First Steps

So, you have water damage due to a burst pipe, sump pump failure, or other issue. What should you do? Your first step is to call a water restoration company who can be on the scene quickly, day or night. Then, call your insurance company to report the damage and file a claim.

When you have water in your home or business, it’s critical to call for help right away to prevent further damage. If you don’t, you might face some of the following issues.


Mold can begin growing as soon as 24-48 hours after water damage occurs. Exposure to excess moisture allows mold to grow and spread without treatment can lead to health issues for you and your family. Exposure to mold can cause respiratory issues, skin and eye irritation, nausea, headaches, and more. The longer you are exposed to mold, the more severe the health complications become. Prolonged mold exposure may lead to chronic bronchitis, brain damage, lung bleeding, nervous system disorders, and more.

Preventing mold growth as much as possible starts with acting fast after a water loss.

mold in subfloor


The longer water sits, the more bacteria is able breed and sink into the fabrics of your carpet, furniture, or clothing, creating an odor that will only worsen. This will make it more difficult to effectively clean your belongings, and they may have to be thrown out.

wet carpet

Wood Rot

When wood is exposed to water for more than 24 hours, it can begin to rot. This means your cabinets, hardwood floors, and furniture may need to be replaced if moisture is not quickly addressed. Untreated moisture within the wood can also lead to mold, fungi, and even termites.

Removing standing water is only the first step. You will need professional equipment, such as dehumidifiers and air movers, to remove all moisture from the wood and promote air circulation in your home.

water damaged subfloor

Structural Damage

Wood is one of the primary materials used to build our homes, so if moisture is present where you can’t see it, like in the framing behind your walls or in the subflooring underneath your floor, the structural integrity of your home is at risk.

water damage behind walls


Untreated water damage makes your home more attractive to pests like cockroaches, silverfish, beetles, and more. Why? These bugs love damp environments. Ward them off by getting any water damage taken care of immediately.

termites after water damage

Electrical Damage

Sometimes water damage is followed up by fire damage. This is because your home’s electricity may be exposed to the water leak, which can damage the circuits and lead to the start of a fire. Even if the water loss doesn’t touch any electricity, untreated water damage can seep through your walls and flooring toward an area where there are electrical components and cause damage.

electrical water damage

The Bottom Line

After water damage strikes, you and your family’s safety should be your top priority. To ensure the full restoration and safety of your home, don’t try to remedy the situation yourself. Call a professional restoration company who can be on the scene 24/7 to help.