3 Problems To Watch For After Your Initial Pipe-Burst Cleanup
When a pipe bursts in your home, your initial focus will be on cleaning up the water and getting the pipe repaired. When that is done, you can take a big sigh of relief and start using your plumbing again. But that won't mean you're out of the woods when it comes to the water damage. In the coming months, you'll want to keep your eyes open for these three issues that can sometimes arise after a burst pipe.
Mold loves moisture. It may not immediately start growing after your spill, but if there is some deep moisture in your walls, floors, or ceilings that was not dried up immediately, you may notice some mold growth in the coming weeks. You may also notice symptoms in yourself, like sneezing and itching, which indicate you're allergic to the mold that is growing.
Mold may be white, brown, gray, black, or even greenish, and it may appear in spots or an even layer. If you do see mold on any surface that got wet after the pipe burst, wipe the area down with bleach water or hydrogen peroxide. Then, plug in a dehumidifier; this will remove excess moisture from the air and let the materials dry out more thoroughly, which will hopefully keep the mold from growing back.
Many insects, including cockroaches and ants, love moist areas. If there's a bit of moisture left over after the spill, you might start seeing some of these insects in your home. As recommended with mold, plug in a dehumidifier to dry the area out further. Then, start cleaning your home. Make sure there are no crumbs or open food packages. If the insects don't have a food source, they won't keep coming around. Consider putting out some baits or traps. Ultimately, once you get the space thoroughly dry, the pests should move on.
Stained Building Materials
Water stains do not always appear immediately after a pipe bursts. Sometimes they might pop up a week or two later once the water fully evaporates. If you see a brownish spot on the ceiling, wall, or floor, don't worry, it is just a water stain. In many cases, you can paint over it with some oil-based primer to conceal the stain, and then with the paint of your choice. There's no need to replace the drywall as long as it is still flat once it dries.
Having a pipe burst can be disheartening, but all of the problems above are pretty easily solved!