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Drying out a structure can take days to weeks depending on the size of the building and the extent of the damage. Teaching your technicians on proper drying procedures will ensure the structure is dried as quickly as possible and limit any secondary damages.
To teach your technicians the proper drying procedure, you need to understand the drying process, learn how to assess structural drying needs, gather the right equipment and procedures, and take the proper steps to complete the process.
Drying out a structure takes time. The structure needs to be completely dry before we can restore and rebuild. This can take a few days of intentional drying practices.
It's important not to rely on fans alone when drying out a structure because they blow moisture around instead of drying it up. Fans will only increase the wet spot, potentially spreading across a larger area, rather than evaporate it completely. You'll need to make sure that your technicians understand this concept as well so they know how to effectively use fans during this process.
The most important factor in drying a structure is airflow. To maximize airflow, technicians should:
You need the right equipment and proper procedures in order to properly dry a home or business:
When you find water damage, you should seal off areas from further water intrusion immediately. Start with shutting off any nearby faucets and valves, or even using duct tape to keep them closed. If there are no valves in the affected area, use fans instead to draw air out of the room and create a vacuum effect. This will prevent any remaining moisture from entering through cracks and crevices.
Preventing any further penetrations of moisture into adjacent areas should be a top priority; whether those be below or above ground level (such as attic spaces). This includes sealing around pipes that go through walls/floors/ceilings, so you can avoid more water to seep into those areas either directly or indirectly.
Containment areas are a key component in the drying process. These areas are where materials, used equipment and other items go during a water restoration job. It's important to make sure your technicians are keeping these areas separate so they don't contaminate dry materials or cause mold growth.
The size of your containment area will depend on how much material you have and how many technicians you're working with. If there's a lot of water damage, we recommend having two or three different bins set up: one for drying materials, one for salvaged items, and one for items that need removal from the property.
Whether you're in a residential home or a commercial building, the equipment will be set up in the same way. Air movers and dehumidifiers are placed in the most effective set up within the affected area.
Air movers need to be placed in a way that creates air circulation in the damaged areas. Depending on the size of each room, you might need several air movers. You should consider placing air movers in particularly soaked spots when getting started.
Technicians need to place dehumidifiers in an area where they have access to fresh air (near windows or vents), so they don't overheat while operating. Let the equipment run continuously until all visible water has evaporated or dried up into clumps on the surface. This step in the drying process could take days depending on how much water is in the carpets or structure.
Teaching your technicians proper drying procedures will ensure the structure is dried as quickly as possible and limit any secondary damage. Understanding the drying process, learning how to assess structural drying needs, gathering the right equipment and procedures, and taking the proper steps to complete the process will help you create a strategic drying procedure for your team.