Flooded mattresses are almost synonymous to wasted money, because it can be counter-productive to save, and can even be dangerous to the health of the user in the long run. Dangerous because it may look clean and dry in the surface, but the inside may still be moist, making it a breeding ground for molds and bacteria to grow. Are flooded upholstered furniture worth saving?
The United States Federal Emergency Management Agency emphasized that upholstered materials inundated in flood waters should be removed as soon as possible from a flooded property and disposed right away. 24 Hour Flood Service Super Dry San Diego
“Remove saturated porous materials such as mattresses or upholstery, especially those with visible fungal growth. These items should be moved out of the building as soon as possible. Cover contaminated items with plastic drop cloths prior to moving to prevent spread of contaminants. Appropriate personal protective equipment should be utilized to avoid injury from possible exposure to mold and bacteria.”
The whole manual can be downloaded here.
The Red Cross also specifically pointed out in its guide during flooding aftermaths to discard flooded mattresses.
“Learn more about how to clean up after a flood, including the supplies you’ll need, how to sanitize food contact surfaces, and how to repair water damage. Be careful when moving furnishings or debris, because they may be waterlogged and heavier. Throw out items that absorb water and cannot be cleaned or disinfected. This includes mattresses, carpeting, cosmetics, stuffed animals and baby toys.” Where to Have Breakfast in Santee CA
Check out the rest of the materials here.
Exemption to the rule
The North Carolina State Extension meanwhile published a manual for homeowners who may have experienced flooding. In that guide they mentioned that some mattresses may be salvaged provided that it is not fully inundated. Mission Valley Commercial Service Calls
“You can salvage a mattress or box spring that has gotten wet from a leaking roof or had minimum contact (only 1 to 2 inches of contact for only a few hours) with clean floodwater (i.e. broken water lines). Clean the surface and put the mattress right-side-up in the sun to dry as much as possible. Use blocks to keep it off the ground and allow air to circulate around it. Use a fan to circulate air and speed up the drying process. But, if there is a musty odor after it dries, then mildew is present. You should have the mattress or box springs sanitized by a professional. Look in the yellow pages of the telephone book under “Mattress-Renovating” for a professional in your area.”
Read the rest of the flooding manual here.
Flooded mattresses that may be salvaged should be professionally restored to make sure that the moisture is adequately removed, and the mattress in fully sanitized, and safe to be used once again.