Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Preventing Basement Flooding

Basement flooding is one of the most aggravating occurrences for homeowners. It is also one of the most preventable. A few simple alterations and additions to your home can decrease your chances of being inundated with a basement deluge. In light of the heavy rains hitting Nordegg, Jasper and Hilton-Grande Cache today, the Insurance Experts at Sharp Insurance would like to provide you with some helpful tips to stop basement flooding before it begins. 

How do basement floods happen? 
Basement floods happen for two primary reasons. The first is when water seeps into your home from leaks in the basement walls and cracks in the basement windows. The second is when your sewer and/or storm drainage system backs up, causing water to surge into your basement through the basement floor drain. Any remedy for basement flooding should address these two possibilities. 

How do I prevent basement flooding? 
The first thing you should do when heavy rains hit is make sure that your downspouts are directing water from the eavestroughs away from the house. A broken connection may allow water to seep into the basement. Ensure that the downspout is displacing water at least 1.8 metres away from your house as well. 

This measure will prevent water from seeping into the basement through cracks in the basement walls and direct water away from the weeping tile, a duct which funnels water into the storm sewer. By diverting water away from your storm sewer, you may be able to prevent it from overflowing. There are also additional benefits to keeping water away from the house: less water around the foundation of the house means less shifting. 

It is also important that you clean out your eavestroughs. Too many leaves and other debris in the eavestroughs can mean that water will spill over alongside the house, increasing your chances of basement flooding. If the eavestroughs overflow when clean, it's time to invest in a larger eavestrough. 

Investing in a sump pump may also help you avoid flooding. Any water that makes its way into your basement will be pumped away from your home, stopping water from causing damage. A sump pump may be an expensive initial investment, but it could save you the cost of replacing destroyed items in your basement. 

Finally, ensure that your home insurance plan includes flood coverage. While these measures will help in the event of heavy rains, a torrential downpour can overwhelm even the biggest downspouts and best sump pumps. The added flood coverage may save you future headaches and a great deal of money. 


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