With hurricane season in full swing and a likely storm heading for Florida, the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety, an independent, nonprofit, scientific research organization, offers these seven ways to get your home ready for summer storms:
1. Select a wind-rated garage door – Garage doors are one of the most vulnerable parts of the home in high winds. High winds can push a garage door inward, allowing pressure to push up on the roof and surrounding walls and damage your home. Wind-rated garage doors have been tested to withstand these pressures and can help protect your home.
2. Resolve leaks — Existing leaks in your roof can worsen in severe weather.
Skylights: Install flashing around skylights to keep water from leaking into your home.
Chimneys: Remove and replace the flashing, including the ice and water barrier, around your chimney to ensure no water seeps into your home.
Flashing: Have leaky flashing removed and replaced.
Roof valleys: Remove and replace leaking valley metal on your roof.
3. Review your insurance policy and assess your risks — Review your insurance policy and store your insurance agent’s contact information in your phone.
4. Trim your trees — Trees in your yard could pose a threat to your home during high winds. Remove branches that overhang the house and remove dead, dying, or diseased trees.
5. Inspect your roof — A roof in need of repair is more vulnerable to high winds.
Unsealed shingles are vulnerable to wind and rain. Have your roof inspected to make sure it’s ready to stand up to hurricane season.
6. Purchase hurricane shutters — Shutters can protect your windows and help keep out damaging winds. Find what’s right for your home with the IBHS Opening Protection Guide. Plywood should only be used in place of shutters as a last-minute resort when tropical weather is imminent. Additionally, taping windows provides no protection and wastes time.
7. Get a whole–home generator — Purchase a whole–home generator to keep your power on, regardless of the weather.