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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Repairing Knoxville Homes After Water Damage

This two-story Knoxville home suffered from a persistent leak in a bathtub drain from an upstairs bathroom. With the PVC hidden between the second-floor supports and the ceiling system of the main level, the drip gradually weakened and stained the ceiling drywall over a prolonged period. When water staining became visible in the ceiling of the main floor beneath this drain, the customer knew that something might be amiss and should call. Because our SERVPRO team is available 24/7, we could respond quickly to begin assessing the situation.

Controlled Demolition for Access to Water Damage

Much like flood cuts that remove a small portion of the final few inches of the base of a wall system, the same controlled demolition premise was implemented on this job. Instead of the bottom of a drywall panel, the stained area impacted by the frequently dripping tub drain was removed. Drywall saw hand tools and powered oscillating tools were instrumental in this process, but only after our SERVPRO professionals made a note of any hidden utilities that might be in the ceiling system along with the bathtub drain. Carefully cutting around the light fixture reduced the build back time by preventing reinstallation of a broader area.

With the floor supports exposed and the OSB board encasing this PVC drain, our technicians could identify the source of the issue. With our general contractor license, we could remove the 90-degree fitting where the leak existed and replace it with a new connection. Priming and gluing these fittings produce a water-tight seal to prevent further leaks.

Direct Drying Methods for Moist Building Materials

Even with the water damage repairs resolved for the compromised plumbing, other building materials had become damaged by the continual moisture and damp pocket. Our team's water restoration technicians (WRT) take special consideration to the placement and positioning of drying and dehumidification equipment. Centrifugal air movers directed powerful blasts into the structural cavity when exposed, like the Before picture, for efficient surface drying solutions for the exposed OSB board, firring strips, and other structural supports.

As with all restoration projects, our Knoxville SERVPRO team minimizes our presence and our interruption to daily life by streamlining our drying and cleaning process. Using spider boxes and daisy-chaining air movers and drying tools, we powered multiple drying units off only a small number of available outlets. Had it been necessary, we have trailered-in generators to provide sufficient power for greater drying needs. Fortunately for this customer, the migration of moisture was minimal, and focused airflow produced adequate evaporation.

Reinstalling Discarded Structural Elements in Knoxville Homes

Making this situation "Like it never even happened," in the After Photo involved reinstalling a new piece of drywall where the small section was removed. Blending these new seams into the ceiling without detection involves putty around the edges and a similar spackling pattern to what exists elsewhere in the room. Had this ceiling been painted, our technicians would have matched the appropriate shade to return the room's surfaces to their original condition before the leak.