What Causes Basement Flooding?

What Causes Basement Flooding

Homeowners with a basement know that one of the worst things they can come home to is a flooded basement. Once the water starts to get into your basement in significant amounts, it can be really damaging to your belongings and your appliances. Even worse, it can be difficult to get the water out of your basement. It is even harder to clean up the mess that is left behind.

In order to prevent this issue from happening in your basement, we’ve put together a brief list of the common causes of basement flooding. That way you’ll know what to be on the lookout for when it comes to potential issues that will lead to basement flooding.


Wet Weather

As plumbers in Vancouver, BC, we have dealt with our fair share of plumbing issues caused by wet weather. Vancouver sees a lot of rain and precipitation, particularly in the fall and early spring months. As a result, we have witnessed a lot of basement flooding when precipitation levels are high. At these times, it is pretty obvious where the water that seeps into your basement causing flooding is coming from. Unfortunately, there are a number of different reasons why water is able to reach your basement.


Foundation Issues

Typically, there is more than the eye can see when it comes to your home’s foundation. On the surface, you can see your home is built upon a solid concrete foundation that raises your main floor above the ground level. This prevents water from reaching up into your main floor, but when there’s a crack or leak in your foundation, the water will find its way inside, and it will flow down into your basement. That is why most homes are outfitted with drainage or weeping tile system that gives water a place to go other than inside your basement.

When these drainage systems fail, you will start to encounter more water in your basement on a regular basis, especially after heavy rainfall or snow melting. If you have an older foundation with visible cracks, you may want to enlist the services of an experienced plumbing and drainage company to address these issues. Since they will only expand, it will definitely get worse over time.


Sump Pumps

A sump pump is often found in newer homes, or in basements where flooding is a common occurrence. These devices are usually dug into the ground at a low point in the basement where water can be directed and then pumped out of the basement via the main floor drain. These pumps are usually activated automatically when water reaches a certain level. Unfortunately, in the event of a power loss, or a simple malfunction, your sump pump can fail to activate. As a result, there is nothing to stop water from rising above the ground in your basement and flooding across the floor.

It is important to have your sump pump regularly checked. In the event of a power loss during a rainstorm, you may want to hook up a backup generator or battery to the sump pump, provided you can set this power source up in a dry area.


Dry Weather

Basement flooding is unfortunately not limited to wet weather conditions. When it is dry out, there are still instances where water can get into your basement and cause significant flooding. In these cases, the water is usually going to come from the house itself because the home’s drainage is clogged or damaged.

Things like tree roots can become entangled with your sewer drain, causing them to crack or back up due to the obstruction. In these cases, you’ll need professional help from an experienced plumber to solve the issue and repair the damage. Your water supply lines can also break or become damaged. When this happens, it is common for the water to flow to the lowest point in your home, which is typically your basement. Although this is a rare occurrence, older pipes can become punctured. If leaks leave unchecked, you’ll likely encounter some flooding issues.

For more information on how you can prevent basement flooding, or if you would like to arrange for one of our plumbing experts to assess the status of your plumbing and drainage systems, feel free to contact MidCity Plumbers at any time for a free estimate.

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