Why is flooding dangerous?
When you have a pipe burst, it isn’t just damage to your plumbing that you have to worry about. In-home flooding from broken plumbing can pose a danger to you and your family. You need to address plumbing issues before they create a flooding hazard, and take care of any in-home flooding immediately.
In addition to the waste and disease causing bacteria, the water flooding your home could cause electrical hazards. Proper clean up is also necessary to avoid potential health hazards from mold.
To keep your family safe in any situation you need to know the hazards and be prepared. Here’s what you need to know about in-home flooding and what to do when it happens.
Reasons why in-home flooding occurs.
Most often, in-home flooding is caused by broken pipes. Most people think of the potential for burst pipes only in the winter when you have to worry about pipes freezing. But there are other things that can cause pipes to burst and flood your home.
Water hammers and your pipes
Have you ever heard pipes clanging when suddenly turning on or shutting off water? This is a sign that your pipes are not secured properly and are moving when the flow of water suddenly changes. It’s called a water hammer because it sounds like a loud banging when the pipe rattles.
The force of the water sloshing in the pipes is so powerful that joints can weaken and eventually break, causing in-home flooding. It is important to get any unusual plumbing noises inspected by an experienced plumber.
Sudden or extreme changes in water pressure
Water pressure can have a big effect on the functioning of appliances and plumbing fixtures like faucets and shower heads. Increases in water pressure can cause pipes to burst and flood your home. Water pressure can be affected by changes in the main water supply or your home’s plumbing.
Most homes should have pressure regulators that control how much pressure is behind the water coming into your home. If you notice a sudden increase in water pressure it could be this regulator that has failed. If replaced promptly you could avoid a burst pipe, but if left unchecked it will eventually lead to flooding. Your water pressure could also increase dramatically due to a failure with the main water supply coming into the home or in your neighborhood.
Backed up sewer line
Your drains can back up and pipes can burst due to sewer problems. These can be the most dangerous of in-home flooding because the sewer is meant to carry away waste. That means that the flood water could contain many harmful bacteria and waste products that could make your family ill just by breathing the fumes. If you suspect a sewer line break is responsible for the flooding in your home, you should remove your family immediately until it has been repaired and cleaned.
A few other potential causes of flooding include:
- Slab leaks, or burst pipes that affect flooding and damage of the foundation
- Clogged rain gutters
- Malfunctioning appliances
- A damaged foundation
- Severe weather flooding
In-home flooding safety guidelines
Regardless of why you have flooding in your home, there are some safety guidelines you should follow for your family’s health and your own safety. Overall, it is best to contact professionals familiar with the hazards of in-home flooding and prepared to deal with them.
While you’re waiting for the experts, you can keep your family safe by following these guidelines:
- Avoid flooded areas of your home, and block access with barriers to protect children and pets. In addition to health concerns, there are trip hazards and electrical hazards that must be considered.
- Wash immediately with antibacterial soap and hot water if you touch the flood water or anything that was in it.
- Call a team of professionals familiar with and prepared for flooding hazards. In addition to a plumber, you may also need an electrician, as well as water mitigation and home repair professionals.
If your home floods from burst pipes or other plumbing failures, take the steps below while waiting for one of our experienced plumbers.
What to do when you have in-home flooding
You should take some steps for in-home flooding to protect your family and reduce the amount of damage that flooding can cause.
- Clear everyone from the area. As mentioned before, you might need to physically barricade access to prevent children and pets from wandering.
- Turn off the water to the house. Your home has a water shut off valve that stops the delivery of water to your home from the city’s water supply. This ensures that the flooding will not get worse.
- Turn off the power. You should turn off power at least to the flooded area, if not the entire house at the main breaker.
- Call a plumber. Before you can get someone in to clean up and repair water damage, you have to get the flooding stopped. That requires the services of a Midlands area plumber able to provide emergency plumbing service.
- Work on clean up and damage mitigation. Prompt clean up will decrease your family’s chances of becoming ill from the flood water or resulting mold, as well as minimize repair costs.
Preventing in-home flooding
The best way to prevent flooding in your home is to keep your plumbing in top shape. You can prevent in-home flooding by:
- Have water sensors or flood detection systems added to your plumbing system. Some of these can be integrated into your security system.
- If you have a sump pump, regularly test it to make sure it can handle increased water from storms.
- Make sure drains have a one-way valve or backflow protection. If not, consider having a plumber install them.
You should also be getting regular plumbing maintenance and inspections. As a general rule, you should have a plumber inspect your entire plumbing and sewer system every two years.
Contact us for emergency repair or preventive maintenance
Whether you want to establish service with a plumbing inspection or you need immediate emergency assistance, contact us today for all of your plumbing needs in the Midlands.