Water Damage: Preserving Valuables

Posted on: 9 February 2016

Basement flooding usually causes extensive structural damage to a home. It usually weakens the house's support beams, causes the rotting of wood structures and even damages walls. However, this havoc is never limited to the house structure. Any valuables stored in the basement also run the risk of getting destroyed. Here are tips that will come in handy in helping you save some of your valuables from water damage.

Cleaning

Water that floods the basement usually contains silt and traces of debris. As a result, anything that gets soaked during the flooding is likely to have deposits of debris and silt. Getting rid of these deposits should be a priority mainly because if they are left to dry on your valuables, they can permanently ruin their aesthetic appeal.

When cleaning valuables with sensitive surfaces, like jewelry, it is advisable that you use a fine hose spray. This is a better cleaning method than using a rag mainly because you don't need to touch the item when cleaning. It therefore allows you to wash away silt particles without the risk of scratching the item's surface, something that will help preserve its value.

For items whose quality cannot be affected by drying mud, such as large metallic sculptures, you can leave them to dry first before cleaning them. This is an easier cleaning method especially in cases where the object has heavy deposits of mud. Choosing to scrape away the  mud after it has dried, before giving it the water-and-rag cleaning treatment, will make for a stress-free cleaning experience.

Drying

When drying your valuables, make sure that you avoid using direct sunlight as much as possible. Using heat is also discouraged. This is because too-much-too-fast drying usually ruins the surfaces of most object. It can therefore cause premature cracking, splitting, buckling and warping – things that will definitely ruin the market value of your valuables.

If it is possible, do your air-drying indoors. And if you must do it outdoors, make sure that you use areas that are shielded away from direct sunlight. However, it is important to keep in mind that indoor air-drying usually comes with mold growth risk. Reducing this risk by ensuring that there is sufficient airflow is a must. Opening your windows, switching on your fans and letting your air conditioner run is a good way of maintaining good airflow and is thus something that you should consider doing.

Valuables that are made out of leather and other textiles tend to lose their shape when soaked in water. Providing them with a good structure support system, when drying them, is therefore a good way of preserving their value. You can do this by padding them with paper or towels. However, you should make sure that you don't use coated or inked paper as it may end up tainting your valuables.

For more information, contact a company like Servpro Of Bear New Castle.

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