After the Thaw Comes the Flooding. Now is the Time to Prepare Homes and Avoid Damage
By Paul Abrams
By mid-March the deep freeze is finally receding in most parts of the nation. This means the snow melt is happening at the same time that early spring rainfall begins. Storm drains and roadside ditches are flowing with water leading to swollen creeks, rivers and lakes. And in some cases, some of that extra water ends up flowing into homes and businesses causing havoc.
To avoid problems, just consider the path that water might take to find its way into your home. Is it coming through the sewer and drain system or through the walls and floor? Basements are the most susceptible areas for flooding because they are below ground level. Many older basements aren’t equipped with sump pumps to drain away excess ground water so it seems up through floors and through walls. You can seal wall seams all you want but if the ground is saturated on the outside of your basement walls, it will find its way into even the smallest cracks via hydrostatic pressure. If this is the problem you’re experiencing, the only sure fire way to prevent this problem from happening again is to have a sump system installed. We see many families that just accept the fact that water is going to get into their homes every spring. But they don’t have to live with the problem, they just have to face it realistically.
Another source of flood water is from clogged drains, especially floor drains. You’ll find them in basements, on patios, older garages and sometimes in bathrooms and laundry rooms. Test these drains by pouring several gallons of water through them, or hook up a hose and let it drain into the floor drain. If the drain doesn’t move water away quickly and seems to be working slowly, you have a partial clog and it could result in standing water around the floor drain. Run an auger snake through the pipe to clear away the obstructions.
Be sure to check roof gutters and downspouts. Make sure they aren’t filled with debris that will inhibit their ability to move water away from your home quickly. Try running a hose from the gutter into your downspouts. If it doesn’t flow through quickly, water could easily back up and cause damage to your roof. It can also force water into your home that can cause wood to rot.
Yard culverts and storm drains near your house should be inspected. Make sure the grates aren’t obstructed by debris that could allow water to back up onto your property and even into your home. If you need help on the plumbing side, Roto-Rooter can help. If your property has sustained water damage, Roto-Rooter’s water restoration team can get your life and property back to normal in no time.
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