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PostPosted: May 9, 2017, 2:26 pm 
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Location: Gainesville, Mo.
Suffered a flood a little over a week ago. My whole 5 acres was under 2-3 feet of water. Our home (a mobile) survived more or less unscathed, but the garage took a major hit. Some of my hand tools tools took a dunking, but a good wipe down, and a shot of WD-40 should set them to right. Some of my power tools however, have me worried. We were in the process of remodeling so there were no work benches, and a lot of the tools were on the floor. My MIG welder was on its cart so no problem there. My ARC welder however is another story. Totally submerged!!! The same goes for my portable air compressor, and my H/F bench mount sander which was new and still in the box.

I'm planning to do a quick disassembly, blow them dry with a borrowed compressor, and then a good dousing with some electrical contact cleaner. Any suggestion, "Yay" or "Nay"? I do realize that my air compressor will require a little more attention with an oil change at the very least!

My other worry is my steel supply, namely 240' of 1" square tubing. Wipe it dry, blow it out, and re-oil? Or, is more required? :roll:

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PostPosted: May 9, 2017, 4:02 pm 
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Sorry to hear of your flooding.

Any electronics should still be OK provided the water was clean water and the equipment was not plugged in at the time of the flood. If you see mud and/or debris inside the electrical equipment, I would hose it out with good clean water and then dry it completely. Blow it our with the compressor then let it air dry. A bit of heat while drying will help. It may take several days to dry out. I'm not sure about how long it would take for the power cords themselves to dry out. The primary concern is to have equipment totally clean and dry before applying power.

I would think that the stick welder, drills, other power tools would react the same.

Where I used to work, we used water based cleaners with a deionized water rinse to clean circuit boards after soldering. Millions of boards per month over 15+ years with no issues. At one time, I also took all the circuit boards out of an old CGA monitor and ran them thru my dishwasher to remove smoke stains and stink from a building fire. Rant it for several years with no subsequent problems.

Insurance might cover it. Have you checked?

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PostPosted: May 9, 2017, 5:35 pm 
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rx7locost wrote:
Insurance might cover it. Have you checked?


I think that, for most homeowners policies, they have floods excluded -- you're supposed to buy that flood insurance you see on TV?

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PostPosted: May 9, 2017, 5:38 pm 
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Bummer, floods are no fun at all...
My own experience with flood water is it leaves a film of dirt on everything, so you'll want to flush with clear water first if you have the same thing. A little simple green helps loosen it up too.
I agree with Chuck, just don't power up until completely dry and you should be fine.
Steel supply would be dry and re-oil. Mill scale on hot rolled is pretty tough and will help a lot to prevent rust from a splash and go, but sitting damp it will rust pretty quick. Get the tubes up and separated to dry fastest.

Good luck,

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PostPosted: May 9, 2017, 6:03 pm 
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rx7locost wrote:
Where I used to work, we used water based cleaners with a deionized water rinse to clean circuit boards after soldering.


I think deionized is the key. Any other water may leave mineral deposits that can cause shorts. I'd get to it sooner rather than later to help minimize any corrosion damage. Any wiring may be another issue as moisture can get between the conductor and the insulation and never come back out.

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PostPosted: May 9, 2017, 6:12 pm 
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a.moore wrote:
rx7locost wrote:
Where I used to work, we used water based cleaners with a deionized water rinse to clean circuit boards after soldering.


I think deionized is the key. Any other water may leave mineral deposits that can cause shorts. I'd get to it sooner rather than later to help minimize any corrosion damage. Any wiring may be another issue as moisture can get between the conductor and the insulation and never come back out.


Professionally I agree. We performed periodical ionic contamination testing on the final products to verify cleanliness. However, I did not use DI water when washing my PC boards at home in my dishwasher. If it were me, I'd probably wash circuit boards with faucet/hose water and buy a couple of bottles of DI water at W-Mart for a final-final splash rinse. I think the DI would be wasted on most transformers and motors.

But I am just giving an educated guess there.

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PostPosted: May 9, 2017, 6:31 pm 
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Use a distilled water rinse then warm it up to drive out all the moisture, that'll save anything that can be saved.

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PostPosted: May 9, 2017, 6:31 pm 
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Joined: December 17, 2010, 1:24 pm
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Location: Gainesville, Mo.
Great info! Thanks, guys

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PostPosted: May 10, 2017, 4:06 pm 
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Be careful if there is a lot of silt in the motors around moving parts like brushes/bearings or other parts that see friction ( old style ac motors being a big one). My mom got hit in a flood and silt and clay got onto everything in every crevice. The sand will eat up contact surfaces like copper and brass in a hurry. Otherwise dry well and continue well and move on.

This is actually a situation where WD 40 would be appropriate if there is trapped water in some hard to reach spot. Oh if there are wet carpets car or house, get them in the dry/asap. A pressure washer will do wonders for cleaning modern carpet.... :ack: just as long as it isn't super moldy.


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PostPosted: May 15, 2017, 2:18 pm 
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Thanks, Jere.

The house isn't a problem. The flood went underneath our mobile home. It did tear out the water main, but that was the biggest prob there. Got that taken care of already and checked our underpinnings, which were in good shape. Got our propane tank reset and and checked out (clean bill of health,BTW) last Friday. The only thing remaining for the house is to get the A/C condenser checked out and running. The biggest concern for me was the garage, and everything in it that was Locost related!

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