Sometimes homeowners experience flooding or sewer odor in their basements. This may be caused by a broken or obstructed sewer line, or by unusually heavy rainfall. We can help you identify the causes of these problems.
Please remember that homeowners are responsible for all repairs on their property. Department of Public Utilities (DPU) is responsible for all repairs within the public right of way or sewer easement.
What to do if your basement floods
Have an Inspection
You should contact a private licensed sewer cleaner check the line to determine where the obstruction is located. The City of Toledo is responsible for all cleaning and repairs within the public right of way or sewer easement. If there is an obstruction between the main sewer line and the home, it is the homeowners' responsibility. If there is a break between the right of way or sewer easement and the home, the homeowner is responsible for repairs. Obstructions can be cleared by the homeowner, a licensed sewer tapper, a licensed sewer cleaner, or a licensed plumber. Repairs can be made by a licensed sewer contractor only.
Report the Problem
If the problem is determined to be in the public right of way or sewer easement, contact Engage Toledo to make a report. A Public Utilities field worker will come out during normal business hours to inspect the main sewer line.
As soon as the flood waters recede, steps should be taken to clean and recondition the area. United Way's 211 program has cleaning kits available.
- Wear boots and gloves.
- Remove debris.
- Clean floors and walls with soap and warm water.
- Go back over affected areas with a mixture of 1 tablespoon vinegar, 1 cup bleach, 1 gallon of water, then rinse.
- Throw out any food exposed.
Evacuate (if needed)
In extreme cases, you may be forced to evacuate your home. Before returning, be sure to take the following steps.
- Turn off main power switches and unplug appliances until they can be inspected by a qualified electrician.
- Check your fuel or gas system, including pilot lights and burners, for leaks or breaks.
- Follow the cleaning protocol described above for all affected areas.
Apply for Basement Flooding Grant
If it's necessary to purchase and install corrective measures to prevent future flooding issues, you can apply for a grant to help offset the cost. The grant program does not cover water coming in around the basement walls or immediate relief from flooding issues. See more information about the basement flooding grant program.