What's the worst that can happen to a drumkit...in a flooded basement?

neeboy

Junior Member
I am moving into a house with a nice finished basement soon....but it IS a basement. What is the worst that can happen to a drumkit if the basement floods? I finally have some nicer drums at this point in my life, and I'm trying to plan for the WORST. A homebuilt riser is an option, but the ceiling is only 7 feet, and I'd rather not feel TOO confined. I'm also considering keeping the bass drums on a storage shelf when not in use. Thanks for any info/advice!
 

Ghostin one

Senior Member
The plies could swell and separate, ruining the drums.

If a flooding situation is caught immediately, just dry them off as best as you can and make sure they can dry completely.

If it happens while you're away, they could be ruined.

Make sure the sump pump works, and has a backup, preferably with a different power supply (e.g. battery or generator)

A house could be prone to flooding at different times of the year, so you could plan accordingly (hurricane season versus spring snow melt, etc.)
 

Tamaefx

Silver Member
My drumkit stays in my basement, I'm not scared of any flooding. Basement is dry and heated in winter time. I thought about building a riser, but it would be a pain.
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
Keep a dehumidifier in there. Basements, even finished ones, can get very damp and dank if not maintained. A dehumidifier will help not only your drums, but also your air quality if its keeping things like mold and mildew from forming.
 

MntnMan62

Junior Member
The worst that can happen? The basement floods and the drums end up sitting in water, for days. By the time they are found, the shells completely delaminate, flop apart and you are left with rusted rims and lugs and flat pieces of wet plywood. That's the worst.

But seriously, you should determine if there is a history of actual water penetration into that basement. If not, then just make sure you have a dehumidifier running to maintain a consistent level of humidity, around 45. If there is a history of water in that basement, consider doing some water proofing measures like a french drain, sump pump, sealing the exterior of the foundation (which would require digging the entire perimeter of the home). Since it's a basement, you'll always want a dehumidifer down there even after waterproofing. But that doesn't mean you can't keep your drums in the basement. I've had my Slingerland Stage Band kit in my parent's basement and my basement for most of their 45 year existence. They are in almost prisitine condition. Just be smart about what you do.
 

rebonn

Senior Member
My Shut off valve broke in 2 and started flooding the basement with all kinds of studio equipment and drums. luckily, I was on my way home when it happened and was able to turn the water off and not much if any damage occurred other than a new evans genera dry snare head pardon the pun was in the floor. I just let it dry out and it's still on a kit. I dried everything off and moved it all out. I need to put the pressure reducing valve out by the meter so the pressure isn't so high coming into the basement and replace the pipe that's in the basement with some new pipe. It's my next project.
 

someguy01

Well-known member
I actually run a humidifier as high humidity 'round these parts is about 20%. On average it's about 6%
 

Lee-Bro

Senior Member
I have been through this, several times.

I came home after an out-of-town weekend to a foot of water in my basement. I had two drumsets down there, and they weren't set up, meaning all the drums were on the floor.

I was literally pouring water out of the shells. The two drumsets in questions: 1990 Tama Granstar II, 7ply 9mm birch, and my 2005 DW Collector's Maple kit. I pulled heads off all the drums along w/ the hardware that had been submerged -on the Tama, it was all the lugs since they are 1-piece.

I towel dried everything, including the heads I stood all the shells up vertically so there wouldn't be horizontal weight pressure. There were spacers under the shell edges for air flow I had two fans blowing air across the shells for two days.

I was fortunate that the basement flood must've happened in a relatively close time to when I came home as the shells ended up not being saturated, did not experience warping, staining, or ply separation. You can't even tell these drums were under water.

Had it been a prolonged submersion, I have a feeling I wouldn't have been so lucky.
 

Lee-Bro

Senior Member
We ended up having a perimeter drain & sump system installed along w/ a channel in the center.

I can't tell you how relieving it is to hear water draining into a sump basin and then being discharged outside rather than hearing the sound of my Shop-Vac or a pool pump running in my basement.

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cbphoto

Gold Member
Keep a dehumidifier in there. Basements, even finished ones, can get very damp and dank if not maintained. A dehumidifier will help not only your drums, but also your air quality if its keeping things like mold and mildew from forming.
I had my drums in a 120 year-old basement that flooded about once a year. Fans circulating the air plus two dehumidifiers (drained by a hose!) really helped.
 

Superman

Gold Member
A lot can happen..and none of it good. I'd build a stage or use pallets to get them off the ground. At least that will buy you a few inches
 

Thin Shell

Well-known member
Flooding from a burst pipe is something to worry about. It is a good idea to figure out where all of the water pipes run above and not place your drums under any pipes. If your house is older, this is more of a concern. I had a galvanized pipe develop a pinhole one day. Fortunately it was in the shop and nothing got damaged and the floor drain was almost directly below it. Freezing pipes in the winter is also a cause of burst pipes. I have a 1 foot riser with 7 foot ceilings and my drums stay setup on it. I am not terribly tall so it isn't a problem, but even if I were tall enough, I still think it is worth it.You would have to be a giant for it to be a problem while seated. I also have several water alarms placed in strategic locations as I get some water in a few spots it we get a lot of rain over a couple of weeks.
 

Rotarded

Senior Member
Been there twice. Got lucky both times because I had my bass drums up on rubbermaid bins once in prep for a vacation, and I had built a 6 inch "stage", and put my other kit on my portable riser, after the first time.

I'd recommend, at minimum:
Check the sump pump. Make sure there is no debris that can affect the float.
Also if your sump is older than 2 years old, replace it.
Battery back-up, on maintenance charger, for your sump pump (power outage safety)
Alarm, via bluetooth, that will warn you when the water is rising in your sump above the limit of the sump float.
Dehumidifier
Kits/drums not currently being used placed on shelves.
And of course, make sure your insurance will cover damage.
 

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neeboy

Junior Member
WOW thanks very much for all the replies :cool: There is a battery backup for the sump, and the house is on the very outer periphery of the county's sewer system, which i'm told s should lower the chance of a backup. I also did realize i should maybe have a tarp/canopy over the top of everything to address any issue of pipes in the ceiling misbehaving.
 

Spreggy

Silver Member
Been there twice. Got lucky both times because I had my bass drums up on rubbermaid bins once in prep for a vacation, and I had built a 6 inch "stage", and put my other kit on my portable riser, after the first time.

I'd recommend, at minimum:
Check the sump pump. Make sure there is no debris that can affect the float.
Also if your sump is older than 2 years old, replace it.
Battery back-up, on maintenance charger, for your sump pump (power outage safety)
Alarm, via bluetooth, that will warn you when the water is rising in your sump above the limit of the sump float.
Dehumidifier
Kits/drums not currently being used placed on shelves.
And of course, make sure your insurance will cover damage.
Excellent post. Let's highlight that last line.

And of course, make sure your insurance will cover damage.
And of course, make sure your insurance will cover damage.
And of course, make sure your insurance will cover damage.


If you're not calling your agent a couple times a year to check your coverages, you're probably absorbing some exposure and leaving money on the table.
 

Bozozoid

Well-known member
You might be thinking....damn it..i knew! I should have got those Tempus fiberglass drums!. You can fish your bass drum out of your swimming pool that your jealous girlfriend tossed in there and be OK. TEMPUS..one step ahead of the flood.
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
You might be thinking....damn it..i knew! I should have got those Tempus fiberglass drums!. You can fish your bass drum out of your swimming pool that your jealous girlfriend tossed in there and be OK. TEMPUS..one step ahead of the flood.
I think this answeres the thread title: sink.

The worst things your drums can do in a flooded basement is sink. That means the water is deeper than your biggest drum is tall, the water has been there a while, and you got bigger problems than a sunken drumset. Unless you bought Tempus.
 
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