If your home flooded while you were away, and the water sat for an extended period of time, you'll need to do more than simply remove the water. You'll also have to clean and sanitize to remove any mold spores that might be present. While small amounts of mold won't harm you, extensive growth – like the kind you can see after a flood – can lead to health problems, especially if someone in the home suffers from asthma or other breathing-related problems. Here are some simple instructions for getting rid of the mold spores in your basement.
Drain the Water
The first thing you'll need to do is drain the water from your basement. Use a sump pump to pump the water out of the basement and drain it to a location farther away from your home. Once most of the water is gone, you can remove the rest with a wet/dry vacuum. Be sure to remove all the standing water from your basement.
Dry the Basement
Once the water has been removed from your basement, you'll need to thoroughly dry the entire room. To do this, you'll need at least one industrial fan. Open all the windows to allow fresh air into the room and turn on your industrial fan. Leave the fan on for at least 24 hours to ensure that all the surfaces are completely dry.
Sanitize with Bleach
After the basement is dry, it will be time to sanitize the concrete. For this part of the project, you'll need a garden sprayer, bleach and hot water. Fill your garden sprayer with hot water and add 2 cups of bleach. Spray the bleach solution on all the concrete surfaces in your basement. Allow the bleach to soak in to the concrete. Once your concrete is dry, you'll be ready to clean your basement with vinegar.
Clean with Vinegar and Borax
You want to make sure that the mold spores are completely neutralized. For that, you'll need to thoroughly clean all the surfaces in your basement. Fill your garden sprayer with hot water. Add 2 cups of vinegar and 1 cup of borax. Spray the floors and walls in your basement with the solution and allow it to sit for about 30 minutes. Apply a second coat and allow it to sit overnight.
Seal Your Concrete
Now that your basement has been scrubbed and sanitized, it's time to seal the concrete with a waterproof sealant. The sealant will protect the concrete and prevent future mold growth. For this portion of the clean-up, you'll need a paint pan, paint rollers and waterproof sealant. Using your paint roller, apply a thick layer of sealant to all the concrete in your basement and allow it to dry for at least 24 hours. For maximum protection, be sure to apply a new layer of sealant at least once a year.
Flooding can lead to mold growth, which can cause health problems. To remove the mold and protect your basement, follow the instructions provided above. For further information on how to protect your basement from water damage, be sure to contact a waterproofing contractor like Sohan and Sons.