The basement is flooding. What now!?
Whether it’s due to heavy rainfall, flash floods, or a combination of both, taking immediate action is crucial to minimize damage. Our experts have put together essential first steps to take when your basement is flooding:
*Remember, seek professional assistance and service to address the flood and/or aftermath of a basement flood effectively if the damage is extensive or irreparable.
Prioritize Safety The safety of you and your family is top priority. If the water is rising and posing an immediate threat, evacuate to higher ground. Once everyone is safe, call emergency services for assistance.
Identify the Source Is the water coming from heavy rainfall, a burst pipe, or sewer backup? Knowing the cause right off the bat will help you address the issue more efficiently.
Turn Off Utilities To prevent further damage and ensure safety, turn off all utilities connected to your basement. This includes electricity, gas, and water. If you’re unsure how to do this, contact the relevant service providers for guidance.
Survey and document the Damage Snap some pics or videos of the flooded area before you start any cleanup. This documentation will be valuable if and when you may file insurance claims. Make a detailed inventory of damaged items and note their approximate value.
Remove Water Safely Once utilities are turned off, you can begin removing water from the basement. Use a submersible pump or a wet/dry vacuum to extract standing water. Neither? The old mop and bucket can do the trick if the flooding isn’t extensive. If it is, you may consider hiring professionals with specialized equipment.
Salvage Important Items Valuables, important documents, and sentimental items should be moved to a dry, safe location. Prioritize items that are susceptible to water damage.
Ventilate and Dehumidify This is a biggie. After removing the water, open windows and doors to allow fresh air to circulate. Use fans and dehumidifiers to expedite the drying process. Mold and mildew tends to quickly develop in damp subterranean conditions, so prompt action is essential. And keep that dehumidifier running. Check out our blog post on dehumidifiers here.
Inspect for Structural Damage Check for any structural damage to walls, floors, and the foundation. If you notice cracks or compromised integrity, consult with a professional contractor to assess and repair the damage. Ignoring structural issues can lead to long-term problems.
Clean and Disinfect Thoroughly clean and disinfect the affected area. A professional cleaning company can be hired for this. In a pinch, you can use a mixture of white vinegar and water to sanitize surfaces and help prevent mold growth. Wear appropriate protective gear, including gloves and masks, when handling contaminated materials.
Contact Your Insurance Provider Once you’ve taken initial steps to address the flooding, and if the flooding is extensive, contact your insurance provider to report the incident. Provide them with the documentation you collected and follow their guidance for filing a claim.
If you’re finding that your tumble drying is taking forever, you’re not alone. Especially at this time of the year when the weather is cooler and ...