How to dry out walls after water damage? If you suspect that there’s water damage inside your walls after a category 2 or 3 water damage, then it’s time to immediately assess the damages and get repairs started. There are several types of water damage and each should be addressed accordingly, so it’s imperative that you start the drying procedure right away in order to prevent further damage. But wait, how long does it take for a wall to dry out after a leak? What is a category 3 water damage, or even category 2? What’s the difference?
How to Dry Out Walls After Water Damage?
This article will guide you through the proper steps to assess any water damage inside walls and determine which type of water damage it is so you can act accordingly. Be sure to read thoroughly so you can understand the nature of your problem and find the perfect fix for it.
Water Damage Categories
So, what is a category 3 water damage? Or a category 2? Well, they’re the main categories of water damage based on the level of contamination according to the Institute of International Cleaning
and Restoration Certification (IICRC). Their number depends largely on their severity:
- Category 1. The water damage is caused by broken supply lines, water systems or natural sources, like rain. Overall, it’s fresh, nonhazardous water.
- Category 2. Water damaged containing unsafe levels of microorganisms and/or corrosive substances such as urine, detergents, or seepage. This is the “grey water” category.
- Category 3. Damage is caused by contaminated water, harmful for human consumption. Because of its deadly and destructive nature, this is considered the “black water”.
Determine the severity of your leak.
Water saturates drywall through ground level, first covering the floor and eventually making its way inside of the wall, “wicking” it up because of capillary action in porous materials. Depending on your wall’s construction materials, the water’s height and the category type of water damage we quoted above, damage can be shallow or deep.
For reference, drywall can wick up 30 inches of water because it contains gypsum, which is an absorbent material, and a cardboard-like paper surface, meaning that both sides (especially inside, due to its enclosed zone that restricts evaporation) will be flooded. What makes it worse: sometimes water damage inside walls won’t be noticeable until it’s too late.
How to dry out walls after water damage?
The first thing you must do is decide whether to hire a professional to do the job for you (especially if you don’t know how long it takes for a wall to dry out after a leak) or do it yourself. We recommend you to consider the former if this is your first time fixing your drywall; however, if you’re eager to do it yourself, then keep in mind the following:
- As every expert would do, address the type of water damage you’ve got in hands, find the leak source and turn off any water supply that’s making the water run.
- Start removing objects from the wall, and then moldings, baseboards, and wallpaper.
- Open windows and doors and use fans to speed up the drying process. Also consider investing in dehumidifiers to remove moisture.
How long does it take to dry out water damage?
Best situations take 2 to 3 days, but the time frame depends on the severity and nature of the damage.
How do you dry a wall after a water leak?
To recap our guide above: address the damage, identify the water source, turn it off and procure as much ventilation as possible to speed up the drying process.
Is drywall ruined if it gets wet?
Long water exposure can actually damage drywall, especially because drywall’s cardboard-like nature. We recommend you to act fast in order to save your wall from further damage and mold build up, or else, it might get ruined.
Now that you know how to dry out walls after water damage, how long does it take for a wall to dry out after a leak and what is a category 3 water damage and the other two ones, you can easily assess the types of water damage if you ever suspect that there’s water damage inside your walls and act fast to prevent further damage.Whether you have water damage in your basement or in your living room; remember: speed is key.