mean any of these things are always covered on every policy. It is a good idea to keep a copy of the policy on hand in case of a water damage emergency.
Water extraction alone may not work. Water Damage Restoration Certification prohibits certified technicians from only performing a water extraction service without leaving dehumidifiers, air movers and following the standard procedures and guidelines that we are trained to follow in restoring the structure to its pre-loss moisture conditions.
drying cabinets after a flood
Cabinets often get wet when the line to the ice maker burst or the sink overflows. The washing machine may overflow in the utility room and if it's next to the kitchen, it can easily happen. If the cabinets are made of hardwood, the air must be dried until the actual humidity is below 40 grains per pound. At a room temperature of 70 F degrees, the relative humidity has to be below 38% to dry hardwoods in any kind of timely manner. Cabinets are very expensive and if they are not dried properly the homeowner can end up paying to replace them down the road.
Be careful about using a water extraction cleanup technician that the insurance company sends out. Sometimes they get in a bit of a hurry to leave because the insurance company gave them the job. They should be eager to stay until the moisture sensors say it's time to go.
It takes a special air mover to dry the air cavity underneath the cabinets. If this area isn't dried properly, mold can become a real problem. Drying under cabinets is similar to putting air into a basketball. Small holes are drilled at the back of the cabinets where small air pins are inserted. These air pins are attached to tubes coming from a specialized air pump designed for pumping air into tight air cavities. The dehumidifiers produce dry air which is forced down into the cavity under the cabinets and the moist air is pushed out, allowing the wall behind the cabinets as well as the cabinets themselves to dry properly and in a timely manner.
water damage in an attic
Water damage in the attic can be a real headache. Wet insulation can be extremely heavy and can cause huge pieces of debris to come crashing down. Wet ceilings can be very dangerous. Because of the danger, wet ceilings are often removed. Walls and ceilings are treated a little differently in that respect. Walls are rarely removed unless water ran down an outside wall that has wet insulation.
Wet insulation should be removed. It loses its RH factor after it has been wet. Ceilings are commonly removed, but can be dried in place on some water damage cleanups. Dehumidifiers dry the air in the living space and air movers with long, flexible ducts move the dry air directly to wet areas in the attic.
Old electrical wiring or even new wiring in Oklahoma can be very dangerous. Kidding aside, try to remain calm and use common sense precaution. Turning off the breaker and using a large flashlight might be a good idea in wet attics.
drying crawl spaces
Once the water has entered a pier and beam house or a mobile home, there is a strong possibility there is water damage in the crawl space under the home. If water is left standing under the house for an extended period, the home can begin to swell. The floors will begin to buckle and some of the doors may not want to shut properly.
The humidity level is hard to control in a flooded crawl space. Using specialized air movers, air can be directed from inside the home where dehumidifiers are producing dry air. When it is cold and wet outside, bringing warm dry air from inside can be a real advantage. Cold and wet are not considered the best of drying conditions. Evaporation needs to be increased to dry crawl spaces properly and to do that, warm, dry air is best. Since water runs downhill, the mess below the home may be much bigger than the one inside.
When wood subfloors get so wet that they buckle (cupping), and the doors will not shut properly, it can take several days of aggressive drying to restore the structure back to it's pre-loss conditions according to the moisture detecting equipment. Make no mistake about it, it can be done, but it takes a water damage specialist. The floors will flatten back out to their pre-loss condition and the doors will shut like they did before the flood waters entered the home.
Water removal can mean two different things when it comes to a flooded house, a flooded building, a flooded church or a flooded school. Some carpet cleaners do basic water extractions and they leave. They remove standing water and they leave wet walls, wet cabinets and wet furniture to dry on their own. With professional training and the latest models in structural drying equipment, it still takes several days of aggressive drying to restore items like hardwood and concrete to pre-loss moisture conditions.
Without the drying equipment, it could take weeks or months for these items to return to pre-loss moisture conditions. By this time, the damage may be beyond repair. Mold, discoloration and deformation can become problems resulting from excessive moisture over an extended period of time.
Certified water damage restoration technicians are prohibited from performing only water extraction services on water cleanup jobs. Air movers and dehumidifiers are to be left to properly restore the flooded home, building, church, office or school to their pre-loss moisture conditions according to the principles and guidelines developed by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification.

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Vick's Cleaning & Restoration

Ardmore: (580) 226-1717
Durant: (580) 931-0030
Madill: (580) 795-2373
In Business Since 1996

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