Floods, storms and your cookware…

July 26, 2010

Floods in Chicago and Iowa over the past weekend reminded us that consumers wonder what they can do if their cookware or bakeware is overwhelmed in a flood or other natural disaster.  Fortunately, most cookware and bakeware is not absorbent or porous, so only a thorough cleaning is needed to get the pans back into good shape.

If the ware has been in contact with water that could be contaminated with sewage, it is a good idea to soak the pan in a mixture of bleach (1 cup to a gallon of water). This will insure any bad “bugs” succumb to the bleach mixture.  Wash thoroughly and rinse at least twice following the soak in order to get rid of bleachy odors or tastes.

Plastic and silicone cookware may be more problematic in that they can absorb material from floodwaters.  Perhaps the safest thing is to throw these items away and start afresh.

Remember that with bleach, never mix anything other than water with it.  Bleach and vinegar combine to release chlorine gas which is highly toxic.