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For some areas of the United States, hurricane season can be both stressful and dangerous, especially when it causes substantial flooding. Flooding rainwater can damage the sewer lines in the city streets and the plumbing lines traveling below your property's ground. Sewage from busted systems can enter your home and contaminate your furnishings and clothing as well as the walls and floorboards in your home. If your family expects to experience a dangerous storm soon, take steps to protect your home and valuables with the tips below.
Secure Your Clothing and Other Soft Materials
If you and your loved ones have a lot of clothing, shoes, and other items of value in the home, you will want to keep them safe from mold and mildew during and after a flood. Mold and mildew can attack the organic material of your items and grow. Although some cleaning solutions on the market can remove or fight the mold and mildew found on soft materials, the chemicals might not work for everything you own. The best way to secure your items from contamination is to wrap them in protective plastic material.
Different types of plastic are often used to waterproof roofing substrates, basements, and other locations exposed to water and moisture. Plastic may also work great in keeping stored or unused apparel safe. Placing your items in heavy plastic sheets or zippered plastic bags, such as those used to hold bedding, helps protect against mold and mildew growth. If possible, fold your items so that they fit inside the plastic sheet or bag comfortably. For sheets and bags without zippers, twist the ends and secure them with waterproof tape.
If you plan to keep the secured items in your closets, place grilling charcoal on the closets' top shelving. Charcoal naturally absorbs moisture and keeps humidity down, and humidity can both trigger mold and mildew growth. Don't place the charcoal on the flooring, or else the flooring may become saturated with flood water.
After you secure your clothing and other items, take steps to keep your furnishings safe from flood water.
Protect Your Furnishings
To keep your chairs, sofas, and tables safe from water damage or to reduce their exposure to water, place large cinder blocks beneath their legs. You can also use large pieces or blocks of wood to lift up your items. By raising your furnishings, you help protect their soft fabrics and wood from the contaminants released by broken sewer pipelines. Broken sewer lines can release black water.
Black water is the most dangerous type of contaminated water to enter homes during floods and excessive rainfalls. You should never attempt to handle, clean, or move items contaminated with sewer water. It often contains things that can harm humans and animals, including water-borne diseases, parasites, and bacteria. Some pathogens can enter your body through your eyes, nose, and mouth if you touch or swallow them. Other contaminants thrive once they find a source of food, such as the soft materials of your couch or lounge chair.
If you can't place all of your furnishings on blocks, store them in the top floors and attic of your house. Secure these rooms from humid air with a dehumidifier and circulating fans. However, be sure to monitor the devices you use to keep the rooms dry regularly. You don't want anything to overheat and catch fire.
If you need additional help with securing your home against an impending storm and flooding rainwater, contact a water clean-up contractor such as Complete Restoration Services right away. A contractor may offer advice on how to store your clothing and furnishings before the storm arrives and give tips to protect them after the storm ends.