So your basement is flooded -- now what?

By Matt Butner - bio | email
Posted by Phil Riggan – email

RUTHER GLEN, VA (WWBT) - Last week's rain is soaking its way through the ground and into people's basements. It's a costly and potentially dangerous problem.

It can leave you wondering how to clean up the mess, and how to stop it from happening again.

Puroclean technician David Gregson was called to this house in Ruther Glen for a report of water on the basement floor.

"This area here you have an intrusion of water coming in through the foundation, on top of the slab that this basement is sitting on," Gregson said.

The homeowner noticed the problem and called right away -- a smart move, Gregson said.

"Anything after 48 hours starts a mold growth," he said.

Mold is one of the biggest issues associated with flooding, he added. And the longer water is left standing, the worse it can get.

"We moved the furniture, we extracted the water up, and of course put down drying equipment," he said.

That cleaned up the initial mess, but most leaks are the result of structural issues with the house. This homeowner is now considering putting in a waterproofing system.

"Most likely she's going to have to take down this sheet rock to place the B-dry system in," he said.

It's an added cost, but could prevent future water nightmares. Another way to minimize the impact of a leak is to look for early signs, because some you can't see right away.

"If the water intrusion is coming from the back side of the sheet rock, you may not see water stains up front at first. You may see some bubbling, some splitting," he said.

And as winter approaches, a new set of problems emerge.

"When you have freezing weather, you have busted pipes, so we definitely have a lot of water loss, floods, crawl spaces flooding," he said.

In the end, this homeowner shelled out $1,500 for cleanup and mold remediation -- and hers wasn't even a severe case.

(c) 2009. WWBT, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.