Preventing Mold Buildup After a Disaster

Cleaning and Sanitizing Your Home

When rain or flood waters get into your home, take steps to prevent mold growth. First, wash surfaces with soap and warm clean water to remove dirt and debris. Next, sanitize surfaces with household bleach. Clean it with a solution of 1 cup household liquid bleach per 5 gallons of water. Remember:

    • Keep children and pets out of the affected area until cleanup has been completed.
    • Remove and discard items that cannot be washed and disinfected (such as, mattresses, carpeting, carpet padding, rugs, upholstered furniture, cosmetics, stuffed animals, baby toys, pillows, foam-rubber items, books, wall coverings, and most paper products).
    • Remove and discard drywall and insulation that has been contaminated with sewage or flood waters.
    • Thoroughly clean all hard surfaces (such as flooring, concrete, molding, wood and metal furniture, countertops, appliances, sinks, and other plumbing fixtures) with hot water and laundry or dish detergent.
    • Help the drying process by using fans, air conditioning units, and dehumidifiers.