Experts say it’s crucial to have your home inspected after it floods, even if the water is gone

Published: Aug. 10, 2022 at 7:57 PM CDT
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ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV) - The water from the floods may be gone, but the dangers such as mold could remain hidden behind your walls and underneath your floorboards. Now, experts are warning if flood waters came into your home, you need to take action.

Sludging through inches of water isn’t something many St. Louisans expected, especially in their home.

“We started being in help mode,” Mark Williams explained.

Now, after remediating the water, flood victims’ walls are bare, drywall has been ripped out and the sound of fans whistles through hallways.

“We were ill-prepared, we just had like brooms, we don’t have like squeegees,” Williams said.

Two weeks ago, Williams had several inches of water covering his first floor twice in three days. It’s now receded and experts said there’s more work that needs to be done.

“A lot of people think that this is clean water, but it’s not it’s actually dirty water coming in from outside,” Grant Efert said.

Efert’s the owner of the Rapid Dry restoration company in St. Louis. He said there could be sewage, pesticides and other bacteria in that flooded water you don’t know about. Even though that water may look like it’s gone, Efert said there are problems you can’t see.

“You have to take precautions to make sure you don’t contaminate things by setting up air scrubbers, air filtration devices, getting out the effective materials, getting our drywall,” Efert explained.

All these steps, Efert said, should be done by professionals. If you live in a small space, Efert said this process could be dangerous.

“You might have a kitchen that has to get ripped out or a bathroom that has to get ripped out. If you can imagine living with no floors, two feet of walls that are cut up. During the clean-up process, as well, there’s a lot of dirt blowing around. There’s always a concern for asbestos and silicon dust,” Efert said.

Before you write off thinking you don’t qualify for help, check. FEMA may be able to assist you. Click here for more information.