Worried about Basement Flooding? Make These Changes


The possibility of a basement flood terrifies you. You never want to walk down the staircase and step into a deep puddle of water. You don’t want to throw out all of the furniture and electronics that got soaked in the flood or pay to repair all of the damages.

So, how can you ease this fear? You can make these changes to minimize the risks of basement flooding.

Sump Pump

A sump pump is a common flood protection device. It sits in a sump basin (sometimes called a sump pit) at the lowest part of your basement. When that sump basin fills with water, the sump pump will turn on. It will pump that water out of the basin and through a drainage pipe, which will expel the water a safe distance from the home’s foundation.

If your home doesn’t have a sump pump, you should consider getting one installed. If it does have one, you should give it a test run once per year to see whether it’s still in working condition. Do this by pouring a bucket of water down into the sump basin and watching how effective the mechanism is at pumping the water out. When the results look slow or ineffective, you’ll want to call a professional to run maintenance on it.

Sump Pump Backup

A sump pump can fail during a power outage. So, if a fierce rainstorm knocks out the power, your basement could still flood. As a safeguard against this problem, you can set up a backup for your sump pump to make sure that it still runs without access to electricity. Sump pump backups can be battery-operated or run through water pressure.

You don’t want to have a sump pump that fails when you need it most.

French Drain

A French drain is an underground drainpipe that soaks up groundwater around your house. That drainpipe will then redirect that groundwater and expel it a safe distance away from your foundation. A French drain is sometimes used in tandem with a sump pump to keep a basement dry.

Yard Grading

The slope of your yard can increase your chances of dealing with a basement flood. When the yard slopes toward your house, water will move down the slope and pool around the foundation. When the yard slopes away from your house, the opposite will happen. Gravity will pull water away from your home’s foundation, and by extension, your basement.

You can have your yard graded to correct the direction of the slope.

Window Well Drain

If your basement has below-grade windows, they likely have window wells. Window wells can fill up with water and leak into the basement. To prevent that from happening, window wells should have a drain that connects to the weeping tile system underground.

Window Well Covers

If you’re still worried about your window wells filling up with water, you can get sturdy window well covers. These covers will be clear, so they will still allow plenty of natural sunlight through the basement windows. They should block rainwater from spilling directly into the window well.

Downspout Extension

Your gutter system is crucial for keeping your basement dry. After all, the gutter system collects rainwater from the roof and runs it through a downspout, which directs the water away from the home’s foundation. But there will be a problem when your downspout is too short. The water won’t be moved far enough away, which means it could pool around the foundation and leak into the basement.

A simple solution is to get a downspout extension and connect it to your original downspout. This should move water further away from your foundation.


How Can You Financially Recover from a Basement Flood?

While making these changes can minimize the chances of experiencing a basement flood, it won’t guarantee that the disaster never happens. So, as an additional precaution, you should prepare your finances for this specific problem.

Flood Insurance

If your basement flood starts because of an overflowing fixture or a burst pipe, your homeowners insurance might help you cover the costs of damages. If the flood starts because of a terrible rainstorm, it will not. Overland flooding is one of the common exemptions from homeowners insurance.

Sign up for a secondary type of insurance called flood insurance to get coverage in cases of overland flooding.

Emergency Fund

Any costs that your insurance will not cover will have to be paid out of pocket. This is where an emergency fund can come in handy. An emergency fund is a collection of savings reserved for urgent and unplanned expenses, like a payment for mold removal services after a basement flood. If you don’t have an emergency fund, you should start building one now.

It will be challenging to cover an emergency expense without an emergency fund. Without one, you might have to borrow funds in order to handle the expense right away. You could look into a personal loan as a solution. You don’t have to visit your neighborhood bank branch to do this. You can pull out your smartphone and call for your next loan in a matter of minutes. If you’re approved for the loan, you can use the temporary funds to get through your emergency without the help of savings. Then, you can follow a repayment plan.

Basement floods aren’t inevitable. There are plenty of things that you can do to protect your home from this type of catastrophe. Make these changes and improve your odds!