Flooded Basement: 3 Cleanup Phases

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A flooded basement, whether from a broken pipe or a weather event, can be disastrous. The only way to minimize damage is to act as quickly as possible to get everything dried out. A three-phase approach works well. 

Step 1: Extraction

A flooded basement can't be cleaned up with a mop. The quickest way to get the water out is with submersible pumps. The damage mitigation specialists will pump out the water from the basement. It's typically touted into a storm drain it if is graywater or routed into the sewer or into a pump truck if it is blackwater that could contain rain sewage. 

Large vacuum water extractors may also be used, particularly as the water level drops. These extractors work well for sucking out the excess moisture from carpeting and upholstery. The goal is to remove as much water as possible during the extraction process so that the majority of the damage can be prevented. 

Step 2: Drying

Pumps get out of the bulk of the water but they don't dry out surfaces. Water will soak into any flooring installed, as well as into any wall paneling, furniture, and even into the main concrete structure of the basement. Many basements are not well-ventilated, so the dampness can stick around if it's not addressed right away.

Industrial fans and radiant heaters are often employed during the drying-out phase. Furniture, rugs, and anything else that can be removed from the basement will be taken to a drying area with better ventilation, such as a garage or even a porch if the weather is dry. The faster the moisture is forced to evaporate, the less likelihood of permanent damage. 

Step 3: Remediation

Getting rid of any mold spores that began to grow is the first part of remediation. If you acted quickly with extraction and drying, mold issues shouldn't be too severe. All surfaces will be cleaned thoroughly with a mold-killing solution, including furniture and other fixtures that were affected by the water damage. 

Tear-out may also be a necessary part of extraction, especially in finished basements. Wallboards and paneling often can't be saved, so it's better to rip it out so that any framing underneath can be treated for mold. Ideally, quick drying will minimize tear-out needs and your service can move right on to sanitation, cleanup, and repainting. 

For more information, contact a company like Urgent Island Restoration.