It doesn’t have to be a major disaster to seem like one. When a pipe bursts, a roof leaks, or a heavy rain causes flooding and you’re faced with dealing with water damage, either minor or major, it’s often difficult to think clearly. Doing the right things can control the damage, while doing the wrong things can exacerbate the situation and even increase your losses. Paul W. Davis Systems, Inc., is one of the nation’s leading property damage restoration companies, offers these do’s and don’ts for dealing with water damage while waiting for expert assistance.

DO: - Disconnect all electrical power to affected areas.
- Stop flow of water if possible. For example, if the problem is broken pipe or backed up plumbing, turn the water off at the master shut-off valve.
- Remove as much of the standing water as you can as quickly -- but with care and caution -- as possible.
- Place furniture on aluminum foil or wood blocks to prevent further damage to both the furniture and the carpet or flooring. This also allows the carpet to dry more quickly.
- Remove all cushions, rugs, books, paintings and other similar items to a place with good air circulation where they can dry faster and mold is less likely to develop.
- Remove valuable paintings from wet walls. Transfer all art objects to a safe place.
- Open all drawers and doors, including closets and cabinets, for maximum aeration and drying. Open suitcases and luggage to dry, in sunlight if possible.
- Hang furs and leather goods to dry separately at room temperature, then take them to a dry cleaner that specializes in their treatment.

- Do mot use any electrical appliances such as fans, hair dryers, or vacuums while the floor on which you are standing on is wet.
- Do not turn on ceiling fixtures if the ceiling is wet.
- Do not enter rooms where the ceiling is very wet because the plaster could fall and cause injury.
- Do not use newspaper to absorb moisture; soggy paper is difficult to work with, and the newspaper will leave stains.
- Do not leave colored items of any kind on wet or damp floors or carpets.
- Do not walk on carpets more than absolutely necessary until they have completely dried.