The flooding comes with costly repairs for house owners. As a homeowner, you must plan for flood mitigation to avoid damage during the rainy season. However, natural disasters and flash floods aren’t the only reason for the property to flood. There are numerous reasons for flooding, including a damaged water main, appliance malfunctions, leaking pipes, or other unanticipated household issues.
You can configure substantial damage after the water reaches the level of your floor and rises an inch above it. Knowing the flood level in your home is significant for safety. It is an official level of how high floodwaters could reach where you live. If you suspect that water will start to build in your home, turn off the power at the main electrical panel. Try not to stand in water to do so.
Waterlogging damage is one of the primary reasons that a growing number of people are purchasing home and flood insurance. Weather can be erratic and unpredictable at times leading to higher chances of flood and water damage. You can make some significant changes to your home to avoid costly repairs and wastage of time.
It is also good to plot out an escape route and have a backup plan in places, such as a hotel or a relative’s house. Follow the instructions of local and state authorities if there’s a need for evacuation. Various organizations help out individuals in such a situation. Also, you can seek help from Water Damage Advisor, a renowned firm that excels in helping families recover from calamities. It is an educational resource that provides information on property-related emergencies and restoration projects.
Following is a list of flood mitigation approaches to protect your home from flooding.
Know the risk
The first step involves understanding the risk of flood damage to your property. You should be aware of the possibility of flooding in your area. Then evaluate the risks based on the type of flood zone your house is in and the probable flood elevation. Obtain a flood zone map from the relevant authorities, including several zone markings indicating flood hazards in the area. Discuss with your neighbors about any prior floods in the area and warnings. Examine the surface runoff when you have a lot of rain or snowmelt to see how the flood water enters your property.
Flood warnings subscriptions
To safeguard your home ahead of time, you need to sign up for flood warnings. These warnings give information about the possibility of a flood in your area. You can subscribe online for flood warnings. These warnings have three levels of severity:
- Alerts: The lowest flood alarm level that verifies your house’s flood kit.
- Warning: Ensures all property defenses are in place and relocation of valuables at a safe place.
- Severe warning: In this case, there is a severe threat to human life. Leaving the premises and reaching higher ground as early as possible is advised.
- Property insurance
Insuring your home and belongings is always advisable as soon as you move to a particular place. It is a good idea to double-check your policy for inclusions and exclusions before buying an insurance policy. Standard home insurance policies do not cover flood damage. And as a matter of fact, a few inches of floodwater can result in costly repairs for the homeowners. You should find a housing policy that covers you against flooding if you live in an area with high flood risk. You can opt for preferred risk premiums that offer building and coverage at a lower price.
4. Ensure that your house is resistant to flood
After learning about the considerable flood risks, your task is to make your house flood-proof. Make necessary changes accordingly. These changes can range from anywhere in between costly house renovations to simple maintenance. Consider the following flood resilience tips:
- Replace the bottom steps of your staircase with concrete
- Create a convenient storage area for flood barriers and blocks
- Installing movable free-standing kitchens
- Installing permeable surfaces on walkways and driveways
- Install rain barrels
- Flood ventsinstallation
- To avoid sewer backups, install drain plugs on all basement floor drains
- Safeguard your electrical appliances
Flood water can prove to be dangerous for your electrical appliances. If left unattended, it can damage all the sockets, circuit breakers, switches, and wiring. Try to locate the washers and dryers at elevation in the basement. Also, elevate all the electric service panels to at least one foot above the potential flood level. Separate the electrical circuits for both upper and lower floors. Using cinder or masonry blocks, lift air conditioning units, water heaters, and generators above the flood level. An unattended wire can spread current in the water and can create a life-threatening situation.
Use flood-resistant material in the buildings
You can minimize the damage caused due to flooding by using flood-resistant material in your building construction. Flood-resistant building materials can tolerate dire contact with floodwaters for at least 72 hours without causing severe damage. All hardware should be composed of stainless steel or galvanized steel in flood-prone areas. Instead of using wooden floorboards and carpets, try incorporating ceramic tiles, rubber, and vinyl. Use movable rugs instead of fixed carpets. Also, use lime plaster, concrete, and decay-resistant wood for internal walls and ceilings.
Use water-leak detectors
Smart water leak detectors use innovative sensor technology and wireless connectivity to detect water leakage. Homeowners can receive alerts of water leakage by installing them at flood risk spots. Flood sensors are the most commonly used water-leak detectors and are highly affordable. The sensor triggers the alarm as soon as the water comes in contact. Flow meters are attached to the pipe and can sense water leakage, the difference in the water pressure, and deviations in the flow velocity. Acoustic sensorsare also an example of technology innovation. When water seeps through a fractured or damaged surface, acoustic sensors listen to the distinctive noise. You can deploy acoustic sensors to determine the leak size.
Keep the gutters clean
Due to clogged rain gutters, water can pool and damage your foundation. Clean your gutters regularly, especially in the spring and fall seasons. Gutters usually get clogged with decaying leaves, dirt, and debris. As a result, they can’t function at their highest capacity. The clog blocks the natural channel for rainwater to drain correctly from the foundation and sidings of the house. Install downspout extenders that can move water up to 10 feet away from your home. It prevents unnecessary pooling of water and moisture from leaking into the walls. In addition, upgrade your existing gutters by replacing them with aluminum ones.
Apart from the steps mentioned above, you can take prompt actions to avoid the damage caused by flooding. Maintain your water tightness by doing essential maintenance. Transfer your most precious items to a higher floor. Inside, store a wind-up radio, a flashlight, rubber gloves, a waterproof document bag, and emergency blankets. Use window well covers to prevent trapping rain and groundwater. Fill concrete patching paste in the foundation cracks to prevent the water entrance. Make an emergency flood plan and inform children about the safe places.