April showers bring May flooding….
That is how that saying goes, right?
While many are excited to get outdoors once again as the weather warms up, it is important to remember that the months of April and May in Wisconsin are some of the wettest! After a long winter, many people forget to take the necessary steps to make sure their homes won’t be susceptible to flooding.
There are many things that should be on your spring checklist to avoid damage from rain and flooding. Here are some of the things you should be keeping an eye out for.
What are the causes of spring flooding?
What types of things can cause flooding in the first place? While this might seem like a pretty simple answer (rain, duh), it can actually be more complex than that.
The first thing is obviously moisture, but that can come in many ways. First, melting snow can easily add multiple inches of water into the ground. You add that together with any new rain that might be failing, you could have the potential for multiple inches of water to be going into the ground at once. The pure volume of water, along with the lower layers of the ground not being fully thawed is where the majority of flooding issues come from.
This melting snow and ice can also cause jams in your gutters and other systems that can cause backups and overflowing.
Warmer temperatures also mean that water that may have turned into ice over the winter will begin to melt again. However, if you know Wisconsin springs, you know that we will still have a few more freezing cold days before the year is over. Because of this, many of the items that help prevent flooding around your home, such as drainage tile, sump pumps, and others can be damaged from expanding and contracting.
How can you avoid spring flooding in your home?
While you can’t control the forces of nature and stop the rain from coming, there are many things that you can do to make sure your home is safe from any flooding damage this spring.
Clean Gutters and Downspouts
Over the fall and winter, your gutters can accumulate a lot of junk. Clogged gutters can lead to them overflowing which can leave a lot of water around the foundation of your home. Make sure you go out and clean any leaves or debris from your gutter to prevent any issues.
As we discussed earlier, as water freezes and thaws, it expands and contracts. This can cause damage to all sorts of things, including the foundation of your home. It is important to inspect your foundation for any new cracks that may have appeared. Even if there is no water leaking yet, it is important to get these things fixed before they turn into a larger issue after more and more winters of damage.
Home grading refers to the way that the land around your home slopes away from it. This is the natural way that home builders try to keep water away from the foundation of your home. While most homes should be graded well, it is important to note that, over time, the grading of the land around your home can change. If you notice any areas where water is pooling around your foundations, that may be a sign to have someone make sure your yard is graded appropriately.
Get a backup sump pump
Not only is a backup sump pump a great thing for when you lose power, but it is also important in case of a major storm where your standard pump cannot keep up. In these situations, your backup may kick on and give an extra boost to your standard one. It is always a good idea to have a backup on hand just in case of an emergency!
If you do end up with some flooding this year, don’t go to your insurance company alone. We are here to help you with your settlement and make sure you get the money from your insurance company that you deserve!