Once mold begins to grow on items such as your couch and the water has soaked up inside, it becomes very difficult to clean properly. Keeping the furniture can cause future problems especially if you have already taken the time and expense to hire a professional and do the mold removal in the surrounding area. The spores inside the furniture can spread into new areas or areas that previously had moisture problems. The fact is, whether it is worth a lot of money or has a lot of sentimental value, it just may have to be discarded. Items with harder surfaces on the other hand may be salvageable. Flood damaged, water soaked wood items for example, can often be safely cleaned without risk to the owner. Kill the contaminates, save the wood, then save the finish.
Always make sure that the belongings you want to keep aren’t going to contaminate your home. Obviously, some people aren’t as fortunate to be able to afford a new living room set after a devastating flood in the home. Speaking with an environmental professional and having them assess the situation in person while doing a visual inspection can also help you make the right decision. They can tell you if they believe that the furniture should be thrown out, taken in to get reupholstered, maybe just set outside for a day to be dried and wiped down with a suggested product to kill any bacteria that it may have been exposed to.
We try not to recommend that customers save things that they do not need to, if it is covered in mold or rotting… chances are that you should just throw it away and start fresh so you don’t risk the health of anyone in the home by keeping it. In some cases you can clean and keep them as mentioned above, but for that $5 foot stool you purchased online 5 years ago… it should probably get thrown away. Being a pack-rat at the time of the post flood clean up isn’t going to help you!