Water is an essential commodity to human life, but it can bring destruction as well. Water damage can cause a headache to you immediately after the disaster and in the future. Floods can translate to leaky faucets, molds growths, and other significant health issues.
You should take proper measures to clean up a house damaged by water. You will prevent your house from further damage. Here is the guide to help you clean and prevent your home from further water damage.
1. Stop any Water Flow
If a pipe burst has caused the water flooding in your home, shut off the main water line of your house. Contact a plumber if you can’t tell from where the water is leaking
2. Turn off Power Supply
If the floods in your home are massive, put off the electricity and gas from the main supply. Also, unplug any electronics and put them away immediately. Take care while you handle electrical appliances. Ensure you have proper insulation to avoid power shocks. It will not be essential to cut power for small leaks.
3. Assess the Damage
Before you start your cleaning exercise, examine the damage to determine if rebuilding is necessary. You should also take required photos and documentation to submit to your insurer.
4. Salvage Valuable Possession
Identify and remove your most essential valuables from the flood to save them from further damage. For those items that you can’t rescue like the underpadding consider disposing of them later. Don’t spend too much time searching for things to prevent water damage from escalating.
5. Remove any Standing Water
If it is a significant flood wait until the water level recedes below your house level. Then, start pumping out water to prevent it sitting any further. Use electric water transfer pump or wet-dry shop vacuum to pump out water. Ensure you wear rubber boots before you stand on a wet area. Open any flooded walls to prevent them from growing molds or decay.
Remove water from structures as fast as you can. Drain the walls by cutting holes in the wallboards. You may supplement the exercise with old towels, mop, and buckets. Use them in areas where there is little water.
6. Clean up Mud and Dirt
Disinfect water before you start cleaning the house. Note that floods carry a lot of dirt and most of the surfaces may be contaminated. Clean metal and plastic furniture, solid wood that can be restored. Hose off mud, sanitize and leave them to dry under direct sunlight.
Consider discarding any furniture and mattresses that have been contaminated by flood as such cannot be salvaged. Ensure you check mud in air ducts as it would be hazardous to dry there. Also, check out for nails and other materials that can injure you. Such are left behind by flood water.
7. Use Appliances to Air Dry
Take caution while you dry your house with any appliances. Be sure to read manufacturer’s instructions before you take any action with them. Use a dehumidifier to dry out your home thoroughly. It will help you get rid of excess moisture and solve some resultant health problems. Also, open windows to allow sufficient air circulation for faster drying.
As you wind up your cleaning exercise, take preventive measures to avoid or reduce future flood problems. Refit your house with building materials that are waterproof. Such materials include sealed concrete, tile, stones and waterproof wallboard. Check doors and windows to ensure seals are watertight. Leave your appliances on higher grounds where flood waters cannot reach them.