Flooding can cause significant damage to your home. If a hot water heater is actively leaking and causing a flood or if a river bank is overflowing and flooding into your home, there are steps you should take to attempt to mitigate the damage. Here are a few of the steps that you should follow if your home is actively flooding.
Unplug Electrical or Gas-Powered Items
If a flood is actively happening in your home, you will want to unplug your gas-powered items and your electrical items. When possible, lift the cords above the ground and/or move the electrical item. You should also turn off the breakers from your circuit breaker box to the area flooded, if possible. It is important to note that you should not unplug items that are already submerged in water, as you run the risk of potentially electrocuting yourself. Do not attempt to plug anything back in to outlets that have been submerged in water until your electric company, an electrician or a water damage restoration company evaluates the outlets and determines if they are safe.
Gather Up Irreplaceable Items
The next step that you should do if your home is actively flooding is to gather up items that are irreplaceable. This includes important documents like birth certificates, passports, social security cards, personal photographs and art work. If you have access to Ziploc bags or waterproof safe, place those items in the waterproof container. Then place your irreplaceable items as high as possible in your home. For most homes, this is the attic.
Try to Raise or Move Furniture
The final step that you can take if your home is actively flooding is to try to raise or move furniture. If you have furniture or throw rugs in a basement that is flooding, try to move all of the items upstairs as quickly as possible. If the items are already slightly wet on the bottom, try to grab a tarp or folded blankets to place under the item to prevent the wet item from seeping into your upstairs flooring.
Unplugging electrical or gas-powered water, moving irreplaceable items and moving furniture upstairs will mitigate damage that occurs during a flood. Unfortunately though, you cannot prevent all flood damage. Following a flood, it is important to immediately contact a water damage restoration company as quickly as possible. They can work to remove water immediately, which can help to prevent mold and mildew, as well as get your home livable after a flood has occurred.