How to Clean a Flooded Basement
It’s a shame, but many homeowners will have to deal with a flooded basement at some point. You don’t even have to endure a storm or live in a particularly rainy area, either, to experience a flooded basement. It is common for gutters to become clogged or corroded, which allows water to run down around the entire perimeter of the home as opposed to being dispersed outwards from the house. As water accumulates, of course, the ground becomes saturated, eventually making its way through the cracks in the foundation and seeping into the basement. Unfortunately, most people don’t know how to clean a flooded basement and aren’t prepared to deal with the problem when it occurs.
Do you know what to do when your basement floods? Here are a few tips:
How to Clean a Flooded Basement
In order to get your flooded basement cleaned up quickly and effectively, you’ll need to make sure that you have the right tools for the job. Depending on the severity of the flood, you may already have the necessary tools on hand. In some cases, a mop, some towels and old rags will do the trick. In other instances, however, you may need something more heavy-duty.
Most of the time, the flooded basement cleanup process will require a wet Shop-Vac or a sump pump to remove the water. Wet Shop-Vacs are essentially vacuum cleaners that are capable of cleaning up water. Of course, much like a regular vacuum cleaner, you’ll have to empty the container when it fills up. If you’re dealing with a particularly bad flood, this means that you’ll have your work cut out for you. Ultimately, you’ll find yourself filling the vacuum up, dragging the container away from the house and pouring it out before returning to your basement.
A sump pump, on the other hand, features a hose that can be run outside of the house in order to continuously pump water out of the basement. This is a much more convenient option to the Shop-Vac method and will help to minimize the amount of damage caused to your home. Make sure, however, that the water is being pumped far enough from the home that the water won’t leak back in. The last thing you want to do is dump the water close enough that it just winds up seeping back through the cracks.
After Removing the Water
In order to properly understand how to clean a flooded basement, it is important to remember that drying the area is equally as important as removing the water. After all, getting the water out is only half of the flooded basement cleanup process. Failing to properly remove moisture can result in mold problems and other damages to your home.
As soon as the rain subsides, you want to allow airflow in and out of your home. Open all the windows and turn the heat on, if possible. Essentially, this will cause the moisture to evaporate and flow outside of the house. Consider buying or borrowing some oscillating fans to make sure that the air is circulating. The more that you can get air to move through the house, the quicker your drying process will be.
If you aren’t able to open the windows due to excessive rain, get yourself a dehumidifier. This will collect the excess water vapor in the air and help to prevent mold from growing. Over time, the dehumidifier will collect water, so you’ll have to empty it out as it continues to fill up.
When Should I Call a Professional?
If you don’t have the proper tools, can’t get to a store or just don’t know what to do when your basement floods, you may want to call a water damage expert as soon as possible. Water damage pros like Tidal Wave Response have the right equipment, knowledge, and training to remove moisture and prevent damage to your home.