Your home is your sanctuary. It’s where you raise your family, it’s where you come to relax after a long day at work, and it’s where you keep all of your precious belongings. So, it’s no surprise that you want to do everything possible to protect and secure it from adverse weather events, including storms. This article will discuss tips to help you secure your home from storm damage.
1. Trim Trees and Bushes Around Your Home
One of the best ways to secure your home from storm damage is to trim trees and bushes around your home. This will help prevent branches from breaking off and damaging your roof or windows in high winds. It will also help keep debris from being blown into your yard or driveway during a storm.
Another benefit of trimming trees and bushes around your home is that it can help prevent animals from getting into your attic or crawl spaces. Animals often seek shelter in these areas during storms, and they can cause significant damage if they’re able to get inside.
It’s also important to ensure that any trees growing near power lines are trimmed regularly. This can help prevent branches from falling on the lines and causing an outage during a storm.
If you have any dead or dying trees, it’s best to have them removed before a storm hits. A tree that is already compromised by disease or rot can easily be blown over in high winds, potentially causing damage to your home or property.
Pro tip: If you have large trees on your property, it’s a good idea to have them inspected by a certified arborist every few years. They will tell you if the tree is healthy and if there are any areas of concern.
2. Board Up Your Windows
Another great way to secure your home from storm damage is to board up your windows. This will help prevent them from breaking and flying into your home in high winds. It will also help keep debris from being blown inside.
You can buy pre-made boards that are easy to install, or you can make your own. If you choose to make your own, be sure to use plywood at least 3/4 inch thick. You’ll also want to use screws or nails that are at least three inches long.
You can also hire a shutter installation service to install storm or hurricane shutters for you. These are specially designed to withstand high winds and provide an extra layer of protection for your home. They are made from materials like aluminum, stainless steel, or impact-resistant polycarbonate.
3. Prep Your Garage Door
Your garage door is another vulnerable area of your home during a storm. If it’s not properly secured, high winds can cause it to break or collapse. This can lead to serious damage to your home and property.
To secure your garage door, you’ll want to ensure that the tracks are aligned and that there are no loose bolts or screws. You should also check the weather-stripping around the door to ensure it’s in good condition. A garage door service can help you with this.
If your garage door has windows, be sure to board them up as well. High winds can easily shatter them and allow wind and rain into the garage. You may also want to consider installing a garage door brace. This is a metal frame that attaches to the top of your garage door and helps keep it secure during high winds.
4. Install Gutters and Downspouts
If you don’t have gutters and downspouts on your home, now is the time to install them. Gutters help divert water away from your home and prevent it from seeping into the foundation or basement. They also help keep the exterior of your home looking clean and well-maintained.
Downspouts help carry the water away from your home and should be installed at least five feet away from the foundation. If they’re not, the water can damage your foundation or seep into your basement.
Be sure to clear any debris from the gutters and downspouts before a storm hits. This will ensure that they can do their job properly when the rain starts pouring.
You can also ask your gutter installer to install gutter guards. These are screens or covers that fit over the gutters and keep the debris out. They also help keep the rainwater flowing freely, so it doesn’t back up and cause damage.
5. Be Prepared for Bugs
Another thing to keep in mind as you secure your home from storm damage is the potential for bugs. After a storm, it is not unusual to notice an influx of insects such as mosquitoes, swarmers, and termites. These bugs can not only be a nuisance, but they can also carry diseases and damage your home.
To help protect yourself from these pests, you’ll want to make sure that your home is properly sealed. Check around doors and windows for any cracks or gaps that may allow them inside. You can use caulk or weather-stripping to seal them up.
You should also install screens on all of your windows and doors. Garage door screens are also a good idea. This will help keep the bugs out and allow you to enjoy the fresh air without worrying about them getting inside.
You can also check with your local pest control companies to see if they offer any post-storm specials or services. This can help you get rid of any pests and/or insects that may have made their way into your home.
6. Secure Your Outdoor Furniture
Another thing you’ll want to do to secure your home from storm damage involves your outdoor furniture. This includes items like tables, chairs, benches, and sofas. If you have any lawn ornaments and glass accessories, be sure to bring them inside. High winds can easily blow them away, and they can cause damage to your property.
To secure your outdoor furniture, you’ll want to tie it down with rope or straps. You can also use sandbags or weights to keep it in place. Be sure to put away any umbrellas or awnings as well. These can act like sails and catch the wind, causing them to break or fly away.
If you have a pool, be sure to secure the cover as well. A loose pool cover can easily become airborne and cause damage to your home or property.
7. Prepare Your Driveway
If you have a driveway, you’ll want to prepare it for a storm. This means clearing it of any debris and ensuring that all the drainage channels are clear. You can use a power washer to clean it and remove dirt, leaves, or other debris. Remember, if water can’t flow freely down your driveway, it will pool up and cause damage.
You’ll also want to make sure that your driveway is properly sealed before a storm hits. If the driveway is cracked or uneven, water will pool and seep into the ground. This can damage your home’s foundation and/or basement.
If your driveway and/or drainage system is severely damaged, you may want it reinstalled before the storm hits. Make a point of getting multiple quotations from your local paving companies. This way you can be sure to get the best price and quality.
8. Have a Plan in Case of Power Outages
Another thing to consider when you want to secure your home from storm damage is how you will handle power outages. If a storm is severe enough, it could knock down power lines and cause a blackout.
You can opt for a portable generator. These are a good option if you only need power for a few things, such as a fridge and some lights. If you need to have everything up and running, you may want to consider getting a whole-house generator. These can be expensive, but they will keep your home running in case of a power outage.
Alternatively, you could invest in a home battery backup system. These are becoming increasingly popular and can provide you with power for a few hours in case of an outage.
You should also have an emergency kit prepared in case you lose power for an extended period. This should include things like flashlights, candles, matches, non-perishable food, water, and a first-aid kit.
9. Inspect and Make the Necessary Roof Repairs
Your roof is one of the most important parts of your home. It’s responsible for protecting you and your family from the elements. If damaged, it can lead to water damage and other problems.
That’s why it’s important to inspect your roof before a storm hits. Look for missing or broken shingles, loose nails, warping, and other damage. You should also check the flashing around your chimney and vents. If there are any cracks or gaps, water can easily get in and cause damage to your home.
If you’re not comfortable inspecting your roof yourself, you can hire a residential roofing contractor to do it for you. They will spot any potential problems and make the necessary repairs.
10. Invest In a Storm Shelter
If you live in an area prone to severe storms, you may want to invest in a storm shelter. These are designed to withstand high winds and flying debris. They can provide you and your family with a safe place to weather the storm.
There are a variety of storm shelters on the market, so be sure to do your research before making a purchase. You’ll want to consider things like size, price, and features. Once you’ve found the perfect shelter for your needs, be sure to have it installed by a professional.
11. Prepare Your Lawn and Garden
Your lawn and garden are also susceptible to damage in a storm. You’ll want to ensure that all your plants are properly secured and no debris or loose objects are lying around.
You can use stakes and tie-downs to secure your plants. This will help them withstand high winds and prevent them from being uprooted.
You’ll also want to mulch your garden beds. This will help protect the soil from being washed away in a storm, while yard fertilizing services will give your plants the nutrients they need to recover quickly after the storm.
12. Have Your Insurance Policy Updated
One of the most important things you can do to secure your home from storm damage is to have your insurance policy updated. Make sure that it covers all the risks associated with severe storms, including wind and hail damage.
You should also consider getting additional coverage for things like loss of use and get flood insurance. This will help ensure that you are fully protected.
If you don’t have insurance, now is a good time to consider getting it. Storms are becoming increasingly common, and they can cause a lot of damage to your home. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.
13. Repair or Upgrade Your Siding
Your siding plays an important role when you are trying to secure your home from storm damage. It is the first line of defense against high winds and flying debris. It can leave your home vulnerable to further damage if it is damaged.
That’s why it’s important to repair or upgrade your siding before a storm hits. If you are unsure whether or not it’s up to par, have a home inspector look at it. They will tell you what needs to be done to bring it up to code.
14. Stay Informed
You also need to stay informed to secure your home from storm damage. Watch the news or check the National Weather Service website for updates on the latest storms. This will help you know when one is headed your way and give you time to prepare.
If a storm is imminent, make sure to follow any evacuation orders that are issued. This will help keep you and your family safe when all else fails.
These are just a few of the many things you can do to secure your home from storm damage. By taking these steps, you can help ensure that your home is safe and secure during severe weather. Please don’t wait until it’s too late to start preparing. Get started today and be prepared for whatever the future may hold.