Flooding and MOLD ... how to PREVENT things from getting bad
A flooded home is a devastating situation. Once your home has flooded, it's always a lot of work to clean up the mess left behind, and it can be hard to know where to begin. Cleaning up after a flood isn't just about getting the water mopped up to prevent structural damage, you also need to clean it up to prevent mould from being attracted into your house too. This article by Florrie Byrd at Molekule was written for people whose homes had flooded because of Hurricanes Harvey or Irma. The hurricane itself is a very traumatic event to deal with, but then there's also the aftermath and the mess to clean up too which can cause even more stress. When you have areas that have been soaked with water, there is a good chance mould will start to grow in these areas. Mould thrives in warm, wet areas and it can start growing in a matter of days. Even worse, it spreads rapidly, which can leave you with a whole other problem to deal with. It's been shown that mould can really affect our health, even if you don't have allergies or other health issues. It can cause respiratory issues and can even trigger asthma attacks in people with asthma.
The best thing to do is to learn some cleaning tips for how to remove mould once it's settled into your home, as well as how to prevent the mould from settling in, to begin with. The longer you leave things wet or damp, the more likely you'll have mould growing in these areas. So do your best to dry everything out completely. Use fans to circulate the air, get a good dehumidifier and air purifier too. You can also make sure that your home is properly ventilated by opening up windows to allow your home to breathe. If the mould is in a smaller area or an area of the home, you don't go into often like your basement, close it off from the rest of the house. If the area that was flooded is smaller, Florrie says, about 10 square feet or less, you can usually clean it yourself by learning how to remove mould safely. But if the area is larger than that, you need to call professionals to come and properly clean it for you, especially if the water came from sewage lines.
Also, it's important to collect photos or videos of your home and the damage right away and to get in contact your insurance company. Even if you have flood insurance, Florrie mentions that you have to start cleaning up the water as soon as possible to prevent the mould. With some companies, your policy might not cover homes that have become infested with mould because no proper cleanup was done. Whenever you're cleaning up mould, there are some cleaning tips you should follow. This includes making sure you wear protective gear like goggles, a respirator and gloves. You can use a wet vac, a vacuum that sucks up water to get as much water as possible out of your space. If areas have been totally submerged in water, you'll also have to completely get rid of the carpet and even the drywall as well as soaked furniture and accessories. You can also use bleach to clean up any visible mould in your home or even white distilled vinegar for a natural option. Remember to hire a professional if your home has flooded significantly and you're feeling overwhelmed by the cleaning duties. It's better that you get it done right than subject yourself and your family to horrible mould issues. Read the full article over on Molekule for more tips on how to remove mould and how to prevent it.***
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