Houston Flood Mitigators

Flood Mitigators Logo, a landscape drainage contractor in Houston, TX

Safety Tips & FAQ

If you have further questions, call today and request an inspection with Flood Mitigators, a Houston drainage contractor at +1(281)-849-1082.

How do I prepare for a flood?

Regardless if you are our customer or not, we hope to provide helpful information and resourceful references to prepare for the next natural disaster as much as possible, to keep your family and property safe.

If you are unsure if you already have coverage for flooding, it is imperative that you clarify this with your existing provider. It is always better to confirm that your home is insured for floods, rather than making the assumption it will be covered under an existing policy.

  1. Get a FLOOD insurance policy. If you do not already have this coverage, you can purchase a policy by directly contacting a local provider in your area, or from the FloodSmart list. All flood insurance policies are price set and backed by the National Flood Insurance Program through the U.S Federal Government/FEMA, regardless of which provider it was purchased from.
  2. Know your flood risk. It is critical to have a thorough understanding of the risk exposure for your property. If you are unsure of this, you can use the FEMA Flood Map Service Center to lookup your address and review the details regarding the imminent dangers of flooding in your area.
  3. Take household inventory. Take photos and videos of all major household items and valuables. Retain these documents in a safe place such that if you ever have to file a claim, there is evidence of what was lost. This also includes keeping critical documents digitized or in a safe (and dry) location, such as birth certificates, medical records, insurance papers, etc. For more details, please review the NFIP Understanding Flood Loss Avoidance preparatory document, or visit their website at floodsmart.gov


  4. Build an Emergency Kit. This should contain essential items like potable water, non-perishable food, portable batteries, a flashlight, and medicine. A guide for a full kit can be found on the Ready.gov website.
  5. Avoid contact with flood water, but DO NOT shelter in the attic. In the unfortunate event where water gets into your home, it is imperative that you preserve yourself and your loved ones by staying on high ground, and avoiding contact with flood water if possible. The attic should be avoided in all circumstances as there would be no point of exist if there is excessive flooding. The other dangers of coming into contact with storm water include, but are not limited to: potential electrocution, waterborne diseases, and risk of falling or possibly drowning. Always use extreme caution in these circumstances and stay away from storm water by any means necessary.

Causes of Water Stagnation

  • Grading. If your home is negatively graded, then you’re at a higher risk of foundation damage, as rainwater will flow down toward your home instead of away from it. This is a consequence of natural topography that may have changed dramatically since your home was constructed.

  • Neighbor Runoff. Your neighbors may not be intentionally draining rainwater into your property, but poor design and outdated building methods may be affecting your property now.
  • Soil Permeability. Another cause of standing water in your yard could be the density of the dirt. Hard, compact soils and heavy, sticky clay soils are less absorbent and prevent surface water from seeping into the ground.

    Unfortunately, 90% of Houston properties have clay soil, which makes permeability almost impossible, and as a result, it leads to even more flooding.

  • Hard subsoil. Hardpan is a thick layer of impervious subsoil. Hardpan can be naturally occurring, or it can be the result of construction equipment densely compacting yards and lawns that are then topped with a layer of topsoil, disguising the issue. Once water percolates down to the hardpan, it has nowhere else to go and begins pooling.

HFM System Benefits

  • Our system can be installed in new construction or added to existing structures, making it a versatile option for homeowners.

  • Our system is an effective solution for reducing flooding and risk of water damage to your property. It redirects water away from your foundation, preventing soil erosion and foundation damage.

  • HFM Drainage Systems is cost-effective and requires minimal maintenance with an average lifespan of our of system being 10-15 years.

  • Every system is customized to fit the layout of your
    property and can be installed regardless of soil type.

  • Our system is inherently Eco friendly solution for managing water runoff and reducing the risk of flooding.

  • Our system is aesthetically pleasing as we leave minimal detection of our presence on the landscape.

Standing Water Health Risks

  • Insects: Various bugs like mosquitoes find pools of stagnant water as an ideal breeding ground to magnify population growth, and risk of carrying diseases like West Nile virus, Malaria, Zika virus, and Encephalitis.
  • Algae: There is a high risk of algae blooming in pooling water, and some types of algae can produce harmful toxins, which pollutes local air quality.
  • Vermin: Rodents like rats, mice, and possums are attracted to standing water for nesting and watering holes. This increases the possibility of diseases from animals to humans.

  • Mold: Standing water saturates the floors and walls, this, in turn, can create support mold growth. Involvement of sewage or other contaminants in stagnant water catalyzes the possibility of mold growth. For instance, under favorable conditions and with clean water, mold requires a maximum of 72 hours to thrive. However, if contaminants are involved, it can thrive in 24 hours.
  • Bacteria: Large pools of water make the perfect ecosystem for pathogens such as E.coli, waterborne viruses, and other bacteria that can cause severe illnesses for humans and pets alike.

Critical Property Damage

  • Foundational Damage. Water can quickly compromise the structure of your home, leading to costly repairs that exceed tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars.

    A crack in the foundation can turn out to be deadly with a condition like standing water. Water can easily sweep in and the damage can go unnoticed until its too late. This is something that can seriously affect the structure of your property.

  • Electrical Damage. Water can short-circuit electrical systems, leading to electrical fires and other related hazards.
  • Appliance Damage. Flooding can also damage electrical appliances and equipment, leading to costly replacements or repairs
  • Flooring Damage. Floodwater can damage flooring such as carpet, hardwood, and tile. Water can cause warping, cracking, and other forms of damage, leading to extremely costly damage. Stagnant water can slowly but definitely dissolve and deteriorate drywall, flooring, carpeting and cabinets.

Frequently Asked Questions

Each system installation is bespoke to address the specific problem areas on your property through strategic placement of drainages, a cohesive end-to-end network of pvc and a high capacity sump pump capable of moving a minimum of 100,000 gallons of water per day on average. Optionally, this can be increased up to 500,000 gallons per day depending on the unique size and severity of drainage problems at each property.

The temporary excavation that is required to install the hybrid system is limited to the necessary trench (~100 feet on average) to fit the pvc network (between 1-4 feet deep), and the containment basin for the sump pump to sit in. HFM will maintain a neat and orderly working area throughout the entirety of the project, and restore the original condition of the landscape as close to the original state as possible. For example, we will cut out and set aside the top layer of grass in square patches such that there is no noticeable difference after installation. Any damage to the landscaping as a result of installation is an accepted risk of the customer in order to have a performant and reliable flood mitigation system. HFM’s goal is to minimize the impact the installation has on the aesthetics of your lawn.

The recommended maintenance for our systems is once every 6 months, or at least twice a year where all drainage points are checked for blockages, the sump pump is recalibrated, and an end-to-end test is performed to ensure water is being moved at an optimal level. This also allows for a routine inspection and identifying issues that were not previously known so that they can be rapidly addressed during the same visit. Such maintenance can take anywhere between 30 minutes to a few hours depending on the gravity of the situation.

Our system is strategically designed to have an exit point that is closest to the street or public infrastructure, such that it is joined with the downstream drainage channels where all unwanted water should be displaced. This is already a natural process that happens over time, our system is simply optimizing the efficiency in moving larger amounts of water in a shorter period of time, and reduces the risk of damage during intense weather conditions such as flash flooding and torrential rain.

Our standard installations come with a dual-switch 3/4 HP sump pump which has a 115V single phase power requirement, this makes sure that the system has the output capacity required for high throughput performance. As such, electricity to the main basin will be required. Any system which does not include a powered force to displace the water will have inferior performance that will be solely dependent on gravity, which by definition is a french drain, which is for casual use cases only (not storm-graded, or designed to be used during intense weather).

To clarify, there is no product or service that will PREVENT flooding, only to REDUCE the risk and MITIGATE it as much as possible. The key to our systems is preparation through a high capacity flood mitigation system that remains reliable through the toughest conditions, which will perpetually reduce the risk of flood damage in 95% of scenarios. The only limiting conditions would be a complete loss of power and functionality at the worst possible time, or an Act of God that could severely limit, or completely halt system performance.

Since properties with a flood mitigation system are exposed to significantly less risk of damage, they tend to have a substantially higher market value than properties that have no flood mitigation at all, or inferior solutions to drainage issues. This will vary based on several variables unique to each property, average increase of property value is around 10-15% within the first few years.

It is important to consult a licensed electrician for the best solutions for power redundancy as our scope of work only covers the system itself from end-to-end (from the first drainage deposit point, through the output near the street). It is important to note that in our system’s bare-bones functionality, it is configured to function as a french drain when there is a complete loss of power, which will use gravity as the primary force to displace water. In this situation, water will continue to flow out through the system as designed, but at a much slower pace, until power is restored to the pump. In addition, there are optional enhancements that can be made to the system which involve a battery powered temporary back-up, outlet fail-overs, and water-pressure based redundancy, which can continue to maintain system performance for a limited time, during such scenarios. Even in the absolute worst possible scenario, the system will never drop to 0 output (unless it becomes obstructed, at which point, that will need to be addressed through a service call with one of our drainage experts.

HFM adheres to all local regulations and laws regarding appropriate licensure, insurance and expertise. All projects begin with a mandatory assessment through 811, which is the national service for marking critical lines that are already buried. This helps us plan around existing lines such that our digging is swift, precise and tamed to only what is required for installation. All of our digging is done by the committed manual labor of our crew, which adds an additional layer of caution through the digging and installation process such to not cause any damage. We always include this as a precursor check requirement on all projects before beginning installation. Currently no permits are required for the installation of our system in either Harris County or the Greater Houston Metropolitan Area.

All new installations come with a limited 2-year parts & labor warranty to ensure it will perform reliably when it is needed the most. After this time, customers have the option to extend the warranty on a year by year basis for a nominal fee to extend this coverage should the system ever need to be repaired. While not required, extending the warranty is recommended just in case any servicing is needed well after the initial period. This will cost less to the customer than needing to call for service on a system with expired coverage (and therefore becomes the customer’s out-of-pocket expense to cover both parts & labor for repair).

Installing one of our systems is significantly less costly and less invasive than both alternatives. A standard flood mitigation system installation of 100 linear feet takes approximately 2 business days to complete from start to finish. Comparatively, the time and resources required to install a flood barrier that works as intended, or elevating the property high enough to evade high waters are exponentially higher. Ultimately, all options are deterrents to flooding, as nothing can guarantee flood prevention, or a complete elimination of flood risk; all are different examples of preemptive measures to reduce impact.

With routine maintenance and care, the lifespan of a newly installed HFM Hybrid System is between 10-15 years. After this time has lapsed, it is recommended to do a like for like replacement of technological components, the sump pump and the central catch basin. Most of the PVC network should still be intact and reusable, but may need to be readjustment where its buried to ensure ongoing optimal performance.

All HFM Drainage Systems are bespoke and specifically crafted to the unique needs of your property. We only use the best quality materials and parts available in all installations, such that each part is standardized for maximum performance and expedited maintenance if and when necessary.

Warranty on all parts & labor for the two years, after this period, the homeowner has the option to extend service coverage year-to-year for a nominal fee.

It takes approximately 16-20 hours to complete a 100 foot system installation, which breaks down to a 1-2 day turnaround for most projects. Please note, this estimate varies depending on system complexity, length, and geographic location of your property. Larger and more complex projects will naturally take more time to install correctly. Our top priority is to ensure the system will function at maximum capacity in the situations that it is needed most.

Due to the nature of our business, and need for careful planning, preparation and execution; the balance for completing the project must be paid in full, ahead of the scheduled installation date. At this time, we do not offer any financing, but we do accept all major forms of payment including cash, credit cards, and checks. If financing is needed, the customer is at liberty to explore third-party options to pay for the project.

The scope of our responsibility is LIMITED from the beginning, where water drains into our system, all the way through the output where water is disposed of. This does not include landscaping or electrical, as such it is the customer’s responsibility to ensure that a conduit is made available for our system for proper burial of electrical wire. If direct power is not available at the time of installation, our team will demonstrate functionality after installation through a temporary generator, extension cord, or anything else that may be needed to prove the efficacy of our system before project closure.

Yes, all HFM systems are a custom design with the optimal drainage system based on the property’s exact measurements and specifications to maximize water displacement and eliminate water stagnation, pooling of water, and other major areas of risk.

About 5 years without ANY maintenance and over 10 years with recommended maintenance

All standard configurations come with a minimum output of 100,000 gallons every 24 hours, which is equivalent to 250 days of water consumption for an average family consuming 400 gallons of water per day, or roughly 20% of all gallons in an Olympic sized swimming pool

Reduction of direct flood risk to the property by at least 30%, and on average over 50%

The potential ROI is an increase in property value, limited risk exposure to storm water, and a decrease in insurance premiums due to the displacement capacity of the HFM Drainage System. Having the system installed dramatically reduces the overall risk of flood damage to your property now, and in the future.

Are you ready for the next storm?

Contact us to stay prepared, and ahead of disaster risk

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