Steps to Fix a Water Damaged Attic
It’s safe to assume that you probably don’t head up to your attic on an everyday basis. Most homeowners don’t. In fact, the attic is a space that might be ignored for weeks or even months. This is one of the reasons that an attic water leak can go on for quite some time without notice.
If you recently discovered water damage in your attic, it’s time to take action. Without intervention, you could incur costly damage, not to mention hefty repairs and headaches.
Take the following steps to fix water damage in your attic:
1. Assess the Water Damage
Your first goal should be to assess the problem. Is the water leaking through a hole in the roof? Does the water seem to come from a burst pipe? Be thorough in your investigation, while remaining safe. Never touch anything electrical, including light sockets or recessed lights, until the electricity in the area has been turned off.
Be sure to note how widespread the attic water damage is. Sometimes, a small dark spot on woodwork can be misleading. Behind it, the wood could be rotten and moldy to a much greater extent.
2. Fix Any Water Leaks
Getting to the source of the water problem and eliminating it is necessary before doing any damage control. Again, this will likely require the help of professionals unless you have the skills, confidence, tools and know-how to get the job done correctly.
Be sure to contact your homeowners’ insurance carrier if you think repairs will extend beyond your deductible. Your carrier may not agree to cover the damage, but it never hurts to ask.
3. Start the Attic Repairs
Because every attic has a different setup, your water damage repair job will be completely unique to the situation. However, some of the common types of repairs you can expect after water damage to an attic include:
- Replacement of structural components - These could include anything from floorboards to your home’s basic framework. Be sure to investigate each board carefully in your attic. It’s an arduous process, depending on the attic size, but it’s well worth it in the end.
- Replacement of plumbing components - Was the source of your attic water damage a plumbing issue? You’ll want to replace any pipes or other plumbing components that led to the nightmare. And if the main cause was pipes that froze and burst, be sure to prevent this in the future with proper insulation.
- Replacement of electric components - Everything from light sockets to lighting itself may have been damaged when your attic experienced water damage. This is not a do-it-yourself job for most homeowners, so be prepared to get expert help to ensure any electric replacements are correctly placed.
- Replacement of insulation - Did your insulation become wet when the leak happened? Even if you discovered water damage long after it took place, you may still want to get new insulation for your attic spaces. Water damaged insulation will not function as well as newer insulation. Besides, it might be a chance for you to upgrade to more energy efficient materials that can wind up saving you significantly in utility costs.
4. Clean Your Attic Space Thoroughly
Finally, you’re ready for the last step, which is to clean your attic space thoroughly. Remove any remaining items and residue, and be sure to wipe down appropriate surfaces with a mixture of bleach and water while wearing protective gloves and gear.
Does the process seem too overwhelming? You can always call someone like the team from ServiceMaster of Lincoln Park to conduct a thorough evaluation on your behalf.
You might not think that your attic is critical to your home, but it’s an important area that protects your upper floors from the roof. Take water damage there as seriously as you would anywhere else, and be sure to call on ServiceMaster of Lincoln Park for any restoration needs.