Water damage can come from a variety of sources. No matter the cause, the process of getting a home back into shape can be long, expensive and taxing. If you’ve experienced a leaky roof, dripping pipes, or even a natural disaster, it’s crucial to replace or repair water damaged walls before mold and mildew set in. In this post, the experts at TriFection provide insight to water damage wall repair and how homeowners can use this hiccup as a great remodeling opportunity.
How to Determine if You Have Water Damage
Water damage in your home can cause significant damage. The sooner you realize you have a leak, the easier you’ll be able to remedy the problem. But, what are the signs of water damage?
Signs You Have Water Damage
Oftentimes, you can spot physical damage from a leak. If you look at your ceiling and see an area that’s discolored or where the texture has significantly changed, that’s more than likely water damage. This happens when part of the wall or ceiling gets wet from an intermittent leak and then dries.
Also, damp or wet areas will begin to have a musty smell after a while. If you’re unsure what this smells like, think about the time you left clothes in the washing machine a little too long (we’ve all been there!)–similar to that.
In some instances, if the ceiling or wall isn’t able to properly dry, you may not always notice discoloration. Instead, the drywall may start to swell. Over time, the swelling will start to push against the paint and cause it to crack or peel. Consistent leaks typically cause this phenomenon.
In certain cases, water damage rears its head in the form of mold. This normally happens when the leak is behind a wall that’s not usually visible.
Frighteningly enough, you may not notice any of the previous indicators of water damage. However, if you receive an unexplained high utility bill, this could be the first warning of a water problem. Keep your eyes open for other signs and start looking for leaks, just to be safe.
What to Do if You Have Water Damage
So, you’ve determined that you have a water damaged wall or ceiling, now what?
Address the Water Damaged Area
To begin addressing the water damaged wall or area in your home, you must first identify the source of the problem. Once you’ve eliminated your leak or taken measures to avoid leaks in the future, you’ll then need to assess your damage.
Drywall that’s heavily saturated will sag or sometimes even crumble to the touch and must be replaced. However, if the drywall is still securely fastened to the studs and the area housing the water damage is small, you may be able to remove a small portion of the wall and patch it.
Remove Wet Drywall
If you’re dealing with wet drywall, remember to wear safety goggles and a mask. For smaller repairs, you’ll want to mark off around 6” outside the entirety of the water damage.
Use a sharp utility knife to cut your line and remove all of the wet drywall. You also need to remove any insulation that’s wet, as well. If you find that the insulation is wet outside of your “boundary line”, more drywall needs to be removed. Continue this process until you reach dry insulation.
The single most important step in this process is to make sure everything is completely dry. Before you replace anything, give the area at least 48 hours to dry out, just to be safe.
In the meantime, contact a licensed electrician to determine the extent of any electrical damage. This is one of the many reasons we advise you to hire a professional renovation contractor, like TriFection, which maintains a complete lineup of trusted professionals to guide you through this process.
Replace Damaged Insulation and Drywall
After the area has fully dried and inspected by a licensed electrician, you can then replace the insulation and drywall. If you don’t have much experience installing drywall, allow an experienced, trusted contractor do this for you.
Water Damage Renovation
We encourage clients to turn bad situations into an opportunity, especially for rooms that need to be completely gutted. Take advantage of TriFection’s on-staff professional designers, and let us help you rebuild the room to fit your style and needed functionality now.
If you still have builder grade cabinets, now could be a good time to replace them. Furthermore, if the room is already destroyed from a water leak, opting to remodel the entire room is far more convenient than going back in multiple times, especially in areas like the kitchen or bathroom.
We’ll work with you to determine whether or not we should reconfigure the space to better suit your needs, help you decide which materials are right for you, and work out a plan to make sure everything runs smoothly for you.
If a recent discovery of water damaged walls or ceilings makes you consider a remodel, call us at TriFection! Our team of experienced professionals is prepared to respond and offer solutions that fit your current situation. Water damage and renovations can be stressful. But, they’re much less stressful when you partner with a proven, local company like TriFection.