Posted on: May 18, 2021
Everything You Need To Know About Flooding And Your Drains
If you’re a home owner in the UK you should be aware of how your drains and drainage system can become compromised.
As the UK is such a wet and flood prone country its no surprise that more than five million homes across the UK are considered to be at risk of flooding.
With the countries climate continuing to change with the affects of global warming its more important than even to ensure you have a well maintained and high quality drainage system in place.
By doing this you can help ensure your property is well guarded from any flooding or water related damages, in this article we aim to help you understand the causes, preventions techniques and recovery of a flooding situation.
WHAT CAN BLOCKED DRAINS READING DO TO HELP?
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WHAT CAUSES FLOODING?
Flooding can be caused by many different external or internal issues with water flow and drainage. Some of these include:
- excessive rainfall
- extreme weather
- prolonged rainfall
- melting snow and ice
- dam breakage
- coastal flooding due to damaged sea walls, or storms bringing extra water inland
Any of these issues have the ability to cause extreme flooding situations, however flooding can also occur completely independently of these issues, due to damaged or poorly maintained plumbing.
WHAT DOES FLOODING DAMAGE?
Flood damage can be extremely detrimental to the structural safety of a home, as well as a whole host of other important and cosmetic problems.
Cosmetic damage: Floods can cause extreme water staining on almost any part of your home, including your furniture and soft furnishings, which can be costly to fix wash or replace.
Mould damage: Caused by the extreme wetness and prolonged drying time flooding can start the process of any kinds of nasty Mold and mildews to begin growing in your home, this is especially true if any of the flooding involves burst or damaged sewage drains.
Electrical damage: Broken wires and damaged internal wiring is very common during a flood, and should be considered with extreme caution, its always best to contact a professional if you believe your property has suffered electrical damage.
Appliance damage: As flooding can penetrate your home through the use of appliances such as washing machines and dishwashers its important to ensure you maintain clean machinery as if your pipes are clogged or dirty the damage will be that much more severe to your home.
Structural damage: The force of the flooding, if the water pressure is severe, can loosen floorboards and damage the structural integrity of walls and doors. It can also cause rot to set in if the wetness is prolonged
HOW TO PREVENT WEATHER REALTED FLOODING
It is difficult to fully prevent weather related flooding, especially in areas particularly prone to flooding or high rainfall, however there are steps you can take to help minimise damage.
Its a good idea to be well informed of any flood risks in your areas, including any dams, reservoirs, seas or lakes you may live near. If you already live in a flood prone area it’s likely you are already aware of these things as they tend to affect home insurance prices.
If you are living in a flood prone area however here are a few home additions that can help:
- door guards which can be fitted on doors
- ventilation brick covers
- damp-proof barriers
- sealed floors to prevent water from rising up from underneath
- sandbags to stop the flow of water
- non-return valves on taps and drains that ensure water only flows in one direction
- landscaping that helps to steer water away from the property
If you are in a particularly high risk area you could also consider:
- permanently moving your sockets and electric wiring to above five feet from ground level
- replacing carpets with rugs that can easily be removed and washed
- storing valuable item high up, or on the upper floor of your home
- using water resistant materials when building or renovating your home.
If your are living or planning to move to an area when flooding occurs its a smart idea to consider this when planning your home insurance and putting the necessary precautions in place.
HOW TO PREVENT HOME CAUSED FLOODING
Waking up to find extreme weather flooding has damaged your property can be extremely disheartening, however waking up to find flooding due to neglect of pipes or poor drainage care is even more so. Most home based flooding situations can be avoided simply by proper maintenance of your plumbing.
Burst pipes are a common cause of flooding and often are what will affect you as a homeowner.
Here are a few steps you can take to prevent a home flooding situation:
If you are aware of any blocked drains on your property, usually by the lack of water flow and subsequent smell from the drain you should contact a plumber and have them help you unblock the drain, as diy drain clearance can actually damage drains further.
Dealing with excess ground water, if a particular part of your property is often flooding due to rainfall its likely this area doesn’t have a proper drainage system in place, it would be wise for you to contact a plumber who can help you install an affective system.
Small changes such as insulating your pipes and leaving your heat on (at a low degree) in winter can also help keep your plumping in its best shape.
Blockages in pipes should be avoided also, some of the biggest causes of blocked pies are as follows so ensure you find alternative ways to dispose of these products;
- fats, oils, and grease
- food waste
- wet wipes
- nappies and pads
- dental floss
- earbuds and cotton pads
- and hair
WHAT TO DO IF YOUR HOUSE IS CURRENTLY FLOODING
Even if you take all precautions accidental or externally caused flooding can still occur, because flooding is an unexpected occurrence it’s impossible to ever be fully prepared for the situation. If you are currently dealing with a flooding here is what you should do:
- Turn off utilities at the main switches
- Use sandbags or flood barriers to protect entryways
- If there is water in your home, only step where the water is still
- Move electrical items, furniture and valuable items away from the flooded areas of your home
- Use plastic bags and elastic bands around the legs of furniture to protect them from the water
- Use bricks or wooden pallets to elevate items above the water level, or move them upstairs where possible
Once you’ve taken all these steps to ensure you have done the most in your power to protect your home you should contact your gas, water and electricity provider, as well as your insurance, and local council to be told who can help and what next steps to take.
If the flooding outside of the home reaches higher than a metre it’s advised for the homeowners to allow the water to flow in, as the external pressure on the building could cause extreme structural collapse.