A Beginner’s Guide to Clearing a Flooded Basement

Water is essential for all living things; without which nothing would survive. The Earth’s surface comprises of about 71 percent water and it is also present in the air in the form of water vapor. It exists inside the bodies of all living organisms as well. Despite it being the most important commodity in the world, water can have harmful effects too especially when Mother Nature unleashes her fury in the form of a severe storm. This can result in excessive flooding of the low lying areas. Stagnant floodwater can damage your most valued possessions, weaken the structural integrity of your house, and cause a health hazard. Here are some tips provided by our experts that will help you tackle your flooded basement and minimize the damage from the floodwater.

Disconnect Everything

Pure water is a poor conductor of electricity; on the other hand rainwater is not. Rainwater contains many dissolved ions that allow for the conduction of electricity. Switch off the main circuit breaker in the basement and remove any electronics, electrical items, furniture and carpets. The faster you act, the more chances there are that you will be able to save them. Pull up any carpets and under-padding. You might be able to save the carpet, if you get it steam cleaned and disinfected. However the under-padding will absorb a lot of water and hence will need replacement.

Remove the Water

Stagnant water can host a variety of problems. It can cause mold, mildew and bacteria to start growing and this can pose a great risk to you and your family members. The best way to get rid of floodwater is manually, by using mops, old towels, rags and buckets. You can also utilize a dry vacuum or a sump pump but you will need to make sure that they are plugged into a dry outlet, away from the affected area. Don’t use an extension cord for you stand the risk of getting a nasty shock. Pour this water into a nearby drain, lawn or over a permeable surface.

Start Drying

Drying the affected area is the most important element in order to prevent further water damage. Once you have cleared the water, use fans, blowers and a dehumidifier to help dry out the basement. If it has stopped raining, you can open the windows to permit air circulation and further aid the drying process. Remember that you need to dry out your basement as thoroughly as possible. The drywall will most probably crumble and fall apart so cut areas of it that were touched by water and extract the paper backing, because it serves as a source of nutrition for mold.

Disinfect Immediately

After you have properly dried out your basement, including the insulation, the drywall and the wooden beams, use a good quality non-toxic disinfectant on the walls, furniture, and wood to eliminate any bacteria that might have sprung up through toilets, drain pipes, sewers, etc.

How to Prevent the Growth of Mold?

A Mold is a fungus that can lead to a multitude of health issues such as allergies and respiratory problems. The best way to prevent mold growth is to reduce the level of moisture. After disinfection, apply a chemical called ‘Concrobium’ to the affected areas. This is a non-toxic water-based compound that inhibits mold growth and can be applied on the walls, floors furniture, carpets or anything else where mold can thrive. It forms a thin layer over the mold and destroys the roots of the spores.

To clean mold from household articles, use a brush and cover your face with a mask to prevent inhaling mold spores. Any item that needs to be destroyed or removed should be wrapped in a plastic bag, sealed with a duct tape and removed through the nearest entrance or window.

Be Responsible During Disposal

Don’t be in a hurry to throw away the damaged items; instead take responsibility and organize the goods into piles. Deliver this pile to your nearest recycling center to reduce the pressure on your local landfill site. Furthermore, check your locality’s waste management website to find out the location of recycling damaged goods such as electronics, furniture, computers, TVs, cell phones, drywall, old paints etc.

Professional Services

Although with the help of this guide you will be able to reduce the water damage caused by the flood and minimize any health risks, there might still be remnants of mold and mildew spores, remaining water in the walls and carpets, and the risk of structural and aesthetic damage to your house. If you want a seamless water damage restoration service at a reasonable price, with trained technicians who will evaluate, monitor and carefully follow a targeted course of action to restore your house to its original state, then please don’t hesitate to contact us at On Time Steam Cleaning. Call us today at 1.888.512.2055 to get a free quote.


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