What to do when you have a flooded basement?

Ah the good old Ontario summer, characterized by hot days mixed with incredible rain storms. Those two weather types are on the opposite side of the spectrum, and one can be a lot more damaging than the other. In 2013 there was a massive rain storm that hit Toronto and nearly drowned the city. During this time, homeowners with basements were horrified to see their basements filling up with water, sewage and other moisture. That wasn’t the only time a basement was flooded though, this happens every single year. Not to mention that there is more than one way for a basement to become flooded, burst pipes and overflowing are two other ways that your basement can flood. Now that you know how it can happen though, keep reading to find out what you can do when your basement floods.

Don't Panic

Oh no you just walked into your basement and felt water seep through your socks! Your basement is flooding, what do you do? While it may be hard, keeping composure will help you in the long run. This guide will provide you with the next tools, steps, and information you need to handle the wet problem on your hands (and feet) calmly.

Make sure hazards are out of the way

Before you even think about going in to assess the damage, ensure that there are no loose wires. If the water has risen above the outlets, TURN OFF THE POWER before you enter the basement. Don’t enter areas with sagging ceilings. Don’t let children or pets enter the flooded area.

Leave everything where it is

Once you have eliminated any potential hazards. Your next task will be difficult too; but if you want insurance to see the initial damage, this is absolutely necessary. Don’t touch anything, leave it exactly where and how it was for the next step.

Take pictures

Photographing evidence is another great way to solidify your insurance claim and can reward you with the largest insurance claim value. Take photos of the leak and the damage if possible, also take photos of the damaged items. You can do this through video as well.

Call insurance company

Your next step is to alert your insurance company of the damages that have occurred. This is exactly why we get insurance anyways, for emergencies! A flooded basement is most definitely an emergency. After the call a time will be set for the insurance company to assess the damages. Inform them of anything that you have already removed from the basement.

Call a plumber

Plumbers will (in most cases) do their best to get to your location as soon as possible. Mopping up and getting rid of the water and fixing the root cause of the flooding is most definitely a priority before a plumber gets there. This will make it easier for plumbers to address the issue that caused the flood. However some plumbers will bring tools to assist with such.

Ensure doors and windows are open to air the area out

As long as the water is not pouring in from the windows that is. But this is a really important step before you clean out the water as well. That being because the water and sewage can really smell. The air can also really help to dry up the wet floor.

Clear out the water

Using large fans, and shop vacs will help you clear out the water along with the smell. Don’t let the water just sit on your floor and especially carpet. Even if you do plan to remove the carpet, it will create mould if you do not dry it properly.

Move important items to a dry area

If you have any valuable items in the flooded area that you can access safely, do so. There are so many items in our home that hold personal value. Important items can include: family heirlooms, items with deep sentimental value, vital paperwork like birth certificates, passports, tax forms etc.

Throw out any water damaged items

Now that we’ve talked about what you should keep from a flood, let’s talk about what you shouldn’t keep. Don’t keep water damaged items unless they have extreme value to you, these products can grow mold and many can be replaced. Many items will have water damage , like books, cds, electronics, furniture, along with other items. It is best to look at them all and throw out anything that cannot be salvaged.

Preventing the Flooding

Now that you know what to do if you have a flood, let’s focus on what you can do to prevent the flooding from even taking place.  These extra steps may cost you more time but at least you don’t have to worry about flooding being as big of an issue.

  • In the winter and spring months, shovel the snow away from your homes walls
  • Purchase and install a sump pump, a device that helps prevent water from building up during extreme weather (gets rid of building up water)
  • Snake your pipes on a yearly basis ideally
  • Ensure your pipes are functioning correctly by having them checked every once in a while
  • Install a backwater valve.  Backwater valves attach to main pipes and help prevent external flooding
  • Waterproof your basement.  This can be done on the inside or the outside

If you are experiencing basement flooding please call Plumber Toronto Pro! WE want to help not only fix your current problem but prevent that from ever happening again.  Our plumbers have years of experience and want to help you with this unfortunate problem.  Afterall, Toronto experiences some of the most intense rains and snow melting and that isn’t going to change anytime soon!

Call Us For All Your Plumbing

Licensed plumbers Toronto residents count on. As a plumbing technicians, we are here to protect your home and business, meanwhile saving your money for the long run.

Plumber Toronto Pro is known for comprehensive plumbing in Greater Toronto Area for both residential and commercial customers. We are always here when you need us with 24-hour availability, 7 days a week.