How to Protect Your Home from a Hurricane

Hurricanes are some of the scariest and most destructive natural disasters. The 2017 Atlantic hurricane season has been the most active in over a decade, and has already been one of the costliest and most destructive seasons on record. With winds measured at up to 185 mph, the strongest hurricanes have left a trail of destruction in their wake. Hurricanes Harvey and Irma both made landfall in the continental United States within two weeks of each other, at Category 4 strength. In August 2017, Hurricane Harvey caused major flooding in Texas after it was downgraded to a tropical storm. Less than two weeks later, Hurricane Irma caused massive damage and destruction in the Florida Keys.

 

The current hurricane season is expected to last until about the end of November. With more destruction almost guaranteed, here’s what you can do to try and protect your home when the hurricanes come.

 

Hurricane IreneBefore the storm:

 

When hurricane season approaches, you need to keep an eye on the news to get the latest updates so that you are not caught unawares. To prepare your home, start on the outside. Move your patio furniture, flowerpots, grills, and anything else that could become airborne, indoors. Remove dead and loose branches from trees around your house. Make sure your gutters are clear so they can handle the extra drainage load.

 

  • Make sure that your doors can handle strong winds and don’t fly open. Install extra locks and bolts if necessary. You also need to fortify your garage door.
  • Windows need to be boarded up with 5/8 inch boards if you don’t have storm shutters.
  • You should also protect your roof against uplift by installing hurricane clips.
  • Stock up on canned food and bottled water, and have a gas cooker, flashlights and extra batteries ready.

 

If you expect flooding in your area, or you know that you live in a flood-prone area, you need to take extra precautions. If it’s possible, move switches, sockets, breakers and wiring above the expected flood level, or just switch off the electricity when the storm hits. You should also move electronic devices and appliances to a higher floor if you can, or at least put them on concrete blocks.

 

During the storm:

 

The safest place to be during a hurricane is indoors, and away from windows. If flooding is expected, you need to prepare a way to get into your attic, and have an ax or hatchet to break out if the flood level keeps rising.

 

After the storm:

 

If you need to evacuate your home at any point after the storm, you need to be extra cautious. Be careful around downed power lines, in case they are still live. Keep the streets clear for emergency vehicles, and don’t drive anywhere, since you may just be contributing to traffic problems elsewhere. Avoid water if possible, since it can be contaminated with sewage and cause infections. If your house was severely damaged and doesn’t provide adequate shelter anymore, you need to make your way to a public disaster shelter immediately.

 

About the Author

Apex Window Werks is a home window repair & replacement company with more than 8 of experience. They repair residential and commercial windows and doors: rotten wooden still repair, window defogging, glass replacement, etc. Make sure AWW services your area and get in touch for a free estimation.

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