Water can hide. Service Team of Professionals (S.T.O.P.) in Coeur d’Alene might examine a bathroom with a water overflow from a plugged sink. Initially the water seemed to be confined to the tile leaving the room looking dry. After all, bathroom tile should be able to tolerate some water. However, if a technician simply looks at the room and sees no water creeping into the walls; there's a temptation to call everything good and go home. The challenge is to evaluate how much water there was as well as the condition of the tile. Then, you can decide if water could have seeped into the floor underneath creating a long-term problem if not treated correctly.
It is important that technicians in the water restoration business understand how to locate water that has traveled where it did not belong and treat the damage it caused correctly. STOP Coeur d’Alene uses water meters to assess moisture content in walls. We have equipment capable of looking through walls searching for possible moisture. We can even send a small camera into the wall through a tiny hole to search further.
STOP also uses thermal imaging devices to look through walls and floors. Our technicians are looking for cooler temperatures inside the structure which generally indicate that water is evaporating creating the cooler environment. Since this is not 100% effective, we also utilize moisture meters to verify what the imaging technology indicates. In some situations water may be present but not evaporating and a restoration process will be needed to keep the property from being compromised.
Sometimes a technician may use the thermal imaging technology, call a location clear of any damage, and move on to the next service call. At other times, a more thorough investigation is necessary to be certain that every component has been dried correctly.
Another problem with relying entirely on thermal imaging is that at times you may get a false reading. This frightens homeowners unnecessarily. For example, we may have examined a bathroom for water damage in the ceiling where our imaging technology may show a cooler area near an air vent. The vent itself may have caused the cooler reading and might not have anything to do with water. So before we jump to a hasty conclusion and start cutting out parts of your bathroom, we will investigate further. We will meter the wall carefully to avoid any unnecessary work and disruption for you, the homeowner.
Consider this example. If there is a possibility that there is water under the bathroom cabinet, many may just remove the toe kick to verify if there is a problem. Unfortunately toe kicks are not designed to be removed and removing them can cause permanent damage. The Service Team of Professionals either uses a probe capable of going under the toe kick or they drill very small holes to test for moisture. Their training and expertise are critical to help them avoid unnecessary repair for a non-damaged bathroom.
The thermal imaging technology that we use is interesting to watch. Customers like seeing the image that comes up on the screen. They feel that we’re doing what they can’t do as we scan a property. However, the technology is only the first step. We utilize our extensive training and other water damage detecting tools to verify whether a property is dry or not. Our mission is to minimize repair while maximizing restoration.
You can receive a complete evaluation of your property by contacting Service Team of the Professionals in Coeur d’Alene at 208-714-0504.