Tailored Solution for Restoration Contractors

Discover how water damage restoration software streamlines project management for contractors.

Regardless of the cause of a catastrophe, water-related disasters that affect structures need to be dealt with as soon as possible to mitigate further damage, beyond even the work involved in restoring a building to its original state. It’s not so much the initial damage from water that matters; rather, factors like mold or other microbial growth can cause even more headaches. Actions to mitigate further damage are ultimately time-sensitive, requiring a rapid response from teams that work not just to remove the water and clean up the damage but also to ensure the area is fully dried.  

Once a situation is assessed, mitigation measures must be taken quickly to avoid the need for further work and the expense it entails. This includes deploying moisture readers that can show the extent of water damage. Restoration software can be used to understand how saturated an area has become, supporting such monitoring with moisture mapping applications. With any water damage restoration, the software has increasingly been used as part of the response to support mitigation efforts and a structure’s return to its original state.

What is Water Damage Restoration Software?

As a tool to mitigate water damage, restoration software allows project managers to track every project detail. Software applications help arrange schedules and project deadlines and document the damage with photos and videos showing the extent of the water damage. Restoration software also helps field teams gather data that can be used for moisture mapping, which helps ascertain where water infiltration is most concerning.

For teams tasked with rehabilitating water damage, restoration software can: 

  • Create inventories of contents packed out of a building during a water damage restoration.
  • Enable project managers to collect and store relevant information about a job quickly and safely.
  • Help organize meetings through apps that aid communication between field workers, insurance assessors, project managers, subcontractors, and others involved. 
  • Log data regarding water damage, including drying times and moisture maps. 
  • Provide a single software platform that helps with scheduling, tracking equipment, and other aspects of a water restoration project.
  • Provide seamless communications between all stakeholders involved in a project via a single software platform.
  • Record images and video evidence of water damage that can be included in reports to be shared with insurers, homeowners, and other stakeholders.

Contactors often use mobile devices like smartphones or tablets to mitigate and restore water damage. Restoration software can be used on these devices to keep everyone involved up to date with all aspects of a project. It allows project managers to perform administrative tasks, like signing contracts, from anywhere with an Internet connection.

Unique Challenges of Water Damage Restorations for Contractors 

There are a variety of sources that can lead to water damage, from category five hurricanes to leaking pipes. Each type of water-related restoration involves a different approach, but the first step to ensuring no further damage occurs involves dehumidifying the area. Yet drying a water-damaged structure is one of the many challenges contractors face during a water damage restoration. Software that assists this process can solve many problems restoration companies must handle when faced with a water-related disaster.

Typically, those involved in responding to water-related disasters must deal with the following: 

  • Assessing the damage and estimating the total cost to restore water damage; restoration software can help contractors write more accurate estimates.
  • Assisting property owners with insurance claims regarding damaged areas; restoration platforms help document damage by enabling easier storage and sharing of photos and videos.
  • Being on call constantly to provide emergency services in the shortest time possible, the best restoration software has robust communications capabilities.
  • Deodorizing and sanitizing areas affected by water damage; restoration software aids scheduling and workflow, so work is done expediently to prevent further damage.
  • Documenting the drying process during a water damage restoration; software for restorers should include or at least support moisture mapping of affected areas.
  • Listing items that aren’t salvageable that can then be claimed on insurance; restoration software supports documentation of damaged items.
  • Removing the bulk of the moisture to mitigate further damage to a structure with the help of water extraction equipment; inventory management software included in restoration platforms allows contractors to track their equipment to ensure it’s there when needed.
  • Using air movers, dehumidifiers, and equipment for controlling temperatures to remove remaining moisture, scheduling and workflow can be more easily managed using software apps.

On top of these issues, contractors must also consider how best to repair and renovate structures to return them to their original state. Additionally, it’s sometimes necessary to quickly salvage the contents of a home or building to prevent permanent water damage. Restoration software can track the cleaning and restoration of these items. Unlike other forms of structural damage, water damage is often deceptive as well, as elements of it can accumulate unnoticed, weakening a structure over time.

What Needs to Happen in a Water Damage Restoration

Speedy action is needed to prevent damage caused by water from worsening. The longer it remains, the more damage water can do. This, in turn, leads to more expensive repairs and more disruption. The three main sources of water damage are plumbed appliances that back up, floods, and burst piping. In all of these cases, there may be a range of toxicity to the water and additional damage from standing or still-flowing water. Mitigation should occur quickly to cut off the water supply, divert its flow, and reinforce where the structure has weakened.

A typical water damage restoration will often include: 

  • Drying areas to prevent mold growth and further resulting damage
  • Fitting new electrical panels or outlets damaged by water
  • Installing carpeting and padding
  • Painting walls and other surfaces
  • Repairing drop ceilings, flooring, and walls
  • Replacing and painting baseboards

Whether a building is a home or a business, a great deal of work is involved in any water damage restoration. Software can help a contractor better organize workflow, making a project run more smoothly.

Dealing with Insurers 

Regardless of the reason, insurance companies will pay to repair water damage. Contractors can use restoration software to help their customers navigate their claims to ensure they can collect the true value of their loss. Property owners are often at a disadvantage due to inexperience in dealing with such situations, so an experienced restoration contractor adopting a software platform can more easily aid their customers to gain a leg up over their competition. Also, helping customers in this regard can help build a restoration company’s reputation.

Real World Water Damage Restorations 

The reality is that most types of disasters that can damage buildings are water-related. While natural disasters like floods and storms are becoming increasingly intense and more frequent, water damage most often results from failed infrastructure. This might include a building’s plumbing or even municipal sewage system. Let’s take a quick look at a few real-world situations involving water damage and how restoration software’s capabilities help restorers approach these emergency situations with greater efficiency. While we don’t know the exact technology any of these contractors used, we’ll extrapolate how restoration software would help restore water-damaged structures.

A Toilet Overflows

A restoration contractor in Georgia was called out to determine the damage caused by a leaking toilet, which had gone unnoticed for a considerable time. The leak occurred within the wall on the house’s second floor, with water flowing behind the main floor’s cabinets before continuing into a finished basement. Because of the ongoing deterioration, there was considerable microbial growth and harm to the structure. Due to this, hiring an outside contractor with the capabilities of an industrial hygienist was also necessary.

The restoration team contacted the insurance company on behalf of their customer. Considering the extent of the water damage, restoration software could be used to map the moisture to determine what parts of the structure were beyond repair and required demolition. Additionally, communications apps would allow restorers, insurance assessors, and industrial hygienists to communicate more easily and share the results of the structural testing.

Burst Water Mains

The main water pipe into the structure burst at a vacant commercial building in Michigan during the COVID-19 pandemic. Positioned about six feet under a concrete slab and well within the building’s perimeter, the burst pipe had gone unnoticed for about a day, allowing water and sand to flood the structure’s ground floor. A team came out to stop the flow, extracting the water before removing the carpeting throughout the building. Damage was done to drywall, while tiling had to be broken through to access the burst pipe to extract water to prevent further damage.

While much work was involved in the water damage restoration, software could support virtual communications. This would allow the restorer’s team to communicate with the customer and the insurer, keeping all stakeholders in the loop, including sending photos or videos of the water damage to the assessor. Restoration software would also allow the contractor to source materials and equipment virtually.

Leaking Appliance

An Illinois homeowner returned to find their washing machine had leaked for many days while on vacation, leaving their basement, bathroom, kitchen, and other rooms covered with mold and other significant water damage. Restoration software could be used with mold test kits to record data tracking air quality. Moisture mapping apps could also help identify areas most at risk of mold spreading even further.

Any time mold affects a structure, restorers need to contain the damage to stop spores from spreading, use HEPA (high efficiency particulate air) filters to remove contaminants from the air and clean all contaminated materials. While restoration platforms aren’t yet advanced enough to identify and repair the damage, the restorer would benefit from an app to help them bid on the cost of restoring the affected areas more accurately.  

Flooding River

In Texas, flooding caused over two feet of muddy water to inundate the first floor of a casino. In this case, we know that the contractors were able to alert the business about the coming floodwaters, enabling the casino to limit the water damage. Restoration software, in this case, allowed the venue actually to prevent further damage. Apps that support real-time weather updates can be integrated into modern restoration platforms to help emergency response teams predict the weather, keeping field teams safer. Restoration companies should look for software with an open API, allowing easier integrations.

After the floodwaters had ebbed, the restoration team came to clean and remove materials with heavy water damage. Restoration software would be useful for documenting damage through photos and videos of the facility after the flood. As with any other water damage mitigation and remediation project, the software could also help restoration contractors source equipment, log hours spent on site, and even provide an accurate estimate of all the costs involved.

Introducing Albi: Purpose-Built Water Damage Restoration Software 

Made by restorers for restorers, Albi offers contractors a means to conduct a water damage restoration more efficiently. Software like Albi enables restoration companies to seamlessly provide their customers with a better service than their competitors while augmenting their operation’s efficiency. To learn more about what Albi can do for you, book a free demo today.