Are you a victim of a recent hurricane? The rebuilding process is often the best time to fortify your home to limit damage from a future storm. If your home is located in a hurricane-prone area like Florida, there is every possibility of another strong storm rocking your home, so now is the right time to make the splurge. Moreover, it’s cheaper and easier to improve your home to reduce future destruction than repairing it afterwards.
So, here are steps to take.
Do Flood Protection On The Property
Start by contacting local emergency management officials to find out about the hundred-year floodplain in your area. You can then make changes to limit the potential flood damage to your home.
For example, you can raise electrical boxes, major appliances, and HVAC components at least one foot above the 100-year flood level. This will help reduce the risk of short circuits and fire danger in the event of a flood. Additionally, you can elevate appliances like washers and dryers with pressure-treated lumber or move them to a higher floor. As for the HVAC equipment, it’s best to have a professional contractor elevate it.
Anchor Your Fuel Tank
To prevent hurricane damage to your fuel tanks, it’s important to anchor them inside and out using properly sized ground anchors. This will help prevent the tanks from moving and tearing the supply line when floodwaters rise.
Also, make sure the filling and ventilation tubes are above flood level. This will prevent water from getting inside the tank. If you’re unsure how to properly anchor fuel tanks, it’s advisable to consult with local officials and building professionals. You want to take every necessary precaution to keep your fuel tanks safe and secure during a flood.
Install Sewer Backflow Valves
Another step to reduce hurricane damage is to install sewer backflow valves. These valves are designed to block drainpipes temporarily and prevent sewage from flowing back into your home. It’s best to have a licensed plumber or contractor install the valves.
Get Flood And Wind Insurance Insurance
Another effective way to protect your home and family from flood damage is to purchase flood and wind insurance. Keep in mind that standard homeowner’s insurance policies do not typically cover hurricane damage in hurricane-prone regions like Florida. The most common way to insure against hurricane damage to your home and belongings is through a separate flood insurance policy.
Reinforce Vulnerable Parts Of Your Home
Hurricanes come with strong winds. To minimize wind damage to your home, there are several steps you can take:
- Install storm shutters over all exposed windows and glass surfaces. Better still, install impact resistant windows and entry doors with a long deadbolt lock and a properly installed strike plate.
- Fortify your garage door by adding braces and strengthening the glider wheel tracks, or consider purchasing a hurricane-proof door.
- Anchor and brace the bottom of your gable end walls to the ceiling joists or framing, and strengthen the studs and brace the top of the walls by tying them to the rafters or trusses.
- Securely anchor all storage sheds, outbuildings, outdoor furniture, and barbecue grills to the ground with straps or cables.
Hurricanes are destructive and undesirable but are virtually imminent in some regions. The best we can do is prepare. With the tips discussed above, you can significantly minimize damage from future hurricanes and save repair costs.
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