Many of us, especially on the East Coast, are thrilled to see the mountains of snow by the side of the road going down as the numbers on the thermometer go up. But the changing of the seasons brings some fresh problems as well. Spring will quickly become summer, and with summer comes hurricane season, the wettest, wildest time of year.
What can one little homeowner do to protect a house from the forces of nature? A lot, actually. Hurricane season is a doozy, but by taking certain precautions and calling in a New Jersey basement waterproofing contractor before summer, you can keep your basement dry in some surprisingly severe weather.
What Is Atlantic Hurricane Season?
Atlantic Hurricane Season is the period during which hurricanes tend to form on the East Coast. This period spans from early June to late November, peaking in August and September. Hurricanes, extreme tropical cyclones known for their ferocious winds, typically cause significant flooding and have only been getting worse in recent years.
The worst hurricane season in recorded history was in 2005, when 31 tropical cyclones, seven of which were considered major hurricanes, occurred. Last year, we saw 15 tropical cyclones and two hurricanes. How many of these storms will 2014 bring? Only time will tell.
Basement Waterproofing for Hurricane Season
Although the forces of nature can be devastating, there is plenty you can do to stop your basement from flooding during hurricane season. A good waterproofing job can mean the difference between a dry basement and a house full of water during a major weather event.
Yard Drainage: Basement waterproofing starts from the outside. If you home sits in a valley or a low-level area, water will naturally flow towards your house. In a storm situation, that almost guarantees basement flooding. A yard drainage system changes the natural drainage of your hard, directing water away from your home. If you suspect that you may need a yard drainage system installed, call in a basement waterproofing contractor can give you a free consultation and estimate.
Gutters and Downspouts: This form of external water control directs water off of and away from your house, keeping the soil around your basement from getting waterlogged. Clogged or damaged gutters and downspouts can cause harmful drainage patterns and lead to leakage. Clearing your gutters and downspouts is a good place to start; repairs may also be necessary depending on your situation.
Sump Pump: This interior basement waterproofing tool pumps any water that does get into your house up and out. It is, in many ways, your most important line of defense against basement flooding. If you don’t have a sump pump, get one ASAP; if you do, test it to make sure it is working properly. Even if it is working, you may want to consider getting a new pump if yours doesn’t have a high enough horsepower to handle hurricane-related flooding.
Backup Sump Pump: Normal sump pumps run using electricity from your home. Like any other plug-in device, these sump pumps cannot work if your power goes out, like it might during a hurricane. A backup sump pump runs on battery power, so it can take over even if the power goes out. You can also spring for an AC/DC or dual pump sump pump, both of which combine regular electrical and battery-powered pumping action.
Existing Issues: Got cracks in your basement walls or floor? Experience some basement leaks once in a while? Have an expert take a look at your basement immediately. If your basement is already musty before a hurricane hits, heaven only knows what will happen if a big storm rolls in.