How to Prevent & Clean Up Storm Damage
Spring storm damage can wreak havoc on your home or business. DKI offers residential and commercial storm cleanup services nationwide. Inclement weather can impact your property without warning, and cause all sorts of problems, no matter where you live. However, the spring storm season tends to leave the most damage in its wake. You may experience heavy rain, intense winds, tornadoes, hailstorms, flooding, and more. Many home and business owners are left with expensive repairs, such as broken windows, damaged roofs, and more. Our storm damage cleanup company wants to provide you some tips about what to do before, during, and after the storm. Recovering from spring storms is a process that can actually start long before storm season. Be sure to get in touch with us for 24-hour emergency services, and don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions about storm cleanup.
What a Spring Storm Can Do to Your Home or Business
Before learning about how to recover from a spring storm or take steps to prevent extensive damage from occurring, it’s essential to understand what kind of damage a spring storm can do to your property. Damage that may arise from spring storms includes:
- Broken windows from objects picked up by heavy winds or hailstorms
- Structural damage to your walls or damage to your roof from high winds or fallen trees
- Lightning strikes, sometimes leading to fires
- Water damage due to damaged or loose shingles, leaking roofs, or clogged gutters
- Damaged or fallen power lines from large tree branches, sometimes leading to loss of electricity
- Flooding in the basement or other areas of your home
- Animal infestations caused by critters seeking shelter from the storm
Before the Storm: How to Prepare
We’re not expecting you to be a meteorologist or predict when a spring storm is going to occur. When we talk about preparing for a storm, we don’t mean the same day the forecast calls for one. The best time to prepare your home or business for a spring storm is during the winter. The following steps can help you minimize the damage to your home or business and be prepared in the event that it is severe:
- Cleaning gutters and downspouts – If your home has clogged gutters, downspouts, or drains, your roof could become damaged during a storm. Debris and dirt may prevent water from flowing away from your roofline, which can add weight to your roof and possibly cause it to collapse. Check your gutters and downspouts to ensure there are no blockages. Also, check that all connections are secure.
- Sealing windows, doors, and roofs – Check out the seals around your windows and doors. Look for cracked caulking or loose screws. You may want to invest in impact-resistant windows, depending on where you live. Be sure there are three hinges on each door and that the threshold is screwed into your house directly instead of only to your door frame. Inspect your roof for missing or damaged shingles, sagging, or other damage.
- Checking for cracks in your foundation – Even the smallest cracks in your basement or foundation can result in significant spring storm damage. Water can seep in through cracks and result in flooding. High winds can widen existing cracks and result in structural damage.
- Installing a backflow valve in the basement – A heavy rainstorm can cause sewer systems to get backed up. Installing a sewer backflow valve can divert unexpected water, which can flood your home.
- Creating a storm preparation checklist – It’s always best to be prepared. Have storm supplies inside your home or business. Be sure to stock up on water bottles, flashlights, a first-aid kit, blankets, batteries, and more. Make sure your family or employees know the plan in case of a severe storm.
- Securing your property and outdoor assets – Be sure your windows are secure and bring in outdoor furniture if a storm is coming your way. Have your trees trimmed before storm season.
- Having a plan for power loss – A power loss plan is crucial for a business or commercial property. Know who to contact during a power outage and where supplies such as batteries and flashlights are kept. Do not use a gas stove as a heating source.
- Special considerations for businesses – If you own or operate a business, make sure to obtain business income interruption coverage. Ensure your data is backed up and you have a communication protocol in place.
During the Storm: Staying Safe
You can count on DKI after a storm, but we want to make sure you know how to stay safe during a storm. Spring storms can strike anywhere across the country. Review the following steps to stay prepared:
- Hurricanes – Having a hurricane plan can save lives. Review your hurricane plan each May because hurricane season begins in June. Create hurricane evacuation plans, and don’t forget to plan to take your pets with you. Be sure you have contact information for emergency services, elderly loved ones, and relatives.
- Floods – Flash floods are the top weather-related killer in the U.S. A flood can occur after a few minutes of heavy rainfall. Be alert and watch for rising water levels. Go to high ground if necessary. Do not attempt to drive or walk through flowing water. Be cautious at night because darkness can disguise flood dangers.
- Thunderstorms – Check for severe thunderstorm watches, which tell you where and when they are likely to happen. Take shelter inside a sturdy building, and stay away from doors, windows, and electrical appliances. Avoid showering or bathing during a thunderstorm and turn off your air conditioner. Avoid landline phones and unplug any unnecessary electrical appliances.
- Tornadoes – Pay attention to tornado watches and warnings and identify a safe place for your family members to go in your home. The safest place in houses is the basement or a small room away from windows. Leave your home immediately if you reside in a mobile home and go to a nearby shelter or another building’s basement. If you are caught outdoors, get to the basement of a sturdy building. As a last resort, lie flat in a ditch or low area and cover your head. Stay out of vehicles during tornadoes.
- Possible power outages – Stock up on non-perishable foods, medications, and more. Fill up your bathtub with water in case you need it. Have a flashlight, batteries, and a battery-powered radio available, and prepare your older loved ones who live alone.
After the Storm: Recovering from Spring Storms
Once the storm has passed, there’s still plenty of work to be done. Check out the following things to do after the storm:
- Ensure the safety of all persons involved – An intense storm can cause damage to your home or business, but the people around you are more important. Check on family, friends, neighbors, and employees for injuries and contact emergency services if needed.
- Turn off electricity, gas, or water lines – If you suspect damage to your gas, water, or power lines, turn them off safely if you are able to do so. If not, contact an expert immediately.
- Inspect damage and take photographs – Check for damage to doors, windows, walls, the roof, and other areas, including soaked carpeting, furniture, and more. Take photos of any damage to your home, including cracks and leaks.
- Contact your insurance company – Homeowners or business insurance is essential when you live in an area prone to flooding or storm damage. Contact your insurance company to notify them of any storm damage.
- Choose a professional cleanup company – After a storm has damaged your home or business, you need a professional cleanup company to get your property back up and running. Avoid any companies that show up at your doorstep. Choose a qualified and experienced team like DKI.
Professional Storm Damage Services
DKI provides nationwide storm damage repair services and professional storm cleanup for storm damage caused by tornadoes, hurricanes, thunderstorms, hailstorms, snowstorms, rainstorms, and more. We offer emergency response services, fast and efficient storm cleanup, and property restoration. As North America’s largest disaster restoration contracting organization, we have more than 48 years of experience. We also offer water damage services, fire damage services, mold and environmental remediation, infectious disease control, COVID-19 cleaning and disinfection services, catastrophe response, personal property restoration, building restoration, tree removal, biohazard cleanup, and specialty services. We have you covered 24/7 nationwide. Don’t be caught off guard by the next spring storm. Contact us today to find out how we can help.