How to Clean a Flooded Basement

If your basement has flooded a little or a lot, here are two guaranteed ways to effectively deal with and clean up the mess. Of course, depending on the size of your basement, if you can recruit help to make the job go faster, that is fantastic because the faster you get the moisture out, the less likely you are going to have to endure the unpleasant odor that a very wet basement can obtain. If possible, open all windows for ventilation.

Now on to clean up mess. If the flood has created two or two and a half inches of standing water or less, you can use your standard wet-dry or shoppe vacuum. Or you can use a mop and ringer bucket. Both have their advantages and disadvantages. The shoppe vac will be easier to navigate and suck more quickly than a mop can, but you will have to constantly empty the heavy container out, and considering how easy access to an outside dumping space is, this could be quite the difficult task. The mop and wringing bucket will work just as effectively, but the task requires a lot of back bending work as you use the absorbency of the mop to soak up the water, ring it out thoroughly and repeat until the water is gone. Either way you are going to need to hook up dehumidifiers to get the remaining moisture out of the basement or you risk subjecting the area to mold.

If you have more than two and a half inches of standing water you are going to have to use a submersible pump. If you do not have one, you can easily rent one. Then you need to figure out exactly where it is you are going to drain your water to. Look around outside and find a location that can handle the discharged water, preferably a storm drain or the like. Once you have found the spot, connect your discharge hose to the discharge pipe and seal it shut with the attached clamp. Put on rubber boots to protect your feet and waterproof gloves to protect your hands and then put your pump into the water until it is flat on the floor. Make sure it is not tilted or leaning over in any way. Put the end of your discharge hose outside going into the selected spot you have chosen to empty the standing water (again, a storm drain would be ideal). Carefully plug your pump into the outlet and turn it on. It will be time to turn the submersible pump off once it stops sucking out the water. A dehumidifier or two, depending on the size of your basement, may need to be hooked up to eradicate any moisture that might be left over from the flooding. Make sure to immediately throw away any items that were saturated to the point of ruin so they do not encourage flooding.

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