Case Studies – Temporary Climate Solutions

Water damage threatens Florida Hilton Hotel opening

When thousands of gallons of water flooded the new 1,400-room Hilton Hotel in Orlando, Florida, it was like a scene from a nearby water park in the popular Florida resort area. With plans to complete the hotel’s construction Hilton faced a very tight schedule but fast action and expert drying by Polygon assured that the construction schedule proceeded as scheduled.

Advanced drying techniques and technology eliminated excess moisture from the building's structure, including walls, ceilings, and flooring. By deploying industrial-grade dehumidifiers and powerful air movers strategically throughout the hotel, the drying process was significantly accelerated. With Polygon’s expertise, the construction project was able to continue without undue delays, and the risk of mold or other secondary damages was minimized.


Only the top three floors of the hotel remained to be completely furnished, an elbow joint in the main hot water feed on the roof of the 19th floor came apart. This caused water to gush through hallways, guest rooms, stairwells, and lift shafts, and cascade 19 floors down to the hotel lobby.

“Every floor experienced water damage and the amount of water was so extensive that it blew out the lobby ceiling 19 stories below the pipe break,” said Brian Kuckelman, senior vice president of architecture and construction for Rida Development, developer handling the Hilton Orlando project. The flooding raised concerns about the hotel’s scheduled completion – less than a month away.


A representative from the project’s general contractor, Welbro Building Constructors, immediately contacted Polygon, who ensured a project manager was on site within 45 minutes to assess the damage.

Within hours, equipment was up and running including portable desiccant dehumidifiers, air movers, and dehumidifiers in rooms and hallways. Polygon personnel were on site by the middle of the night and by early morning additional equipment had arrived from all over the country.

“Thanks to the company’s rapid response, sound advice, breadth of capabilities, and a recommendation from the general contractor, we decided Polygon was the ideal candidate for the job,” said Kuckelman.

The enormous project required quick drying out of all structural components, including carpeting and walls and ceilings in rooms and hallways, and maintaining good air quality to help prevent the formation of mold. Approximately 18 desiccant dehumidification units were used of varying sizes as well as 130 smaller refrigerant units placed strategically throughout saturated areas of the hotel. The larger dehumidification units provided dry air to varying floors of the hotel through ductwork situated up the side of the building. During the project, 1,500 air movers were arranged in hallways and rooms.


Salvaging Material

Polygon technicians were able to minimize tear-out and prevent mold growth, saving tons of drywall, paint, carpet, and other building materials, and the time it would take to replace all of them.

Time Efficient

The drying process throughout the hotel was completed in just over a week. After which the furnishing and construction of the rooms resumed, and the hotel was able to open on time as planned.

Learn more about Polygon Emergency Drying Services and how you can monitor for leaks during construction here.

“Thanks to the company’s rapid response, sound advice, breadth of capabilities and a recommendation from the general contractor, we decided Polygon was the ideal candidate for the job,” said Kuckelman.