The Twin Cities are prone to major storms at any time of year, but the spring season brings several different weather conditions that can cause major property damage like thunderstorms, hail, high winds, and tornadoes. Extreme weather is usually quite predictable but sometimes it is impossible to tell just how damaging a storm will be until it hits. With the high possibility of adverse weather conditions in the spring, residents in the St. Paul and Minneapolis area are advised to take preventative actions to protect their homes from storm damage. Storms that involve strong wind and flooding can cause serious damage to your home but by following these storm preparation tips, you can prevent extensive damage.
Trim Large or Dead Tree Branches
Strong wind from a tornado or thunderstorm has the potential to blow off large or dead tree branches and even uproot entire trees. If a tree or tree branch falls on nearby powerlines or your home or car, it can cause very extensive damage and even serious injuries. Inspect the trees around your property and look for loose, dead, or large tree branches. You should pay special attention to tree branches that are close to your home, garage, or vehicle because they are the biggest threat to cause damage. Remove tree branches that look like a threat to snap or fall off and consider trimming back branches that are too close to the house. Trimming tree branches can be a difficult and dangerous job so make sure you call a professional if you cannot do it yourself.
Secure Loose Items in Your Yard
Many homeowners have various items in their yards including outdoor furniture, lawn ornaments, grills, toys, and gardening equipment. During a severe storm, these items become very dangerous as strong winds can make them into projectiles and send them flying into your home, garage, car, and even your neighbor’s home. You must clear all these items from your yard if there is an impending storm and either take them inside your home or store them in your garage or shed. This is an easy way to prevent excessive storm damage.
Inspect the Roof and Gutters
It is very common for rain and wind to cause damage to the roof of a home during a severe storm. Strong winds can dislodge shingles and large areas of the roof, which allows rain in the house, as well as cause damage to the gutters which affects drainage. You must inspect your roof as soon as possible this spring to check for loose or damaged shingles, cracks in the flashing or soffit, and issues with the gutters. Repairing the damage on your roof will help prevent wind damage from a storm as well as leaks from heavy rain. It is usually best to have your roof inspected and repaired by a professional.
Inspect your Windows
The windows of your home are vulnerable during severe storms because they may leak if they are poorly sealed and they can be shattered by strong winds. Make sure your windows are properly sealed to keep out wind and moisture and consider getting new windows if they are old and not sealing properly. New windows are much less likely to leak and there are windows available made of powerful glass that can withstand high winds. You can also install metal or plastic storm shutters over your windows for extra protection.
Protect your Home from Flooding
Indoor flooding is one of the most common effects of severe weather and it can lead to severe damage in your home as well as mold growth. Flood prevention is an important part of storm preparation to make sure rain and moisture stay out of your home. Check your basement and foundation for leaks or cracks that could allow water into the home and seal them with caulk. Installing a sump pump to remove excess water is a highly effective way to prevent flooding in your basement. You should also make sure that your gutters drain rain water away from your home because any buildup of water near your home can cause flooding.
Have a Backup Power Source
Severe storms tend to knock out the power which is not only inconvenient, but also potentially dangerous. Without power, the food in your refrigerator or freezer can go bad and if your cellphone battery dies, you will not be able to recharge it to make emergency calls. The other major issue caused by the loss of power is that the sump pump will stop working. This can result in significant basement flooding which leads to extensive structural damage and creates the right conditions for mold or mildew. The power in your area could be out for hours or days, making it important to invest in a home generator to provide backup power. With a backup power source, you can keep your sump pump running and ensure that your refrigerator will keep your food fresh until the electricity is restored.
Call the Storm Damage Restoration Professionals
As soon as the weather permits, get outside and prepare your home for severe weather this spring with these storm damage prevention tips. Completing these actions could mean the difference between expensive storm damage and no damage at all. As mentioned earlier, the severity of storms may be difficult to predict and you could end up with storm damage even after taking these precautions. If your home in the St. Cloud and Minneapolis area sustains damage in a storm, make sure you contact ServiceMaster Professional Services immediately for our storm damage restoration services. Our technicians provide excellent storm damage repair and will ensure that your home is restored to its original condition. Give us a call 24 hours a day at (800) 245-4622 for storm damage emergencies.