In addition to causing significant material damage, floods and other natural catastrophes put our health at risk. When a flood happens, wet walls and everything in the house or flat is left behind soaked in unclean water, and the general level of hygiene in those areas deteriorates, which provides ideal conditions for the emergence and spread of infectious diseases and pathogens. Because of this, extensive disinfection, cleaning, and restoration are required. To that end, here are some tips for handling furniture correctly, along with a list of what should be trashed and what can be dried and used again.
First things first
After the water is gone, you should start cleaning right away to avoid the growth of dangerous bacteria. Children, the elderly, and pregnant women should wait a few days before returning due to the potential formation of mold, algae, and fungi, which can lead to asthma and a variety of allergies. Therefore, it is a good idea to consider removing mold caused by dampness or flooding with the help of a professional. Only this way can you feel at peace and not worry about the hygiene of your home after a flood. Likewise, in order to prevent the growth of bacteria, you should first throw away any bedding, towels, leather, and fur items, as well as shoes that have been submerged in water for more than 48 hours.
Dishes and cutlery made of plastic should be discarded right away. For the remainder, complete disinfection is required. It is necessary to soak the dishes and cutlery in vinegar or baking soda water after they have been cleaned with detergent. The next step is thorough washing and paper towel drying.
Wipe the wooden furniture down carefully, then allow it in the sun to dry completely so you may restore it. Laminates and parquets should be thrown away since floods cause them to expand and become entirely ruined.
Clean the walls completely with water and detergent after cleaning the space of any unnecessary items, then scrub them as hard as you can using sturdy brushes. After that, a time of thorough drying is needed, which may be accomplished with expert equipment or open-air ventilation. Machine drying can take up to 30 days to finish, while natural drying might take months. Only then can the walls be completely renovated.
Things that might be saved
Solid wood furniture may be kept by giving it a thorough wipe down and then exposing it to the sun until it is totally dry, at which point you can refurbish it. On the other hand, parquet, laminate, and chipboard furniture won’t work at all.
Even if it seems impossible, you can keep several home appliances. Call a repairman, take them to a service center, or see whether they are still covered by a warranty. Appliances like hair dryers, TVs, stoves, and refrigerators might be repaired. It’s intriguing that books, images, and papers may be preserved by being placed in the freezer for two to three weeks in order to remove moisture from the paper and stop the growth of mold. However, mattresses, upholstered chairs and couches, pillows, and blankets cannot be saved since it is impossible to completely clean them of dirt.
After the area has been fully cleaned and sanitized, drying can begin naturally or using the equipment. Depending on the season, you should wait between three and eight months in favorable conditions. Some home dehumidifiers, like those we can purchase in stores, will assist, but often their power is insufficient to properly dry the wall after flooding.
If there is moisture in the insulation beneath the floor glaze, vacuum drying of the insulation and glaze requires specialized equipment. Ideally, for this part, you would consult a drying service for advice.
Get the insurance companies
The type of home insurance you need depends on the other policies you have. The insurance company will send an inspector to inspect the damage, evaluate it, and decide if it is a covered loss. Get as many pictures before, during, and after cleanup as you can of the value of anything you can think of. When the inspector visits and evaluates the damage, this will be helpful. However, make sure you never clean anything before the insurance inspector comes. Ideally, they should see the place as it is so that you can get maximum compensation!
Flooding is indeed a natural disaster that can cost us a lot. However, with a professional touch, our homes can get their old shine back! Do not worry and focus on your home. Soon, you can enjoy it the same way you did before!