Heavy Chicago rains leave residents with huge flooding cleanup

Heavy Chicago rains leave residents with huge flooding cleanup

Thousands of Chicago-area residents woke up to flooded basements Friday morning after overnight storms dumped nearly five more inches of rain on parts of the area. 

The western and southern suburbs were hit the hardest by the storms, which also closed parts of the Eisenhower Expressway and stopped trains on the Chicago Transit Authority Blue Line in Forest Park, according to reports. 

The National Weather Service measured two-day rainfall amounts of 6.2 inches at Midway Airport and 5.48 inches in St. Charles. A flash flood warning remains in effect through Saturday for all or parts of Grundy, La Salle and Livingston counties.

Thursday nights storms appear to have done the most damage in southwest suburban Burbank, where streets and homes were flooded and schools closed Friday.

How to clean up after a flood

Flooded Chicago-area residents may feel overwhelmed about where to even begin cleaning up. Start with these DIY flood cleanup tips, which will help prevent problems even if you don't need to call in a professional water damage restoration service.

  • Dry out your home ASAP to prevent mold. Open up doors and windows and set up fans to start the air moving and dry the home. If it's too late and mold takes hold, here's what you need to know to hire a mold remediation company.
  • Remove standing water. Use a wet-dry shop vacuum, electric water transfer pump or sump pump to remove flood water. Wear rubber boots if you have to stand in a wet area.
  • Tear out any wet drywall or insulation, and remove soaked carpet. It’s next to impossible to save water-logged carpet, so pull it up with the padding and throw it out. And mold loves drywall, so if it's wet, toss it.
  • Throw away soaked items that can’t be repaired or disinfected. This includes everything from pieces of paper to water-logged mattresses that came in contact with flood water.

RELATED: Angie's List guide to water and smoke damage


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Standing water leads to mold growth. If your home is ever flooded, cut up and toss out flood-soaked carpets and ventilate your rooms as soon as possible. (Photo courtesy of Teresa K., Beachwood, Ohio)
Standing water leads to mold growth. If your home is ever flooded, cut up and toss out flood-soaked carpets and ventilate your rooms as soon as possible. (Photo courtesy of Teresa K., Beachwood, Ohio)

Colorado restoration companies say they’re overwhelmed with calls. Read tips for cleaning flood damage on your own or until you can hire a professional.

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