Floods, leaks, fires, hurricanes, wildfires are all disasters that may affect your home, change your life; they may disturb your peace of mind. Some disasters happen in the house due to roof leaks, a sudden fire, a sewage back. Some are natural disasters. They are out of your power. They happen in the nature and have the form of tornadoes, hail storms, hurricanes, heavy rainfall, wildfires.
When it comes to natural disasters, you cannot control them. It’s up to the weather; it’s up to the government and the local authorities to take measures to prevent the worse case scenarios. And such scenarios involve building destruction, floods, fire and water damage – a new series of disasters.
And so, the problem is this. Natural disasters may affect your home. They may cause a house fire or basement flood. So, how we control such “second-phase” disasters? The ones that happen out in the nature but may also affect our home?
And then, there’s another battlefield – that of domestic accidents, mishaps, or damage that occurs in the home. Damage that may lead to great loss, to a disaster. Let’s see.
How to avoid a house fire
• Keep the numbers of a fire damage restoration company and the fire department handy, for both you and your kids to easily find. Being prepared for the impossible is prudent.
• Make sure your home has smoke detectors and make sure they are inspected that they work okay from time to time. They can help you detect a problem before it happens and spare you from the emergency of even limited fire damage.
• Some home appliances are fire hazards. Gas or electric, appliances should be attended. Don’t turn on the stove and walk away – at least, not very far away. Make sure the lint is frequently removed from the dryer, too. And never leave flammable items close to heat sources. Another good idea? Keep a fire extinguisher at home.
• Be extra careful with electric blankets. Don’t use them if the cables are worn. The same applies for Christmas lighting. And never leave them unattended.
• If there’s a fireplace in your home, keep flammables (cushions, rugs, curtains, etc.) away.
• Naturally, make sure the electrical panel and all cords, plugs, sockets, etc. are in great condition.
How to avoid water damage
• Severe floods often happen due to roof leaks. To avoid such disasters, make sure roof problems are fixed with no delay. Also, make sure the gutters are clean, unclogged. If not, the rainwater may eventually find its way into your home. It may not cause a flood but it will cause great structural damage that may also turn into a disaster. Or, it may lead to a smaller-scale flood that will be followed by mold contamination.
• Everything related to water in the home, everything connected to water lines must be checked and fixed – if needed, right away (toilets, sinks, pipes, ACs, appliances, showers, etc.)
• If you go away for a long time, shut the main water supply.
• If there’s a leak – even a minor one, fix it. Also, check why it happened. What caused it. Where is the root of the problem – that’s hard to do with water but significant for the avoidance of future troubles.
How to protect your home from natural disasters
• Make sure the doors all around the house and surely, all windows are properly caulked.
• Place a threshold seal in the garage to better control the water entering your structure in a heavy storm.
• Make sure your home structure is strong and built in accordance with the local building codes. You need to be sure that it will resist heavy storms and remain intact during an earthquake.
• Be sure the garage door is in good shape. If this is a hurricane prone location, get a wind load door.
• Keep the trees around the house trimmed and the area clean to avoid damage caused due to impact during storms.
• Use covers to protect windows, make sure the siding is secure, reinforce doors.
• Store valuables in watertight spaces, where they cannot be easily reached (thus, damaged) in the event of a flood.
• Prefer fire resistant materials for your home and in your home, especially if you are located close to a forest.
Disaster restoration is possible, whether this is a flood, water damage, fire damage, you name it. And damage is not always the same. It may be partial or complete. Since limited damage is better than complete destruction and no damage is better than any damage, do your best starting today.