How to Assess Appliance Safety After Hurricane Harvey

  • Schedule inspections for all water-damaged appliances four to five
    days after the appliances are dry
  • Replace refrigerator water filters if you have been without water
    or under a boil alert
  • Contact local health authorities for cleaning and remediation
    guidance for flood-contaminated appliances

LOUISVILLE, Ky.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Those impacted by Hurricane Harvey are in the hearts and minds of many
as search and rescue is still underway in many parts of the region.
Assessing home damage might be far off for some, but for those who have
stayed in their homes or are able to return, safety must be a top
priority as many dangers can still exist. To ensure your safety,
water-damaged appliances from storms and flooding should be evaluated to
decide whether repairs are necessary before resuming use.

“We have received calls from consumers affected by Hurricane Harvey
asking what they should do with their flooded appliances and if they can
be recovered,” said Greg Crite, manager of the Technical Assistance
Group for GE Appliances. “First and foremost, owners should disconnect
any flooded or submerged appliance from its power source. Under no
circumstances should owners attempt to touch or reconnect the appliance
to power until it has been inspected and repaired by a qualified service

Inspections by service technicians, Crite says, are important because of
the potential hazards water damage can cause in electrical products and
gas-powered appliances. In particular, dry ocean salt water is an
electrical conductor and corrosive. Corrosion of clogged parts can cause
a fire, explosion or electrical shock.

Consider these factors when evaluating water-damaged appliances after a
major storm:

  • Disconnect water-damaged products from the electrical power source
    after the water recedes. Never attempt this in standing water.
  • Consult your nearest authorized service facility to arrange for an
    appliance inspection. Schedule the inspection four to five days after
    the products are dry.
  • Replace electrical and gas components exposed to salt or brackish
    water. There are no economically feasible methods to recondition them.
  • Check with your insurance company to see if they’ll help with
    replacement costs for your major appliances.
  • Change your refrigerator water filter if you have been without water
    or under a boil alert. In addition, the Center for Disease Control and
    Prevention (CDC) also recommends throwing out your ice, flushing the
    dispenser for three to five minutes, running the icemaker for an hour
    and washing and sanitizing bins.
  • Check with local health authorities or go to the CDC website at
    for additional decontamination recommendations. Products that are
    exposed to polluted floodwaters may have been contaminated and require
    special cleaning instructions.

For additional appliance service questions, contact the GE Appliances
call center at 800-GE-Cares, or visit the FEMA
and FTC
websites for more information.

About GE Appliances

GE Appliances, a Haier company, makes moments that matter for our owners
through our passion for making great appliances and providing
unparalleled services. Owners have more choices than ever before under
the Hotpoint, GE®, Haier, GE Café™, GE Profile™ and Monogram® brands.
Our products include refrigerators, freezers, cooking products,
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GE Appliances
Kim Freeman, 502-452-7819