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6 Reasons You Shouldn’t DIY “Minor” Cleanup Tasks After a Disaster

When disaster strikes, the results can be catastrophic. Whether it’s water damage, mold infestation or a house fire, you’ll be left to pick up the pieces and decide how to proceed. You may be tempted to save the cost of hiring a professional cleaning crew and handle the cleanup yourself. After all, you scrub and sweep your home all the time — how difficult can it be?

In reality, restoring a home after a disaster is no small task. You may have experience rebuilding your deck or fixing your leaking pipes, but unlike many DIY home projects, disaster cleanup requires an expert eye. Consider these six reasons that it’s always best to call in a professional restoration company to handle the cleanup job.

1. You Might Be Walking Into an Unseen Hazard

You know your house inside and out — but that doesn’t mean you know what new dangers exist after a disaster. There may be sharp debris and obstructions hidden beneath standing water or under smoke or burned objects. You could run the risk of falling through unstable framework or flooring. If there’s water damage on the floor, you could also slip and hurt yourself.

Beyond the visible hazards, there may also face a variety of health issues from being in the space. Water damage after a flood could cause dangerous electrical shocks if your wiring has been impacted. Your gas lines could be damaged, leading to potentially toxic gas fume leaks. You might also be facing bacteria, mold or sanitation issues if your plumbing system was broken during the event.

For these reasons among others, it’s best to stay out of your home after a disaster. Call in a professional cleanup crew that’s trained and equipped to handle these risk factors.

2. You Could Use the Wrong Cleanup Tools

You probably have a closet full of cleaning tools, like mops and sponges, that can handle small emergencies. In a more serious situation, however, your standard cleaning equipment won’t be of much assistance. Even heavy-duty mops and rags won’t be able to efficiently handle significant amounts of standing water, which will leave the standing water to further damage your home’s structure while you try to clean.

Professional companies, on the other hand, will use industry-grade equipment designed for emergencies just like the one you’re facing. They’ll have all the right tools on hand to make quick work of the job, including high-quality cleaning solutions that can thoroughly disinfect your home and provide a full restoration.

3. You May Miss an Important Detail

Without an expert eye, it’s difficult to know exactly what details to consider. There’s no shame in that — after all, you’re not a professional in natural disaster restoration. However, it means you can easily miss key details while attempting a DIY water damage cleanup project. With a large amount of water to clean and dry, you may forget to check outlets or hidden parts of your home, which can lead to residual water damage and mold that accumulates over time.

Damage restoration crews, like our team at Unlimited Restoration, are trained to scour every inch of a home during the cleanup process. We go above and beyond to make sure no detail is missed.

During a recent flood cleanup project, our inspection team discovered a wet and energized switch panel located above the waterline. While the panel was considered safe due to its location, the water inside was energized and could have led to some hefty health repercussions if we hadn’t discovered it. A DIY water extraction project could have easily meant overlooking this panel — to a risky end.

4. The Problem Can Get Worse After Even a Short Wait

As any professional will tell you, there’s no time to lose when it comes to fixing house damage. Whether it’s water, fire or mold, speedy intervention will prevent the problem from getting worse. DIY repair projects require a hefty amount of time to set up. Between identifying the problem, making a list of supplies, shopping for equipment and watching instructional YouTube videos, you can spend countless hours preparing for a repair project before actually starting to remedy the issue.

Calling in an expert cleanup crew can save valuable time and prevent further corrosion and damage in your home.

5. Cutting Corners Doesn’t Always Save Costs

When your home is hit with unexpected damage, it can feel like a blow to both your morale and your budget. Depending on the disaster, you may be looking at costly bills to replace lost furniture, technology and appliances. At this point, it’s tempting to pinch your pennies and opt for some DIY fire damage cleanup.

Going the DIY route might seem budget-friendly in the here and now, but this option can come back to wreak financial havoc later. Beyond the cost of purchasing specialized cleaning supplies, you run the risk of making a mistake or missing a detail.

Over time, this misstep can lead to a growing problem, from sagging floors and weakened structures to corroded electrical wires. You may have to call the professionals to handle any errors you made with your first cleaning attempt, leading to bigger and costlier repairs. An initial professional cleanup service is an investment that will pay itself off in expert results and your own peace of mind.

6. Safety Procedures Should Always Come First

The safety of you and your family members should be your first concern. Whether it’s a damaged floor, a sagging roof or residual smoke exposure, it’s always wise to stay out of your home for your own safety. This is also true of smaller restoration projects, like DIY mold removal. Black mold is toxic and can be harmful to your health if inhaled. 

Instead of trying to fix the issue yourself, remember your number one priority and call in the professionals. They’ll have the right protective gear and training to stay safe even in the midst of potential hazards.

Reach out to Unlimited Restoration for Your Professional Cleanup Services

If you’ve experienced a disaster in your home, remember that you’re not alone. We’re committed to offering reliable and effective assistance. We know how overwhelming and stressful this situation can be, so we’re here to make the cleanup process as easy and straightforward as possible. URI provides water and fire damage restoration services, including emergency site stabilization, debris removal, drying equipment implementation, mold prevention and complete reconstruction.

Contact us online to learn more, or call our emergency response hotline at 888-753-7587.