We have been providing water damage restoration in Los Angeles for over 25 years. In this water damage guide, we will cover:
- The dangers of water damage and what to look for
- Determining factors in cleanup costs – sewer or freshwater
- Initial steps you should take to save your home from further damage
- Different processes of restoration you should know
- Types of restoration
- How companies charge for water damage in the Los Angeles area
- What you should do – repair vs. replacement
How much does it cost to restore water damage? – Billy A., Venice, CA.
Water is a huge necessity, and of course we all know it’s necessary and part of our life. With over 2,000 water clean ups in Los Angeles alone, we’ve seen it wreak havoc.
The amount of damage we’ve seen is unbelievable. It can happen through flooding due to a storm, a sewer pipe break or back up from toilets, sewer ejector pump failure or a burst pipe. Other causes include water heater leaks from an air conditioning line, moisture trapped in attics, walls or floors, gaps in a tile shower, foundation cracks, a leaking toilet, water damage after a fire, or a leaking roof.
Too much moisture left alone inside your home can leads to bigger problems.
*Quick Twin Tip
If water isn’t cleaned up properly and quickly, and materials dried out within the first 8 to 24 hours after the initial damage has been done, additional problems can begin to set in, including black mold, mildew, and wood rot. One particular mold called Poria will actually eat your property alive.
Check this video out with Dave at a customers home.
Does it matter what kind of water causes the damage?
Not all water damage is equal. Water from “clean” sources, such as a hot and cold water pipe or rain is easier and less expensive to clean up. Water from a backed up sewer pipe or drain line takes much more thorough cleaning, as most materials that make contact should be removed.
Also a slow occurring leak that’s hidden, will do more damage such as mold or dry rot. Molds such as Poria are more common with water damage in Los Angeles than just about anywhere. Pipes even rust out such as gas lines and that is a huge danger.
Can I get some ballpark figures on what it will cost? – Savanna. Santa Monica, CA
If you need to determine the cause of the water source, leak detection can cost from a low of $225 to an extreme high (for difficult leaks) of $2,900.
The average cost of simply drying out your property from a “clean” water leak, with no further damage done or restoration needed, can range from low of around $950 to a high of 3,400.
However, the average cost of drying out your home and repairing the damage done to areas like drywall, base molding and carpeting can range from $3,400 to $7,500.
Attics & crawl spaces can range from a low of about $800 to a high of $5,500.
*Costs can continue to go up from here depending on the source and type of water, amount of water and how great the damage has spread.
Who cleans my personal items, such as furniture, art work etc? – Stephanie. Monrovia, CA
When it comes to personal items, a content restoration company will assess the damages, and either clean onsite or at their facility. The content cleaning can range from $250-$3,200.
What are the dangers of water damage? – Peter. Woodland Hills, CA
A very slow leak or burst pipe water damage may seem only inconvenient, but water can do a lot of damage to your home if not cleaned up in a timely manner. That’s why we’re big believers in arriving within 60 to 90 minutes to any job site here at The Twin Home Experts.
In addition to the damage that prolonged contact with water may have on things like carpeting and drywall, water may also lead to:
- Fire caused by contact with electrical outlets, breakers or other electrical sources
- The potential growth of black mold or mildew on both hard and soft surfaces, and personal belongings
- Rotting of wood and other organic materials.
- Stains caused by minerals or particles in the water seeping into porous materials such as stone or wood.
- The spread of e Coli bacteria, or disease in water from contaminated sources like sewer or drain pipes
- Off gases caused by mold, mildew and bacteria that leach out into the breathing spaces.
All of these issues are also considerably more costly to repair or remove from your home than the initial moisture. This is why it’s important to deal with water or leaks as soon as they are discovered.
What are the determining factors in cleanup costs? – Antoinette. Simi Valley, CA
While there are some basic costs in dealing with water or moisture issues in your Los Angeles home, there are several factors that can influence what your final costs will be.
The first consideration is the type of water. Is it clean water? Water that comes from a drain pipe or the rain is the easiest to deal with and the least costly.
With most water restoration problems we’ve charged, and have seen our competitors charge, are around $1,200 to $4,200 for a thorough dry out – using dehumidifiers, air scrubbers & air movers.
Sewer or gray water, or water that has come from a dishwasher, washing machine or other appliance that can contain chemicals, is more costly to deal with. These damages can range from $2,000-$10,000.
Water Damage Restoration in Los Angeles: Initial steps
Most of the time, dealing with water damage should always be left to the professionals. However, speed is of the essence if you want to help keep your total costs down. Therefore, it’s recommended that you follow these steps before they arrive to help deal with the damage:
- Turn off the water to the house.
- Stop using any plumbing fixtures.
- Turn off the power to the affected area to prevent electrical fires.
- Remove any throw rugs or moveable soft furnishings from the room.
- Mop up or bail out as much water as you can without using any electrical appliances.
- Move all personal items such artwork, photographs and decorative items to a safe dry place.
- Open up cabinets and doors to help facilitate drying.
- Wipe down any walls or furnishings that have a small amount of moisture on them.
- Hang draperies out dry.
- Open any windows to help air out the area.
Types of restoration and reconstruction
Beyond simply removing the water from your home, and dealing with the resulting moisture, you may need additional reconstruction as well. If the water has damaged your floors, walls, or other areas of the home, you may need to include these types of restoration costs in your estimate.
What is the restoration process? – Scott P., Thousand Oaks, CA
Every situation dealing with water inside your home is going to be a little different, which may mean that the actual process of restoration may vary for your property as well. However, the general steps taken will likely resemble the following:
Detect water source and stop it! The restoration team will make a thorough examination of your home and the potential damage to create a plan using infrared, moisture detection devices.
The water gets extracted by suction type equipment.
Next, your property will be dried out thoroughly with the use of dehumidifiers, fans and air scrubbers. Movable items may be removed to an offsite location for cleaning, including your furniture, drapes, throw rugs, and children’s toys. They will be thoroughly sanitized and deodorized before being returned.
Finally, your home will be sanitized and deodorized using a combination of fogging equipment, air scrubbers, and antimicrobial treatments. If there was further damage done to your home such as wood rot, reconstruction will take place to restore the damaged areas.
How do other water damage companies charge? – Connie V., Santa Clarita, CA
Most Los Angeles water damage companies charge based on their business model.
They typically charge either by the job at one set price, per square foot of the job, or hourly (which we do not recommend).
Repair vs. replacement? – Joanne S., Culver City, CA
You may find that depending on the level of damage done to your home, there are times when repairing something may be the recommended option, while at other times, replacement is for sure needed.
This is largely due to the amount and level of damage or contamination. As stated earlier, once sewer water makes contact it should be removed.
Additional considerations and costs from The Twins
Your insurance company may pay for the water damage and clean up due to a burst pipe or sudden spill.
If you find mold in your home after water has infiltrated, do not disturb it in any way, and seal up the area. Mold can become airborne when touched, spreading to other areas, and potentially causing health problems.
Always ask for a written, detailed estimate of the work to be performed before it’s begun so you know what will be taken care of, and can make arrangements for further restoration if necessary.
You will also want to be certain they detect the water source, and give you a detailed report with action steps.
Make sure that the company you hire to deal with your water damage is certified with the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification.
Verify that they are certified for mold, as well as fully insured and bonded.
Finally, work with someone you can count on to handle your personal items with care.
*When it comes to costs, just make sure you call a company that will assess the damage and provide full transparency. As you can see prices vary from a low of $500 to $10,000.