South Africans have come to know the true meaning of the saying “When it rains, it pours”. During spring and summer, many parts of the country are hit hard by storms that can be catastrophic. Once the flood waters have receded, picking up the pieces can be a daunting task. How do you recover after your home has been flooded? Here are some pointers to make your home liveable again:
1. Have your waterproof gear ready
You should always assume that flood water is contaminated so when trying to remove it and clean up, it is best to have some items that can prevent you from coming into contact with the water. Keep a bag in a an area of your house unaffected by the flooding and make sure it contains the following items:
- Waterproof boots
- Waterproof pants and raincoat
- Waterproof gloves
- Cloths and sponges to help you clean
2. Keep your cleaning products handy
Make sure that you have stored your cleaning products in a safe place and keep the following handy:
- A mop
- A broom
- Disinfectant and detergent
- Soap and other cleaning products
3. Invest in a shop-vac cleaner
There are lots of water vacuum products on the market and these can come in handy especially if your home is prone to flooding. These products will be able to suck in all the water at different points around your house and you’ll be able to drain the water faster. If there are large bodies of water you might have to use the old school method of draining the water with buckets first before using a vacuum.
4. Maintain your drainage environment
Although it takes a while before drainage starts working again after a flood, it is important to check your homes’ drainage environment and ensure that you clean out any debris that may have blocked the drain. Once the drain works, it will make it easier for you to get rid of excess water.
5. Remove any trapped mud or water
Once you have managed to get rid of most of the water, it is time to check the hidden corners of your house for any trapped moisture, mud and water. Clean anything that has enough space in it for moisture to get trapped. If these dry without cleaning, it will usually leave smelly mould and decay.
Once you have cleaned your home and removed all water residue, it is important to asses how much damage the water has done and if there are parts of your home you will have to fix to prevent further problems.