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How To Handle A Flood Or Plumbing Emergency In Your Basement

Tuesday, January 24th, 2012 by Jacques Bouchard

Take Caution When Pumping Out A Severely Flooded Basement!

How To Handle A Flood Or Plumbing Emergency In Your Basement - Image 1It's worth noting: in cases of severe flooding, pumping out a basement on your own can be dangerous and/or destructive to your home.  If your basement is experiencing a major flood, your best option is to call a professional who can provide you with emergency plumber services.

If you are considering pumping out your own flooded basement, please consider these two major risk factors:

Avoiding Potential Foundation Damage

The earth around your home is the source of enormous pressure on your foundation walls – particularly when that soil is weighed down with water.  This slow buildup of water increases the water pressing in against the structure considerably.  From the inside, however, nothing is pushing back.  When the pressure from the outside exceeds the bearing strength of the wall, the walls will begin to slide in at the bottom, lean in at the top, or bulge in the middle.

Imagine what would happen if that pressure were to be placed on the wall suddenly!

When you have a large volume of water on the inside and outside of the basement, the water on the inside presses back on the outside walls – effectively relieving some of the pressure imbalance.  If that water is quickly removed, then that balance will shift quickly, which can potentially damage your basement.

Hazards That Go Hand-In-Hand With Basement Flooding Water

A large basement flood means that a lot of water has gotten into places where it shouldn't have.  Depending on the conditions in your basement, this water may have become contaminated with any number of things – including bacteria, viruses, and potentially unsafe chemicals.

Similarly, a basement is often filled with appliances off all types (most of them wired in), as well as the fusebox itself.  There's no easy way to check to see if your water has become electrified.

If you don't know what you're about to start wading in, the answer is simple:  don't wade in it!

What To Do When Moving Forward...

A flood like this never needs to happen!  There are plenty of protective measures that can be put in place that can respond automatically to keep your basement dry. If your basement is flooding, you can count on these two things to keep you prepared for almost anything:

A Sump Pump System:  Installing a full perimeter drain and a sump pump system complete with a floor drain provides your home with a way to pump the water out and away from your home. An ideal sump pump system should have three pumps – a primary one for normal loads, a secondary one that can turn on if the primary one fails or is overwhelmed, and a battery backup system for power outages.

A Water Alarm System: Many homeowners choose to install a water alarm in their basement, which will sound off when water is present. Modern water alarms are often included with sump pump systems, and the best ones can even be hooked up to a home alarm system – so you get a phone call when a problem arises.

This article provided by Frank's Mr. Plumber – an emergency plumber in Buffalo, NY. If your basement is flooding from a flood of any type, contact us to schedule an on-site, professional appointment today!

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