Cleaning a Flooded Basement Caused by Hurricane Ida

With the historic power of Hurricane Ida, many homeowners encountered flooding they may not have seen before. After calling 24 hr services to fix the damage, they might not be familiar with the flood restoration process after their basement’s first flooding. Here are seven vital tips to remember when dealing with Ida and any future water emergency.

Ensure Safety

Before entering a basement to begin flood restoration, it needs to be safe. The impact of flash flooding can create gas leaks or turn the basement into an electrical hazard. Turning off the electricity beforehand will prevent damage from electric shock, so shut down the breaker system or contact an electrical company for assistance.

Stop the Flooding

It isn’t easy to recover from basement flooding if the water keeps leaking. Finding the source of the leak and covering it up will prevent any more water from coming in and making the water removal process quicker.

Bring Furniture and Valuables Upstairs

One of the numerous threats of basement flooding is the damage it can inflict on anything you store downstairs. Precious keepsakes from family members, old or unused furniture, and other valuables are at risk of permanent damage from water. To save as many furnishings as possible, carry them upstairs and away from the flooded area so they can dry out. Placing them in a location with strong ventilation will help speed up the process and prevent further damage.

Remove the Water

Removing water is the most pivotal part of flooding restoration, and there are multiple methods of doing so. Using a water pump or wet vacuum will help suck up the mess quickly, but buckets and mops will suffice if those aren’t available. Extracting the water as soon as possible reduces the risk of mold, as it requires damp conditions to grow. 

Dry the Basement

Even after removing the water, the aftermath of the basement flooding still needs to be dealt with. Fans (especially large industrial-sized ones) and dehumidifiers will assist in removing any remaining dampness and moisture, so mildew has fewer opportunities to grow. Place fans several (6-8) inches away from the walls to help airflow circulate, and replace their filters regularly so they can function optimally. Depending on the material used for flooring and walls, it could take several days to air out, so don’t expect results to happen overnight.

Clean Away Dirt

A basement flooding might bring in more than just water: mud, debris, and other unsanitary impurities may flow inside during a storm. It’s imperative to address any foreign pollutants soon after a flood, as it will be more difficult to remove after it dries out. Determine the right cleaning solutions for the basement’s floor and walls, then scrub them and any belongings affected by the water to clean off the filth. It is also recommended to sanitize them as well to get rid of any harmful bacteria.

Repair Broken Infrastructure

The last step in flood restoration is to repair any damage caused by the flooding water. Having flood insurance will help pay for the costs to replace any broken walls or repaint surfaces. While the basement undergoes construction to fix the flood’s destruction, it’s also a great opportunity to prevent future damage by addressing potential water leaks and waterproofing the basement if future flooding does occur.

If you need help removing the dampness from your basement after severe flooding, ServiceMaster’s drying services will help restore your home to normal!

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