How To Choose Water Damage Restoration Services

When a storm leaves a home flooded, or a burst pipe causes serious issues in the house, getting water damage restoration services from a respected company should be considered a top priority. Unfortunately, this industry is not regulated, and there are people out there who pose as professionals or overstate their qualifications. Therefore, homeowners should be mindful of who they hire, as an untrained technician may do more harm than good or delay repairs, resulting in a higher degree of destruction. Before selecting a company to handle the job, keep in mind these points of emphasis:

  • Only choose certified professionals to perform water damage restoration services. Even though the industry is not regulated, technicians who have received certification have made the effort to get the best training possible, proving that they take their job seriously. Certification through the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) is a sign that a professional has received the most up to date training and is knowledgeable in the latest techniques and technologies employed during repairs. The IICRC operates a Certified Firm registrant-only database on its site, making it easy to find a local, certified professional without trouble.
  • Do not select a technician based only on the price or an insurance company’s recommendation. When possible, speak to neighbors or friends who have had to hire a technician recently and try to get a recommendation from them. Insurance companies often select a restoration company based on price, and unusually low pricing suggests the company does not use modern drying or repair methods.
  • Choose a company that offers a range of water damage restoration services. The easiest way to determine the expertise of a firm is to see if they provide a full range of options for homeowners. Mold remediation, for example, is often needed given how quickly mold can set in. This is a standard field of knowledge that advanced technicians should possess. If a company doesn’t offer mold remediation, it may not be prepared for all job settings.
  • A company that is available 24/7 is a good sign. Stay away from any firms that are reluctant to start right away. In many cases modern equipment can enable near-complete drying in as little as 36 hours,  although many situations require longer. Also, a homeowner should not have to wait before repairs begin. Every minute counts when there is standing water present, and reputable professionals understand this. If a technician insists on waiting to begin the  remediation portion of the loss, they probably cannot be trusted to see the job through in a reasonable timeframe.

Using these guidelines, a homeowner should be able to find a technician that can be trusted and is equipped to do the job the right way. A storm or other disaster is hard enough to deal with, and a remediation firm should do everything in its power to make this difficult process easier.

What Does Mold Remediation Certification Courses Offer?

Technicians who have taken mold remediation certification courses can be valuable assets to people in distress. Certified professionals are trained to identify moisture sources, evaluate any visible or suspected mold growth, minimize the damage, remove the contaminated material, and make sure that no further areas are contaminated. For households and business dealing with microbial infestation problems, having a person who can handle such issues properly is a necessity.

The path to obtaining certification may seem difficult for those technicians who do not have it, but fortunately for them the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certification (IICRC) offers courses in the subject.

These courses usually take four days to complete. They are taught by approved instructors who have experience with the subject matter. The IICRC does not have a main campus; instead, it has a list of approved-schools in which an interested student can take a class. This list, as well as the times and dates of available classes, can be found on the IICRC website.
During the course, students will learn the proper methods of identifying the contaminated area, how to effectively remove it, and the proper methods of drying out the area. They will also learn proper health and safety practices to protect themselves against the potential hazards that come from removing mold.

Students will need to complete a written test and a skill demonstration after completing the course. Upon passing both examinations, they will be certified.

The IICRC has been at the forefront in creating reference guides and setting the standards in mold removal. Because of the reputation that comes from being an industry leader, any technician who has completed mold remediation certification courses from the IICRC will be a step above his or her competitors in the field.

Is Online Water Damage Restoration Training Available?

Is there an online water damage restoration training program available through the internet?

Safely cleaning up a home after a flood or sewage backup is an extremely complex job, so there is no way an internet program can properly train a technician. This training can only be delivered in-person, hands-on, and by an experienced professional. For technicians that want to get their feet wet in the industry, so to speak, it’s best to avoid any organization that only offers distance education.

Why is online water damage restoration training not possible?

When cleaning a property that has been damaged by floods, there are a number of dangers to be mindful of. This includes wildlife, like snakes or spiders, chemical runoff, microbial threats, mold, structural instability, and electrical hazards. Neutralizing these threats and  restoring the home to a pre-loss condition takes detailed hands-on experience that just can’t be gained online.

Even if a flooded home doesn’t contain any obvious threats, salvaging and drying material must be done correctly. A professional without the proper knowledge may dispose of furniture that could be saved, or fail to identify items that cannot be restored and therefore should be destroyed.  Improper restoration may cost the homeowner more than it should, or even leave behind secondary structural problems or hazardous mold growth.

Mold remediation is a critical part of a technician’s job and is perhaps the main reason professionals should receive detailed instruction before handling a work site. Mold growth is a major threat in any home that has harbored standing water, and it can cause severe health problems with prolonged exposure. Looking for mold and safely removing it should only be done by trained professionals. If not done correctly, a technician may leave mold behind, which will eventually spread and compromise other parts of the home.

What is the best alternative to online water damage restoration training?

The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) offers all of its courses through approved instructors. These instructors can be found around the world and have put the IICRC’s standards into practice for many years. They are one of the institute’s most valuable resources and have helped thousands of technicians transition into the industry smoothly.

The IICRC’s coursework is focused on helping technicians handle a variety of work situations, in both residential and commercial settings. When paired with the IICRC’s applied structural drying course, a technician will be able to identify which materials should be removed, and which materials can be salvaged. With coursework in proper drying techniques, a professional will be able to accelerate and monitor the drying process, ensuring all excess moisture is removed from the home.

Home and business owners put a major emphasis on certification and expect the technicians they choose to have the expertise needed to do a thorough job. Hands-on coursework through the IICRC is the best way to gain this expertise.

How Is Industrial Carpet Different From Others?

Industrial carpet is typically used in commercial properties and is better adapted to these settings for a number of reasons. There are differences between this type of flooring and the material used in residential properties. This is something a cleaning professional must keep in mind when approaching a job site, as the style of the flooring will dictate the best form of treatment. For this reason, professionals in the cleaning industry should train in both residential and commercial cleaning if they plan on working in both settings.

How is industrial carpet different than residential flooring?

Residential flooring is designed with comfort in mind first. A home is somewhere to relax and get comfortable, and a plush surface to walk on is an important part of this approach. Thick padding is particularly important for families with children, as children will spend most of their time on the floor. Residential carpeting typically has taller pile and a fairly loose loop design. Both of these produce the plush feel that homeowners want from their flooring.

Durability and economy are the most important priorities when producing commercial flooring. Businesses experience a much higher degree of foot traffic, so its flooring needs to be able to take the punishment. Residential flooring installed in these areas would deteriorate quickly and be flattened right away, taking away its plush feel. Commercial material generally has a short pile and tight looping, providing it with the density needed to spring back under pressure. Commercial carpeting can also be cut in a larger variety of sizes and is generally less expensive, so it is easier to incorporate into an expansive floor plan.

This additional durability and economy means less comfort, which is why commercial grade flooring is rarely found in homes. It can, however, be a good choice for home offices, as it produces less friction when moving around chairs and can convey a professional look.

How can a technician learn industrial carpet cleaning?

The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) offers a variety of certification courses to professionals in the industry. Among these is the Commercial Carpet Maintenance Technician course, or CCMT, a class that instructs technicians on commercial flooring cleaning and maintenance. A total of 14 hours will be taught over two days, the CCMT course exposes students to a variety of commercial cleaning situations. Students will learn about the basics of commercial flooring construction, standard cleaning methods, cleaning equipment, safety procedures, and preventative maintenance techniques. Upon completing the CCMT course, they will be able to perform most forms of restorative, preventative, and salvage cleaning.

There are several differences between residential and commercial flooring, and these differences will affect effort’s to clean the material properly. For this reason, a technician who wants to provide the best service possible should consider certification in both residential and commercial treatment through the IICRC. Look online for a class near you.