Cleaning up your home after a flood can quickly become overwhelming. In addition to property damage, flooding increases the possibility of mold and mildew and can bring other contaminants into the home. You can speed up the drying process by lowering the humidity with dehumidifiers, fans and room air conditioners.
Note: Only use appliances that have not been damaged by flood waters. Appliances may look normal after a flood, but using any that have been immersed in water creates the risk for electric shock and fire.
The American Red Cross offers these tips to reduce humidity in your home during flood recovery:
- Use a dehumidifier: Dehumidifiers remove excess moisture from the air. Position it in a dry area of the house at least six inches from any wall. Make sure the dehumidifier is protected by a ground-fault circuit interrupter and avoid using extension cords, as spilled water creates a shock hazard. Set the humidistat to extra dry to remove moisture from room furnishings.
- Open the house: Open windows when weather permits, if there’s lower humidity outside than inside.
- Turn on the AC: A room air conditioner can help reduce humidity in the home. Avoid using central air conditioning. If systems are contaminated by dirt, silt or other materials, they’ll spread it around your home.
- Use fans: Fans will help move humid air outside your home.