If the basement floods, it’s essential that homeowners take several key steps for safety and cleanup. First, homeowners should reach out to their insurance agent and create an inventory of damaged items.

Homeowners should also wear protective equipment like boots, gloves and a mask before entering their flooded basements as water that contains sewage may pose serious health risks and electrical current.

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Turn off the water

If your basement flooding is severe, it is crucial that you know the steps to take in order to keep both yourself and your loved ones safe. As soon as everyone is secure, take appropriate action immediately.

Before venturing into any flooded areas, be wary of electrocution risks; standing water can conduct electricity as well as contain hazardous materials, including raw sewage, chemicals, and pollutants that pose significant dangers. When entering any flooded area it’s recommended that rubber boots and gloves are worn as protection from this danger.

If your basement is flooding due to plumbing problems, turn off all water supplies until a plumber can assess and repair them. Disconnect any gas-powered appliances located in the affected area as well. Once safe to enter, remove upholstered furniture and move belongings into dry areas as soon as possible; professional assistance should also be sought to ensure mold doesn’t form.

Turn off the electricity

Next, turn off the electricity in your basement. As water can conduct electricity and even electrocute you, shutting off power should be the first step if possible. A home with a breaker box makes this task straightforward.

Finding and switching off each breaker of an electrical service panel, usually found in a basement or utility room, should not be difficult. You will probably require some sort of tool but if that is not available long sticks or broom handles can also do the trick.

Important note: Ensure any broom handles are wood or plastic – metal can be extremely dangerous and risk electrocution.

Now that the electricity has been cut off, you can begin the water removal process. Be sure to wear protective gear such as boots, gloves, and a mask when entering flood waters if you plan on entering them; pay particular attention when approaching raw sewage, chemicals, or pollutants present therein.

Fans and dehumidifiers could help speed up drying times as well. You should be able to extract most of the excess water on your own but be wary about entering too deep.

Move out all personal items

As soon as a basement flood occurs, it is paramount that all personal items be quickly extracted from the water as soon as possible. This includes large furniture pieces and clothing that may have been affected by it as well as documents of damage for insurance purposes. It may also be useful to take photographs and videos documenting its extent for insurance purposes.

If the water has become polluted with sewage, professional assistance will likely be required in order to restore its safety and eliminate potential health risks. With clean water however, flooded basements may typically be restored back to their normal conditions with time and effort alone.

For quicker removal from a basement that has become waterlogged, try using a wet vacuum or pump. Also open all windows and doors to increase air circulation for drying purposes and expedite drying times.

Call a professional

Professional water removal and cleanup companies will have all of the tools needed to quickly pump out flood water while simultaneously reviewing items that could be saved, as well as helping determine and correct what caused flooding in the first place.

Professional advice will also enable you to protect against future basement flooding, with useful suggestions such as waterproofing basement walls. Regularly having plumbing checked and pumping out of septic tanks are other effective measures to minimize basement flooding risks.

It is wise to notify your insurance agent as soon as your basement floods to determine whether your policy covers such damage; should it do, they will likely provide a list of professional water mitigation vendors they recommend for assistance.

Ayush Bhansin

Ayush Bhansin has a degree in General Studies focusing on Interdisciplinary Sciences from Harvard University and has been a versatile contributor and analyst for 12 years. He offers a broad perspective on topics ranging from technology to lifestyle. His previous experience includes roles in market research and as a freelance journalist. He has brought his broad knowledge to various general content, providing insightful analysis and commentary. He is an emerging technology enthusiast and actively participates in various intellectual forums. He is also a classical music aficionado and enjoys exploring different culinary traditions.

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