Water damage in basement

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Melting Snow Poses Flood Risks in Homes

March 3, 2021

Many areas of the country are experiencing melting snow and ice, and when it melts too quickly, it can cause costly and damaging flooding to basements and homes. Rapid melting creates more water pooling around the foundation of homes, putting basements at risk.

“The best way to keep your basement from flooding is by shoveling the snow at least five feet away from the foundation before it has a chance to melt,” Lifehacker.com suggests in a recent article. Ensure that melting snow will flow away from your home and not toward it, especially if your home is sloped.

Restoration Local, an emergency restoration service firm, also offers several tips on its website to prevent flooding, including:

  • Assess drainage areas around the home. Make sure they are clear of snow and ice buildup so when snow and ice melt, they can drain properly away from your property.
  • Clear snow from your roof to prevent excessive buildups. This can help prevent too much water from flowing through the gutters as it melts.
  • Look for any cracks in basement walls. Caulk around windows, too.
  • Make sure the ground is sloped away from your home. When there’s no snow, add soil to help melted snow later to flow away from your foundation and not toward it.
  • Inspect your gutters and make sure any leaves or debris are removed, which can cause blockages. You might consider adding downspout extensions so melting snow can be taken further away from your home.
  • Test your sump pump. Restoration Local suggests pouring a bucket of water into the sump basin to make sure the pump is working properly. If it doesn’t turn on, unplug the pump to investigate more.

If water does get into the basement or inside your home, dry and clean the area of water as quickly as possible and call a professional immediately, Restoration Local notes. The flooding can not only damage your flooring, walls, and personal belongings but also lead to mold growth.

Keep Your Basement From Flooding When Snow and Ice Start to Melt,” LifeHacker.com (Feb. 28, 2021) and “How to Protect Your Basement From Snowmelt Flooding,” Restoration Local (April 8, 2020)