Although much of the country remains in a deep freeze, spring is coming! With spring comes melting snow, thawing frost, and heavy rainfall, leading to saturated ground that can cause havoc in basements.
The best defense against water incursion in basements is protection. Remove snow that is piled near the foundation and watch for snow or ice accumulation that blocks downspouts or drainage paths. Hopefully you cleaned your gutters in fall. If not, take the opportunity of a warm spell to do so. Add gutter extensions to move water away from buildings. Investigate drainage of your lot as snow melts and rain falls and consider reshaping the landscaping to improve drainage when weather allows.
Waterproof your basement walls and regularly check for damp areas. If there is any concern about water incursion, be sure items are moved to higher areas or out of the basement.
Additionally, be sure to have a multi-component sump pump system in your basement. Besides having a primary pump, install a backup system such as a secondary, battery-powered pump, a portable generator, or even a water-powered backup if you have a city water supply.
Sump pump alarms can alert you if pump failure occurs and water in the sump rises. Also, there are several home-monitoring systems that feature sensors that can be placed in potential trouble spots in basements and transmit alerts to your smartphone if water is detected.
Finally, ask your independent agent about sewer or drain backup coverage.