Cleaning Up After Flooding
When a home sustains damage from a flood, there are many steps that will need to be taken to make the home inhabitable once again. Flooding can cause a lot of destruction and water should be removed right away in order to avoid worsening conditions of the home's structure. Here are some steps you can take to remove water from a flooded basement and how to get your home back into safe livable condition.
Assess The Damage And Prepare To Be Safe
Take a look at the basement to see how much water you are dealing with and come up with a plan to move the water away from the interior. You should see if there are any friends or family members who could give you some help, as it will be a lot of heavy lifting and repetitive pouring.
Have buckets on hand and make sure anyone helping is dressed so that floodwater cannot get on their skin. Waders, rubber boots, or gloves can be worn to help protect people from getting bacteria or mold spores on themselves.
Turn off power to the basement if it has not already been shut off. You do not want to risk having an electrocution occur while working with the water. Remove any items that you think have a chance of being salvaged so they do not sit in water longer than they need to. Turn pieces of furniture upside-down to help them dry quicker.
Removing Water From The Basement
Everyone will need to scoop water from the basement and walk outdoors to dump it out. You will want to make sure the water is being dumped far enough away from the foundation of your home so it does not seep back inside.
Without power, it will be difficult to pump the water unless you can find someone who has a power source you can tap into. You would need a very long extension cord to be able to work a water pump. If you are able to get electricity to run one, make sure the hose directs the water far from the home in an area lower than the foundation.
Drying The Basement
You will want to open any windows in your basement to allow the area to dry once the water has been removed. If you have a finished basement, you might want to consider ripping out the carpeting so there is no chance of mold growing. Carpet padding breeds black mold very easily, and this should be avoided since it is very harmful to the health of anyone in the area. Use area fans when you get power back to the home. Drying can take several days. Go through every few hours with towels and rub down surfaces to get extra moisture removed.
Cleaning The Destroyed Areas
Remove any damaged drywall right away so it does not have a chance to grow mold within. You will need to repair these areas with new pieces of drywall. Clean all surfaces of the basement that had water touching them. Make a cleaning solution in a spray bottle of water mixed with a cup of bleach. Bleach will kill any bacteria left behind from the flooding. Follow the bleach treatment with a mildew remover to help keep areas from growing mold. (for more information, contact ServiceMaster by Restoration Xperts)