Since my brother and I started our water damage restoration firm in 1982, we have dried over three thousand homes. Practically every job we have had, we would always hear the same question from our customers “How can you tell my walls are wet, they look fine to me?” I then introduce to them the moisture meter, and they were all fascinated with it and how it works.
We use two types of moisture meters - Penetrating and Non-Penetrating
Penetrating moisture meters use two sharp pins or probes that are inserted into a material or structural element which you suspect is wet. An electrical current passes from one pin to the other and the resistance is measured and that resistance determines the amount of moisture within the material. This type of meter is great for determining the moisture content in wood and for checking carpeting for moisture as well.
Non-Penetrating moisture meters do not use pins, but rather sensors. These types of sensors work by sending an electronic signal into the material and measures power loss. The benefit of using this type of meter is that you do not have to put holes into your drywall to determine if it’s wet or not. Also you can check large areas quickly to determine where the moisture is located.
How we do it at Puritan
At Puritan Flood Restoration we always check the drywall after a flood using a non-penetrating moisture meter. The Technician will find a known dry area in an undamaged area of the home or business. Then they will use that reading to establish a “drying standard”. This drying standard is what the technician will consider dry. They will then use that reading as their “drying goal”. The Technicians then sets up our drying equipment to dry those areas until the walls reach our drying goal.
Moisture meters run from inexpensive to very expensive. For a water damage restoration firm like ours, a more expensive one is necessary. But for the home owner an inexpensive one will work just fine. The inexpensive ones will usually be a penetrating moisture meter that will show you whether something is wet or dry.....................Good Luck and Stay Dry!