Damage to your home or business can be devastating. Losses from excess water, fire or mold can amount to thousands of dollars. Not only that, but irreplaceable and priceless items can suffer damage as well.
It’s important to begin the restoration process quickly to mitigate the damage and loss. It’s best to call in a professional for assistance as soon as possible to begin the restoration process. Until they arrive, there are some things you can do to prevent further damage.
1. Be Safe!
Before you even attempt to enter the water damaged area, be sure that it’s safe to do so. There may be water that has come in contact with electrical outlets or devices, in which case you should proceed with caution. Wet areas are also slippery, so wear shoes or boots that are appropriate. Water-logged materials, like carpeting and furniture, can be very heavy, so keep that in mind when trying to move them.
2. Dry It Out
If you determine you’re not in danger of electric shock, set up as many fans and dehumidifiers as you can to circulate the air and begin to dry out the area. If it’s warm weather, crank the AC down very low and in winter turn up the heat to evaporate the moisture. Mop and wipe up as much excess water as you can from floors, rugs and furniture.
3. Remove Items
Move as many items as possible to a dry area. Lamps, pictures, smaller tables, books, area rugs, drapes, and furniture cushions are some to consider moving.
4. Protect Remaining Items
Prop up legs of sofas and chairs or other heavy furniture that cannot be moved with wooden blocks or aluminum foil. Open dresser drawers and closets to help circulate air.
1. Again, Safety First
Do not enter a building that has experienced a fire before you get the go-ahead for a fire marshal. The building may look safe to your unprofessional eyes, but the experts know what hazards could lurk inside. Also, throw out any open or possibly exposed foods that may have been contaminated from the fire.
2. Wear Proper Attire
Because there are dangerous elements that remain in the air after a fire, it’s important to protect yourself. Wear a mask and goggles to prevent smoke and soot inhalation and eye irritation or damage.
Open doors and windows to air out the building and get rid of lingering smoke odors.
4. Prevent Further Damage
Cover any furnishings that were not damaged by fire with tarps or plastic coverings to prevent them from being affected by lingering smoke and soot or the effects of the clean-up process.
5. Address Water Damage
Fires are devastating, certainly. But the damage resulting from the water used to put out the fire can be even more concerning. Follow the steps above to mitigate that damage.
Because mold can be very toxic, the best course of action is for all building occupants to stay out of the affected areas and wait for the professionals to arrive. Therefore, we’ve included some dos and don’ts for DIY cleanup here.
Any surfaces that must be used before the professionals arrive should be disinfected. Such areas can include bathroom sinks, kitchen self and counters dining area and others.
· Turn Off HVAC
If you can access the HVAC unit, block off any vents to make sure that the mold growth behind walls does not spread to adjacent rooms.
· Seal off Affected Areas
If you have an N-95 respirator, you can seal off areas where mold damage is.
· Disturb the Mold
Touching affected surfaces can irritate your skin and cause the mold spores to multiply. Using liquids to try to clean the mold affected areas can actually make it spread and make the damage worse.
· Use Fans
Using air movers or fans may cause the mold spores to travel and multiply to otherwise unaffected areas and surfaces.
Call St. Louis Cleaning and Restoration to Restore Your Damaged Property
Because fire, water and mold can cause severe damage to your property, it’s best to call in the professionals as soon as possible. St. Louis Cleaning and Restoration, will remediate the effects of these types of events and restore your property to a clean and safe environment.
St. Louis Cleaning and Restoration offers 24/7 emergency service because we know quick response is crucial to proper restoration after catastrophic events. Contact us immediately for help in these situations.