Indoor Air Quality

Understanding Indoor Air Quality: Issues and Prevention

Mold growth, structural damage, and property loss are the well-attended concerns after a home was hit with water damage. Indoor air quality becomes the least of their concern, probably because it is not visible to our naked eyes. However, in reality, this invisible problem could be the cause of health hazards in a home.

Just like structural damage, indoor air quality problems should also be addressed to have a healthy and liveable home.

What is Indoor Air Quality?

Indoor air quality or known as IAQ refers to the quality of air within or around the home or a workplace. The term itself doesn’t only explain the specific environment of a structure. It also explains the several factors which include; natural contaminants such as bacteria and mold, comfort issues like poor ventilation, changing temperature, too high or too low humidity and man-made pollutants such as burning oil, coil and so on.

To conserve energy, homes today are built with stricter standards of air-tightness, which keeps outdoor air to infiltrate inside the structure. Nowadays, people tend to spend more time in those enclosed structures. That is the reason why indoor air quality has an increasing impact on the health condition and well-being of a person.

With that said, keeping healthy indoor air is very vital. Thus, proper cleanup after any type of water damage has to be done properly. 

Indoor Air Problems after Water Damage

Indoor air problems after water damage may be the least of your concern. But, failure to address problems of contaminated materials and high moisture and humidity area can be hazardous to your health and your family as well.

Floodwater contains a variety of dangerous substances such as pathogens, bacteria, microbes, and other contaminants. Contamination can release airborne viruses that, if inhaled, can cause congestion, throat infection or a lung infection. Flooding can also contain solvents, ammonia, pesticides and other man-made chemicals that can release toxic fumes.

Standing water and wet materials are a perfect breeding ground for mold growth. Mold can start growing and release mold spores in just about 24 to 48 hours. Within the enclosed home and perfect condition (with high-level humidity, food source, and darkness), mold spores can quickly spread and raise its level of toxic when inhaled. Other microbes, such as dust mites and pollens can also grow in a wet or damp environment and could cause airborne allergens. 

How to Avoid Indoor Air Problems

Time is the essence when dealing with the aftermath of water damage. The longer the water sits in your home, the more microbes and allergens can grow and spread causing hazards to the occupants.


  • Remove Standing Water


Keep in mind that standing water is a perfect breeding ground for common microorganisms such as mold and dust mites, which can become airborne and pollutant. Sensitive individuals are more prone to allergic reactions to these microbes.

If you are handy, use a shop vac to completely remove the standing water. But, if you don’t have any tools to use, you may use an old towel and a bucket to remove the water.

Removing standing water as quickly as possible can prevent you from being harmed and can lessen structural damage.


  • Dry out your home


The drying process could take several days or even a week. But doing this is vital for having healthy indoor air.

Use a dehumidifier or ordinary electric fans to dry out your home. If the weather permits, or if it is not too humid, open the doors and windows to allow air circulation.


  • Discard Unsalvageable Items


It is truly difficult to abolish items in a home, especially those with sentimental value. But keeping these items that were soaked by water can greatly influence the indoor air quality of your home. Some materials that are damp and can hardly sanitize and dried can be a perfect place for mold growth.   


  • Clean and Sanitize Your Home


Thorough cleaning and sanitizing are one of the keys to healthy indoor air quality. You should wash and disinfect floors, wall, shelves, closets and other contents of the house. It is also suggested by the FEMA to disinfect and sanitize ductwork that was affected by water damage.

Be cautious when using disinfectants and sanitizers as they contain toxic substances. Check the label and follow the correct procedures.


  • Address the Source of the Problem


Fixing the leaky pipes, repairing or replacing broken appliances or installing a dehumidifier might be some of the things you need to do to address the source of the problem.


When water damage hits your home, it is best to leave it to certified professionals. Square One Restoration professionals guarantee complete water damage removal and restoration and mold remediation services to ensure the indoor air quality of your home. They respond and act fast to control and eliminate contamination. Dealing with water damage now? Contact Square One today.

water damage from dishwashers

What Causes Water Damage From Dishwashers

Just like any other appliances in the home, a dishwasher is one of the most useful tools you can have in your home. Not only it makes your life easier, but it also helps in saving some of your time and spend it to more important things, like family bonding.  Yes, it is very useful and inexpensive; however, when it takes its toll, it becomes frustrating and could cause problems such as water damage. 

A simple leak from a dishwasher can become a big problem. Water can travel inside your home and will seep into areas that are accessible to do so. Addressing the issue promptly is extremely necessary.

How Can Dishwasher Water Damage Your Home 

There are plenty of reasons that a dishwasher can damage some parts of your home or parts that are susceptible to water such as tile, wood, drywall, wallpaper, laminate, and electrical wiring. Understanding how they can be damaged by a dishwasher can help in preventing water damage.

Worn Or Damaged Gaskets

A gasket is a silicone or rubber that is used to fill the space between the door and the tub. Its purpose is to prevent water to leak from the inside. However, a gasket has its limitation. It becomes deteriorated in the long run and a dishwasher could cause water damage. Regularly check for cracks or signs of potential damage on your dishwasher. If you are concerned, worried or anxious about the worn-out gasket, let professionals handle your problem.

Broken or Loose Water Lines

A dishwasher has two different connections. One line connects to the kitchen sink faucet and supplies clean water and the other one leads dirty water to drain out. These water lines can get loose over time. That is why giving it a quick check, at least every six months, is very crucial. Check the hoses. Replace them if necessary. Remember that supply lines can create ample damage when they break down. 

Using of Wrong Dishwashing Soap

Using a regular dishwashing soap could lead to overflowing, bubbly scenario. And, it could result in water leaking from your dishwasher. Use only soap that is specifically designed for a dishwasher. If you must use regular dishwashing soap, it is better to wash dishes manually.

Broken Or Leaky Door

A broken or defective door is the most common cause of water damage by a dishwasher. The leak from the door of the dishwasher happens mostly due to the loosen latch and hinges or the crews on the door. You can solve this problem on your own by using the proper screwdriver. Tighten the screws as hard as you can.

Broken Tub

A tub is the interior part of the dishwasher where you can find all the nozzles and racks. Detergents and minerals that are used in washing the dishes can be built up in the long run. These elements can corrode the lower part of the tub. If that happens, water can seep out and gather under your dishwasher. If the problem is difficult to handle and is frequently used, this problem might go unnoticed. Eventually, this problem can result in mold and water damage to the subflooring under your dishwasher. And, if the water leak is not mitigated right away, the damage can become more severe.   


How to Prevent Water Damage from Your Dishwashers

  1.     Scan the manual. Not all dishwashers are the same. As an owner, you should understand what is inside and outside of your dishwasher. The manual will give you ideas of the proper type and amount of soap you can use. Knowing important information can prevent problems that could cause water damage.
  2.   Give your dishwasher proper maintenance. Proper maintenance can keep your dishwasher working properly. Most parts that you have to check on your dishwasher are flushing filters, rubber seals, gaskets, and spray nozzles. 
  3.   Use only the appropriate parts. The hoses and seals should be the appropriate ones for the type or model of your dishwasher. If you must change these parts, make sure that they properly fit your dishwasher. Unfit hoses and seals could lead to a leak.
  4.   Check your supply line and drain hose. A dishwasher has two water lines, the clean water supply line and the dirty water drain hose. Damage to any one of them could lead to a water leak and mold growth. If you notice any problems, fix it right away or call a plumber.
  5.   Use the dishwasher only when someone is at home. It is the best way to prevent water damage from a dishwasher. If the problem is seen right away, you can solve it at once. 


Water damage caused by a dishwasher can be very frustrating and stressful. Not only you have to worry about the problem with the dishwasher itself but also with the repair requires for the damage it has caused. Don’t worry! A professional restoration company can help you solve this problem. They are equipped with advanced skills, equipment, and knowledge in fixing any type of water damage. 

Contact professional restoration company today!