It’s every homeowner’s worst nightmare- floodwaters taking over your home. All of a sudden, you’re standing in knee-deep water with your personal effects floating around you, wondering what you’re supposed to do next. Whether you’ve had a minor flood and just a small amount of damage or a major flood that took out a lot of your belongings and left your home a disaster zone, there are a few important steps to follow to ensure that you and your family bounce back from the flood with minimal issues.
Step One: Stop the Water
The first and most important step is to make sure no more water gets into your home. If a pipe has burst or it’s a different plumbing problem, either seal up the pipe in question or turn off the main water valve. If the flooding is due to an act of nature, make sure you don’t have cracks in your house that are allowing more water in. Seal those up with concrete or epoxy if possible.
Step Two: Turn off Your Electricity
The next step is to make sure you and your family are safe by turning off the electricity so that no one gets electrocuted when they step in the water. However, it is very important to note that you should not attempt to turn off the electricity if you have to walk through water to get to the fuse box. Do not risk electrocuting yourself! If you cannot reach the fuse box, call an electrician to help you turn it off.
Step Three: Don’t Stick Around
If your home is flooded, even if it’s “just” the basement, you probably don’t want to hang around. It’s not as simple as just staying out of the basement until the water is gone, unfortunately. If you turn the electricity and main water valve off in your home, you really need to stay somewhere else while the problem is fixed. Make sure all humans and pets are out of the house, and try to establish temporary shelter somewhere, whether it’s with a relative or friend or somewhere like a hotel or Airbnb.
Step Four: Make Necessary Calls
If you own your home, call your insurance provider right away and explain that you’ve suffered water damage. Be aware that your insurer may have someone come out to your house to assess the damage, and that you may have to wait to start repairs until that’s done. If you rent your home, call your landlord. In both of these cases, document the damage as much as possible while still keeping yourself safe. Take photos and videos to show the insurer or the landlord- the more detailed, the better.
Step Five: Start the Clean Up
Whether you choose to do the clean up yourself or to hire a company to help you, cleaning up after a flood basically consists of salvaging personal items from the water (some may need to be restored by a professional), removing the water from your home, drying out the space, and disinfecting everything just in case there was something gross in the water. It can be a long and difficult process, which is why we recommend hiring help. Trust us- you don’t want to try and clean out your basement by taking the water up the stairs one bucket at a time. You’ll also need to take steps to make sure that the water doesn’t cause mold problems in your home. Mold can be extremely hazardous to your health and the health of your children and pets. To avoid mold damage, you’ll need to get the flooded space as dry as possible as quickly as possible, as well as using a really good disinfectant on everything. Try to find a disinfectant with bleach in it.
Americon Restoration is Still Here For You
We know you may have concerns about COVID-19 and we want to assure you that we are doing everything in our power to keep our employees and our customers healthy and safe. As an essential business, we are still open to serve you. Americon Restoration is taking all necessary precautions before entering our customers’ homes. We want you and your family to feel safe and stay healthy! Please contact us through our website or by phone at (216) 221-5200.