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My Basement Has Flooded—What Do I do?

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No one wants to wake up or come home to a flooded basement. Forget about your plans and expect to spend the next several hours calling up Maryland basement waterproofing companies and sorting through your damaged possessions. When it comes to flooding, whether it originated from a burst pipe, an overflown washing machine or heavy rain, it’s important to act fast. Here are some of the crucial steps you should take as soon as you discover a flooded basement.

Take Safety Measures

First and foremost, take some safety measures. A few major safety risks in a flooded basement include electrical shock, sewage contamination and broken objects/sharp pieces. Before doing anything in the basement, make sure you:

  • Cut off power supply to the area
  • Put on rubber boots, gloves, safety glasses and a face mask
  • Protect any exposed cuts or puncture wounds you may have.

Find Where the Water is Coming From

To mitigate any further damage, you need to stop more water from coming in if it’s possible. If the cause of the flood is a burst pipe or a broken washer, find the shut-off valve and cut off water supply to that area. If the water is coming in through the floor, walls or around windows, then you have a ground water problem. Call your Baltimore basement waterproofing contractor to diagnose the issue and implement a solution before the next heavy rain.

Take Lots of Photos

If you have flood insurance, take plenty of photos before you touch anything and then again as you remove your damaged items from the basement. Specifically document damaged items that look like they will have to be replaced. Contact your agent right away and inquire about instructions for submitting an insurance claim.

Remove the Water

Now that you’ve documented the damage and dressed in appropriate protective gear, it’s time to get dirty. You will need to pump the water out of your basement. First of all, ask your basement waterproofing tech if they offer flood cleanup services. If they do, then you can kill two birds with one stone. If your waterproofing company doesn’t do flood cleanup or if water damage is from a pipe or an appliance, then you will need a professional crew of water damage remediation specialists. You can certainly do some of the work yourself if you have a wet-dry vacuum or a pump. But it’s usually best to hire professionals, as they have more powerful equipment and can get the job done faster.

Ventilate

You would want to get your basement dry as soon as possible. If you hired professionals, they will likely set up powerful fans to facilitate the drying. But if you had minor flooding and are tackling it on your own, open up all windows (as long as it’s not humid outside) and place every fan and dehumidifier available to circulate air though your basement.

Start a Discard Pile

Once the basement is free of water and is drying, look though all the items and discard the ones that are too damaged. For example, cardboard boxes, books, drywall, upholstered furniture and carpet generally don’t respond well to flooding. You can try to save the carpet and furniture with water extraction equipment, but in many cases they will develop mold that is extremely difficult to remove from deep inside the cushion and fabric.

Fix the Underlying Problem

So why did the flooding happen in the first place? Did the power go out and your sump pump stop working? Are there cracks in your home’s foundation that allowed for a major leak? Whatever it is, have your Maryland basement waterproofing contractor find it and fix the problem.

Contact Basement Waterproofing Technologies today if you are dealing with an aftermath of flood and need professional assistance and guidance.