Tampa has been taking a beating lately from all the rainfall and flooding. Many homeowners and residents have experienced their homes flooding, and many more are worried about what will happen if their homes do start to flood.

Flooding is a big danger with appliances. You may be looking at some pretty expensive repairs or replacements. Here are some pointers to help you prepare for a flood, minimize the danger to your appliances, and keep yourself safe.

If your home is flooding, shut the breakers off immediately. Unplug all appliances. Live electricity with water may harm your appliances, and can also cause severe bodily injury.

After a flood. Do not enter your home until you know the electricity to the home has been turned off. If there is standing water and the house still has electricity, you may be in danger of electric shock.

Once you have determined that your home is safe to re-enter, you still should not plug in your appliances or attempt to run them. Let a trained appliance technician look at them first. Even small amounts of water damage can make an appliance unsafe to run. The appliance may break if it is turned on before the problem is fixed. For example:

  • Electric motors may need to be replaced or reconditioned.
  • Wiring that may need to be cleaned or replaced.
  • Fixtures may need to be cleaned or replaced.
  • Metal parts may need to be protected with a rust inhibitor. Even if an appliance was not submerged, the dampness in the air may cause rust.

You can go ahead and start cleaning your appliances while you wait to have them checked. Keep in mind, though, that some appliances may be unusable.

If you live in Hillsborough, Pinellas, or Pasco Counties, contact Appliance Repair Specialists for fast same day or next day service on your appliances affected by the flood. Learn more about our service area here.

Clean & Sanitize Appliances

Freezers and refrigerators

If water has seeped into your refrigerator and freezer, you will need to sanitize it before you can use it next. Never work on your refrigerator or freezer unless it is unplugged!

First, check to make sure the insulation is not wet. If the insulation is wet, you may have to replace the unit. Contact a service technician to receive a professional evaluation.

Remove all shelves and drawers. Wash them with a mild detergent and hot water, and then rinse them with a disinfectant such as bleach.

Wash the interior with hot water and baking soda, and rinse with a disinfectant. Let the refrigerator or freezer stand open for 15 minutes to allow air circulation.

Washers and Dryers

If your washing machine has a “clean” cycle, run this cycle according to manufacturer’s directions. Most washing machines simply take bleach on the clean cycle. If your washing machine does not have a “clean” cycle, put bleach in the tub and run a “hot” cycle.

Wipe out the inside of your dryer with a disinfectant solution. Rinse with clean water.
Let the doors of both your washer and dryer stand open overnight to ensure that they dry out completely.