What To Do When Your Basement is Flooding
All owners of private houses are familiar with the problem of a flooded basement. In this article, we’ll go over the basic methods of dealing with basement flooding.
Table of Contents
- Basement flooding: the nature of the problem and its consequences
- Which leads to flooding of basements
- External protection of the basement from groundwater
- Internal protection of the basement from groundwater
- What to do if the water is already in the basement
- Drainage pumps for draining flooded basements
- Where to buy a drainage pump
- Video What to do when your basement is flooding
Basement flooding: the nature of the problem and its consequences
Flooded basements is one of the most common problems faced by owners of private cottages and country houses today. Basement flooding solutions can be different – depending on a problem.
The consequences of the problem are often serious because systematic flooding destroys the foundation of the house, not to mention the violation of sanitary standards, damage to things and the failure of expensive equipment that we often install in basements (washing machines, dishwashers and other household appliances).
But before talking about ways to deal with the problem, let’s look at the causes of flooding.
Which leads to flooding of basements
In general, the problem of flooded basements should be solved even at the stage of building a house. After all, there are a number of important indicators that must be taken into account when building houses with basements, for example: on which site the house will be located, the terrain, the level of groundwater, how deep the basement is planned, etc. Unfortunately, the current situation shows that in the overwhelming majority of cases builders do not pay due attention to the issue of waterproofing. As a result, your home is not protected from flooding at all or is poorly protected.
As a rule, when talking about waterproofing, there are three main types of water, which are the sources of flooding. Let’s consider them.
Basement floods every time it rains heavily. To prevent this from happening, you need to think over the drainage system: how and where the water will drain from the roofs.
Soil water (or meltwater). In spring, many owners of country houses and cottages are faced with the flooding of the basement with meltwater, and the reason is that the walls of the basement were not waterproofed at the time of construction. This problem is fought by organizing a drainage system on the site.
One of the most common mistakes modern builders make is neglecting to waterproof. Often they do not see the need for waterproofing, since according to geological data, the groundwater level is much lower than the foundation of the house. But do not forget that during construction, the density of the earth changes, and groundwater easily penetrates the soil on your site. As a result, basements and basements are systematically flooded. The problem is solved by waterproofing work or the organization of drainage systems.
There are also a number of cases when the occurrence of flooding is caused by other reasons, for example, a breakthrough in a water supply system.
External protection of the basement from groundwater
- First of all, excavation is carried out along the entire outer perimeter of the basement. The walls are cleaned of dirt. Large gaps are filled with sand-cement mortar. If possible, all surfaces are leveled as much as possible.
- For outdoor work, bituminous mastic is first used, then roll materials are glued. It is important to ensure that the ends of the material extend beyond the walls by at least 20 cm.
- For the same purposes, you can apply penetrating waterproofing. The mixture is diluted according to the manufacturer’s recommendations on the packaging. No clots are allowed in the solution. The outer corners of the room are processed with a brush. Then the walls are processed with a roller, the layer thickness should be about 1 mm.
- Drying of surfaces will take at least 2 days, during which time the composition will penetrate into the thickness of the walls by 30-70 cm (depending on the manufacturer). Competently done work will protect the walls from water penetration for a period of 40-50 years.
- There are situations when there is no access to the external walls and excavation is impossible here (the buildings are located close to each other), in which case injection comes to the rescue. Holes are drilled in the wall in a certain order, into which polymer resins, micro cements or acrylic gels are pumped under pressure.
- Rapid drainage of stormwater will provide drainage, laid along the perimeter of the building or basement. Minimize the ingress of water into the basement and the installation of gutters and storm water inlets. Such a system serves for drainage; it is not used as the only protection against moisture ingress into the interior of the room. Its use is advisable only in conjunction with other waterproofing works.
Internal protection of the basement from groundwater
- Getting started, you need to get rid of the water. It can be scooped out with improvised means, which is very inconvenient, or you can use a pump. The choice of a drain pump should be used to pump water out of the basement based on the degree of contamination of the water. If it contains fibrous inclusions, sludge and other large particles, then it is better to use a fecal pump. For example, a conventional drainage pump is able to pump out water from a basement with a particle content of up to 7 mm, then a faecal unit will cope with 50 mm particles.
- Next, the room is dried. You can simply ventilate the room or use forced drying using infrared heaters, heat guns, etc.
- The corners are the weakest points in a room. It is recommended to lay them with a waterproofing cord, swelling, it makes problem areas impenetrable.
- It is advisable to fill the floor with concrete again, all the cracks in the old base are pre-filled. A layer of sand or expanded clay with a thickness of 5-10 cm is filled in, any waterproof roll material is placed on top. After processing with bitumen mastic, the screed is poured with the addition of water repellents and modified fiber fibers, which will give it water resistance. Instead of concreting, you can install logs, and a plank floor over them.
- Vertical surfaces are also cleaned of dirt, all large cracks are repaired with masonry mortar. The walls must be treated with antifungal drugs. Bituminous mastic or other similar material is applied to the surface with a roller or brush.
- Great attention should be paid to ventilation. Her job is to normalize the humidity in this difficult room. It prevents the appearance of mold, eliminates the musty, unpleasant odor of dampness.
- Supply and exhaust ventilation can be performed in a simplified version. One pipe should be placed parallel to the wall almost from the floor itself with an exit to the outside, using a knee, the second should be placed under the ceiling, also with access to the street. The outer parts of the pipes are protected from the ingress of melt and rainwater.
If the building is quite old and due to some circumstances it is not possible to perform all the recommended repair work, then here you can advise the following:
- fill large gaps with rags and coat with bituminous mastic;
- organize a pit, that is, dig a hole about half a meter deep, the walls must be strengthened with brickwork. Pour coarse crushed stone about 10 cm thick on the bottom. Install a drainage pump equipped with an automatic start-up system. As soon as the water reaches a certain level, the pump will pump it out. It is better to place the water drain hose coming from the pump as far as possible from the building.
Timely organization of waterproofing will help to save yourself from laborious and rather costly work, to protect things or winter workpieces from water damage. During the construction process, all of the above activities can be carried out with great convenience.
What to do if the water is already in the basement
If the basement is already flooded, it is too late to look for reasons and think about waterproofing the house. And in order to solve the problem quickly and efficiently, you need to use drainage pumps that quickly pump water from a flooded room.
Drainage pumps for draining flooded basements
Water from flooded underground structures is pumped through submersible drainage or sewage pumps. Such pumps are designed specifically for lifting water from basements, basements, mines, pits, as well as for draining drainage and sewage water. As a rule, they are effective and fairly easy to operate, which allows you to quickly solve the problem of flooding.
When choosing a pump for these purposes, it is necessary to take into account the degree of contamination of the pumped liquid. The drainage pump can work with both clean and dirty water, but each model is capable of pumping a liquid of a certain consistency, with content of solid particles of a specific size. If you need to pump heavily contaminated water, which contains fibrous particles, sludge or debris, it is advisable to use a fecal pump. The main difference between drainage and fecal pumps is that fecal models pump more contaminated liquids than drainage ones. For example, if the Zenit DR-Blue drainage pump for dirty water can pump liquid with particles of 7 mm in diameter, then the DG Blue sewage pump allows particles of 50 mm.
When the basement is rapidly flooded, a pump immersed in liquid easily pumps water out of the room. Also, drainage (or fecal) pump can be used to prevent flooding by installing it in a pit in the basement.
In addition, electric pumps are used when the natural flow of liquid into the drainage system is impossible. In such cases, drainage pumps (pumping stations) provide forced drainage, which easily solves the problem.
Where to buy a drainage pump
Of course, you need to purchase a pump from a reliable company, whose specialists will help you make the right choice and provide high-quality information and technical support. Our company has been working with leading manufacturers of pumping equipment for over 7 years, and we will be happy to help you find the right equipment. For example, for lifting water from basements, we recommend using equipment from trusted companies.