What to Do If Your Home Floods

Posted On Apr 30, 2020

What to Do If Your Home Floods

Home flooding can be caused by any number of mishaps. Appliance failure is the most common cause. Ruptured washing machine hoses, a broken sump pump, and water heater tank failure come to mind. Most other causes of home flooding are related to the weather.

Heavy rainfall can overwhelm combination sewer systems and send storm water and sewage into your home via the drainage system. This is a condition known as backflow. No matter the cause, few situations are more stressful than watching a massive amount of water damaging your home and possessions.

Once you’ve discovered flooding inside your home, call a water mitigation & restoration company like Catons right away. When the water damage restoration team is on the way, there are a few things you can do to get a head start:

  • Be safe. If you don’t feel safe into the house, get out! There could be a danger of slipping, getting cut on something you can’t see, and electrical hazards.
  • Shut off the main water supply valve immediately. Obviously, it’s good to know ahead of time exactly where the shutoff valve is located.
  • Turn off the electricity to flooded rooms, if you can do so safely. Never walk or wade through water to reach the breaker box. The danger of electrical shock is ever-present when water is everywhere.
  • If you can safely reach your sump pump, and the electricity is still on, check your sump pump to see if you can get it operating. Pull up on the float switch and check to see if the electrical cord or a foreign object has prevented the float switch from turning on. If your basement is flooded, a working sump pump is the fastest way to get the water out.
  • Do NOT use your household vacuum to remove water. Only use an approved wet/dry vacuum to extract water.
  • Get the air circulating. Use ceiling fans (but not if the ceiling is wet) or A/C in the summer to begin the drying process.

How to Reduce the likelihood of a Flood

1) Replace your sump pump every five years. Catons provides this service.

2) Install a battery backup sump pump or have Catons install one for you. A battery backup pump will continue to pump water out of your sump pit if your primary sump pump stops working or if there is a power failure.

3) If you use your basement for storage, move valuable personal belongings off the floor and onto high shelves.

4) Keep your sewer pipe flowing freely. If more than two drains in the house are slow, you probably have root intrusion or a blockage in the main sewer. Call Catons to schedule a sewer cleaning.