Protecting Family Photos and Documents from a Flooded Basement
Heavy rains in Pocatello and other cities around Idaho have been the cause of many flooded basements this summer. Water damage is unpredictable and whether it is a flash flood in your neighborhood, a broken pipe that floods your entire basement or sewage backing up into your home a flooded basement can be a very emotionally trying experience for any family.
The greatest grief comes from the loss of family heirlooms, photos and countless other items that simply cannot be replaced. Depending on the type of water damage, sometimes these items can be salvaged, but in the case of sewage they may be impossible to safely restore.
Ideas To Protect Your Photos From Flood Damage
Digitizing your photos and other important documents is one way you may be able to protect these memories in case of water damage. Today many storage devices, including USB drives, can sustain some water damage and be salvaged. You may also store the items on a portable hard drive or other device, and keep the device secure in a safety deposit box at a bank. Prices for both USB drives and portable hard drives have steadily declined over the years, and are a fairly inexpensive option to safely store your most treasured photos and documents.
While digital copies cannot replace originals, it is possible to recreate the images as they once were so only a trained eye would be able to distinguish the difference. There are several professionals who specialize in restoring family photos after water damage, and if your items are severely damaged it may be worth a consultation.
Think about it for a moment…where do you store your photos? If you just answered in my basement, well then you’re not alone. But, honestly your basement is the most likely place to flood. You may want to make a plan to move some of your most cherished items upstairs and reduce the risk of a flooded basement destroying your photos.
If you live in an area at risk for flooding, consider purchasing a flood insurance plan. Make an itemized list of all items of value in your home, and it’s also a good idea to take photos of the interior and exterior of your home. Store this list with the insurance plan in a safe place likely to be unaffected by flooding. Your insurance agent can provide guidance regarding what to include.
If you do find yourself with water damage or flooded basement, the sooner you call a professional, the higher the odds are that they will be able to save some of your treasured items. The longer your items are damp or submerged the greater the damage and the greater the potential for mold growth.
If you have extensive water damage or standing water in your home, it is time to hire a property cleaning and restoration expert. A property cleaning and restoration specialist will remove any water remaining in your home and will clean and dry carpets, drywall and furniture, preventing mold growth caused by dampness. If the flooding has damaged your walls or ceiling, they can repair the damage.
On The Spot Cleaning and Restoration can offer guidance as to what types of items can be recovered after water damage. Whether items can be saved or not often depends on the materials the items are constructed of and the source of the flooding. If you have furniture or other items that have water damage, it is often a less expensive to consult a professional before replacing the items.
The most important thing to remember when experiencing any type of disaster and loss is that your family is safe. Items can be replaced, and if you take the additional steps to protect your most valued family photos, documents and heirlooms the devastation and loss will be much less.
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