Karen Arbutine & Associates

Prepare Your Home For Hurricanes

Mon, Jul 05, 2010 at 11:17AM

The following is a list to prepare your home for hurricane season:

Roof:  Install additional braces in the trusses.  A qualified builder can install galvanized metal hurricane straps to secure the roof to the walls.  Wait until after hurricane season to replace old roofs.

Gutters:  Make sure gutters are clean, functioning properly and water from downspouts does not collect near the house.

Patio:  Remove furniture, flower pots, grills, firewood, etc. to a secure place.  Patio furniture can be submerged in the pool.

Pool:  Lower the water level by a foot or two.  Stock up on chemicals to shock the pool stored in the storm.

Trees: Trim out dead wood and limbs that could scrape or fall on the house.

Windows:  Options include hurricane shutters, plywood covers or clear plastic window film.  Shutters are effective but relatively expensive.  Plywood covers are a good DIY option.  Purchase, cut and label plywood covers ahead of time, and install before the wind strengthens. Adhesive window film helps prevent glass from shattering only if anchored in the window frame.

Doors:  Install beefier hinges to make outside doors stronger. Reinforce garage doors by bracing each panel, adding stronger supports and heavier hinges.  

Screens:  Secure or remove screen doors.  Remove items that could be blown through screens.

Valuables:  Move rugs, furniture, pictures, books, etc. away from windows.  Store where they are least likely to suffer water damage.  Secure important papers and jewelry in the dishwasher.

Supplies:  Stock up on gas or charcoal for the grill; lights powered by gas or batteries; and ice chests.  If you plan on purchasing a generator, do so before the last minute rush.

Insurance:  Go over insurance coverage, including flood insurance.  Get recommendations from you agent or check online for disaster-relief contractors just in case.



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