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Mold Prevention After Flooding

Hurricane Sandy Storm Recovery
Important Flood Mold Prevention and Remediation Information To Be Done After Flood Waters Have Receded.

When Searching for a Water Damage Contractor in Forked River, Lanoka Harbor, Bayville, Beachwood, Toms River, Seaside Heights, Seaside Park, Ortley Beach, Mantoloking, Point Pleasant, Brick, Waretown, Manahawkin, Beach Haven West, Long Beach Island, LBI, Beach haven, Ship Bottom, Surf City, Harvey Cedars, Barnegat Light, and Long Beach Township. you can rely on Axis Builders

By John A. Cafiero, President Axis Builders, LLC

What Steps Should Be Taken After Flood Damage :

With any water infiltration into a home, it is imperative to remove any porous materials and dispose of as soon as possible. For example couches, carpeting, flooded internally insulated or flexible duct work, cabinetry and other articles must be discarded. If tidal waters came up high enough to mix with raw sewage system everything must be treated as sewage.
All drywall must be cut and removed a foot to two feet above the highest water line. Any insulation in crawl space, basements or in walls must be discarded as well. You cannot simply let dry out and leave it. This will allow for mold to grow behind the walls. It is imperative that as soon as it is safe to re-enter your home that this all happens quickly. Mold needs 70% humidity level to grow and will happen fast if conditions are just right.

If water got in, flooring must be removed as well. Even hardwood is no match for flood water as water will penetrate in behind each board and destroy it as well as leave enough moisture trapped to start mold growth as well. If internally lined insulated ductwork had water infiltration, then it must be disposed as well. Flexible ductwork must also be removed and disposed. If the ductwork was externally insulated then the insulation must be removed and disposed and new duct wrap insulation reinstalled in its place. The internal duct system as well as whole system should be fogged with an antimicrobial duct sanitizer to sterilize the entire duct system.

Once all articles, drywall, insulation and flooring have been removed the whole space must be properly ventilated. If the humidity level is less than 70% outside the best method is to open windows on one side and have air movers on the other side to create enough air movement to have a negative air pressure in the space. This will naturally extract the moisture from the area in your home or business. If the outside humidity level is greater than 70% the windows should be left closed and air movers are still utilized to dry out space, but with the addition of a commercial dehumidification system as well to extract the water.
Crawl spaces and basements must be pumped out slowly to prevent walls to crack from loss of pressure too rapidly. The pressure on the walls of a foundation by rising flood waters is great. Releasing that pressure too quickly can have an adverse affect on the integrity of the foundation. This is a balancing act between inside and outside water levels. Moving too quick can be disastrous for your foundation. Another thing to consider is the incredible force of rising water. Pressure on foundations are with incredible forces and can cause structural damages to the structure as well. A foundation and framing inspection is necessary to determine if your home or business is safe to occupy. The repairs will need to be completed prior to any other work to ensure the stability and safety of the structure. Be Careful!

Once the space is dry it is time to treat for mold. A bleach and water solution can be used, but I find it best to use a ready to use professional antimicrobial. Both will work, but the professional chemicals are pre-mixed and ready to use and do not have the strong odors and harmful vapors of using bleach. The antimicrobial is applied with the use of a fogger machine which emits a fine even mist of chemical on the entire surface. After treated with the antimicrobial sanitizer a mold inhibiting sealer is applied to seal any areas affected.

Now that the space has been dried out and treated for mold growth and tested, the reconstruction can begin. The insulation should be installed with the vapor barrier facing the condition living space and not any other way. So many times I have seen this installed backwards. Vapor barrier always faces the living quarters. For example, in the crawl space the fiberglass vapor barrier should face toward the first floor and in the attic it should face down to the ceiling. On exterior walls the vapor barrier should face into the room it is serving. All finishes like drywall, flooring, tile, trim, cabinetry, and painting can be installed to normal professional standards.

It is also imperative to inspect the entire outside for wind or storm damages that may be in need of repairs. A few missing roof shingles, siding, fascia or gutters that are in need of repair or replacement and left neglected can cause water infiltration and major problems later if left neglected for too long. Axis Builders will do a free assessment or your home or business to ensure everything is the way it should be.

Hiring a professional to do all of this work is important and this really shouldn't be done by a homeowner or a novice contractor. Axis Builders can take care of your storm clean outs, mold prevention, mold remediation, and rebuilding including insulation, flooring, drywall, kitchen and bath remodeling, structural damage repairs, roofing, siding gutters fascia and much much more. Please give us a call for free estimates and advice on these critical steps to making your home and business back to the way it was before this disaster. We serve all of Ocean County, NJ including the towns of Forked River, Lanoka Harbor, Bayville, Beachwood, Toms River, Seaside Heights, Seaside Park, Ortley Beach, Mantoloking, Point Pleasant, Brick, Waretown, Manahawkin, Beach Haven West, Long Beach Island, LBI, Beach haven, Ship Bottom, Surf City, Harvey Cedars, Barnegat Light, and Long Beach Township.

Please Call us at 609-489-6305 or visit one of our speciality websites for more specific needs. LBI Custom Home Builder  LBI Handy Man or  LBI Kitchens and Baths