Preventing Groundwater Flooding: Actions to Protect Your Property
Protecting your home or business from groundwater flooding is important, especially if you live in areas more prone to it. Groundwater flooding can occur quickly, for instance during times of heavy rainfall, or over a period of time if the water table gradually rises. It can cause damage to any items stored in your basement, as well as electrics if it is not properly protected.
Preventing flooding of any kind is vital, but knowing how best to protect against groundwater flooding can be difficult. Here at London Waterproofing Solutions, we look at the most vulnerable areas and the methods you can use to protect your property from groundwater flooding.
Which areas are most at risk of groundwater flooding?
The City of London is a high-risk area for groundwater flooding in both new and existing properties. This is because the ground is made up of London clay in many areas, preventing free drainage of water below ground and creating perched water tables.
Groundwater is known for causing problems in London, particularly in Fulham, Hammersmith, Southwark or Wandsworth as well as many parts of East London. Any London property with a basement or cellar area is at risk.
This does not mean that other areas of London or the rest of the UK are not at risk. If you have any concerns and want to protect your property, we deliver groundwater flooding prevention across London and offer free surveys.
How to protect against groundwater flooding
When river banks burst, property owners will use sandbanks and similar methods to protect their homes. However, as groundwater enters from the ground up, this method will not work. Instead, you’ll have to take a different approach, and what that approach is will depend on your home and needs.
Tanking – Type A barrier system
For basement waterproofing, the most commonly known term is tanking. BS8102:2009 categorises this as a Type A barrier. This involves the application of a cementitious based product designed to keep water out. While this is the traditional method, in many cases it is not suitable to use as a standalone system. In cases where water ingress is quite bad, the tanking system can be applied as a primary barrier in conjunction with a secondary system, cavity drainage.
Cavity drainage membrane – Type C
By far the most popular type of waterproofing method is the Type C cavity drainage system, as detailed in BS8102:2009. This is considered to be the industry standard and offers the most reliable system. The drainage channels around the perimeter will help to redirect the water towards a sump and pump or to a drainage system, giving you greater control over the water entering the property.
This is the preferred method for many homeowners and business owners across London, as there is little to no preparation needed. With minimal disruption to the home, you can have the Type C cavity drainage membrane installed without delay. For more information, our video below gives you further details.
Which system is right for my property?
The system you choose will depend on a number of different factors. If you have a brick basement, you may find that the tanking method doesn’t give you the required bond to effectively protect your home. In all cases, it is best to have the property assessed by a CSSW qualified surveyor who can advise on the best solution to suit your needs. We are here to help. Get an instant online quote for waterproofing your home and we will give you everything you need to make an informed decision and protect your property.
Prevention is better than reaction
Protecting your property against groundwater flooding is better than trying to remove groundwater from your basement. As groundwater can build over time, slowly raising the water table level, you may not notice the presence of water in your cellar. It can start with damp patches, causing water to appear in your basement seemingly without a source.
Even if you have never seen any signs of water in your property before, the code of practice that covers flooding in below-ground structures, BS8102:2009, states that any basement or cellar is assumed to be at risk of flooding. Professional waterproofing companies will offer a guarantee of the work completed, so you can rest assured that your basement is waterproofed if you have this document.
If you do notice water in your basement, the best thing to do is move any items to another level of the home. This will protect them from any water damage. You should then contact waterproofing specialists to find the perfect solution for your building.