How to Clean Up Your Contents After Flooding
A flood has a devastating impact on your home, but it's not the end of the world. With proper cleanup and drying procedures, you minimize damage to your belongings and prevent mold growth. Here are a few steps you take to clean up your contents after flooding:
The first step in this process is to remove as much water as you can. Use a mop, sponge or towel and soak up as much water as possible. If the damage is caused by flooding then it's important that you act quickly before mold develops.
If removing water isn't possible, then turn off the power and unplug appliances that are still operational. If there's no power source available, use a wet vacuum to soak up any excess moisture from carpets and rugs before removing them from the property entirely (if necessary).
Materials Cleaning and Disinfection
Next up is the disinfection of materials. Again, this needs to be done by a professional if you have a septic system and/or you have children or pets in your household. If not, however, then using bleach is fine (but only if it's safe for the material). The most important thing to keep in mind when disinfecting anything after flood damage is making sure you use an EPA-registered disinfectant that is safe for everyone involved—including children and pets!
There is a possibility only part of your home and materials are damaged. In this case, move damaged items to a different area. Use plastic sheeting to create a barrier around the area, then tape it down with duct tape to make sure it stays in place. If there is any chance of more rain or another flood, use tarps on top of the plastic sheeting to create an extra layer of protection.
Keep people away from the area until cleanup is complete and all materials are dry. Do not allow anyone into a damaged room that is covered by plastic sheeting until contractors have removed all mold growth, repaired walls and floors, cleaned up any remaining dust and debris, and removed all materials that were affected by water damage (such as carpeting).
It is vital that you dry your home as quickly as possible. This takes weeks, and it's not just a matter of drying out the walls and floors—you must also dry out your contents.
The longer it takes you to clean up after a flood, the more likely mold will grow within those belongings. Use towels, rags, and dry fabrics to dry out your materials. You can even use fans or air movers to dry out your materials.
Potential Mold Damage
Mold is a serious problem that leads to health problems, including respiratory issues and skin irritation. Mold is also harmful to pets, children, and elderly family members. Pregnant women are advised not to enter the area until it's completely dry—fungal spores may be present in the air that could cause miscarriage or premature labor.
If mold develops on personal property it should be removed immediately once the water has been removed from your home. If you're not sure if you have mold growth on your items, take them outside (in an area with good ventilation) and inspect them under bright light. If there's any concern about mold growth, then you should discard those items as soon as possible
There are many steps to recovering from a flood.
There are many steps to recovering from a flood. The first step is to remove all water from your home and contents, clean up the mess and disinfect everything. Then it's time to dry out your home and contents. Finally, if you have mold damage and/or odors, you need to clean that up, too.
There are many steps to recovering from a flood. If you need assistance, contact our team at AdvantaClean. Our team of professionals walks you through each step during the flood damage remediation process.