Why Water Damage Cleanup Companies May Want You To Put Some Damaged Items In The Freezer

If you experience water damage and you call up a professional water damage restoration company, you may end up asking them what you can do to help jumpstart the cleaning and drying process before they arrive. And depending on the company, they may tell you to put some damaged items in the freezer (items such as books, documents, and papers) if the area is safe to enter. Here's why they may give you this seemingly bizarre recommendation.

Freezing the water halts its spread

Frozen water tends to crystallize in place, and once it's totally frozen it can no longer creep slowly across the surface of a paper while you watch helplessly. Turning the water into a solid is how freezing works, so this is actually a kind of brilliant way to perform damage control on books that already have water damage. Be careful not to put anything dangerous in your freezer, though; this is only recommended for books that have been damaged by relatively clean water, not by sewer backups or other dangerous water sources.

Freezing buys time to decide what to do

Freezing not only allows you to keep your books from getting more damaged while you wait for the damage control company to arrive, but it also allows time for looking at each book to decide if it's worth trying to save or if you should just replace it. The water damage experts will be able to help you make these determinations, and if the books are frozen solid, there won't be any time pressure as you're discussing it.

Frozen materials can be freeze-dried

"Freezer burn" when applied to water damaged materials can be a feature rather than a bug. While dried-out shrimp, ice cream with forests of frost on top, and other dehydrated foods are likely to be unappetizing, having the water pulled out of wet books is actually a good thing. Freeze-drying is sometimes recommended for DIY water damage cleanup (for instances where only one or two books were damaged, for example) and involves leaving your books in the freezer for a while until the water gets pulled out of the pages. Professional remediation experts sometimes offer freeze-drying services that use professional equipment to ensure your books are freeze dried in the most effective way, and if you have your books in the freezer before the experts arrive, they'll be all ready to be freeze dried.

For more information, contact a business such as Continental Carpet Cleaning Restoration