On behalf of all of us at UDK/DK, we are so sorry that you have experienced flooding in your home. There are times that a restoration contractor is essential for water mitigation, and we are always available to assist. However, we realize there are times in which homeowners are looking to handle as much of the mitigation as possible. This is common if the flooding is not covered by insurance, if the flooding is minimal, or during extreme widespread flooding, the service wait times are longer than normal.

Fortunately, there is so much you can do on your own to help mitigate and stabilize your property to reduce your out-of-pocket expenses. We have designed this page as a DIY resource for homeowners in need of flood cleanup after a rainstorm, extreme spring runoff, or other large scale flooding events.



It is very common for flood damage resulting from a water source such as rain or spring runoff to NOT be a covered insurance loss.

We encourage property owners to reach out to their insurance agent to verify.


DIY Mitigation Steps to be performed within the first 24 Hours:

  1. Extract:
    • Extract the water however you can with whatever equipment is available to you. Shop vacs and sump pumps are perfect for this and can be purchased at Home Depot or Lowes or even better, borrowed from a neighbor, friend, or family member.
  2. Remove Carpet:
    • If the affected area is carpet, consider disposing. Flood runoff carries a wide range
      of contamination from bacteria in the lawn, streets, and soils, along with the
      chemicals in fertilizer and pesticides.
    • To work with wet carpet, extract as much water as possible so you can pull it back to
      remove it from the tack strip.

      • If you plan to dispose of the carpet, cut into manageable strips and place
        into heavy duty contractor grade garbage bags.
  3. Dispose carpet padding:
    • Carpet padding should be disposed of. It is inexpensive, and not worth the time
      delay it will cause attempting to dry in place. With the carpet pulled back, remove
      the pad, and toss it out!

      • Pro Tip: Wet pad is HEAVY! Place the pad in a pile to drain. You can extract
        around it as the water runs off. Next, place the pad in heavy duty contractor
        garbage bags to dispose of.
  4. Remove wet baseboards:
    • Score the top of the baseboard with a utility knife
      • By scoring first, you will separate the wall paint and caulk from the board,
        reducing drywall damage.
    • Gently pry the boards away from the wall with a small pry ball.
      • NOTE: If you noticed the wall is soft and wet, you’ll need to remove some
        drywall as well. The idea is to remove all wet materials from the environment to bring down
        the moisture levels and minimize the risk of mold.

        • To remove drywall, cut the wall with clean straight lines.
          • Using a utility knife or a drywall saw, cut the drywall at least
            2” above the wettest area, and then bag and dispose the
  5. Sanitize the area:
    • If you have a household product to sanitize with, apply an even layer to all affected
  6. Air movement:
    • Commercial Air movers:
      • Lowes and Home Depot rent and sell commercial air movers.
        • Place one air mover for every 10 linear feet of wall.
          • This is not to be confused with oscillating fans or floor fans
            which provide a fraction of the air movement. However, if
            this is all you have, use it!
    • Dehumidify:
      • Lowes and Home Depot occasionally rent dehumidifiers.
        • If you can rent a dehumidifier, place one in each affected room.
      • If you can’t get a dehumidifier: The air movement along the wet materials is
        causing evaporation, thus the air is becoming wetter (more humid). Exhaust
        this air out a window or doorway if you can. Keep the environment as dry as
        possible so the wet materials can dry.

DIY Supply List

  • Air movers and dehumidifiers that can be rented or purchased at Home Depot or Lowes
  • Shop vac
  • Submersible pump
  • Utility knife
  • Small pry bar
  • Drywall saw
  • Work gloves
  • Contractor grade heavy duty garbage bags
  • Household disinfectant

Additional tips:

  1. Do everything you can to minimize tracking (cross contamination) to other unaffected areas of
    your home.
  2. If you are not drying with the help of a dehumidifier, remove contents such as clothing,
    blankets, rugs, and furniture from the affected area to bring down the humidity levels.
  3. If the water source was ground runoff as opposed to roof leaks, it is highly recommended that
    your personal property (contents) be disposed of along with carpeting.

    • When relocating contents, place in an area with a solid surface floor such as a driveway
      or a garage to sort and process rather than an area of the home that will become
      damaged through cross contamination and additional humidity.
  4. If you have a window well that is full of water, don’t approach it from the inside.
    • Instead, carefully bail the water out with a bucket or lower a submersible pump into the
      window well and pump the water out.

      • Pro tip: To prevent the pump from becoming clogged with debris, you can
        create a filter out of a five-gallon bucket by drilling several holes in the bucket,
        then place the pump inside the bucket and lower the bucket into the window


Mitigate your property at your own risk. The contents of this article are for informational purposes
only and are not intended to be a substitute for professional advice and services. There are
extensive amounts of training and certification that goes into proper mitigation to minimize health
and safety risks of the building occupants and the individuals performing the work. UDK/DK is not
liable for any accidents or property damage that results from the use of this advice.