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Can a Wet Book Be Saved?

wet book

Calling for basement waterproofing in Newtown, PA, will help prevent any further flood water from entering your home, but significant damage may already be caused after a turbulent storm. Carpeting, furniture, and other household items can be ruined by water, but one potential victim of a flood could be your beloved book collection. 

After your bookcase topples during a flood causing the books to splash into the water, you might fear that those memorable tales are gone forever, lost to soggy paper and mold growth. However, saving a wet book is possible! 

Depending on how much exposure the book got to water, there are different steps you can take to dry out a wet book so you can read it once more. Here are several methods for drying out wet books that fell victim to a recent flood or other water-related accident.

Steps to Drying Out a Wet Book

If your books are damaged by water, you must take care of them as soon as possible, especially if they are dripping with water! Follow these steps to ensure that the problem is taken care of properly.

  1. The first step you must take when saving a wet book is to cover the flat area you wish to dry it out in with a plastic surface and newspapers or paper towels to absorb any moisture.
  2. Hold the wet book while it is closed and shake out any excess water, so it is no longer dripping.
  3. Using a paper towel or dry rag, wipe down the cover of the book, but not the pages inside; they are much more prone to tearing.
  4. Place the now-shaken books upright on the paper towels or newspapers so the water can flow into the base.
  5. After no more water is dripping from them and they have dried out a bit, you can start placing rags or paper towels the same size as the book between the front page and cover and the back page and cover.
  6. Place a few more paper towels between the pages, around a quarter of an inch.
  7. After a certain amount of time has passed, replace the old absorbing papers with dry ones and let them sit in place.

After taking these measures when saving a wet book, it can be treated in the same way a damp book is.

Steps to Drying Out a Damp Book

Sometimes a damaged book will not be soaking wet, but the pages of the book will be a little damp. Just because the water damage is not as serious as it could have been, it is still crucial to address the dampness so that there are no long-term problems. Take these steps for damp books and soaking books that have been through the previous drying process.

  1. Stand the book vertically upright and open the book at around a 60-degree angle so as to not stretch the binding. Ensure that the pages are not stuck together, and there are small gaps in between each page.
  2. Begin fanning the pages to air dry them. Allow for ample airflow in the room, but do not aim fans at the books themselves, lest they turn their pages rapidly. Let the book rest like this for around a week or two.
  3. Now that you’re finished drying out a wet book, it is time to restore it to its original form. Place a weighted object, such as several more books, on top of it to flatten any curves in the pages for another week.

After saving a wet book, you can read it once more and preserve it for future generations to enjoy!

If you need help with basement waterproofing in Chester County, PA, while you are drying out your wet books, reach out to Rightway Waterproofing today!

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