Important steps to avoid costly repairs to homes after flash flooding

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Repeated rounds of rain and flash flooding are pushing water into homes around the metro. But there are some steps you can take to limit the risk and avoid costly repairs.

Plenty of people are watching rivers rise around Kansas City.

"I just hope it doesn't flood like last time," Laura Goldston said.

But flooding is already an issue for homeowners.

Anthony Plumbing, Heating and Cooling is swamped with calls for flooded basements.

"The one I just went in, his pump was 8 or 10 years old and had completely failed. He had ankle deep water through the majority of the basement," said Jeff Prentice with Anthony Plumbing, Heating & Cooling.

No sump pump or existing pumps breaking down are the most common culprit of a wet basement.

"They live a long hard life," Prentice said.

With lots of heavy rain, when the pumps can't keep up, they're susceptible to shutting down.

"Absolutely. It's a mechanical item. So anything mechanical is subject to wearing out," Prentice said.

The best way to keep your pump working is to have it cleaned and serviced annually.

"A lot of people don`t think about the sump pump until it doesn't work, you know. And then you come down to the bottom of the stairs and step on wet carpet and surprise." Prentice said.

The check valve and floater on an Overland Park homeowner's sump pump both crashed causing the pit to fill to the brim.

They're lucky it wasn't worse. If left unchecked with more heavy rains coming, their entire basement could've flooded.

"We've kind of heard from the manufacturers that sump pumps, you're kind of supposed to treat them like a mattress: eight years and replace," Prentice said.

If your sump pump's new or in good shape, there are tell tale signs something else could be causing a wet basement.

"Foundation issues you'll typically see water running across the floor to the pit or to the drain, whereas sump pump, the water comes from under the floor and to the pit," Prentice said.

If you notice those issues, it might be time to call a foundation repair expert.

Getting those routine checks on your pump done can save you a lot of headaches and cash. Maintenance is pennies on the dollar, compared to the hundreds or thousands a new pump will cost you.

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