How to protect your home from flooding

Flooding is, unfortunately, unavoidable for some homes in the UK. Whether homes are situated near a body of water prone to overflowing, or surface water and poor drainage are the issues, water can permeate our doors and windows with ease.

If your building does suffer from flood damage, Speedy has all of the equipment you’d need to ensure you get rid of the water and get your home back to the dry, sanitary home previously.

You can hire water pumps, dehumidifiers, and carpet dryers from us, available to order online and from over 200 depots nationwide.

But there are also steps you can take when furnishing your home to ensure the clean-up is as smooth and easy as possible, and the water causes little damage. You can even try to take steps to prevent water from entering your home.

If your home is in a high-risk flood area, it could be worth taking note of the below.


Home improvements ideas if your home is at risk of flooding


  1. Use permeable outdoor surfaces

If you have paving or concrete outside for paths and driveways, choose permeable materials which will allow the water to get away.

A lot of flooding, especially in new build estates or city centres, is caused by high amounts of surface water which is not able to get away.

There are loads of options out there now, from traditional gravel to permeable pavers which look like real stone. You can also get permeable grass. Avoid artificial grass, as everything sits on the surface.


  1. Limit carpet

While we do have carpet dryers and carpet cleaners available, it can be difficult work to clean and dry an entire floor of carpet over multiple rooms.

Rugs are a good alternative to carpets, as they can be moved. Choose a ceramic tile with waterproof adhesive for kitchens, dining rooms and storage rooms.

You can then use a steam cleaner to properly sanitise these surfaces, too.

Also, consider a runner on stairs, or even leaving them completely uncarpeted.

If you do want to risk carpet, choose something low pile which will be easier to dry out. You can also buy moisture-resistant underlay, although be prepared to need to replace it.


  1. Choose the correct kitchen cabinets

Kitchen cabinets with raised legs rather than traditional bases are a good idea. This way, water damage will be kept to a minimum, and water will be able to escape as there’s nowhere to hide.

It is still sensible to choose solid wood, plastic, or stainless-steel cabinets, however. You may also wish to store food in higher wall cabinets, and just keep the ground-level cabinets for food preparation.


  1. Use lime plaster, not gypsum plaster

It is probably common sense to not wallpaper lower ground floors which are at risk of flooding, but below the decorative paint is also important.

Lime plaster allows the building to breathe. It is commonly used in older properties, especially from the Victorian era. Moisture can escape and will be able to evaporate, causing little damage to walls.

Hire a dehumidifier, and your walls can dry out in no time.

Gypsum plaster is, unfortunately, the most common form, however, so you might struggle to find someone who can use lime plaster. There are breathable alternatives out there though, so ask around.


  1. Think about your electrics

While this could mean a rewiring of your house, it will be beneficial if the worst does happen.

  • Raise electrical sockets at least 1.5m off the ground
  • Separate your upper and lower-floor electrical circuits
  • Put appliances on raised plinths
  • Ensure wiring for TVs and other moveable appliances are always neat and tidy
  • Know where the electrics can be turned off and on

The above will allow you to save your expensive electricals, and also still use the upper floor of your property.

If you do need to make any electrical changes to your home, contact a qualified electrician to do the work.


  1. Choose flood-resistant doors and windows

Front and back doors can be flood resistant; they’re often UPVC or composite, and completely watertight. If you have a garage, it is worth looking into watertight doors here too.

UPVC windows are also a better choice than traditional wood, as they won’t get damp and are easier to clean.

SPEEDY TOP TIP: Also check your property for airbricks or vents. Air brick covers can be fitted, which react to rising water

If you can’t replace your doors and windows, opt for a flood barrier. Store them so they can easily be reached, or you may choose to permanently fit some to your doorframes. They’re easier to use than sandbags and can be reused.




Yes. Speedy Hire, the UK's leading tool hire company, has a range of flood recovery products available for hire, including:

Speedy has more than 200 service centres across the nation, hire counters in selected B&Qs and nationwide 4-hour delivery, flood product hire has never been easier.

We also have everything you’ll need if you need to clean and redecorate after flooding, from PPE and other consumables to paint sprayers.


Speedy in your pocket
Get a Speedy Account