Many people scamper about to ensure that their basements are watertight in preparation for the rainy season. They do this to keep the water out of their basement. Waterproofing your basement also helps to prevent the growth of mold and the development of other serious water damage problems.
The rainy season however, is not the only threat to basements. In fact, winter can be just as bad or even worse for basements. Winter basement flooding can occur when the snow melts and turns into water. The water will have the same effect as rain. In many cases, snow that has collected on the ground can result in more water than torrential rains.
Even the smallest amount of water seeping through your basement during the cold winter months can be very dangerous to your foundation. When the temperature drops and the water freezes, it will expand and cause serious damage by weakening your foundation. Any cracks that would have been considered miniature before will become even larger as a result.
Tips for preventing winter basement flooding
Don’t leave it for winter
Most people will only start thinking of waterproofing their basement when they begin experiencing moisture problems. This however, will be too late. It can be difficult for contractors to work under the freezing conditions of winter. The low temperatures make it uncomfortable to work and nearly impossible to dig through the frozen ground.
Be sure to contact a professional to examine your basement before the winter season sets in. Having a professional go over your foundation will ensure that any problems are identified and dealt with early.
Don’t let snow pile near your home
When the snow starts to fall during winter, the first thing we think about is clearing the driveway so we can make it in and out safely. However, it is also important to remember to clear snow piles away from the foundation of your home. Snow is harmless to your foundation as long as it remains in solid form. However, temperatures are bound to change. The snow will melt when the weather becomes warmer.
When the snow melts it will form water in large volumes. If the snow was piled near the foundation of the home, the water is likely to seep into the basement through the foundation walls or the windows.
Check your gutters
Gutters are the last thing many people think to check when it comes to preventing winter basement flooding. Gutters however, are vital when it comes to the flooding of basements especially in the rainy and winter seasons.
The first thing you should check is the direction of the downspout of your gutter. Ensure that it is facing away from your foundation. It should also lead into a drain that guides water away from the foundation and doesn’t allow it to accumulate near the basement.
It is also important to check that the gutters are free from debris such as leaves and mud. Ensure that the gutters can lead water safely away from your home without obstruction. Obstructions such as leaves and other debris will hinder the ability of the gutter to guide water properly.
Repair and maintenance of your sump pump
Many people remember they have a sump pump when their basements flood. It is important to double check to ensure that your sump pump is in working order well before the winter season sets in.
You should ensure that the pump is checked and maintained at least once a year. Servicing your pump will ensure that it works well for many years to come.
Start preparing for winter well in advance of its setting in and you’ll enjoy a dry basement.