AVERAGE COST OF BASEMENT FLOODING CLEANUP
How much does it cost to clean up basement flooding? There are many factors that go into determining the price. One of the most significant of these is the cause.
If your basement floods, the cause is usually one of two things:
Flood or rainwater entering your home either through a crack in the foundation, backed up drains, or sump pump malfunction
Sewage or other waste either backing up or leaking from pipes
The two are very different in terms of their implications for the cost of cleaning up, due to the fact that the cleaner the water is, the easier and cheaper it is to clean up. We go more in-depth on assessing the type of water and its effects below.
The cost is also determined by the volume of liquid that has flooded the basement as well as the extent of the damage – whether the liquid has permeated into the walls, damaged electrical equipment, or burst pipes – which naturally has implications on the final bill.
This guide will walk you through the determining factors and give you an idea of what to expect when paying for a flooded basement cleanup.
BASEMENT FLOODING CLEANUP COST
Overall, the cost of cleaning up a flooded basement will be between $450 and $7,000, although if you require a new drainage system or the liquid contains toxic materials, the final cost can go as high as $10,000 (or beyond).
An important determining factor is the depth of the liquid. For example, for clean water an inch deep, you can expect to pay between $500 and $1,500 to clean it up.
PRICE PER SQUARE FOOT
|1||$3.75 - $7|
|10||$37.75 - $70|
|100||$375 - $700|
|500||$1,875 - $3,500|
|1,000||$3,750 - $7,000|
Basement Flooding Calculator
Calculate how much you’ll pay for flooded basement restoration based on the square footage of the affected area.
BREAKING DOWN THE PRICE
Generally, the price above (and quotes from professionals) will include things like labor, call out fees for coming to your house, and equipment. However, breaking down the cost will give you a sense of where you can save money if you decide to do some or all of the project yourself.
The cost for labor depends on the area you live, although generally, you are likely to pay $70-$200 per hour for a professional to come and work in your home.
Call Out Fee
Most professionals will charge a call out fee for an emergency. This fee is usually $50-$100.
QUICK AVERAGE PRICE BREAKDOWN
|Labor||$70 - $200 / hr|
|Call Out Fee||$50 - $100|
|Material Costs||$50 - $5,000|
|TOTAL||$450 - $7,000|
TYPE OF WATER
What Cleanup Involves
BLUE WATER: water that comes from pipes, faucets, and so on (i.e. water that you use in drinking or bathing).
The extent of the damage is moisture.
You will need to pump out the water and dry out the basement.
$500 - $1,500
GRAY WATER: stemming from appliances like a washing machine or a dishwasher.
The water will contain detergents and other materials that may be harmful.
Pumping out the water, drying out the basement, and cleaning up to ensure the removal of hazardous materials.
$3,000 - $5,000
BLACK WATER: from sewage backups or river flooding, which may contain toxic materials.
The water contains extremely hazardous materials.
Pumping out the water, drying out the basement, and a deep-clean of the space to ensure that the area is disinfected. In some cases, all permeable material needs to be replaced.
The first thing to assess is the level of damage. Depending on how badly your basement is flooded (and, as the chart above shows, with what is has been flooded) the costs will vary significantly.
Minimal damage with clean water.
Moderate damage with clean water, or minimal damage with gray water.
Extreme damage with clean or gray water or any damage with black water.
In addition to the above, the following may be required:
HOW TO SAVE MONEY
CALL YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY
The first way to save money is to speak to your insurance company. If you have the required homeowner’s insurance or flood insurance, then you may have the full cost of the cleanup covered. In general, your first call should be to your insurance company – they may have required providers for the work.
DO IT YOURSELF
Another way to save money is to do the work yourself. Assuming you are able to do this – and if your basement is flooded with black water, you can’t – you can expect to pay around $1,500 for pumping and drying equipment. In addition, the process will take between four and six days to be fully complete.
PORTABLE UTILITY PUMP RENTAL
Renting a portable utility pump will cost between $75 and $250, and a large diameter discharge hose will cost $50-$100. If you’re really intent on cutting costs, you can use a standard garden hose, although this will take longer, and potentially lead to the water permeating more of the walls of the basement.
Purchasing a portable utility pumps can cost $70-$250 each, with about another $50-$100 for a large-diameter discharge hose to direct the water out of the basement (some pumps can be connected to a garden hose, but the smaller diameter hose means the pumping will take longer).
To rent a dehumidifier, they typically rent by the day or offer a discounted rate for the week. For a large, professional-grade 18-gallon (144 pint) model, you can expect to pay around $200 for a week, or $50 per day (it’s likely you’ll need at least four days’ worth of work, so a weekly option will work out cheaper).
If you would prefer to purchase rather than rent, a standard dehumidifier that dehumidifies around 70 pints per day costs around $200-$300. Check out our Best Dehumidifiers for Basements guide for a more in-depth look at the top humidifiers available today. For a professional-level dehumidifier, you can expect to pay $800-$1,200. However, in most cases, this will be included in the cost of a professional’s cleanup work.
TAKE ON THE EASY STUFF
There are other, smaller jobs you can do to cut down the time the flood cleanup team needs to be at your house, thus cutting down the overall cost (since you’ll not be paying someone an hourly rate to do it).
The key caveat here is that you should not do any of the below if it is not safe, or you suspect it is not safe to do. If in doubt, leave it for the professionals.
Here are some things you can do yourself:
Turn off the power
Work out the source of the flood
Remove curtains and other upholstery and leave them outside to dry
WHAT YOU DON'T NEED TO PAY FOR
If your basement has been flooded with blue (or clean) water, you may not need to pay for a cleanup service after the water has been removed. In the four to six days that the humidifier is running, you can clean the hard surfaces of your basement ourself, using regular cleaning materials from your home.
TO CLEAN A HARD SURFACE AFTER FLOODING, USE THE FOLLOWING STEPS:
Clean walls and other surfaces
Use cleaner or detergent.
Clean areas once again with a disinfectant
This will prevent mold or mildew growth. For this, use can make your own solution using ½ cup of chlorine bleach in 1 gallon of water. If the area requiring disinfectant is large, you can use a garden pump and spray your bleach solution onto the surfaces.
Let it air dry
The dehumidifier will help with this, but also bring in fans and ventilate the area.
However, if mold has already begun to grow then you will likely need professional mold removal. This is especially true if you have any young children, elderly, or individuals with weakened immune systems living in the house and you cannot afford the risk of leaving any mold remnants behind to be continually inhaled by these vulnerable people.
Overall, there are a number of mitigating factors that will shape the cost of your basement cleanup.
If nothing else, the dramatic variance in prices should show the benefits of a good homeowner’s policy. Even with a fairly small flood, the costs can really add up.