Heavy rains and flooding have left basements across the region sopping wet this spring.
For homeowners, this raises a laundry list of questions.
Home inspector John Trostle and general contractor and designer Samantha Strong joined The Daily Circuit to offer advice.
5 ways to prevent, clean up a wet basement
1. It's best to prevent the water from getting to your basement in the first place.
Trostle said the first thing to do is check the grade around your house to make sure it isn't flat or sloping toward the house. Water will travel in the path of least resistance.
"This is going to allow water to slide down the outside of the foundation to the bottom and then come into your basement," he said. "One of the most effective, and really least expensive and it can be done pretty readily by oneself, is to bring in some clean black fill dirt. Build it up, tamp it down and slope it gently away... When the water drains into it then, it will have a tendency to drain away."
2. If your backyard slopes toward your house, consider more extensive landscaping.
"Go out from that house about six feet toward that section of the yard that's sloping to the house and you can dig down a shallow swale, a little dip in your yard, and create a channel to direct that water around the house," Trostle said.
Strong said you can also consider French drains in this situation.
3. If a wet basement leads to peeling paint, test for lead before scraping.
You can find tests at your local hardware store.
4. If you're experiencing a wet basement in a property where a landlord or association controls major renovations, contact your insurance company and contractors.
A caller on The Daily Circuit said two sides of her home are below grade, but she lives in a town home complex where she doesn't control the landscaping. The complex hasn't been willing to do anything to the property to stop the water coming into her basement.
Strong recommended taking pictures and calling the insurance company. Trostle suggested having a couple contractors out to offer suggestions.
"Even if it's not your responsibility, having the knowledge of what a solution could be might help prompt your association to take action," he said.
5. Wet carpet needs to be dealt with immediately to avoid permanent damage.
"If it just happened, you can roll it back, get the fans going and potentially dry it out," Strong said. "But if it's been sitting there, I would ditch the whole thing and start over."
Trostle said that recurring water in a carpeted area will likely require you to pull out the pad under the carpet for replacement.