Water does not always lay on the floor. Mean leaks and water overflows occur in the ceiling or on the second floor. As it runs down ceilings and walls soak up the water. Not only will the drywall be wet but so will everything behind it. This means that insulation and framing need to be dried as well. Water will even soak “up” into the drywall off of the floors. This is called wicking. Usually if water was sitting on the floor it will wick up and saturate the unseen area behind your baseboards. The good news is that H2O Drying is usually able to dry the walls and ceilings in place as well. Not just the outside but the interior cavities as well.
Step 1 Install containment around wet area
Depending on the type of wall covering our process will vary. For example, we are able to pull water right through a flat wall paint. Depending on the situation H2O Drying may build a false plastic wall in front of the wet wall to hold more heat on it. If the same wall is covered with a glossy latex paint the paint forms a vapor barrier, the same sort of vapor barrier can also be created with wallpaper. A vapor barrier blocks the water from evaporating on that side of the surface. In these cases we will create access to direct airflow behind the wall. This is usually done by removing the baseboard and drilling holes at the bottom.
Step 2 Evaporation
H2O Drying will get heated, dry airflow as close to the wall or ceiling as possible. If we are drying inside the wall then an attachment called an octi-dry is fixed on the heat exchanger. (Picture) In some cases we may even duct hot air into a stubborn area.
Step 3 Ventilation/dehumidification
As water is evaporated it is critical that all of that moisture be removed from the room. The more humid the air is above the affected materials the slower drying occurs. To overcome this H2O Drying sets up a thermostatically controlled exhaust to remove excess heat and humidity. While in some cases dehumidifiers are used exhaust is the preferred method. The exhaust we construct on site creates a river of air, exchanging hot wet air for cooler dry air. This allows us to remove gallons of moisture per day instead of only pints.