What to Do After Your Basement Floods
On the list of unwanted home-damaging events, a flooded basement is most certainly at the top. Flooding happens when you least expect it, and is a stressful experience if you don’t know where to turn or who to call. That’s why you should read these helpful tips from your local SERVPRO team…
Stay out of your flooded basement.
Basements flood first because of their low-level, underground nature. Of course your instincts may tell you to start bailing out buckets of water—don’t. The safest thing to do is not enter your basement until you call a professional water restoration company AND an electrician to come and assess the aftermath. Electricity and water are a dangerous combination; you need to keep yourself and your loved ones safe by making sure a professional properly deals with the situation beforehand. Turn off your circuit breaker only if it’s outside of the basement, on the ground level or upper level of your home.
Once it’s safe, remove excess flood water.
Once the electricity is turned off, it may be safe to enter your flooded basement and start bailing out water. Do this as soon as possible to mitigate the damage. Make sure your sump is working properly to help remove the water, or that it’s not malfunctioning and causing flooding in the first place. If flooding isn’t that extensive, use buckets, mops, and towels to soak up the water.
Take photos, then remove and air out damp objects.
Before you start cleaning, take photos of your flooded basement and damaged property for filing your insurance claim. In as little as 48 hours, mold can grow on anything damp in your flooded basement. That’s why after taking photos it’s important to remove any damp objects and leave them in an area to dry out. If you have a finished basement, rip out any wet carpet and padding underneath it. Unfortunately but realistically, your carpet will not be salvageable.
Dry the flooded basement area.
As mentioned earlier, you want to dry the area out to prevent mold growth and further damage. If you don’t own them, rent some fans and a shop vacuum from your local hardware or home improvement store to dry the basement area as quickly as possible. Then have a professional inspect the area make any necessary repair recommendations as well as prevent future mold growth. It may also be wise to buy a dehumidifier to remove excess moisture and allow your basement to dry faster.
When flooding happens, we’ll be there immediately.
May flooding never happen in your home or business. But if it does, know that SERVPRO of Southeast Milwaukee County has the team, tools, and timeliness you need in an emergency. We’re here to serve you 24/7 at 414-421-3500. When it’s less urgent, we’re also here for any cleaning or damage restoration services you need.