April showers bring May flowers, but beware. Those same showers can also bring flooding to your basement. According to the National Flood Insurance Program, floods are the most common natural disaster in America, leading to an average of more than $3 billion in insurance claims annually. In fact, even a few inches of water in a basement results in an average repair cost of $10,000. While the number of floods varies based on geography, heavy rainfall can produce flooding in any basement.
While we may not be able control the weather, the following steps can be taken to help prevent your basement from flooding and eliminate unexpected costs:
- Check Your Foundation for Cracks. A simple check of your home or building’s foundation for cracks can save you thousands of dollars down the road. If you do find a small or medium sized crack or gap, use epoxy to fill it. For larger, more serious problems, consult a professional.
- Make Sure Your Sump Pump is Working Properly. Check your sump pump for debris that may be affecting its performance. If you have a portable sump pump, make sure it is connected to a reliable power supply and that it is positioned in the lowest part of your basement. Also consider purchasing a backup sump pump, which will automatically start working should your main pump fail.
- Clean Out Your Gutters. Excess debris clogging your gutters can cause overflow. Be sure to clean them out.
- Strategically Place Your Downspouts and Downspout Extensions. Your downspout is the pipe that carries water from the gutter to the ground. It is suggested that the water be drained at least three feet from your foundation. This can be accomplished with a downspout extension which can typically be purchased for less than $20.
- Have an Emergency Power Source. Heavy rain can lead to power outages. If your home or building loses power, your sump pump and other appliances won’t be able to function. A backup generator will assure that your sump pump has power in the case of an outage.
- Check Your Homeowner’s Insurance. In case there is flooding, you want to make sure you’re covered by flood Insurance. Check with your home insurance agent to see if you currently have flood insurance on your plan or, if you don’t, how to add it. If your agent does not have flood insurance available, contact the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to find agencies that do.
It is impossible to predict when an emergency will occur, but taking the correct precautions can help to minimize the chance of an occurrence. At Doyle Security Systems, protecting your home and possessions are our top priority. Along with the above steps, we can further reduce your chance of flooding with our Water and Sump Pump Monitoring Services. Should your water levels rise above a specified height, a signal will be sent to our award-winning Emergency Response Center, where we can notify the appropriate contact to ensure the integrity of your basement. Whether you’re home or away, Doyle Security Systems will monitor your water levels 24/7/365, providing you constant peace of mind.