Once you have experienced a flooded basement, you never want to go through the same thing again. The stress is overwhelming—as is the clean up. There are a few simple steps you can complete to ensure that your basement is protected from flooding the future. It requires a bit of maintenance and awareness, but anyone can do it.
Here are ways you can prevent a flooded basement:
1. Inspect and Repair Your Foundation
Sometimes, undetected flaws in the foundation can cause terrible flooding. You might not even notice the issue until it’s too late. To prevent such water damage, visually inspect the interior of your basement as well as the external foundation. If you find any cracks, fill them with some epoxy. If the leaking continues, you could have a severe foundation issue. Call a professional for assistance.
2. Maintain The Sump Pump
Did you know that malfunctioning sump pumps are one of the leading causes of flooded basements? Sump pumps can be beneficial, since they fight flooding. Unfortunately, when the sump pump is neglected, it can make the flooding infinitely worse. Just because you have a sump pump doesn’t mean you are immune to water damage. Make sure the unit is getting plenty of maintenance throughout the year by a professional.
Before a large storm rolls in, check your sump pump. Plug it in if it isn’t and turn it on. Consider purchasing a generator for the sump pump if you risk losing energy.
3. Maintain Your Gutters and Downspouts
You might not believe it, but the cleanliness of your gutters plays a huge role in how much water floods your basement. When gutters and downspouts are neglected, clogged, and broken, the water they are working to shuttle away from the house will instead trickle down the facade, straight to the foundation. The water will pool around your home, seeping into any cracks it can find.
Make sure your gutters and downspouts are clear of debris. Set the downspouts so that they are directing water away from the foundation. You can buy extensions and troughs for that. If your gutters get clogged with leaves, buy covers. Do maintenance a few times a year, at least.
4. Get Your Septic System Cleaned
Can you recall the last time you called in a professional for a sewer and septic system inspection? Probably not. But skipping those inspections and cleanings could spell chaos for your home. Overflows, backups, and clogs are all things you don’t want to happen.
5. Window Well Covers
Does your home have a below-grade window or two? Those can potentially let in any water that collects around the foundation of your home. You will want to place window well covers and keep them well maintained. Window well covers are securely fastened to the basement window and work wonders with waterproofing. Worried about blocking sunlight? Purchase the clear acrylic ones.
As you have seen, most of the issues that lead to a flooded basement usually start out small. But you shouldn’t overlook those problems for long, because they will get worse—and lead to monumental flooding and water damage. So, be proactive. Do maintenance. Make sure you are getting your home inspected by plumbers and other professionals.