As if we haven’t had enough to worry about this past year with a global pandemic, we are also experiencing more than our fair share of natural disasters. We’ve had record-breaking temperatures and raging wildfires in the West. And now we’re right in the middle of Atlantic hurricane season. Spanning from June 1st to November 30th, storm season can cause life-threatening situations in addition to heavy property damage from storm surges, high winds, and even tornadoes. They key to surviving the season successfully is early preparation. You need to start protecting your home before skies turn gray. Waiting until the very last minute could mean the difference between a safe, protected home and one with major property damage.
Although storm season may be well underway this year, there are still a number of steps you can take to make sure your house is ready for whatever mother nature decides to throw in its way.
Since your roof is the area where leaks and openings can allow wind and water to do the most damage, you need to make sure it is secure. You should start by looking at your roof covering to find out the condition of your shingles and tiles and whether any are cracked or missing.
If you decide to re-roof, then you should also seal the roof deck. It will cost a little bit more, but you’ll have much less chance of a leaky roof in the future. A professional contractor with experience in this area is a good first step to seeing what your roof needs for protection against severe storms.
In some states like Georgia, it is strongly recommended that you use metal roof straps to attach your home’s roof to the walls. Simply nailing roof trusses to structural walls isn’t enough to keep a roof in place in a major storm. Metal hurricane clips can ensure that your roof will hold steady under heavy winds.
Windows are another area that you want to pay close attention to in advance of storm season. You can begin by looking at the seals around your windows and doors. Warmer weather, even in states like Maryland, can harm seals over the years. As a result, wind and rain gusts may cause water damage during a strong storm.
Because they are made out of glass, windows are also in danger of shattering if debris gets picked up by heavy winds. One of the most efficient ways to weather-proof them is to install storm windows. If you’re in a storm-prone area, you might want to install hurricane shutters and secure them in place over the windows.
Some building codes that require storm shutters also permit impact-resistant windows as an alternative. These types of windows are every bit as effective as storm shutters, and they offer protection 24 hours a day. In addition, they don’t need any special hardware or installation time before a major storm hits, unlike storm shutters. If you still have questions, it always helps to contact a professional window installation company to find out what window protection will work best for your home.
Garage doors and entry doors are features of your home that should be reinforced to protect your home from hurricanes. If a heavy storm makes a direct hit on your home, garage doors often blow inward. If you have an attic that sits above this area, they can also blow upwards and take your home apart.
One way to strengthen your existing garage door is to install a vertical garage door brace and reinforce it with horizontal wooden beams. If you need help with your garage doors, you should get in touch with a garage door installation and repair company to help you figure out your best options to protect against storms.
You should also take steps to secure any exterior doors. If even an inch of floodwater enters your home, it can mean thousands of dollars of damage to your property. For this reason, securing your entrances is a crucial part of storm preparedness.
While we cannot predict or prevent every disaster, we can plan ahead. Taking the appropriate steps to secure your home before a disaster is imminent will help you know what to do when the worst happens. It will also give you the peace of mind that your home is as protected as possible. If you’re looking to weather-proof your home to withstand storm season, try some of these tips before the storm clouds start forming.