What Do I Do When My Basement Floods?
Walking downstairs and finding that your basement flooded is an unpleasant surprise for any homeowner. Water in your basement may affect family heirlooms, couches, electronics, carpets and more, leaving most overwhelmed and unsure of where to start. Don’t worry - we’ll walk you through the steps of a flooded basement cleanup!
8 Things To Do When Your Basement Floods
- Don’t immediately enter a flooded crawlspace or basement. If there is a large amount of standing water in your basement, turn the power and gas off before entering - and be sure it’s safe to enter before you do. If you don’t know how to turn off the power or the circuit breaker is in your basement, call an electrician to help.
- Wear rain boots and gloves to clean. Flood water may be contaminated, especially if from a sewer backup, heavy rains, or sources like rivers and streams. If the water is past your shins, chest waders may be needed as well. If your basement has this much water, we would recommend calling in flooded basement cleanup specialists who are equipped to handle major flooding, like SERVPRO of Morristown.
- Find the source of the flooding. If the water in your basement is caused by rainwater, wait until the storm passes and water stops entering before starting the water removal process. If the basement flooding is caused by a burst pipe, your furnace or water heater letting go, or any other faulty appliance, turn off your water immediately. This will help prevent further flooding.
- Check to see if basement floor drains are clogged and if your sump pump is working. Sump pumps help send ground water away from your home - but if it’s broken, it’s likely the cause of your flooding and it won’t be able to help drain any water! If floor drains are clogged, try your best to clear them to help drain water.
- Start removing and extracting water from the basement. For moderate flooding and puddles, you can try and use wet/dry shop vacs, utilize your sump pump, or go old-school with a bucket and mop. If there’s a large amount of standing water that you have to wade through, it’s best to call a flood removal company to help. SERVPRO of Morristown can quickly remove all the water from your basement in a matter of hours using our specialized equipment.
- Begin drying EVERYTHING out! Remove wet and water damaged belongings and decide if they can be saved. Set up fans, dehumidifiers and open windows to help dry out your basement. If there was a lot of water, household equipment may not be able to get the job done. SERVPRO of Morristown uses high grade equipment that will be able to quickly and thoroughly dry your basement, and ensure no moisture is left behind.
- Clean and sanitize all basement walls and floors! Your basement may be dried out, but depending on its source, the flood water may have been dirty or contaminated. Dirty or contaminated sources of water include sewage overflows or water from streams or rivers. Cleaning and sanitizing also helps prevent mold and mildew growth once water is gone.
- Make a plan to prevent flooding in the future. If your sump pump failed, a pipe burst, or an inadequate drainage system caused your basement to flood, be sure to get the problem fixed to prevent the same thing from happening again. If your basement is generally prone to flooding, it’s best to also take out appliances like washing machines and water heaters so they aren’t affected in the future, or put them on cement blocks so they’re not submerged when water is in your basement.
What Causes Basements to Flood?
There’s many different reasons for flooded or wet basements. Basement flooding is usually caused by insufficient drainage around basement walls, heavy rains bringing in rainwater through cracks in the foundation, failing sump pumps, clogged floor drains, burst pipes, or a combination of these factors. Luckily, there are solutions to many of these problems, such as investing in better drainage systems, changing where water runs off from your home, or waterproofing your basement.
When Should You Call A Professional To Help Cleanup Your Flooded Basement?
If the water in your basement is several feet deep or more, you should call a professional flooded basement cleanup company like SERVPRO of Morristown. We are leaders in the water damage restoration industry have the knowledge and resources necessary to quickly remove water, dry, clean, and sanitize your basement. If reconstruction is needed, we can help there too!
SERVPRO of Morristown provides all customers:
- 24/7/365 Rapid emergency service
- Free evaluations
- Free estimates
- Direct insurance billing & guidance through the insurance process.