A Few Tips for Saving Old Photographs Damaged by Water

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Flooding can ruin a person’s entire home, and precious memories kept via photographs are particularly vulnerable to water and especially painful to lose. In order to help Houstonians whose photo albums were overtaken by water, KHOU compiled an article with advice from their photojournalist Keith Tomshe on how to restore life to wet photos.

First of all, the images must be separated and laid out individually face-up, so they won’t stick together as they dry. Rinse off the dirty flood water, and then prepare to set them out on towels away from sunlight. If photos need to be removed from an album, use a “putty knife, flat tool or dental floss.”

Tomshe says that curled edges as the photos dry are fine and can be smoothed out later. He highly recommends scanning photos as soon as possible to prevent the fear of their total loss in the future.

The Image Master Photo Repair website recommends that people take photos of the photographs before they start this process just in case something goes awry. They also say, “If you have a number of photos stuck together they can be soaked in slightly warm water. If the water becomes dirty change it often. It could take about an hour to loosen them.” More in-depth tips can be read here.