Home Improvement

9 Tips for Preventing Basement Water Damage

When disaster strikes and water floods into your basement it can cause far more than just an annoyance, it can an expensive fix whether the basement is finished or not. Many times, basement water damage goes unnoticed because you don’t go down there often, it’s dimly lit, or it never crosses your mind.

Basement water damage can happen all at once after a major incident or it can happen slowly over time. We’ll examine nine ways you can help prevent water damage in your home, so you can stay safe and happy without worrying about what’s going on in the deep dark basement.

  1. Avoid Basement Water Damage and Test Sump Pump Regularly

In many places, water in the basement is just a fact of life. Seepage in from cracks in the foundation or the occasional overflow from the storm sewer can cause water it enter into your basement. The best defense against this is your sump pump.

The basement flows all water to the sump pump hole and once it hits a certain height, the sump pump drains it to the outside. If the sump pump doesn’t work, then water can build up and cause damage.

It’s a good idea to test the sump pump every year to make sure everything works properly. You don’t want to be surprised with six inches of water in your basement.

  1. Check Your Hot Water Heater

The hot water heater is the biggest standing water reservoir in your home. The water is constantly heated ready to be used. Unfortunately, time and damp basement conditions can lead to rust. Rust can compromise the structural integrity of the water heater.

This leads to leaks and it only gets worse with time. Check the area around the water heater for standing water. If you see it, then it might be time to get a new water heater. The water will constantly drain from the water heater until it’s replaced.

  1. Do Your Basement Pipes Have Leaks?

Winter can be a trying time for your basement pipes. If the weather becomes very cold, then it could lead to the pipes freezing. A frozen pipe isn’t a big deal, but what it does to your pipes is. When water freezes in the pipe, it expands and can lead to cracks in the pipes and even a pipe break that quickly covers your entire basement in water.

Check your plumbing pipes to see if there are any leaks and cracks as well. Leaks most often happen where at the pipe connections.

  1. Know Your Pipe System

The basement has the bulk of your home piping and it’s a good idea to know where all the pipes go. It’s important to understand what pipes take source water to the faucets and what pipes lead to the main sewer line.

It’s also important to know where the main water shutoff is. If you have an emergency situation such as a pipe breakage, then shutting off the water fast can prevent a lot of damage.

  1. Clean Gutters and Downspouts

Believe it or not, but rainwater can have an impact on your basement. The gutters and downspouts are designed to move water away from the home. If they are clogged, then the water can’t move away from the home and instead pools against it.

The water seeps into the foundation and causes cracks and other problems. Eventually, it leads to water entering the basement and causing damage. Yearly, examine your gutters and downspouts and remove any debris that could cause clogging.

  1. Keep Your Septic Tank in Check

In homes that don’t connect to a municipal sewer line, they instead have an underground septic tank that holds all the waste and must be cleaned out regularly. The tank holds all the wastewater that goes into drains and flushes down the toilet.

It only has a finite size, so when it gets too full, then it can back up into your basement. Sewer water contains bacteria, feces, and other contaminants that can cause serious health problems. Don’t forget to clean it out or risk the consequences.

  1. Install Covers for Basement Windows

Many basements have windows at ground level. This lets light into the basement, but it also can let rain in as well. A heavy rainstorm can cause serious flooding if the windows are not secure.

A window well cover lets light enter the basement, but stops rain from seeping in. If any of the windows are broken, have them fixed or else they can also let rain in.

  1. Fix Foundation Cracks

Your foundation is an important part of your home’s structural stability, but time and water can lead to cracks that seep water into the basement. If the cracks are small, then fix them with epoxy or sealer. If that doesn’t work, then contact a professional to come in and seal the cracks.

If cracks aren’t sealed properly or if they go on too long unchecked, then they can cause serious problems to your foundation. They will only get worse over time, so fix them as soon as you can.

  1. Have Regular Professional Inspections

You’re not an expert on the basement or house water damage. There are many causes of water damage and you might not see them all. Call a professional such as Ctr-nw.com to come and check out your basement and catch any problems before they become emergencies.

They know exactly what to look for, so they’ll find even the smallest problems.

Keep Your Basement Dry and Free of Damage

Basement water damage is no laughing matter. In finished basements, it can lead to thousands of dollars in damage from carpeting, furniture, electronics, and more. An unfinished basement can have foundation problems, mold, and other issues that are costly to remediate.

Follow these suggestions to prevent water damage in your basement and you’ll stay dry. If you want to learn more about water damage in basements, then please explore our site.

About author


Hi, this is Hugh Hook. I’m here to share my insights on a wide variety of home improvement topics. I hope that my site becomes a platform for your inspiration on green living and DIY projects.
Hugh Hook
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