Water damage inside your home is probably one of the worst things that could happen inside your property. You can just imagine how frustrating it is to clean up after the mess once the water subsides.
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Moreover, cleaning can be extra work if the water comes from the heavy thunderstorm as you can just expect dirt will go inside, causing further damages to your home and your belongings.
While you can always hire a water damage restoration company like SERVPRO of Southwest Dallas or other similar businesses, it’d be best to know which steps you need to take to succeed in your home restoration. Moreover, listed below are the steps to take to clean up your property after dealing with water damage:
1. Inspect The Property First
Before you go inside your house, you should make a thorough examination and inspect if it’s safe for you to enter. You can check for any structural damages that indicate a poor house condition and any obvious electrical damage. If you notice harm inside and around your property, you shouldn’t force your way but rather call a professional who can assess and fix your house. In this way, you can guarantee everyone’s safety and avoid risking your life just to clean up your home.
2. Turn Off The Electricity And Gas Line
Before you begin with any serious clean-up, you should start by practicing proper safety measures to ensure that no harm happens inside your house. You could start by turning off the electricity and gas line. However, if you’d like to maximize your home’s safety, turning off the entire line would be a workable idea.
After turning off your electrical and gas lines, you should consider hiring a professional, so they can assess the condition of the property. Moreover, they should provide any appropriate repairs and replacements to bring the condition of your house back to normal. After their fixes, you should be able to turn your gas and electrical lines back on track.
3. Wear Protection
No matter how safe or dry your property looks, there’s no harm with wearing protective gear to ensure your safety while inside the house. With the proper equipment, you can quickly work without worrying about how safe it is to take a step inside.
Ideally, you should wear rubber boots, rubber gloves, and eye protection as you roam around your house. You can never know what might happen once you’re inside your home that goes through intensive water damage. Moreover, you should also look for any snakes, fire ants, or other animals that might roam inside your house, especially if the water comes from a heavy thunderstorm’s flood.
4. Call Your Insurance Company
If your home insurance company covers flood damage, you should immediately give them a call about your household’s situation. In this way, an adjuster will visit your home, assess the issues, and see if it’s a covered loss.
Since your insurance adjuster may not arrive at your property immediately, you should provide them with clear pictures of your property before, during, and after your clean-up. In this way, they can see what has happened to your house and see if your case is valid for insurance coverage.
Moreover, you should document the value of every item that’s been affected by the flood. This will give your insurance company a hint about how much help they could offer.
5. Remove Any Water Immediately
After calling for the insurance company, turning off the electricity and gas lines, and wearing appropriate protective gear, the next thing you should do is remove any standing water inside your property as quickly as possible. Molds can immediately develop inside your home within 24 hours in a damp environment. While they might seem harmless, they can severely damage your home, forcing you to replace your walls and floors.
To remove the water inside your property, you can do it by using a sturdy bucket and scooping the water out to proper drainage. However, the process can be lengthy and might develop severe back pain. If you have enough budget, you should consider buying a wet vacuum. This way, you no longer have to worry about bending over to the water as you can simply let the machine do all of the hard work for you.
6. Place Everything Outside
Before you begin your clean-up, you should place everything outside of your home for thorough drying. You can choose to salvage or throw them out, especially if they’re in an awful state. Apart from your furniture and personal belongings, you should consider your appliances full of water and dirt.
If you’re throwing plenty of large items out of your home, you should consider hiring the same-day removal or skip bin service. This way, you no longer have to worry about where to bring them but rather let the professionals take them off your hands.
Alternatively, if you still plan to keep some of your furniture as they’re only slightly damaged, you should bring them outside to dry. Since outdoors has the best ventilation, you can guarantee there’ll be less mold or mildew formation, which can cause further damage, along with harming your family.
7. Clean Your Walls And Floors
After clearing everything up inside your home, you can begin cleaning your home. In this way, you can have a blank canvas and be able to move around your home freely while also ensuring you’re able to clean every inch of your home.
When cleaning your house, your goal shouldn’t just be about removing any dirt away but also disinfecting your home from any possible health concerns. With that, you should ensure that you bring disinfecting cleaning products with you.
You can begin by scrubbing your walls and floors for any possible dirt. For your walls, a liquid household cleaner should be able to do the trick. Ensure that you cleanse them thoroughly to remove any dirt, grease, any other bacteria inside your property. After cleaning your walls, you shouldn’t forget to clean your carpet thoroughly by using chemical or natural products which you can find inside your kitchen. However, if your walls and floors are severely damaged, replacing them would be the best option for your household.
8. Completely Dry Your Home
One of the most important things you need to do with your property is dry every inch of your home completely. After cleaning and removing water inside your property, you should promote maximum ventilation as much as possible.
If you’re using fans, ensure that they’re pointed directly to the wet areas while keeping your windows and doors open for the entire period. Alternatively, if you’re using a dehumidifier or air conditioner to dry your home, you should keep the room shut for maximum efficiency.
If you don’t have electricity in your home, you should just open your windows and doors fully. Moreover, you can always use a generator to speed up the process to allow yourself to reduce the possibility of molds inside your home.
9. Keep Track Of Moisture
It’ll take hours to days before you can completely dry out your home. While your house might appear to be completely dry, you’d be surprised to see that it can still carry high amounts of humidity and moisture, which could lead to mold formation.
To keep track of the moisture and humidity inside your property, you should purchase a humidity and moisture meter, which you can easily purchase at your local hardware store for a low price. Ideally, you should aim for 30-50% humidity so you can ensure that your home is fully dry and safe to live in.
A moisture and humidity meter will allow you to see the condition of your home, especially that there might be dampness you can’t see.
10. Consider Hiring A Professional
Even if there are plenty of ways to dry your home yourself, hiring a professional will help guarantee the best results. With their service, you can ensure that they can help reduce the possibility of molds inside your home, reducing your repairs and replacements for your property.
Moreover, if there are plenty of molds inside your property, you should hire a professional to remove them for you. Removing them yourself can be dangerous, especially if you don’t have the right tools and experience. With a professional, they know what to do about your molds and can provide maximum safety precautions for everyone.
11. Replace Your Walls And Floors
No matter how much you try to scrub and clean your walls, you shouldn’t try to keep them in place, especially if the damage is irreversible. For intense damage inside your property, you should replace them immediately.
With wall and floor replacements, you can guarantee that you can thoroughly inspect your property and see if any molds are hiding under your walls. Moreover, it’ll give you a fresh start and see a brand-new interior that’ll make your home feel new.
Handling water damage inside your home would never be a treat for anyone. However, you shouldn’t be quick on your feet as molds could grow in as quickly as 24 hours. With that, you should dry out your home as fast as you can while also trying to salvage your furniture as much as you can. Moreover, you shouldn’t stir away from hiring professionals as they can guarantee excellent results for your home.