Your home is probably one of the most valuable and largest investment you own, so keeping it safe from natural disasters is probably one of your top priorities.
Hurricanes don’t just damage the homes of the people near the coast, they can also damage homes hundred’s of miles from shore. Continue reading to learn how to prepare your home for Hurricane Season.
Simple Steps to Follow and Prepare for Hurricane Season
1. “Watch” and “Warning” Alerts
You can get alerts from the National Weather Service on TV, radio, or online. There are two kinds of hurricane alerts:
- Hurricane Watch – A hurricane watch means that hurricane conditions, which has a sustained winds of 74 miles per hour or higher, are possible in a certain area. Experts put out hurricane watches 48 hours before they think sustained winds of 39 to 73 mph from a tropical storm will start.
- Hurricane Warning – Hurricane Warning are more serious than hurricane watch. Hurricane warning means that hurricane-force winds are expected in a stated area. Experts send out these warnings 36 hours before winds from a tropical storm are expected in the area to give people time to get ready for the storm
2. Plan Your Evacuation Route
Before a disaster occurs, you and your family must be familiar with a plan that you will carry out when the real disaster strikes. This could help avoid confusion especially when you are separated during the incident. Planning your evacuation will help you get to the nearest shelters quickly.
3. Prepare Your Emergency Supplies
Before a hurricane hits, you need to make sure you have the things you need. You can make a list to make sure you don’t forget to bring anything important. Food that doesn’t need to be cooked, water, first-aid kits, batteries, matches, and flashlights should all be stored. Don’t forget to gas up your car and always remember to put your important papers safely so they don’t get damaged or lost in case of a flood.
4. Install Hurricane Shutters
Hurricane shutters are used to keep things from flying through the air and hitting your windows and doors. These will keep you from having to pay money for damage.
5. Create an Inventory of Your Personal Property
Creating an inventory of your property will help you make sure that you have enough insurance. Whenever you can, take pictures or videos. If you have to leave your home, make sure to bring your home inventory with you or store it in the cloud.
6. Review Your Insurance Policies
During hurricane season, having an insurance checklist can help you understand your coverage and decide if it’s enough to fix or restore your home if needed and replace your belongings.
7. Take Extra Precautions to Protect Your Home
Winds as strong as a hurricane can turn things in the yard into projectiles that can break windows and doors. Making your home stronger to protect it from storm damage is an investment, but you can do it in steps:
- Clearing your yard. Make sure your house isn’t damaged by anything that could blow around in the storm. Move bikes, lawn furniture, grills, propane tanks, and building materials inside or under a shelter.
- Cover the doors and windows. Protect your windows by putting up storm shutters or nailing pieces of plywood to the outside of the window frames. This can help keep you from getting hurt by broken glass.
- Get ready to turn off your power. You will need to turn off your power if you see flooding, power lines that have fallen, or if you have to leave your home.
- Fill clean containers with drinkable water. You should do this in case the storm makes you lose access to water. You can also put water in your sinks and tubs to wash with.
- Check the battery in your carbon monoxide (CO) detector to avoid CO poisoning.
When hurricane strikes, you’re home is often damaged. Even small storm damage can cost a lot of money in the long run if it isn’t fixed right away.
The sooner you take a look at the damage, the sooner you can figure out what needs to be fixed and also start the process of making an insurance claim. Below are the following steps you should take after hurricane.
1. Check Your Roof for Visible Debris
Debris on your roof shows that the storm had bigger effects. Even if the damage is small, a dented or broken roof can cause a lot of trouble. Water may have gotten in during the storm, or damage that isn’t fixed will lead to water damage in the future.
If you can do it safely, clear away any debris you can and check the roof shingles for damage.
2. Check Your Roof Shingles
Look at the roof as closely as you can. Are there any missing shingles or ones that have moved because of the storm? Even if a shingle is still on the roof but has fallen off, it can still let water in and cause damage.
If you can see them, cracked shingles are another sign that your home has been damaged by the weather. It could also mean that debris hit the roof in a bigger way, which could have hurt other parts of the roof.
3. Check Flashing and Gutter on Your Chimney
During the storm, the metal flashing around your chimney may have come loose, been damaged, or lifted. All of this could mean that your home has been damaged by water. When water flows under the flashing, down the chimney, or along the roof beams, it makes the area damp.
4. Check Your Interior and Exterior Walls for Water Stains/Damage
Do you see any obvious wet spots in or around your house? During a storm, when it rains hard and heavy, water can get into small cracks in the walls and do damage.
After a storm, it can take a while for the outside walls to dry out, so make sure to check on them every few days. This will make sure you don’t miss any new damp spots that are easier to spot now that the storm is over and the house should be dry.
5. Check Your Exterior Walls for Possible Dents or Holes
Did your see any spiderweb cracks on your walls after hurricane? If yes, then it is one of the sign of hurricane damage. This means that there was a hit hard enough to break the cavity foam insulation on the outside wall.
Smaller signs of damage include chipped paint or plaster or small holes in the stucco.
Stucco Damage After Hurricane
Signs of Water-Damaged Stucco
Here are some signs that your stucco may have been damaged by hurricane, whether you just noticed it now or weren’t able to fix it right away:
- Water stains on your interior and exterior doors
- Tear-like stains near the windows, and other joints
- Cracks, especially around doors, windows, and fixtures like outdoor lights
- Higher home humidity
- Mold growth
- Dark Spots or discolored patches
Stucco damaged by water can deteriorate quickly, so it’s important to schedule repairs as soon as you notice a problem.
How to Repair Water-Damaged Stucco?
Here are the four most common ways to fix stucco that has been damaged by water:
- If water has done a lot of damage to the stucco and there is mold or a problem with the structure, don’t try to fix it yourself. Instead, call a professional.
- If you think the stucco only needs a small fix, you can take out the damaged part, just like you would with damaged drywall or rotted wood.
- Patch the hole with stucco that matches the rest of your exterior/interior.
- Put on three coats of stucco, give drying time in between applications.
Schedule an Consultation to Naples, FL's Most Trusted Contractor
Hurricanes can be devastating, and the damages that they cause can be difficult to remediate. In case your home becomes affected by a disaster this hurricane season and you need help in restoring your home, Smith Plastering is a contractor’s first choice for stucco installation in Naples, Florida, and its surrounding areas.