Flood Protection Information

Complete Flood Prevention Guide

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These Areas of Your Home are at Risk of Flooding

At-Risk Areas for Intrusive Floodwater

 April 14, 2020


Household flood prevention is not easy. 


But it is possible. 


It all starts with preparation. 


Being prepared for emergency flooding greatly decreases the chances of flood water damages to your home.  


So how do you prepare your home for flooding? 


A good way to start is by identifying what areas of your home are most susceptible to intrusive flood water. In this article, we identify some of the common places in a home that floodwater tends to enter. 


Common household entry points for intrusive floodwater: 


Garages 


Garages are one of the most flood-prone areas of a home. The reason being is that the garage door sits flush with the driveway concrete, making it an easy target for intrusive floodwater. Furthermore, concrete is porous and often uneven, which makes it even easier for water to enter.  


Our recommendation and most cost effective solution? 


Use a combination of self-inflating sandbags and poly-plastic sheeting to secure the entire length of your garage door. First, lay down the poly plastic and fold it about 12" high up the garage door. Then, lay the sandbags on the poly. 


Refer to this guide on how to properly stack sandbags for help.
 

Doorways 


Many of us have doorways leading out of the ground-level and basements of our home. Unfortunately, this is one of the most common points of floodwater entry and a big culprit of basement flooding. If your home has a walkout basement patio, preparing a means to flood-proof this door is extremely important.  


The problem with many doors is the lack of a water-proof seal at the bottom, which is the same reason we get drafts of air through our homes.  


Your options? 



  • Use household materials, ie. plastic sheeting, to seal the doorway (Inexpensive, but less effective).  


  • Use flood barriers, sandbags, sandless sandbags, etc. (Affordable & conventional).  
     

Foundation Cracks  


It's no surprise that household basements are the most flood-prone area of the home. That's why you want to make sure to thoroughly and carefully inspect your basement and its foundation to identify areas where floodwater could potentially seep through.  

Our recommendation:

To protect the foundation of your home, we once again recommend sandbags and poly wrap. Not only is it cost-effective, but its also a very reliable way to safeguard any foundation cracks.  
 

Internal Sources 


Aside from external flooding, basement flooding from internal sources like damaged water heaters and burst pipes must also be considered. Be sure to check your boiler room and have a plan to isolate it should emergency indoor flooding occur. For indoor flooding, a number of great products exist.   


Check out this list of the best flood barriers (our Quik-Response Self-Expanding Sandbags are on the list).  
 


Household flood prevention starts with you.   


Being prepared and identifying ways to protect problematic areas of your home will minimize the chances of expensive floodwater damages to your home. 


For more flood prevention tips, be sure to check out the other articles on our blog .
 

Flood Protection Tools:


Flood Barriers

QUIK-RESPONSE ™ Self-Expanding Sandbags


Sandbag Calculator

How many sandbags do I need to build a flood barrier?


Flood Damage Cost Calculator

How much money will flood damages cost me?  

How To Protect Your Home From Flooding

35 Ways to Protect Your Home From Flooding

 According to Public Safety Canada, flooding is the costliest natural hazard in the country.


With overland flood insurance failing Canadians, protecting your own property is more important than ever. 


Use these 35 tips to protect your property from expensive floodwater damages:



 1. Raise your home on stilts or piers



  2. Install foundation vents


  • This will allow flood water to flow through your home, rather than pool around it and relieves pressure on walls and basement windows. 


  3. Apply coatings and sealants


  • Apply to your foundation, walls, windows and doorways to prevent flood water from leaking into your house through cracks. 

 
  4. Raise your electrical outlets and switches


  • All outlets, switches, sockets, and circuit breakers should be at least one foot above flood level in order to prevent significant electrical damages. 


  5. Install check valves on your pipes


  • These valves prevent a flooded sewage system from backing up into your home. Tip: Gate valves are preferred over flap valves, since they provide a better seal. 


  6. Grade your landscape away from the house


  • If your lawn tilts toward your house, rainwater is likely to pool around your home. Use a heavy soil that contains clay content and sand to adjust the grading of your lawn so that runoff empties into a street gutter.

   
  7. Make space between your mulch and siding


  • Wet mulch can rot your house's siding which may lead to leaks. A space between your mulch and siding will allow it to completely dry after rainstorms.   


  8. Point your downspouts away from your home


  • If your gutter runoff is not pointing away from your house, expect water to pool at the corners of your house. This can cause basement leaks.  


  9. Repair or replace your roof if shingles are deteriorating or missing


  • Prevent rainwater from leaking into your home through the ceiling. 


  10. Elevate & anchor outdoor equipment


  • Safeguard outdoor property from floodwater damages.  


  11. Seal up any cracks in your foundation


  • Mortar or masonry caulk can be used to fill in any foundation cracks & gaps. 


  12. Buy a battery-powered sump pump


  • A great way to pump water away from threatened areas. Buy one that runs on battery power in case of power outages. 


  13. Relocate your valuables to higher ground


  • Moving your valuables to the second floor will help mitigate damages. 


  14. Install a flood sensor


  • These come standard on many home security systems and can detect small leaks before they become a big problem. 


  15. Have sewer or septic line check valves installed


  • These protect against sewage flooding back into your home.  


  16. Clear out all gutters and drains to maximize drainage water flow


  • This can help prevent water from pooling near your property. 


 17. Utilize sand bags to block water from contacting your home


  • If inconvenient, use sandless sandbags. These provide a great sand-free sandbag alternative.   


 18. Use water-resistant barriers



  19. Use airbrick covers


  • Airbricks provide underfloor ventilation. However, its imperative to seal them during a flooding to prevent water from flowing into your home. 


  20. Install flood resistant doors and windows


  • Designed to withstand impact by water and debris, these handy devices create an effective water-resistant seal against floodwater.  


  21. Dig french drains and route to a sump pump in the basement


  • This can help minimize basement water damages. 


  22. Install flood boards


  • Placing boards in front of doors can help minimize the impact of debris and high pressure flood water. 


  23. Seal your floors with tanking


  • Prevents water from rising through the ground.   


   24. Varnish your skirting boards


  • Seals up cracks and prevents rotting. 


  25. Repair sidewalks, patios, decks and driveways


  • Cracks holes can cause flood water to pool near your property. 


  26. Landscape your yard with plants and vegetation that will minimize soil erosion 

  
 27. In the winter, clear snow away from the home’s foundation. 


28. Utilize window well covers


  • Prevents water from pooling and seeping into your basement. 


29. Ensure downspouts extend at least three feet away from your home


  • Make sure to point in a direction away from your home and towards a drain. 


30. Use a rain barrel to catch runoff.   


31. Repair/replace your roof if shingles are deteriorating or missing.   


32. Ensure that the weeping tile is in good working condition. 


33. Trim Overhanging Trees


  • In case of storms, overhanging tree limbs can damage your house and break windows.      


34. Mount high shelves for storing valuable items


  • In case of flash flooding, having mounted shelves can make a huge difference in saving household items.     


35. Buy flood insurance




And there you have it!  


35 great ways to protect your home from flooding.  

If you're looking for quick, easy and convenient flood protection, check out Quik-Response .
 

home at night

How To Protect YOur Business From Flooding

smiling woman in front of store

HOW TO PROTECT YOUR BUSINESS FROM FLOOD WATER DAMAGES

May 4, 2020

Author: Thita Sripraiwalsupakit


Having your own business is a capstone achievement that one can pursue in his/her life. Large amounts of money and time are invested to ensure that the business will be viable and operate smoothly in both the short & long term. 


As such, it makes sense to safeguard this investment.


The bad news?


Your Business is Constantly At Risk!


Believe it or not, around 3,785 businesses in Canada were affected by floods in 2019. 


The interesting thing to note is that flooding does not occur only in the area near rivers or the coasts, but it can happen anywhere. 


Therefore, flooding is considered an urgent issue, and deserves your attention to ensure the safety of your business.


You might not be aware that only one inch of flood water can create immense damage to your business. 


It affects not only your physical business settings such as buildings, factories, or warehouses, but also impairs the ability to operate your business and causes a delay in operation. Delay in operation means delay in serving your customers and generating revenue. 


There are also additional expenses required to repair and get your business back to normal  operation. As a result, a plan must be put in place to prepare your business for an unexpected natural disaster. 


How Can Water Enter Your Home or Business?


1. Sewer backup


Sewer backup occurs when the normal flow of wastewater from your property to the city's sanitary sewer becomes blocked. There are a number of factors that contribute to sewage backup:


  • Overwhelmed sewage system caused by rainwater and melted snow
  • Old/ faulty sewage system
  • A cracked sewer lateral pipe (connects your home to the city's sewage line)
  • Broken/cracked sewage line
  • Tree roots puncturing sewage lines
  • Blockages in city sewage mains
  • Plumbing blockages
  • Sump pump failure


2. Overland Flooding


  • Riverine  Heavy rainfall or spring snow melt causes rivers or creeks to overflow.


  • Pluvial Heavy rainfall in neighborhoods or downtowns can be too much for storm systems to handle in cities & rural areas. This can cause ground flooding due to over saturated soils that are unable to absorb rainfall.


  • Groundwater Heavy rainfall causes underground water levels to rise above ground level and rain over land.


  • Ice Jam River ice breaks and jams in spring causing rivers to backup and flood.


  • Storm Surge Heavy winds force waves inland from a body of water.


  • Tidal Wave/Tsunami An earthquake offshore forces a large wall of water onshore. 


These are the most common ways that floodwater will enter your home or business. 


The question is ...


How Can You Protect Your Business From A Flood water Disaster?



Create Flood Protection Plan for Your Business


It is best to prepare an emergency plan for your business to cope with unexpected flooding in your area. 


The plan is not complex and does not require a large amount of time to prepare. We recommend the following preparations for your  flood protection plan.


  • Determine a flood-prone area in your business such as the front door of warehouses, office building, or entrance of factories.


  • Prepare a flood barrier that can easily and quickly be deployed to protect these vulnerable areas and prevent intrusive floodwater from entering your business. 


  • Be prepared for the worst case scenario (e.g. high level of flood water) and identify an exit route to ensure the safety of everyone in the building. 



Deploy Preventative Measures


There are several ways that you can protect your business from flooding. 


However, you should keep in mind that your flood protection solutions should be easy to use, quick to deploy, and do not require too much storage space. 


We have gathered some flood protection tools for you to choose from depending on your business needs.



Water-Activated Sandbags


Self-expanding sandbags are a water-activated alternative to traditional sandbags. 


They require no sand, no setup, and can be deployed 6x faster than normal sandbags, making them an ideal choice for business owners looking to prevent intrusive water damage. 



Flood Gates


Flood gates are normally installed to protect your business entrance. 


The size and height of flood gates varies depending on your business's entrance points.


These gates come in both portable and permanent options to choose from. This portable option can be setup in less than 15 minutes.



Sump Pumps


Purchasing or leasing a sump pump is another great way to protect your business. It is ideal to connect your pump to the battery backup, so it can immediately start pumping flood water during power outages. It is ideal to regularly check your backup power system to ensure that it is working properly.



Purchase Overland Flood Insurance


Overland flood insurance can help insure losses from a water-damaged business. 


The water must be caused from intrusive floodwater that enters through doors & windows or was caused by storm water, overflowing lakes, rivers or ponds.


Usually, overland flood protection is not included in a normal home insurance policy, so be sure to inquire about it with your insurance provider.



Follow these steps, and you can minimize losses to your businesses caused by flooding disasters! 


For more information on protecting your property, check out our flood blog!



Written by: Thita Sripraiwalsupakit

Pyramid sandbag flood protection diagram

How to Properly Stack Sandbags for Emergency Flooding

Stacking a Proper Sandbag Flood Barrier

 November 29, 2019


Sandbags offer simple & effective flood protection, but only if you stack them properly.
Remember, the idea of sandbagging is to divert water away your property, not to create a dam.

 
Attempting to stop the flow of water dead in its tracks is a losing battle. 


Keep that in mind when considering the angle of your sandbag barrier.  

What is the correct way to build a sandbag flood barrier? 


First, you're going to need to fill and tie a bunch of 3/4-full sandbags. 


If using sandless sandbags, you can skip this step.


Next, lay the first bag parallel to the expected flow of water and debris, then lay the next bag over the fold of the first bag so that they partially overlap with each other.  

Stamp them down firmly with your knees as you repeat the process of laying each sandbag. Compressing the sand and flattening the sandbag will create a tighter seal. 


If using sandless, self-expanding sandbags, you can skip this step. The gel-polymer in sandless sandbags automatically forms a tight seal.   
 

Pyramid-Stacking  


A single-width sandbag wall works well in most situations, but should not be stacked higher than 3 units-tall (About 1 foot in height). 


If you’re dealing with more water than that, its best to use the pyramid stacking method.


To create a pyramid berm, determine the height and length of your desired pyramid wall. 


Then use this handy tool to determine how many sandbags you need to build your wall. 


Once you've determined how many bags you need, roll up your sleeves and begin filling & tying the required number of sandbags. 


It's quite a time-consuming process, so grab 2 or 3 friends to lend you a hand. 


If using sandless sandbags, you can skip this step because these sandbags require no filling or tying.  


As mentioned before, don't aim to stop the flow of water, but rather use your sandbag wall to divert the flow of water away from your property. 


If you're working in a confined space & unable to divert the flow of water, you'll have to take extra precautions to prevent the water from pooling-up and flowing into the foundation of your home. 


To do this, you'll need a roll of polypropylene plastic:   

 
Tape the poly-plastic sheeting to climb at least two feet up the wall of the building you are trying to protect. 


Then, stack the sandbags tightly against the poly and fold the excess under the sandbags. You can also thread the poly-wrap vertically through your sandbag wall for even tighter protection. 


Once again, if using sandless sandbags, this step isn't necessary. The gel-polymer inside these sandbags forms a much tighter seal than normal sand-filled sandbags.    



Additional Tips & Tricks: 


Filling & tying sandbags is time consuming, so be proactive, have all of your dike-building supplies on hand and begin construction BEFORE the flooding occurs. 


Use this calculator to see how long does it take to fill sandbags.


Failing to build your wall in time can result in thousands of dollars in damages to your property. Use this flood water damage cost calculator to see how much.


It's not easy to predict when a flood will strike. 


If you're worried about not setting up your sandbag barrier in time, use Quik-Response self-expanding sandbags. They require no filling or tying and can be deployed in minutes by one or two individuals.  


Use polyethylene sheeting that is at least 5 mm thick.  


If your dike is going to be taller than three-feet high, you can strengthen it by digging a trench one-sandbag deep and laying your first layer of bags in the trench.  


Remove any debris between your dike and the ground before building. This will ensure a tight seal and stop water from seeping through the barrier.  



Follow these instructions and you can successfully prevent water and debris from damaging your property.


Want to know more about household water damage? 


These are 6 things that every Canadian homeowner should know. 

Flood Protection Tools:


Flood Barriers

QUIK-RESPONSE ™ Self-Expanding Sandbags


Sandbag Calculator

How many sandbags do I need to build a flood barrier?


Flood Damage Cost Calculator

How much money will flood damages cost me?  

Comparing Different Types of Sandbag Material

Quik Response sandless sandbags protecting a sliding door

What Type of Sandbag Should You Buy?

Looking to purchase sandbags to prevent flooding and to protect your property


There are many types and kinds of sandbags, each with their own strengths and weaknesses. Some sandbags have shorter longevity (lifespan) than others, and some are used for indoor or outdoor purposes. 


In this article, we focus on emergency sandbag use and how each different sandbag type compares.


Different Types of Sandbag Material

Polypropylene


Polypropylene is a surprisingly lightweight yet strong material. 


These durable circular woven polypropylene bags are UV stabilized, weaved, and sewn tightly, and provide an economical solution for flood and erosion control. 


They also work efficiently for highway barriers, including other traffic and construction applications,..


In stores, they are sold in bales of 1000, weighing about 40 pounds when filled.



Nylon


If you are looking for a strong, durable sandbag material, look into Nylon. Nylon is very strong, having a puncture-resistance up to 1200 p.s.o. It's also water-resistant, making it a great choice for indoor flood protection use.  



Burlap/ Jute


Burlap/jute bags are organic, eco-friendly, and biodegradable. Aside from being incredibly durable, this material lasts through strenuous weather conditions as well and is a go-to choice for outdoor flood protection. 


Sandbag Alternative: Self Expanding Sandbags

The Benefits Of Using Sandless Sandbags

February 29, 2020


Sandbag barriers are an effective and very-commonly used method for protecting property against flooding


In recent years, a number of alternatives to the traditional sandbag have emerged- including sandless sandbags.

 

These self-expanding, sandless sandbags utilize a polymer substance that expands in both size and mass when exposed to water. 



Why sandless sandbags are better than normal, sand-filled sandbags:


Faster Preparation Time


  • Sandbag barriers are only effective if setup BEFORE a flood. However, flooding is unpredictable and can occur extremely fast. Hauling sand, filling sandbags, and lifting heavy bags to a job-site is a lengthy process when using normal sandbags. With sandless sandbags, you simply lay the weightless bags where you want them, add water, and watch the water-activated flood barrier grow in minutes.  


Faster Deployment (6x faster)


  • Using  traditional sandbags, it takes two individuals about one-hour to fill  and place a 1' x 20' dike (Emergency Mgmt. BC). With sandless sandbags, two individuals can deploy a 1' x 20' dike in under 15 minutes.  


No Sand Required


  • Sandbags require ALOT of sand (about two tons for every 100 bags). This can be messy, difficult to transport and hard to cleanup.


Easier to Store


  • Before activation, the sandless sandbag equivalent of thousands of pounds of normal sandbags can be stored in a closet or small room.    


More Convenient


  • Sandless sandbags bags require no setup and can be deployed by one or two individuals.  


Save On Labor Costs


  • Normal sandbags require a labor force for setup (filling bags with sand) and deployment. Sandless sandbags require no setup and can be deployed by one or two individuals.  


Save On Transportation Costs


  • Using a single pickup truck, the Quik-Response sandless sandbag equivalent of 11,000 lbs of traditional sandbags can be transported easily to a job-site.  

 


These are some of the main  benefits of using sandless sandbags over normal, sand-filled sandbags for flood protection barriers. 


Looking to protect your property from flooding? 


Identify and protect these 6 areas of your home NOW. 

Flood Protection Tools:


Flood Barriers

QUIK-RESPONSE ™ Self-Expanding Sandbags

Sandbag Calculator

How many sandbags do I need to build a flood barrier?

Flood Damage Cost Calculator

How much money will flood damages cost me?  

SHOULD YOU PRE-ACTIVATE SANDLESS SANDBAGS?

Quik-Response Self-Expanding Sandbags how to activate infographic

SHOULD YOU PRE-ACTIVATE YOUR QUIK-RESPONSE SANDLESS SANDBAGS? And How?

"Is it necessary to pre-activate my Quik-Response Self-Expanding Sandbags or can I use the floodwater?"


It's one the of the most common questions we receive. 


The answer?


It depends.


In most cases, we certainly recommend that you pre-activate your Quik-response Self-Expanding Sandbags.


Why?


A flood barrier is only effective if it is set up BEFORE the flooding occurs. 


Remember, the whole purpose of building a flood protection dike is to divert water away from your property, so it makes sense to have the barrier setup beforehand. 


If left un-activated, there is no guarantee that the floodwater won't simply carry-away the un-activated units. It's not certain that this would happen, but why even risk the water damages to your home?


If you don't have time to fully activate your units, you can also partially activate Quik-Response. 


This takes anywhere from 30 seconds to 1 minute and will allow Quik-Response to gain enough mass so that it wont be swept away by the flood current. 


Then, the bags will continue to grow as they are subjected to more and more floodwater. This can be especially convenient in flash flood scenarios and other instances where time is of the essence. 


One thing to consider when partially-activating your Quik-response units is to consider the magnitude of the impending flood. 


Always activate Quik-Response to a mass large enough that they wont be swept away by the floodwater. 


Instances when pre-activation is not necessary: 


In some flood situations, such as internal basement flooding, you can use un-activated Quik-Response bags to absorb water. 


You can also place un-activated units under pipes to act as an absorbent mat should any leakage occur.


These instances aside, we recommend that you always activate (or at least partially-activate) your Quik-Response Self-Expanding Sandbags. 


How To Preactivate a Quik-Response Sandbag

Remember, QUIK-RESPONSE is activated by the presence of water. 


Pre-activate your units in the following ways:


Submerge bags in water for 3-5 minutes. (Recommended)


Flooding often occurs near rivers, lakes & coasts.


You can use this water to pre-activate your Quik-Response units. 


If at home, use a Tupperware tote or any other basin filled with a few gallons of water. 


Hose down bags until fully expanded


Most of us have a hose or water spout located outside of our homes. Hosing down Quik-Response takes a little longer than the submersing the bags, but it is one of the most convenient methods . 


Simply turn on your hose and evenly wet each unit of Quik-Response until complete activation is achieved. 


If a sufficient amount is available, use on-site floodwater to activate bags


As mentioned before, if using this method, be sure that there is a sufficient amount of water present for the bags to activate and the flood current isn't strong enough to carry away the un-activated units. 


Remember, proactive preparations is key for successully protecting a proeprty from flooding.


Likewise, a flood barrier is only effective if it is built in-place BEFORE the flooding occurs.



Follow the above steps and pre-activate your Quik-Response sandless sandbags!

Quik-Response sandbags advertisement

THE DO'S AND DON'T(S) OF QUIK- RESPONSE SANDLESS SANDBAGS

How to Properly Use Sandless Sandbags for Flood Protection

Quik-Response self-expanding sandbags are one of the most innovative flood barriers on the market. 


Whether you're a current Quik-Response user or are looking for more information about Quik-Response, this post will go over some of the things you should and should not do with your sandless sandbags!



Quik-Response Do's


Pre-activate units before stacking


  • When building a Quik-Response sandbag flood barrier, it's important that you soak them in water BEFORE the flood water approaches. Why? If you don't pre-activate the floodbags, you cant guarantee that a successful and effective flood barrier will form. The safest and guaranteed method is to have the sandbag flood barrier in place BEFORE the flooding starts.   


Follow proper stacking procedures when using Quik-Response sandbags 



Build your emergency flood barrier at an angle 


  • The purpose of sandbagging is to divert water away your property, not to create a dam. Keep that in mind when considering the angle of your sandbag barrier. 


Store Quik-Response in it's original packaging


  • Keeping the floodbags away from moisture and humidity will ensure a long shelf life. 


On unsealed/porous surfaces, use polyethylene sheeting that is at least 5 mm thick 


  • This not only protects the ground surface, but will also help form a tighter seal against the flood water.   



Quik-Response Don't(s)


When it comes to floods, don't procrastinate


  • Quik-Response allows users to react extremely quickly to emergency flooding, but only if the user is equipped prior to the flooding. Utilize Quik-Response's convenient storage ability and keep some in your closet, in your car or in your garage.  


Don't cut open the Quik-Response bag


  • If you cut the sandless sandbag open, the self-expanding gel-polymer inside will ooze out. Quik-Response self-expanding sandbags are extremely durable, so unless you intentionally cut it open with a knife, the bag wont break.


Don't stack Quik-Response vertically


  • As mentioned before, you should not stack sandbags directly on top of each other. Instead practice pyramid sandbag stacking. It's the most effective and solid way to make a flood barrier.



Pretty straightforward, right? 


Follow these rules, and you'll effectively protect your property from emergency floodwater damages with Quik-Response Self-Expanding Sandbags.

Flood Protection Tools:


Flood Barriers

QUIK-RESPONSE ™ Self-Expanding Sandbags

Sandbag Calculator

How many sandbags do I need to build a flood barrier?

Flood Damage Cost Calculator

How much money will flood damages cost me?  

Additional Flood-related Guides

Complete Canadian Flood Guide

Complete Flood Prevention Guide

Complete Flood Prevention Guide

Complete Flood Prevention Guide

Complete Flood Prevention Guide

Complete Flood Prevention Guide

The Complete Flood Safety Guide

Complete Flood Prevention Guide

The Complete Flood Safety Guide

Canadian Flood Insurance Guide

Flood-Related Infographics & Explainers

The Complete Flood Safety Guide

Flood-Related Infographics & Explainers

Flood-Related Infographics & Explainers

Flood-Related Infographics & Explainers