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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

The Do's & Don'ts of Water Damage Restoration

7/11/2019 (Permalink)

No doubt about it — you work hard to turn a home into your own personal oasis. It’s where you go to relax and recharge. It’s where you connect with family and friends. But, let’s face it. Every now and then, there’s no way to stop trouble from finding its way into paradise. 

As a homeowner, there may come a time when you’re faced with a water emergency. From storms and flooding to sewage backups and appliance defects, water-damage culprits are constantly trying to creep into your home to wreak havoc. 

Luckily, it’s not the end of the world if a water nuisance finds its way in!

 While you might not be able to prevent a water emergency from occurring, you can prepare yourself for the aftermath. By remembering some key do’s and don’ts of water damage restoration, you’ll have your sanctuary back in no time!

The DO’S

1. Stop The Water From Flowing

If water is coming from a specific source, shut it off. If it’s a more complicated fix, you might need to hire a professional to stop the flow of water.

2. Cut Off The Supply Of Electricity When Safe To Do So

If any electricity is present where there’s water, turn off the applicable circuit breakers. Also, remove any electrical devices. If it’s not safe for you to do so and there’s the risk of shock, seek professional help. 

3. Remove Excess Water

Mop up any standing water. If the furniture is wet, wipe it down or blot it with a dry towel or cloth. 

4. Open Up Closet Doors and Furniture Drawers

Opening up your doors and drawers allows for airflow and promotes drying. This tip applies to luggage as well. 

5. Remove Items That Cause Staining

There’s a myriad of household items made with dyes or ink. When in contact with water, these can cause stains on carpet and furniture. If you see any of the typical offenders in or near the water-affected area, get them out of there:   

  • Rugs
  • Newspapers, books, and magazines
  • Potted plants
  •  Shoes

(If you end up with pesky stains, don’t get too upset. The right water damage restoration company can help with carpet and upholstery cleaning.)

6. Remove Important Items

Place items of importance such as artwork, photos, computers, documents, and keepsakes in a safe, dry location. If you have any leather and furs, hang them out to dry in a space at room temperature.

7. Prop Up Wet Furniture Cushions and Pillows

It’s exactly what it sounds like. Remove all cushions and pillows from the wet area and prop each up for even drying.

8. Place Aluminum Foil Between Furniture And Flooring

For furniture that can’t be moved, put pieces of aluminum foil between the legs and floor. This helps prevent saturation or the transfer of water from the legs to the furniture. Blocks of wood can also be used. 

9. Lift Draperies Off The Wet Floor

Loop the bottom of your drapes through clothes hangers and place the hangers on the drapery rod.

10. Hire A Water Damage Restoration Specialist

Beyond having the right equipment to deal with cleanup and repair, an expert should also have expertise in how to initially categorize the water. This is extremely important in determining the safety of the scene as well as if items can be salvaged and cleaned.

For example, when a SERVPRO technician arrives, he or she immediately decipher the kind of water category you’re dealing with:

  •  Category 1 (Clean Water) is considered sanitary water (should be cleaned before it gets dirtier).
  • Category 2 (Gray Water) is contaminated and has the potential to make humans and animals sick.
  • Category 3 (Black Water) is significantly contaminated and unsafe (sewage, trash, fertilizer, and other harmful agents).


1. Don’t Walk In The Wet Area

This may be a bit hard but try your best to not walk in the wet area. You don’t want to track water or contaminants into other parts of the home. 

2. Never Use A Vacuum Cleaner To Remove Water

Using a household or shop vacuum in water increases the risk of electric shock. Or, in the least, you can ruin the electronic components of the vacuum.

3. Don’t Enter A Room With Water And Live Electricity

If electricity is flowing and there’s standing water, stay away from the area. If you’re unable to turn off the electricity, call in a professional. 

4. Don’t Use Appliances Standing In Water

Appliances are another source of electricity. Never use an appliance that’s located on wet carpet or flooring.

5. Never Attempt To Clean Up Biohazards Yourself

It’s unpleasant to talk about, but it happens. Sometimes, the water seeping into your home can carry hazardous pathogens. 


If you experience a sewage issue, let the experts in water damage restoration handle the cleanup. It’s not safe to expose yourself to infectious microorganisms that might be present in the water.


As everyone knows, mold can cause a whole slew of problems from property damage to health ailments. If mold is possibly present, it’s best to call in a mold remediation and restoration expert.

5. Never Place Newspaper On The Floor

Some folks believe newspaper is a good way to protect a floor. Don’t do it! It can cause staining and permanent damage to the floor.   

6. Don’t Try To Lift Installed Carpet

When carpet is tacked down, there’s a certain process involved in lifting it up. If it’s done incorrectly, shrinkage can occur.

When Is It Time To Call In Help?

Water damage can be a difficult situation since issues are sometimes hidden to the human eye. If you want to ensure your home and belongings receive the best care possible to prevent further damage, contact a certified, full-service professional as soon as possible. 

For example, SERVPRO of North Irving is a full-service water damage repair and restoration specialist with over 30 years of experience. We not only handle matters of water inspection, extraction, and drying but also we provide reconstruction services. And, we’re mold remediation and restoration experts. With our accredited technicians, state-of-the-art equipment, and 24-hour emergency availability, we’ve restored more than 300,000 homes.

If you need fire and water damage restoration in the Dallas area, call SERVPRO of North Irving.

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