"Do you REALLY need to remove the drywall?"
There are times when a pipe bursts under a sink, or the line to the ice maker gets a hole and you have a flood in your home of clean water. In those cases, if the water coming into your house is clean, and possibly even filtered. If you catch the flood soon enough before is soaks into things, you might get lucky. It may be possible to just dry your home as it is, but most often that isn't the case, because a lot of times the water that is flooding your home isn't clean water.
We get it, seeing your walls and floors removed is overwhelming and stressful, especially when you're concerned about your home and belongings. Homeowners often ask us why we recommend that drywall, carpet and padding, and other porous surfaces be replaced after a category 2 or 3 flood. After all, we're a "restoration" company so why don't we restore it as is? The reason is lying in the water.
When water seeps into your home, it often comes in contact with different contaminants that make the water unsafe and can make you sick. It spreads bacteria, fungus, chemicals and other possible gross things. That doesn't count where the water came from to begin with. Water that comes out of the dishwasher is full of soaps that can harm your skin or pets, and eventually can cause all sorts of things to grow in your floors, walls, cabinets, or furniture. The water itself may be able to just dry, but we have to think about what's in the water.
Let's not even talk about water that backs up into your home from the sewer... You REALLY don't want anything in that water lingering in your home or walls. Think about what's in your sewer, and then having that soak into drywall? :::SHUDDER:::
We almost always recommend that carpet, padding, and drywall be removed and replaced. We're thinking about what could grow in the future if it isn't removed. As for carpet padding, its very difficult to dry completely and the risk of mold is significant. Our experienced technicians will help you decide.
As a homeowner, it's always ultimately up to you how you'd like to proceed and how much you would like removed, but our IICRC technicians are highly trained for these kind of decisions.