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Salvaging film and transparencies

When cleaning from flood water replace the dirty water with clean water, slowly and gently separate the layers of film. If negatives or transparencies require cleaning a professional film cleaning solution should be the only material used. Use cotton material only for application of the solution, never use paper or material of non-pure cotton material.

If a complete washing of negatives is required prepare a mild water solvent film cleaning solution and gently and slowly rinse in the solution using a clean chamois to squeegee the film. Soak the film in cool water with a "PhotoFlo" additive. Squeegee again and hang to dry from its edge draining the length of the film. Warm water will soften the emulsion and increase the odds of further damage, avoid this.

The same procedure can be used for transparencies but be sure slides are first removed from their mounts if possible. The only instance you should feel required to do these procedure is in the event that the material became damaged and recovered from a flood or contaminated water.

Use of a photo stabilizer on color negatives and slides made on Kodak Ektachrome film will facilitate cleaner and provide more uniform drying. PhotoFlo Solution and Stabilizers are available through photographic dealers and pro photo finishing labs.

After the salvage and all efforts to salvage the materials, you can consider additional restoration. Reprinting negatives or making copies of prints might be the first step. Further restoration may be possible through retouching and then recopying. Today, digital imaging can offer significant benefits in restoration.

We highly recommend that if you find yourself in this unfortunate predicament that you will contact "Photo-ER" for further instructions or shipping information so our professionals can salvage your material.

Frequently Asked Questions about Photo First Aid
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