Flooded basements are not uncommon. The usual suspects include a clogged drain or loose window frames that allow moisture from heavy rain or melting snow to seep inside. Other causes include the following that you need to know about to keep them from happening.

Sump Pump Backup

If your home has a subterranean basement or crawlspace and is subject to flooding due to the natural groundwater flow in your area or subject to heavy rain and snowfall, you should have a sump pump. The small pump helps to remove water buildup to protect the lowest levels of your home from flooding. However, the sump pump can sometimes be overwhelmed due to extremely heavy rain, runoff, or ice thaw, allowing water to build up in the protective sump pit and flood the basement. The pump equipment can also weaken over time and eventually break, causing water to enter your home quickly, sometimes in huge amounts that lead to serious flood damage. You may want to have an alarm and backup system installed on your sump pump to warn you of a potential problem and to keep the pump going during a power outage.

Water Heater Rupture

A typical home water heater can last several years. But over time, it, too, can grow weaker and possibly rust or break, causing your basement to flood. While this problem is not common, it does happen occasionally, requiring the basement to be cleared of water and thoroughly cleaned before installing a new hot water tank.

Foundation Buckling

An older foundation or one that is built on a steep hill or canyon can sometimes shift or buckle. The problem can be addressed to keep your home secure, but if foundation blocks have moved, water from weather elements may find a way into the basement through cracks or thin gaps in the structure.

Sloped Soil Grading

Check the outside perimeter of your basement or crawlspace to see which way the ground slopes. If it slopes away from the home, you shouldn’t expect water problems from that area. But if the ground slopes toward the house, water can collect near the home’s foundation and gradually deteriorate the structure, leading to possible flooding. A basement waterproofing expert can advise you about the graded slant of your ground near the house as well as provide an estimate for waterproofing service for your basement.

Don’t wait for flooding to occur. Check these areas of your home or have a professional do it for you. Address any issues that could cause flooding in your basement.