Bathrooms can flood even in the best-kept homes. As we go about our daily activities, someone may forget to turn off the tub faucet. Some may raise their eyebrows at the thought, but it does happen. What about a burst pipe you did not notice until the following day when you woke up to a flooded bathroom? The bathroom can flood easily, whether due to broken plumbing or sewage backup.
As the leading flood cleanup company in Wasilla, Alaska, we know how to handle this work. Though DIY can sometimes solve the problem, there are incidents when professional assistance is required to avoid more costly damage.
Five Common Causes Why Bathrooms Flood
Bathroom flooding can be a major inconvenience for any homeowner. It causes water damage to your property and creates an unpleasant and potentially hazardous living environment. Understanding the common causes of bathroom floods can help you prevent them from happening in the first place.
Here are the five most frequent reasons for bathroom flooding:
1. Plumbing malfunctions
A flooded bathroom is often the result of faulty plumbing. A malfunctioning float, which is responsible for monitoring the water level in the tank, is a common problem with toilets. As a result, the toilet fills and eventually spills over after the homeowner flushes.
2. Toilet clogs
Clogged toilets frequently cause bathroom flooding. For example, large amounts of toilet paper can eventually result in a toilet overflow. Therefore, a toilet plunger is always helpful to have nearby.
3. Burst pipes
A drop in temperature causes the water in the pipes to freeze, causing the pipes to expand and possibly burst.
4. Clogged drains
Hair in sink drains often causes bathroom pipes to clog and back up. If there are children at home who love to create an “indoor swimming pool” inside the bathroom, also expect to find their toys clogging the drain. If the overflow drain is not working, running a bath will fill the tub to the point where it overflows, sending water behind the shower wall and all over the bathroom floor.
5. Sewer backups
Most of the time, sewage backs up into the bathroom because of storm flooding, but tree roots can also crack, clog, and back up sewer lines.
10-Step Guide to Cleaning Up a Flooded Bathroom
It is a must to address the bathroom flooding immediately. A bathroom flood takes little time to saturate the floor, walls, and cabinets.
As the water soaks into baseboards, drywall, and cabinets, it creates a humid environment that can support the growth of mold and mildew within 24 hours.
These 10 steps will help you recover from a flooded bathroom:
1. Ensure safety
While a flooded bathroom may not immediately evoke thoughts of electrical hazards, it is important to exercise caution. First, turning off the breaker for that area of the house is recommended. Next, carefully inspect the bathroom for any appliances or electronics that may pose a risk.
It’s important to ensure the outlets are dry before unplugging any electronics. Once the area has been deemed safe, all electrical items, such as space heaters and hair dryers, should be removed.
2. Turn off the water
Now that it is safe to start the cleanup process, it will be the most appropriate time to shut off the water source. Instead of extracting or draining the water immediately, find where it is coming from and turn it off at the valve closest to the leak. If this does not stop water from pouring into your bathroom, you may have a burst pipe inside a wall. Next, turn off the main water supply to your home at the valve outside. This will keep you safe.
Reminder: Wear shoes with rubber soles while you work to avoid slipping on a wet bathroom floor.
3. Call your insurance company
It’s important to contact your insurance company and inform your insurance agent of the water damage in your bathroom, regardless of the severity. To ensure the claims process is seamless, consider taking photos of the damage before cleaning or making any repairs.
By providing this documentation when filing your claim, you can help streamline the process and ensure that your insurance company has all the necessary information to assess the damage and provide appropriate coverage properly.
4. Fix the issue
Several methods are available for resolution in the event of bathroom plumbing issues. If access to the pipe or line is feasible, a temporary solution could be using epoxy putty or fiberglass tape to halt leakage. Alternatively, the hardware store’s pipe repair clamp kit could be utilized to repair any perforations.
For a leaking toilet, installing a new supply line, replacing the wax ring around the flange, or tightening the base may be necessary for remediation.
If a broken pipe behind the bathroom wall is causing the bathroom to flood, call a water damage company in Wasilla, Alaska, to resolve the problem.
5. Reflect and evaluate
Although messy, most homeowners clean up standing water with a mop and bucket. Swift action is advisable to mitigate water damage. Nonetheless, issues such as damp walls and concealed mold growth may still arise.
Consider entrusting cleanup and repairs to water damage professionals. Their teams clean, disinfect, and restore flooded bathrooms and resolve plumbing issues.
6. Get ready to clean up
Move everything out of the bathroom cupboards and vanities and put it elsewhere. Things that are too wet to use should be bagged and thrown away. Inspect the insides of the cabinets and storage closets for indications of water damage that might require fixing at a later time.
7. Get rid of standing water
Soak up the water with towels if your bathroom is flooded. A heavy mop and bucket work better for more significant amounts of water. Wet vacs are the best way to get rid of standing water. You can rent the tools from a home improvement store near you.
Reminder: Never use a regular vacuum cleaner to try to get water off the floor.
8. Begin drying the flooded bathroom
Again, you can DIY this step, or you can hire a water extraction company in Wasilla, Alaska, to do this for you to save time, energy, and even money.
Install as many fans as possible to circulate crosscurrents of fresh air. If you have a dehumidifier in the wet bathroom, check and empty it regularly.
To expedite the drying period, consider renting high-powered drying equipment from a home improvement store. The length of the process can vary from several days to over a week, depending on the degree of water damage incurred. Employing a moisture meter can aid in tracking progress during the drying-out process.
9. Remove and replace the drywall
Check the drywall in your bathroom very carefully. Since the material pulls water up, damage usually happens a few inches above the water line. Wet spots need to be ripped out and fixed. You might have to replace whole sections of the wall.
This is the most time-consuming part of fixing a flooded bathroom, but it’s imperative. If you do not get rid of water-damaged drywall, it becomes a place where mold can grow. The material can also let water into the wood framing, which can cause severe damage to the building.
10. Complete with a good disinfecting
The final step in restoring the bathroom is to scrub it thoroughly. Clean all surfaces with a strong disinfectant, including the floor, tub, toilet base, cabinet bases, trim, and baseboards.
This eliminates contaminants left over from flooding. It also improves the indoor air quality in the bathroom.
Who to call to fix water damage
While we encourage you to learn how to clean up after water damage, there are some situations where we advise you to leave it to the pros. For example, cleaning up a flooded bathroom floor can quickly become a major undertaking.
We know that the bathroom is one of the most used rooms in the house, which is why we want the cleanup done right away. But unfortunately, even minor bathroom flooding can cause severe structural damage that could cost you more than just hiring a restoration company.
When you call a professional for help with a flooded bathroom, you know the job will be done safely.
Don’t take any chances if you aren’t sure about your safety or how bad the bathroom water damage is. For a bathroom flood in Wasilla, Alaska, call Resto Clean! Our water damage experts will respond quickly to mitigate the situation and restore peace of mind.