• Kris Kuran

Understand Water Damage

Understanding Water Damage


Why is Water Damage a problem? - Major Causes - The Inspection and Evaluation Process

Categories of Water Damage - Classes of Water Damage - How is a Structure Dried?



The topics of water damage we will discuss will be the following; Why is Water Damage a problem, Major Causes of Water Damage, The Inspection and Evaluation Process, Categories of Water Damage, Classes of Water Damage and finally How is a Structure Dried?


Premium Restoration has been dealing with emergency restoration since the early 2000’s and has handled over 10,000 jobs to with over 1,000, 000-man hours in work completed. Premium has hired some of the best professionals in the industry from emergency technicians, contents staff, project managers and especially the administrative staff that can handle any task assigned to them.


With water damage and fire claims becoming more prevalent and more and more people working from home, everyone needs to know who to deal with water damage and hopefully prevent massive flooding their home and businesses. Also due to the age of buildings in the Greater Vancouver Regional District GVRD and the Fraser Valley Regional District FVRD, Environmental Remediation for Asbestos, Lead, Mould etc. and now COVID 19, this can be a large and expense undertaking and needs to be handled by the appropriate professional otherwise physical and mental health can be compromised.


Kris Kuran has been in restoration for the past 10 years and dealt with the average home restorations – basement floods, to most complicated arenas, hospital and municipality restoration. Kris Kuran also offers continuing educational courses for brokers and insurance companies.


WHY IS WATER OR MOISTURE INGRESSION INTO OUR HOMES AND COMMERCIAL PROPERTIES SUCH A PROBLEM?


Prolonged moisture deteriorates building materials, increased risk of bacterial and microorganism growth as well all types of mould growth.


Major Causes of Water

Sewer Backup - Fire Suppression system - Natural Disaster Causes – Accidents

Negligence - Faulty / Defective Plumbing - Defective Appliances / Fixtures - Willful Misconduct & Vandalism (strata's) - Faulty / Damaged Construction

Strata’s have been willfully mismanaging their building and the bill has come to pay.

Improved building codes, insulation / retrofit programs and higher energy costs have resulted in:

More energy efficient buildings that have:

  • Less air exchanges

  • Trap moisture

These efficiencies have actually caused more moisture issues


The Inspection and Evaluation Process


Restorers should conduct the following pre-restoration activities:

Information Gathering

Initial response and Health and Safety issue resolution

Pre-restoration inspection

The Extent, content, degree of penetration is very important to determine the next course of action

Penetration depends on the Material & Contents involved

Types of materials (contents)

Quality of water or sewage (category)

Quantity / Length of contact time (class)

Severity depends on the Category and Class of Water Damage.

  • Source/Cause and time frame

  • Health and welfare of occupants from hazardous material

  • Evacuation or Isolation of the damage areas

  • Types of Materials/Contents they could be carcinogenic or hazardous material

  • Pay special attention to all hygroscopic materials in the water

  • How far has water migrated

  • Restore the contents or replace everything

  • Has it affected the HVAC

  • Best methods for repair

  • When safe for occupancy

Create a plan with a professional project manager and move forward with that plan not deviating for any reason.


Moisture Detection

Contact Moisture Meter & Thermal Imaging Cameras are the 2 most important tools in a restoration project managers arsenal.

Contact moisture meter allow and thermal imaging cameras for non-invasive techniques. In the past only invasive tools where used which caused damage to areas that were not wet.

Contact Moisture Meters


The Purple Spot Shows Moisture


Invasive Methods – Rip the walls down and test afterwards


Categories of Water


Category 1 - Water Damage - Clean Water

Originates from a sanitary water source with minimal risk from dermal, ingestion or inhalation exposure.


Broken water supply line

Tub or sink overflows

Appliance malfunctions

Melting ice or snow

Falling rain water

Broken toilet tanks/bowls


Category 1 Water can deteriorate for many reasons:

Contact with building materials - Contact with contents - Mixing with soils


Category 2 - Water Damage - Grey Water

Contains significant contamination and has the potential to cause discomfort or sickness if contacted or consumed by humans.

Examples of Category 2 Water:

Discharge from dishwasher or washing machines

Overflows from toilet bowl on the room side of the trap with some urine but no feces

Seepage through wall and basement foundation


Category 3 - Water Damage - Black Water

Grossly contaminated

Can contain pathogenic, toxigenic or other harmful agents

Generally, of sewage origin

Human exposure to pathogenic raw waste

Evacuate and begin restoration immediately


Extreme Health Risks within the Water

Classification of Water


For broker and adjuster explanation: Classes designate water-damaged environments by their relative degree of saturation, which is then used to determine the approximate initial amount of dehumidification equipment necessary for an efficient drying system. i.e. the Class takes into consideration the typical size of the loss and types of materials likely to be affected.

Class 1

Least amount of water, absorption and evaporation. A small one room flood with non porous material

  • Concrete floors – Garages and some Basement Floors

Class 2

Large amount of water, absorption and evaporation

  • Affects at least an entire room of carpet and cushion (pad)

  • Water has wicked up walls less, than 24 inches

  • Moisture remaining in structural materials such as

Plywood

Particle Board

Structural Wood

Vinyl Composite Tile

Concrete

Substructure Soil


Class 3

Large amount of water, absorption and evaporation

  • Restoration projects in which water has wicked up the walls greater than 24 inches.

  • A water loss that enters the structure from overhead and affects the entire area

Ceilings Walls Insulation Carpet Cushion Subfloor



Class 4 - Specialty Drying Situations

A water loss that involves wet materials with very low permeance/porosity such as:

Typically, there are:

  • Deep pockets of saturation

  • Require very low specific humidity

  • May require longer drying times and special methods.

Injectidry System with floor mats.


Dual system of Tenting and Injectidry System


Desiccant System


Desiccant dehumidifiers work by using a large desiccant wheel to adsorb moisture from the process air stream. This heated air steam picks up the moisture from the wheel, in turn drying the wheel so it is reactivated and able to continue to dry the process air.


Humidity Control

  • Accelerates the drying process

  • Reduces damage to absorbent structural materials and to contents

  • Creates a comfortable environment for occupants

Note: You can over dry - With Over-drying and heating control you must be

Careful not to warp wood floors and other wood materials. It can shrink items

like wall paper – melt plastics


Air Movement

High velocity air movement:

  • Increases the rate of evaporation

  • Reduces material temperatures

  • Retards the growth of microorganisms

Technicians go to school to learn how to create air movement, 2-3 blowers can do more then 6 or 7 blowers if placed correctly. Each tech is arms with a formula our techs use to ensure proper air movement.


Temperature

  • Use enough heat to increase the rate of evaporation

  • Maintain safe temperature to reduce mould and mildew growth

  • Maintain a comfortable environment for occupants

Cool & even warm air holds more moisture that is why we use heat.


Time

Time is key to ensure proper drying.

The usually drying time for Class 1 & 2 is 3-4 days.

As the classification go up 3 & 4 special drying technique and more time is usually necessary.


In the event of water damage call your local restoration company and ensure to mitigate the damage as it states in your insurance policy. It is your responsibility to mitigate and then call your insurance company. Remember it is your choice who you use to mitigate and rebuild.

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