Usually, a construction crew will clean up after a big renovation job. But small bits of scrap material and debris are always left behind. What do you do?
If you’re stuck with a big post-remodel mess, you can follow this guide to cleaning up scrap material and debris after a renovation. From what kinds of construction debris you can expect to encounter, to how to dispose of it, to what you can do to make this cleanup as environmentally as possible. All the answers to your questions await.
What Kind of Debris Does a Home Renovation Generate?
Construction waste can be so hazardous to the environment that the EPA has guidelines for the suitable management of construction and demolition materials.
They underline that construction, renovation, and remodeling jobs leave behind a lot of waste. It’s up to you whether it gets disposed of properly, safely, and with as little environmental impact as possible. When cleaning up after a renovation, you can expect to encounter these types of waste:
- Lumber, wood frames
- Metals, including nails and scrap metal
- Masonry (brick, concrete, cement)
- Paper and cardboard
- Pipes and rebar
- Rocks, dirt, and sand
- Green waste like leaves, grass, and weeds
- Carpet, insulation
- Dredging materials, including tree stumps and rubble
- Scrap Metal
- Hazardous waste, including lead, asbestos, paint thinner, strippers, solvents, mercury, aerosol cans, fluorescent bulbs, and plasterboard.
How to Clean Up Debris After Renovation
There are a few things to consider before starting your home renovation project. First, start the air purifier immediately. It doesn’t come in this guide until dust cleanup step one, but it should be running from the start to avoid lung damage.
Remember to monitor your health during the clean-up job. Don’t over-extend yourself to get it done faster than you’re able. And when you’re ready, follow these steps.
1. Section Off the Work Zone
If the construction crew took down all the plastic sheeting that sectioned off the work zone from the rest of the property, put it back up. You want to have a dedicated cleanup space that doesn’t spread debris and dust elsewhere.
2. Clear the Air
There’s a whole other process for removing dust from a construction site. But while you’re working here, turn an air purifier on its highest setting and start feeling that clean and clear feeling in your lungs again. It isn’t worth working even a few minutes in a dust-filled room.
3. Remove all the Heavy Debris
There are a few different options forconstruction debris removal. But the best strategy is to target all the heavy debris first. That’ll be your chunks of concrete, your sections of plaster and particle board, your sections of rebar wiring, and so on.
Set a large tarp out on your front yard for the large debris, and don’t stop moving it out of the renovated space until it’s all gone.
If this sounds overwhelming, it might be time to call the friendly team at Nixxit Junk Removal and have professional construction debris removal servicesordered straight to your door.
4. Remove Medium and Small Debris, then Sweep and Vacuum
Next comes the truly time-consuming part of the job. Start removing the medium-sized debris, like bricks and planks of wood, and then the small pieces of debris. That would include nails and bits of scrap metal and plastic. Once all the debris is off the floor, sweep and vacuum to get a clean floor – and don’t forget to wipe down the walls first.
5. Clean Upholstery, Wipe, Sanitize, and Mop
Now, go in with a fine-tooth comb. Go over furniture with a high-powered upholstery vacuum; wipe down every surface; sanitize after you wipe. Once everything is clean, perform the final task: mop the floor.
How to Clean Up Dust After Renovation
Now that the debris has been cleared up, it’s time to handle that dust. Construction projects generate a ton of dust, and prolonged dust exposure can have a serious adverse impact on lung health.
It’s not enough to merely set up an air purifier, open your windows, and wait a few days. Here’s how to totally rid your space of construction dust.
1. Ventilate the Space
Immediately set up a crossbreeze, if you can. Open all the windows in and near the workspace. Bring in some air purifiers, but importantly, don’t set up fans. Fans will just blow dust around, not remove it.
2. Rough Clean
A rough clean is a quick and dirty clean that will catch most of the larger dust particles. This is done with brooms and dry mops, tools with rigid bristles that will carve dust out of its hiding places.
3. Deep Clean
After all the dust is removed from the floor, walls, and any furniture left in the workspace, perform a more extensive deep clean. Utilize tools like shop vacs, microfiber towels, and extendable dusters to get every last trace of dust cleaned up, no matter how tiny.
Start with a soft, damp towel or cloth that you change out each time after you wipe. Use a disinfectant and thoroughly clean each surface.
4. Don’t Forget the Ceiling and Walls
You can’t forget to go over the ceiling and walls with a dry mop and then a mop slightly damp with disinfectant. Make sure the products you’re using don’t affect the kind of paint used on walls and ceilings. But you’ll want to complete this step early on so that you’re not shedding additional dust on a squeaky clean floor.
5. Keep Ventilating
Even after you’ve ventilated for what feels like forty days and nights, ventilate some more. Dust has a habit of hunkering down and never leaving. Don’t give it that option. Always keep the ventilator on after a renovation job.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Long Does It Take for Construction Dust To Settle?
It takes construction dust a very short amount of time to settle. For the largest particles, it’ll take about three minutes. For the smaller particles, you’ll want to wait four hours or more. An air purifier will help you ventilate most airborne dust, but wait for the smaller particles to settle before you clean by hand.
What Is the Best Way To Remove Dust After Renovation?
The best way to remove dust after ventilation is to get a cross-breeze going, set up an air purifier or two, and wait. After about four hours, go in with a clean cloth and wipe down every single surface. It will take time, but your lungs will thank you.
Need Help Removing Junk in the Bay Area? Contact Us.
Removing construction debris is harder than it looks. Don’t break your back trying to be the hero by lifting a concrete slab over your head. Call the team of experts at Nixxit Junk Removal and ask about our construction debris removal services.
We’re available around the clock in the Bay Area for all your construction debris removal needs. Nixxit is proud to be a Bay Area Certified Green Business, and we’ll bring our environmentally friendly expertise straight to your door.
Need Help with Junk Removal in the Bay Area, CA?
Nixxit Junk Removal can help with your junk removal needs in the Bay Area.
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- We Do the Heavy Lifting and Loading
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