The Rains Came Down: What To Do After A Flood

Floods can have a devastating effect on your home. Unfortunately, torrential rains increase the risk for flooding. If you're at risk for flooding—or you've just experienced a flood at your home—you need to know how to begin the cleanup. It's not as easy as just wading into the water to begin the cleanup efforts. Certain steps need to be taken to make sure that you and your home are protected. Here are four steps you need to take after a flood.

Have the Power Turned Off to Your Home

Once the flooding has stopped, but before you enter your home for the first time, call and have the power. You don't want to enter your home while the electricity is still on. If the water level has reached your power outlets or there were power strips on the floor in your home, the water could be electrically charged. That means that anyone who enters the water could be electrocuted. Before you approach your water-filled home, take the time to have the power turned off.

Contact Your Insurance Company

If you own your home, you'll want to call your insurance company before you begin the cleanup. Contacting them as soon as possible will allow you to get a claim started. You'll need the claim to arrange for the restoration of your home. It's also important to contact the insurance company first to find out what they want you to do. They may want you to take pictures of the damage, which is a good idea to do anyway. Also, the insurance company will provide you with a list of water damage restoration companies that you can use for the cleanup.

Arrange for Cleanup Assistance

If a significant portion of your home is under water, you'll want to arrange for cleanup assistance. You can choose from a water damage restoration company that your insurance company has suggested, or you can choose one of your own. However, it is important that you work with a professional cleanup crew. After the flood, you're going to be dealing with cleanup issues that you might not be prepared to handle, such as mold mitigation.

Start Draining the Water

Once you've arranged for professional cleanup assistance, you can start draining the water. One way to do that is to open all the exterior facing doors. That way, some of the water can drain naturally. You can also use shop vacuums and submersible pumps to start removing the water from your home. The cleanup crew will bring industrial pumps and fans, but getting a head start on the removal will help speed up the process.