Steps Towards Severe Weather Preparedness

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It may still be January for now but the weather will be warming up before you know it, bring severe weather upon us. April and May are notorious for tornado outbreaks and hurricane season starts in June. While it may seem a good ways off, time leading up to severe weather flies when you are not prepared so we need to make those preparations before it is too late. There is nothing we can do to prevent natural disasters, but there are a few steps you can take to ensure your home is ready. Damage is never totally preventable, especially in the case of super storms, but if your home is in peak condition before these storms hit, it will have the best chance possibly of making it out on the other side. Severe weather never takes a break, so neither should you.

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You can start your preparations by examining the structure of your home. Walls, windows, and doors are extremely susceptible to storm damage and are areas of your home you need to reinforce. You can do this by checking your home for any signs of wear, cracks, or leaks and sealing and/or repairing any such damage you find. Check your window information to find out what type of impact they are able to withstand and cover windows if possible when severe weather such as a hurricane is heading your way. If the paint around your doors is peeling or your doors and windows stick, this could indicate that you have a leak or something is loose. Take pains to tighten all screws so doors and windows will continue to be held firmly in place. Don't forget to include your garage door in your door assessment; due to the low weight of garage doors, they are susceptible to damage by collapse if impacted and can also be sucked outward by the force of wind. Make sure all of the components holding your garage door in place are tight and not rusty.

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Your roof is also a very important part of your home and is one of the most troublesome and expensive things to replace when damaged. If you notice missing or buckled shingles, now is the time to investigate. Have a look around the attic and make sure your roof straps are all properly connected and that there are the proper number for homes built in your area per building code requirements. If you notice a lot of grainy residue in your gutters, this could mean your shingles are wearing out and need to be replaced.

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The types of natural disasters that could affect you vary by geographic region, and knowing that you may someday encounter is the best way to survive it, both for you and your home. If in the future you purchase new windows or garage doors, always check impact and wind ratings to ensure they are strong enough. If you are not ready to upgrade windows, consider the addition of storm shutters or keep a stock of plywood on hang to cover windows that may be at risk. If you have a sump pump, check its performance periodically, and maintain access to sandbags for flooding. The more precautions you take ahead of time, the less house repair work you will have to do after the fact. Work beforehand is still just that-work-but if you repair what needs it now, it could very well save you from having twice as much or more repair work later at double or triple the expense.

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