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Share your stories and ideas with the network as you respond to crisis and disaster.

Aug 18
Steve Marr

Water Back Ups- What To Do

Posted by: Steve Marr

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Last week my home town of Detroit suffered a deluge of rain, over 20,000 homes suffered basement flooding as the sewer system could not handle the water.  A week later, many are still a mess. Most residents never had this type of water before and didn’t know what to do. Should this disaster ever strike you, or someone you know these a few steps to take. 

First, make sure the power is turned off to basement, otherwise you could get zapped. Do this regardless how little water is in the basement, water is an excellent conductor. Further, turn of any natural gas lines, water may snuff out a water heater or furnace pilot light.

Second, remember sewer backups are a cesspool full of germs,  wear waterproof boots, gloves, a mask and goggles to protect yourself. Some may believe the mask and goggles go too far, but one splash of icky water in your mouth, or eye can make you sick.

Third, Open up any basement window to get some air flow going.

Fourth, clear the basement drain. Often as the water rises junk gets loose and then clogs up the drain. Cleaning the drain will allow most of the water to escape back down the sewer where it belongs.

If you have a wet vacuum you should be able to remove a few inches of water, and then use paper towels to soak up the rest. If you have more water you likely need a pump.

Remove everything that got wet, including any carpet and padding, the carpet will never be OK, just toss it. Lay out other items in your garage floor, decide what can be salvaged, and what must go.

After the water is removed, run a fan and dehumidifier to start the drying out process. Remove any wet drywall to avoid future mold growth.

Check with your insurance agent to see if you have coverage, many policies provide coverage, at a higher cost. Many will not be covered.

With the extensive damage getting a water damage removal company to come out and help is very unlikely. Get on a waiting list, have them come out, even if you need to wait a few weeks and have then check to insure no mold is able to start growing. The time and money will be worth every penny. Many homes receive more mold damage then were taken out by water.

By taking the steps you can will cut down on the total damage. Want to be ready for an emergency? Start here by taking the free Ready Christian training:

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