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Causes of Water Damage from Basement Flooding During Winter

Flooding in your home is never pleasant, and it can happen at any time of the year, during the day or at night. But during the winter, there are a few additional factors at work that can make it more likely for your basement to flood and sustain water damage. Here are the most common causes of water damage and basement flooding in the winter.

Bursting Pipes

Of course, pipes can burst at any time of the year, as well. However, they are much more likely to burst in the winter. This is due to drops in temperature that can freeze the water inside the pipes and cause it to expand to the point that the pipe cracks and breaks. The best way to handle this type of water damage is to prevent it from ever happening in the first place; properly insulating your pipes before the winter sets in is the best way to protect your home from such an event.

However, if this does occur during the winter, the first thing you need to do is shut off the water. Make sure you know where your emergency shutoff valve is. Then, depending on the extent of the damage, you’ll either need to begin drying things out yourself or call for water extraction. If the pipe is located behind drywall, professional help is always a good idea; if these areas aren’t properly dried, you can get mold growing inside your walls.

Overuse of Plumbing

Another reason that flooding and plumbing issues are so much more common during the winter is due to the holiday season. Plumbing systems—especially those with a septic tank—are only designed to handle so much use. When your home begins to fill up with relatives from all over the country, your plumbing begins working overtime. If it’s overused too much, you may damage the plumbing system and cause a leak.

Other water-based appliances like the water heater and the water softener are also frequently located in the basement. These can get overused with visiting relatives as well, leading to leaks and other damage in your basement.

Melting Snow and Ice

During the spring and summer, your gutters and downspouts help to direct rain away from your foundation and your basement to avoid flooding and water-related damage to your foundation. But obviously, snowfall is a bit different from rainfall. It is more likely to accumulate around your home, as the downspouts can’t really redirect it as they can with rain. When the temperatures warm up a little, the snow can start to melt and begin leaking into your basement.

Additionally, ice dams can build up in your rain gutters and downspouts during the winter. This makes the problem even worse; as snow on your roof melts and begins to run off, the gutter system is unable to redirect that snowmelt properly. It then runs down the side of your house and pools against your foundation, where it can leak into your basement.

Take Preventive Measures

There are many factors that can lead to basement flooding or sustaining water damage, and many of those are in effect all year long. But in the winter, it’s important to keep in mind these other potential problems and take steps to avoid them. Insulate your pipes, keep an eye on your plumbing system if it’s being used excessively, move snow piles away from your foundation, and break up any ice dams in your gutters.

If your basement still floods for any reason, contact Integrity Restoration & Remodeling Contractors, LLC. We are among the best water damage restoration companies in Sandy Springs. We’ll remove the water, dry out your basement, and repair any damage we find until your basement is good as new. Contact us for a quote today.

The content on this page is for general information only and does not accurately reflect the offering and process of Integrity Restoration & Remodeling, Inc. For more information on our services, feel free to contact us at 770-966-9987 or by submitting a form here.