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To Clean or Not to Clean: Flooring and Blood Cleanup

photo by Andrew BaletOver the past two weeks, we’ve examined some ways a homeowner can treat minor blood spills on a variety of surfaces (Part One and Part Two are located here). But with all the time and money required to perform proper cleanup and remediation, many homeowners and businesses find it easier to hire a certified and experienced remediation company to handle services. These companies are not the same as carpet cleaning or maid service companies. This final article in the series will touch on what companies like Aftermath do, and will endeavor to answer common questions asked by families who are experiencing a traumatic situation.

Can you save my carpet? Stain resistant carpets may help with the appearance of stains, but fibers can still trap harmful bacteria. Depending on the size and location of the spill, some homeowners opt to only cut away and replace the affected portion of carpeting. A trauma cleaning company will also inspect the flooring underneath the carpet for additional damage, and clean and treat it appropriately to prevent additional problems in the future.

Aftermath aims to educate the property owner on the risks of improper or incomplete cleanup, but ultimately the choice to remediate is up to the homeowner. In most cases, hiring a professional biohazard company means removing and disposing of at least a part of the carpet. While carpet removal sounds like something you can do yourself, keep in mind that impacted areas are considered medical waste and need to be disposed of in a responsible fashion. Furthermore, without the proper tools, it is difficult to know the full extent of the damage; not all bio is visible, and even unseen fluids can lead to problems down the road.

What are the best floor coverings to protect against damage from biohazards? Take a cue from industrial and commercial facilities; VC or ceramic tile are good options for nonporous flooring. If you are serious about protection and are willing to invest in the appearance of your floors, attractive, nonporous sealants like Dur-A-Flex are used by hospitals and restaurants and provide an another excellent solution.

Does insurance cover damaged carpet? Some policies include coverage for accidental damage, while others will cover some or even all of the costs for crime scene cleanup. Check with your agent to see what options are available to you, and what your current policy entails. In the event of an incident, Aftermath client services are available to assist you with your claim.

What is semi-porous material and how do we decide how to deal with these materials? Semi-porous materials include concrete and some types of wood; they are generally regarded as resistant to stains because the pores, tiny naturally occurring holes in the surface of the material, are almost invisible, making it difficult for stains to adhere.

As with any cleanup, safety always comes first. Aftermath recommends the removal of semi-porous materials as they are difficult to remediate fully; bacteria and other biohazards are also very small, and may become trapped in the nearly invisible pores. However, as always, it is up to the homeowner to decide what option is best for their situation.

For the family who is dealing with a tragic situation, the idea of starting fresh by remodeling the home can be a daunting, yet healing prospect. Removing all the affected surfaces ensures dangerous bacteria, including potentially infectious bloodborne pathogens, are eliminated, and stains and odors prevented from returning.

Aftermath Services provides courteous and dedicated blood spill cleanup nationwide. Our technicians are trained to handle a wide variety of situations, and they are on call 24/7. For more information on blood cleanup and other biohazard cleaning services, contact Aftermath at 877-872-4339.

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