As hurricane season approaches many of us cross our fingers with those hard rains we hope we won't notice any surprise leaks in our homes. By taking an afternoon to thoroughly inspect your home yourself (or hire professionals for more involved jobs) for signs of damage that might allow water to leak in, you can avoid costly repair bills after the damage has been done! Not sure where to begin? Use our hurricane checklist.
Check Your Roof and Gutters
Maintaining your roof and gutters is one of the most important steps in planning home protection from hurricane season. These are the easiest ways that water can sneak in to your home.
Maintaining Your Roof
Keep an eye out for cracks on the ridge of your roof, and make sure that the shingles are all securely in place. Replace broken or missing shingles immediately, as they are an opening into your home. Much more water than you imagine can enter through a single missing shingle space! Check any sheet metal for rusting or erosion and be sure to replace it as quickly as possible.
Maintaining Your Gutters
No one likes cleaning gutters, but clogs can lead to backup which can damage your roof and even reach the inside of your home. If gutter cleaning is a chore for a kid in your home, consider doing one session yourself. Your little helper might not be aware of the importance of what to them seems like a small clog or hole. Do it yourself during your rainy weather maintenance just to be on the safe side.
Work From The Inside Out
Look closely at the ceilings and exterior walls from inside your home. Check for cracks, leaks, mold, signs of water damage, and any discoloration. Look out for soft spots in your walls and ceiling. Check around all doors and windows and make sure they are properly sealed. Make sure to move all decorations and furniture around so you can see all of your wall space. Mold loves to grow in the the dark spots behind furniture and paintings. Make any necessary small repairs in preparation for hurricane season.
Pay Close Attention to Your Basement
Your basement is one of the most vulnerable places in your home to water damage. Consider hiring a professional to check your basement to be on the safe side. Even a complete resealing of the basement is much less costly than dealing with the aftermath of a flood.
Consider a Full Electricity Check
Hiring an electrician to comb through your home's wiring before you have a problem might seem like an extreme precaution to take, but there is nothing worse than being stuck in a house without electricity all because of an easy fix that could have been caught sooner. The benefits of conducting a full examination of your house's wiring every year before the start of hurricane season far outweigh the annoyances of the cost and time it takes to complete.
If You Live In A Known Flood Zone
If you are an old hat at dealing with floods make sure you are stocked up on your necessities. Sand bags are a classic for a reason, they work! Prices do tend to rise once it starts raining so try to get your supply as soon as you can. Water absorbent "hurricane socks" can be purchased for every door in your home as a precaution. The hurricane socks can be reused over and over, which make them a more environmentally friendly option than sand bags. However, they can be a bit pricey and are not always as effective as sand bags. Use sand bags for heavy jobs and have some hurricane socks on hand for emergencies.