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How to prevent basement floods with backwater valves

A flooded basement is every homeowner’s worst nightmare. eieihome spoke to Drain Rescue Plumbers, a Toronto contractor that provides all plumbing services, about the use of backwater valves to prevent a disaster in your basement.

What is a backwater valve?

“A backwater valve, or back flow preventer, is a crucial element in the mission to keep your basement dry and prevent any potential damage caused by flooding,” says Drain Rescue. It is a small device, typically the size of a backpack, which prevents water from backing up into the basement. This valve acts to remove water from your home, but doesn’t allow for water to back-up back into the house.

How they work

If pressure is felt coming from the wrong direction, the backwater valve’s immediate response is to shut tight, and not allow anything to come through. If you live in a flood prone zone or an area that is known to receive heavy rain at least once a year, then backwater valves are an excellent way to ensure your home is not negatively affected by any water backing back into it.

How to install a backwater valve

Installing a backwater valve is a large procedure, one which definitely requires the expertise and knowledge of a certified plumbing professional. After the plumbing inspection you will require a building permit to allow the work to be carried out. Many cities share the homeowner’s desire to keep real estate protected and will offer rebates to assist in the cost of installation. The backwater valve is installed along the sewer lateral and serves as your first line of defence against dangerous flooding due to water attempting to re-enter your home.

“The installation of a backwater valve typically coincides with the installation of a sump-pump due to the removal of weeping tile, which our staff are well versed in and can be of assistance with,” says Drain Rescue.

Your backwater valve’s lid is removable, so occasionally it’s a good idea to have a look inside to inspect the system. If you suspect something is not operating correctly, or would simply like the benefit of someone else having a look, Drain Rescue Plumbers would be happy to pay your home a visit for an inspection.

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