3 Reasons Tackling Storm Damage Yourself Isn't A Good Idea

27 January 2015
 Categories: , Articles


Severe weather in the colder or warmer months can leave considerable damage in its path. Although you may think handling the problem yourself is a good idea and cost-effective, the risk of personal injury or more costly property damage should make you think twice.

Extensive Water Damage

A common problem after a significant storm is water that has seeped into your home from flooding or roof leaks. The risk of flooding is often considered a potential threat during severe weather in the warmer months, but can occur after blizzard conditions, when significant amounts of snow begin to melt. Although there are many types of machinery available for rent that can help you pump out excess water and dry the floor, it is rarely enough to remedy the situation.

Although you may think you have sufficiently dried the floor, it is often damp underneath the carpet or flooring. Even worse are the effects after water has soaked into the floor and walls. Simply because you toss out the old carpet or strip the flooring, this does not mean you have uncovered all the damage. Your home can become structurally unsound from extensive water damage that rots supporting structures. Furthermore, deeper layers within the floor and wall can become a breeding ground for mold, which has serious health consequences.

Trauma And Electrocution Risks

A ladder and chainsaw seem like enough supplies to dismember a tree that has fallen on your property or is blocking the roadway. The first danger lies in nearby power lines that are often entangled in trees. You do not need to be in immediate contact with a power line to risk electrocution. Stepping in a small puddle of water where a wire has landed can be enough to cause fatal injuries.

When the risk of electrocution is not a factor, the chances of major trauma remain. Falls or blunt force trauma can occur from attempting to remove tree branches or dismantle trees on your own. The risk is increased because you do not know the condition of the tree. When large trees are easily toppled during a storm, you can assume the tree was probably not healthy to start. This means that attempting to cut away branches, even small ones, could cause larger branches or the trunk of the tree to crumble.

Hidden Dangers

Another risk when doing damage cleanup on your own is the risk of coming into contact with gas or sewer lines. Although cable and telephone lines are potentially hazardous because they may carry voltage, some of the most common threats are gas and sewer lines. Many of these lines are buried under the ground and are not clearly marked, or can be damaged where they enter your home.

Natural gas has a unique scent to help you detect a gas leak, but depending on the location of the leak, and how fast the gas is leaking out, the results may not be immediately noticeable. This presents a widespread risk to you and anyone in your neighborhood, since a simple spark or static electricity could cause an explosion.

Damage to sewer lines can cause additional damage if the severed line leaks inside your home or into the street. Broken sewer lines can contaminate the water system or cause infectious disease outbreaks if anyone encounters untreated waste. Even after cleanup, untreated waste can continue to contaminate the ground around you or property for many years to come.

It is never a good idea to tackle storm damage cleanup on your own. Investing in a professional water damage cleanup service can reduce the chances of creating new problems during the cleanup process and give you and your family more time to recover from the incident.