How to prevent rain water from getting into your basement
Home & Gardening

How to prevent rain water from getting into your basement

The excessive rain is starting to cause problems for some Twin Cities homeowners who are experiencing basement flooding.

BLOOMINGTON, Minn. — With all the rain this spring it’s all hands-on deck at Service Restoration in Bloomington.

“It’s busy, busy,” manager Ray Sandey said.

“Everybody’s working right now.”

Over the last two weeks, Sandey says their call volume has nearly tripled with flooded basements.

“With the ground saturation, water needs to go somewhere,” Sandey said.

“Water finds its path of least resistance and it may be into your basement.”

In their shop they have all the best tools and equipment to dry out homes after a flood, hundreds of fans and dehumidifiers, and a special washing machine that can clean smoke and mold from clothing.

“It was designed in Canada to clean hockey equipment and so the idea is if you can get hockey equipment clean you can get anything clean.”

But Sandey says as homeowners all you need to prevent a flooded basement is a clean set of gutters and a working sump pump.

“If you have gutters, are they working properly? Are they getting the water away from the house? Are they full of leaves? That’s a big thing this time of year,” Sandey said.

For sump pumps, the online recommendations are wide-ranging. Some sources say sump pumps should be replaced every 7-10 years, while others claim pumps should be replaced every 5-7 years.

Sandey says the timeframe depends on how often you run your sump pump.

“If your sump pump runs regularly and gets a lot of work, every three to four years might be a good idea. It may be working now, but they will fail eventually. They wear out over time and that’s one of the most common problems we see,” Sandey explained.

Most sump pumps cost a few hundred dollars to buy, plus a little extra if you’re paying to have a professional install the pump in your basement.

Sandey argues the extra expense is worth it compared to the much higher cost of drying out a flooded basement.

“You know, that’s cheap insurance, versus a five to ten-thousand-dollar dry-out bill on your basement.”

Speaking of insurance, Sandey says many homeowners insurance policies either don’t cover basement flooding, or don’t pay out enough to cover the entire bill.

That’s why prevention is so important, because once the water is already in your basement it takes a lot of time and money to remove it.

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