Water damage is one of the most common types of property damage due to the numerous ways it can occur. One of these sources is flooding.
Whether it is natural or unnatural flooding, flooding leaves your home filled with excess water. Sometimes this water can be contaminated, such as with sewage or other waste materials. The longer this standing water remains, the more damage it can cause, and the more likely mold will grow as a result.
Because of its commonality, you need to take extra precautions to protect your home from flood damage. This is especially the case if you do not have additional insurance coverage for flooding.
Use the following tips to help protect your home from flooding and to learn what to do if a flood occurs.
Conduct Outdoor Maintenance
The grade of your lawn is an important factor for flood prevention because its slope will either help prevent or encourage flooding. If your lawn tilts toward your home, then it can allow rainwater to accumulate near the foundation and eventually make its way into your home. What you want is for your lawn to be sloped away from your home so that any rainwater will naturally move away from your property.
Knowing this, pay attention to how your lawn slopes. If you notice your lawn is not graded in a way that directs water away from your home, then consult a professional to fix this.
Additionally, clean your gutters to ensure water can travel through them. If they are clogged, water will accumulate within the gutters and eventually spill over the side and pool near your home. Adding downspout extensions can also help ensure the water that travels through the gutter is directed far enough away from your home.
Take the time to inspect your home’s foundation for any cracks as well. These openings can easily allow water to seep in. If you find any cracks, seal them with caulk.
If a storm is near and natural flooding is expected, you can place sandbags around your home to act as a barrier.
Conduct Indoor Maintenance
Basements are prone to flooding and a great way to help prevent flooding in your basement is to have a sump pump installed. When excess water is present in your basement, the water moves into the pit where the sump pump is installed. The pump will then redirect the water away from your home.
Some sump pumps are powered by electricity, so consider installing a battery-powered pump — even if you already have one installed. This will ensure you have a functioning sump pump if there is a power outage.
In addition, address the exterior windows and doorways in your home by applying a sealant around their frames. If there are any openings near these areas, then water may make its way inside. The sealant will prevent this from happening.
If you add a flood sensor, then this will alert you of any leaks. With these alerts, you can address water issues sooner which helps prevent extensive damage and saves you money in the long run.
Another step you want to take while protecting your home against flood damage is to protect personal belongings and other valuables. Store important documents, such as birth certificates, in a safe place by placing them in a waterproof container and on a higher level of your home.
Get Proper Insurance Coverage
While it is necessary and important to have a standard homeowner’s insurance policy, it is not sufficient for protection against flooding. Any flood damage that occurs will need to be covered out of your own pocket unless you purchase additional coverage. Flood insurance is the only way you can have insured protection against flooding on a year-round basis.
Knowing this, if you live in an area prone to flooding or if your home is simply flood-prone, then it is worth spending the money to purchase flood insurance. While it can be costly, it will be of much help in the event of flood damage.
How to React to Flooding
If a flood does occur and damage your home, then you need to take immediate action. Porous building materials and furnishings will absorb the standing water. The more water they absorb, the worse the damage will be. With enough absorption, these materials will suffer structural damage, potentially leading to an unstable home structure.
In addition, flood damage provides the perfect conditions for mold growth. If mold begins to form, it will cause its own damage in addition to the flooding.
Because of this, it is important that you get help right away.
Professional Flood Damage Help
ServiceMaster Kwik Restore can help you with your flooded home through the professional water damage restoration services we provide in McHenry County in Illinois. Within these services, our technicians will use the industry’s best available dehumidification and drying equipment to remove the standing water from your home.
We start our flood cleanup work by containing the water and inspecting the damage. We then proceed to the water extraction and drying before handling the flood cleanup and structural repairs/installations.
With help from ServiceMaster Kwik Restore’s water damage restoration services, your home will be clean and safe to return to after sustaining flood damage.