Floodwater in Wausau may carry silt, raw sewage, oil or chemical wastes that can cause a range of bacterial, viral and/or parasitic diseases. Cleaning and disinfecting surfaces in your home after a flood is a major undertaking to prevent further damage to the property and help prevent illness. You want to make sure that your time is well spent and that the chemicals used don’t cause more damage to your items (or your health.) The American Cleaning Institute offers tips to help with clean-up efforts:
Wet textiles are the perfect breeding ground for mold and mildew. As soon as the floodwaters recede, the next priority is to clean your clothes and other water-soaked fabrics. Verify 1) that the city water system is clean and 2) that your washer wasn’t contaminated with flood water.
Although your first instinct may be to wash these items in very hot water, high temperatures may set any stains. Prewash first, using cool water and powdered laundry detergent. Then, wash the items using powdered laundry detergent and the hottest water that’s safe for the fabric.
If clothes came in contact with sewage, add a disinfectant to the wash. Use liquid household bleach when fabrics allow. If chlorine bleach is not suitable, use color-safe oxygen bleach, PineSol or Lysol. Utilize sunshine; kill bacteria while drying clothes in bright sunlight. Or dry in the dryer at the hotspot setting the fabrics can endure to kill the bacteria.
Kitchen counters, pantry shelves, refrigerators, stoves, dishes and glassware that have been in contact with water should be thoroughly washed with warm water and soap, rinsed and then disinfected. To disinfect, use a solution of a ¾ cup of liquid chlorine bleach per gallon of water. Keep the surfaces wet for two minutes, then rinse with clean water.
Glass and metal can be sterilized. Contaminated wood and plastic items, including cutting boards, utensils, and food storage containers should be discarded because they may harbor bacteria.
Throw away any foods that have come in direct contact with the water, including unopened foods in glass containers and canned foods. Food in glass containers may look safe, but the lids could be compromised. Also, dispose of staples stored in canisters or containers with cork-lined or waxed cardboard tops.
Bedding should be hung up in fresh air and sunshine as soon as possible; then brush off excess soil and dirt. Pillows, while washable, should be discarded if soaked with contaminated floodwater. Put sheets through two complete washing cycles. Use diluted liquid chlorine bleach to help kill germs; slightly faded colors are better than a germy bed. Wash or dry clean comforters depending on the fiber content of the bedding. Usually, it is best to wash cotton quilts.
As a general rule, inexpensive mattresses are not worth the expense of professional sanitizing and should be discarded. (In some cases, a good mattress may be worth the cost of reconditioning. Get an estimate from commercial facilities.) If the outside of the mattress is only slightly damp, brush off surface soil and wipe with a solution of one cup denatured alcohol and one cup water.
Ask For Professional Help
After any water damage in your home, K-tech Kleening can help. The team of highly trained and certified technicians can handle any job, big or small. Whether you are in need of a bio-wash antimicrobial cleaning in one room or entire remediation of your home or business, K-tech has the equipment and the staff to put your worries at ease.
At K-tech Kleening, we understand how important it is to extract the water as quickly as possible to prevent further damage to your property and your belongings. We will remove it using specialized, high-powered drying equipment. We know that it is important for you to return to normal as soon as possible, so we will provide all the resources necessary.
K-tech serves customers in Wausau and Central Wisconsin. Multiple offices and a 45-plus fleet of vehicles provide an extensive reach to outlying rural and metropolitan locations.