When flooding happens, a large mess may be left behind for you to clean up. Unwanted water in the home can cause serious damage to the structure of the building itself, as well as any of your personal belongings found inside. When it comes to emergency flood cleanup, time is key because you may be able to salvage some of your belongings if you act quickly enough. Here are some tips to cleaning up after a flood.
The first thing you should do after a flood is to disconnect the power to your home to ensure that you do not have any electrical problems. Many electronic devices are dangerous when submerged in water, and your safety is the top priority. Once the power has been turned off, unplug all electronics and move them out of the way. Anything that has been touched by water is probably not salvageable, so you might as well get those items out of the way so that you can focus on items that you can try to save.
This can be a more difficult task if the flood was more serious as there may be a large amount of sitting water. If this is the case, you should call for help from a professional immediately, as you may find it impossible to rid your home of all water, which is necessary in order to prevent mold growth and other health concerns.
If you are able, try to dry out as much of your home as you can. This may include pulling up carpets and carpet pads, removing furniture, and setting out fans to keep air moving. If it is warm enough outside, open all windows and doors to assist in the drying process. In the event that you are without power or worry about damage to your electrical units, start drying things with towels and mops.
It can be difficult to throw things out, but the first thing any professional will tell you is that carpet will not last through a flood. Some carpet shrinks after being soaked and will not fit into the same room properly. It is very difficult to completely dry out carpets before they begin to grow mold, so it’s not worth the risk to your health to keep them around. Once damaged by flood, all carpet and carpet padding will need to be replaced.
Walls that are finished with sheet rock will need to be closely inspected to ensure that they are not damaged. Drywall easily crumbles when wet, and the paper backing is a good place for mold to start growing. Any part of the wall that was touched by water may need to be cut out and rebuilt.
When it comes to flood cleanup, you can never be too careful. If there has been a lot of damage in your immediate area, there may be a bit of a wait before a professional makes it out to you. However, don’t feel that you need to do it all on your own. By allowing a professional to take a look, you can make sure that your home is safe for you and your family, which is the most important part of rebuilding after a flood.