What Is Water Damage Triage?

water damage triage

Water damage triage is the organized process of reversing damage caused by water and restoring a secure, healthy indoor environment to your home as rapidly as possible. Water damage often occurs out of the blue. Faced with snap decisions about what needs to be done first, a homeowner’s understandable response might well be, “Everything!”

Water damage triage applies a standardized method to water damage assessment and remediation, based on scientific research and experience in the industry. Professionals apply established techniques and procedures in a very specific sequence to produce optimum results in the shortest time frame possible.

While water damage triage necessarily varies according to many factors, here’s a general sequence in a typical project:

  • Inspection. Arriving on the scene, a rapid, extensive inspection is conducted to determine the source of the water as well as the extent to which it has spread within the house. Safety is part of water damage triage as electrical hazards in the wet environment and/or structural issues are identified. Moisture meters and other technology are utilized to track down the spread of water in the structure.
  • Removal of saturated material. Items that may retain water, such as soaked mattresses, sofas, throw rugs, and other movable material, are taken out of the house. Saturated drywall, soaked insulation, and other building materials which can’t be dried may also be removed.
  • Eliminating standing water. Using specialized equipment designed for high-volume water removal, all standing water is rapidly removed from the house. Powerful extractors are utilized to pull water out of carpets and even solid flooring. Where deep water exists, such as a flooded basement, submersible pumps are put to work.
  • Drying. Residual moisture inside the house is dried using a combination of high-powered air movers as well as industrial-grade dehumidifiers. These devices run continuously throughout the process to eliminate the remaining water in the structure.  
  • Testing and verification. Throughout water damage triage, moisture meter data and humidity readings track the reduction of moisture inside the house. The structure must meet published industry standards for dryness before the project can be concluded. 

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