Steps to Clean Up a Flooded Basement
Basement flooding and other household emergencies hit your NJ home when you least expect them. Taken by surprise (and often at the most inconvenient time), your mind races with questions.
- What should I do first?
- How do I get rid of all this water?
- Can I do it myself, or should I call in a professional?
- What about mold and mildew? How do I dry out my wet basement and everything in it before hazardous mold begins to grow?
Experts say rapid flood cleanup is critical to minimizing permanent damage and preventing long-term health risks. To keep your family and home safe, tackle your flooded basement in Union County with confidence by following these basic steps.
Five Key Steps to Wet Basement Cleanup
1. Address safety.
Turn off the power and gas before stepping into a flooded area. Don appropriate safety gear, including waterproof boots, gloves, protective eyewear, and a respiratory mask to guard against airborne particulates. If you’re unsure how to disconnect the power and gas, call your utility company or a qualified plumber or electrician.
2. Locate the source.
Before you can determine what cleanup actions to take, you’ll need to find the flooding source.
- If flooding is due to a burst pipe or broken fitting, turn off your home’s water supply.
- For backed-up sewers or septic tank problems, refrain from using toilets or drains in the rest of the house.
- When basement flooding is the result of heavy rainfall or poor outside drainage, check floor drains for blockage and sump pumps for function.
3. Clean up the water.
This is the tricky part, and the equipment you’ll need depends on the amount of water accumulated. Flood cleanup professionals use heavy-duty pumps and dryers to remove large amounts of water quickly. Do-it-yourself flooded basement cleanup can be accomplished more easily with a working sump pump, wet-dry vac, towels, buckets, mops and lots of help. Removed water should be diverted away from the house to prevent additional seepage.
4. Dry everything.
Move stored basement items to a well-ventilated area to dry. Electrical appliances should be inspected before future use. Cardboard boxes, magazines and other items that don’t dry within 48 hours may need to be discarded. Carpeting and other types of flooring should also be removed, allowing basement floors to dry thoroughly. Soaked drywall and insulation may also need to be stripped out and replaced. Consider renting a dehumidifier and industrial fans to boost air circulation and speed up drying.
5. Clean & treat the space.
Wash down basement surfaces and treat with a diluted chlorine bleach solution or anti-mildew spray. Your goal is to prevent the growth of harmful mold and mildew, which could pose serious health concerns for years to come.
Put Your Home Under the Blue Umbrella
Summer thunderstorms won’t lead to flooded basements in Union County when you have professional waterproofing installed by Blue Umbrella. We have proven solutions to banish basement moisture, including:
- Free estimates & consultations
- Interior French drains & tile systems
- Back-up sump pump systems
- Year-round maintenance plans
When you’ve dried out your basement and it’s time to invest in a permanent waterproofing solution, call 908.432.8858 to schedule an appointment. For your convenience, you can also contact us online, 24/7. Need a recommendation for other water restoration projects? Steve Karlik and his team partner with home and remodeling professionals to restore wet basements and mitigate mold and mildew. Just ask us for referrals and home cleanup tips!