Faster Recovery from Flooding with a Professional Cleaning Service
Flood and mold outbreaks are hazards that every home and business face, and everybody affected wants to get back on their feet and start rebuilding as quickly as possible.
The problem with floods is they can cause structural damage beneath the surface that may not be immediately visible. It’s essential not to rebuild too quickly, as you could risk a mold outbreak, insect infestation, and further deterioration of the building's infrastructure.
Professional cleaning services near you are available and will provide professional advice, guidance, and expertise for restoring your home or business, mitigating mold, and ensuring the restoration of your building to its original condition goes as quickly as possible.
Benefits of Professional Cleaning Services
Recovering from a disaster is time-consuming and stressful, and most people do not have the expertise or equipment to go it alone. A professional cleaning service can be critical to restoring your home to its pre-flood conditions.
Faster flood recovery also reduces the risk of a mold outbreak and continued structural damage as materials continue to degrade from moisture.
How Much Does a Professional Cleaning Service Cost?
With so many variables to consider, such as the extent of damage, the size of the property, and the number of goods to dispose of or restore, it’s impossible to provide an exact price.
Professional cleaning services will assess the damage and provide you with an accurate quote so you don’t get caught with any surprises. If you have insurance, there is a good chance your provider will reimburse you for the cost of the cleaning and restoration.
Professional Restoration Service Checklist
After a disaster and before you call in a professional cleaning service, the first thing you need to do is to ensure everyone is safe. There will be many different hazards left in the wake of a flood, and everybody should stay clear of the property until given the all-clear. Always assume flood-damaged materials are contaminated, so wear personal protective equipment (PPE) during the cleanup.
Flood Insurance Claims
Call your insurance agent right away, but don’t wait for them to arrive before starting clean up and restoration.
● Start cleaning, drying, and salvaging as soon as possible. Take photos to prove ownership.
● Clean up as much as you can so the adjuster can accurately assess the damage.
● Store damaged goods out of the way as proof of loss
● In case of widespread floods, contact government services for information.
You can apply for emergency financial assistance in areas where the President has declared a natural disaster.
Gas and Electrical Systems
Never enter flood-damaged premises unless you are sure the gas and electrical systems are switched off. Wait until an electrician checks the grounds to ensure they are safe before entering for the cleanup. The website at NEMA.org provides a detailed guide on how to stay safe against electrical hazards.
Sanitizing Food and Water after a Flood
Flood conditions have likely contaminated the municipal water supply, so don’t use water from faucets until the authorities have informed you it is safe. You need to sterilize water through a filter and bring it to a rolling boil for at least a minute. Unscented chlorine drops (about eight drops to a gallon of clear water or 16 drops if cloudy) will provide potable water. Iodine and other purification tablets are not suitable.
Only eat from undamaged commercially prepared foods in metal cans after a flood. You should remove the labels and clean the outside of the can before disinfecting them with a sanitizing solution (1 tablespoon of bleach mixed in a gallon of potable water). Don’t forget to re-label the cans, so you know what they contain.
Discard wooden cutting boards, spoons, baby bottles, nipples, and plastic utensils. Wash metal pots and pans in hot, soapy water, and disinfect them by boiling them in clean water.
Carpets and Furniture
A professional cleaning service is your best bet to deal with flood-damaged carpets because they should be removed and replaced due to contaminants trapped in the fibers. Waterlogged rugs and mats should be removed within 48 hours of floodwaters subsiding.
Most metal and solid wood furniture can be cleaned, scrubbed, sanitized, and left out in the sun to dry. Unfortunately, contaminated upholstered furniture and mattresses should be disposed of. However, it might be possible to restore valuable pieces if the stuffing and upholstering are removed and replaced.
Cleaning and Restoring Walls
Flooded walls, even those that have seemingly escaped unscathed, should be opened to prevent a mold and mildew outbreak. Remove baseboards and cut drainage holes cut into the wallboard.
Flooded drywall will need to have the interior insulation up to the water height removed and discarded. After clearing out all the mud, spray the walls with a disinfectant. Dehumidifiers and fans throughout the interior will speed up drying and protect against mold outbreaks.
The process can be time-consuming, as interior walls may need four to seven days (depending on size affected) before they are thoroughly dry, and they will need to be left open during this time.
When floodwaters dissipate quickly, it may be possible to save some of the interior flooring materials, provided cleanup begins as soon as they subside.
Submerged plywood subfloors may not survive because plywood can quickly absorb moisture and swell and separate. The ruined sections should be removed to prevent buckling in other areas.
Subflooring can take a long time to dry out without industrial-level drying equipment, so a professional cleaning service that can supply powerful dehumidifiers and fans will come in handy.
Wooden flooring will need to have every few feet of panels removed to reduce buckling from swelling. Consult a professional carpenter if your floor is a tongue and groove type, as these can be tricky to deal with without experience. Ensure the floor is completely dry before you start repairing it.
A professional cleaning company proficient in mold mitigation will help prevent mold outbreaks using drying equipment such as dehumidifiers and fans. However, there are strategies you can do yourself, such as running air conditioners all day, opening windows, and using fans to ensure air is continuously circulating.
As you can see, your to-do list will be significant after a flood, and you undoubtedly want to get back to normal as quickly as possible. Call a professional cleaning service near you, and let the experts help you rebuild your life.