Finishing our basements has always been popular, but with COVID-19, basements became vital for families as a space to create joy, community, and provide boundaries when the rest of your home feels claustrophobic. Not only does a basement offer a boon of unaccounted square footage for your home, but the potential of what it could become is dizzyingly intoxicating. It’s the “choose your own adventure” of remodeling whether you make it a fully stocked bar to make your famous cocktails or a state-of-the-art gym including a rock climbing wall! It sounds like a no-brainer.
Until you remember we live in the Midwest.
Basements already create the perfect environment for flooding and water damage. They are enclosed spaces, often with a porous cement foundation, exposed pipes, and minimal sunlight, all things perfect for anything damp. This paired with Midwest weather-- high snowfalls that rapidly melt and heavy spring rains-- is a true recipe for disaster. Some basements have no problem keeping the water out, others, maybe due to location, seem to be in a constant battle with flooding. Working with a professional company can help minimize the risks of basement flooding, but even then, unexpected disasters can strike, such as sump pump failure or a burst pipe.
Luckily, there are now products that can help prevent water damage, as well as materials that won’t be destroyed by water, helping to protect your investment.
1. Luxury Vinyl Tile
We are big fans of this type of flooring when considering the many benefits. Not only is it durable for families with rowdy children and irresistibly lovable pets, but it is one of the few water-resistant flooring options. This is a great product to choose as a preemptive measure for flooding. When it is installed, it snaps together almost like a puzzle, allowing for it to easily come apart for professionals if a piece needs to be replaced or the surface beneath needs to be cleaned to prevent mold. Again, you should only trust professionals to remove and reassemble your flooring. If flooding occurs, it can easily be cleaned and will not absorb the liquid like other materials, such as carpet and hardwood.
Beyond the functional benefits of LVT, you are sure to find a style perfect for your space. While it may lack the depth of hardwood, some tiles almost perfectly mimic hardwood patterns.
2. Cabinets with Metal Feet
Wood and water do not mix. Wood naturally absorbs water, making it swell, and eventually grow mildew or mold. This is why placing cabinetry in your basement can be a risk, since cabinets often come into direct contact with the floors. If flooding occurs, the base of the cabinets will start to observe the water, making it sometimes impossible to salvage the cabinets during the disaster cleanup. Metal feet can be the solution. Often, these feet are undetected and can seamlessly be added to the design, while also helping add a layer of protection to your investment. By raising the cabinets of the ground a few feet, you greatly increase the chances of saving them. Metal is a non-porous surface that can easily be cleaned in the wake of the flooding.
3. Flo by Moen
While there are a few water leak detection systems on the market, one of our favorites is Flo by Moen. The two-part system includes a Smart water shut-off and a smart water detector. The Shut-off is located on your water system and has the power to shut-off your water from anywhere when connected to the app. Meaning, if flooding is detected, you can make the choice to stop your water, which will help drastically reduce the flood. The Water Detector notes when there is a potential leak in your home. This, paired with the shut-off, proved precise control over a situation, and a much quicker response to flooding, especially when you aren’t home.
These three products are a great starting point for any Midwesterner interested in a basement remodel. If you are interested in a basement remodel, with or without concerns of flooding, contact our team of experts today. They can help create a design perfect for your space while finding creative solutions to help combat any flooding. You can call (847) 541-4848 or make an appointment online.