Construction projects are becoming more complex. As building materials become more advanced and focused on energy efficiency, the challenges facing a water damage practitioner are becoming more difficult and multifaceted. While traditional structures using materials such as wood, concrete, brick, and metal framing will always exist, we are now seeing a rise in the demand for eco-structures that are constructed using insulated concrete bases, insulated block walls, and a wide variety of insulation materials and vapor barriers. These materials and constructions add a new level of complexity for the water damage technician.
Drying wall cavities, crawlspaces, and other interstitial spaces has been an ongoing struggle throughout the years. In the past, water trapped inside these hard-to-reach spaces was often overlooked or not addressed correctly. Traditional equipment was designed to dry the air in the room and the surfaces of the materials rather than the water trapped within the multi-layered constructions. Contractors were forced to resort to elaborate, often labor-intensive, target-drying setups to try and focus energy directly onto the affected areas. In many cases the drying was prolonged and secondary damage occurred, resulting in costly strip-out, trashing baseboard, sheetrock, and insulation as well as damaging the project timeline. The goal of a water damage technician is to restore the structure to a pre-loss condition, and it is the role of equipment manufacturers to provide tools that enable this restoration process as building constructions continue to evolve and advance.