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Whether the cause is a flood or a slow leak, home water damage can require a lot of time and money to repair. While most repairs likely require the help of a professional, there are a few steps that you can take to start improving the state of your house after water damage. One of the first steps to take is to dry as much of the carpet as possible, as this is usually one of the most expensive items to replace. You should also inspect the baseboards and wall for signs of moisture since you may be able to dry out these materials before permanent damage is done. If you suspect that the wall is too soaked to save, you should likely call a home water damage specialist for help.
If you noticed the standing water immediately after the flood or leak occurred, you should be able to make some repairs on your own. Once you have determined the cause of the excess water and stopped the flow, you should soak up as much moisture as possible. It is advised that you use a wet/dry vacuum on carpeting to suction up most of the water. Turning on ceiling fans and directing floor fans toward the carpet can also help dry the area, though these methods may take a couple days to work. You may be able to avoid permanent home water damage by taking these steps soon after the issue occurs, but if the carpet has been soaked for a few days before you are able to take action, you will likely have to throw it out.
One of the biggest worries of most homeowners is wall damage since replacement of the drywall or wood can be a large, costly project. The good news is that you may be able to repair this type of home water damage on your own. If the water has only been present for less than a day, you may be able to prevent the wood from warping or rotting by drying it quickly. This can be done using floor fans or even a blow dryer to focus air and heat on the wood so that it dries as quickly as possible. If the water has been present for days, you will likely need to repair the wall, usually through replacing the wood and drywall.
Most homeowners cannot repair major home water damage on their own, which is why water damage specialists exist. If you find that the wood in your house is already warped, or the carpet pad has been soaked for days, you will probably need help replacing these items. If you cannot afford the repairs on your own, find out if your homeowner's insurance will cover the costs.