How to Prepare Your Home for the Rainy Season

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Often, the rainy season brings along with it threats of water damage to your house. Here are steps you can take to keep yourself and your property safe and dry.

Things You'll Need

  • Portable Radios
  • Waterproof Boxes For Valuables
  • Canned Foods
  • First Aid Kits
  • Can Openers
  • Corks Or Stoppers
  • Sand Bags
  • Caulking Guns
  • Caulks
  • Flashlights
  • Caulk cracks around windows and doors to prevent water from seeping inside. Check old caulk every year for chips and cracks, which indicates the caulk has dried out and needs replacement.

  • Check trees in your yard and remove any dead branches, which could fall during heavy rain and cause damage.

  • Remove leaves, branches and debris from gutters and drains. Otherwise, water could overflow and rot the woodwork around the roof area.

  • Plug sewer traps with check valves - special valves that direct water in one direction only - thereby preventing it from backing up into your home. You can purchase these at a hardware store, or improvise by using large corks or stoppers to plug sinks and tubs in an emergency.

  • Lower the water level in your swimming pool, so it is less likely to overflow during heavy rain. The chlorinated pool water can be harmful to your grass.

  • Turn off automated sprinkler systems when rain is expected.

  • Stock up on sand and sandbags to fill in low areas around your home. Some local fire stations provide sandbags to residents during the rainy season.

  • Have a flashlight, batteries and a first aid kit on hand, in case you get stranded in your home.

  • Ask your local planning and zoning office whether your property is above or below the flood level, and find out if your area has a history of flooding.

  • Keep important documents - including insurance policies, birth certificates and passports - in an easily accessible waterproof box.

  • Protect basement walls by sealing them with a cement or concrete sealer.

  • Know how to turn your electricity off in the event your house gets flooded. Make sure not to turn it back on until everything has dried out.

Tips & Warnings

  • If water damage occurs, get help right away. It only takes a few hours for bacteria growth to start.
  • Consider purchasing flood insurance for your home, as most homeowners' policies don't cover flood damage.
  • Avoid using electrical appliances while standing on wet carpets or floors.
  • Stay out of flooded rooms if the electricity is still on.

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