Recovering Your Personal Items From Flooding & Water Damage
Flooding, and water damage are stressful situations that many Long Islanders unfortunately have to deal with from time to time. Being one of the most regularly occurring and expensive disasters that home owners have to face in homes from Nassau County all the way to Montauk. Hurricane season has already begun and this year it is expected to be even more active throughout the Atlantic region then it was in 2017. If your area and home are flooded it is important to know what steps to take to protect your valuable possessions.
How to store/protect documents
Crucial documents – Birth Certificates, Social Security Cards, Passports, Military Discharge Papers, Wills, Deeds, as well as financial, insurance and immunization records are best stored in a safe deposit box or other secure, flood-proof location. Also keep recent utility bills handy to show proof of residence. It is also smart to store photocopies of all of your most crucial documents and ID cards in a seperate location along with secondary credit cards. Also keep a file with all of your banking and insurance information.
Take Photos Now! – Photographs and/or video of the inside of your home as well as the exterior areas including all of your cars, boats and recreational vehicles. You should also take records of your belongings. Having these will help when you file a claim with your insurance company in case they are lost or damaged beyond repair.
If your personal belonging do get wet or incur water damage
- Objects that are wet should be rinsed with clear and clean water or a mist from a hose. Dried silt and remaining debris can be removed with a soft brush or a clean damp cloth or rag.
- Air Drying items indoors is best when possible. Drying in the sun can cause warping.
- Use of dehumidifiers and fans is highly recommended to reduce humidity and reduce the possibility of mold and mildew growing. If you notice visible mold formation on walls, baseboards, floors or other surfaces throughout your home remove it immediately using commercial disinfectants. If you have an older home with historic wallpapers or paint DO NOT use cleaners and wait for a professional.
- Any items that are broken or detached and are delicate should be placed in dry open containers or boxes. Don’t proceed with repairs until everything is properly dried.
- Documents, books, and family photos as well as artwork are extremely fragile after flooding. Handle with care.
- Remove the edges of prints and paper art from their matting and frames and allow them to dry. Another option if you have the space is to freeze or refrigerate them until they can be restored by a specialist.
- Never pull apart or attempt to separate photographs that have become stuck together. Soak them in clean distilled water until them naturally come apart. Hold prints and negatives by their edges
and allow them to dry on a clean, dry and flat surface. Photos printed on a home ink jet printer have water soluble ink and will not be able to be saved.
- Textiles, fabrics, leather and all other similar items need to be air-dried
- Wet paintings should be taken out of the frame but leave the stretcher in place. Place them face
up out of the sun to dry.
- The finish on your furniture as well as any painted surfaces may form a white haze. Although it does not require your immediate attention it may require professional services to remove properly.
- Any metal items that are exposed to flooding, mud or silt need to be rinsed with clear water and then dried with a soft cloth. If you have heavy mud deposits on large metal items or sculptures allow them to dry and call a restoration professional before removing them.
Need water removed immediately? Contact the water damage restoration experts at KOS Restoration today 274 Madison St Mastic Beach, NY 11951 (877) 339-5464
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