Cleaning a Basement After a Flood
LESLIE: Carmen in Missouri dealt with a flood and now at least the water subsided. What happened? Tell us about it.
CARMEN: When there was a lot of flooding in our area our partial unfinished basement completely filled with within two inches of our floor joists with water and that water covered our furnace and our hot water heater and now we’re trying to get back to normal and I was wondering if I sprayed some bleach water on the floors and the wall area down there if the bleach water would have any effect on the mechanics of the sump pump.
TOM: I don’t see any reason that you can’t go ahead and use a bleach and water solution on the walls and floor because it certainly will kill any mold. But I am more concerned about the fact that the furnace was completely covered with water. Are you planning on replacing the furnace?
CARMEN: We’ve replaced a lot of parts on the furnace. (chuckles)
TOM: OK, yeah because the electronics could be absolutely affected by the flood water, so that’s a good thing.
CARMEN: They were.
TOM: Alright, well then I think you’re good to go, Carmen. Go ahead and use a bleach and water combination on the floor and on the walls. I’d say you probably can use about one part bleach to three parts water.
LESLIE: Any sort of fan situation that we need to put down there to keep things ventilated to dry things out from this cleaning process?
TOM: It may not be a bad idea if you could ventilate that by opening the windows, running a fan through it so you keep some air moving while it’s all evaporating and gets nice and dry. It’ll also make it easier to work down there without your eyes starting to water from all the bleach.
CARMEN: (chuckling) Right.
CARMEN: OK, thank you very much.
TOM: You’re welcome, Carmen. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.