Did you know that, despite common misconception, most homeowners insurance policies do not cover flood damage? While surprising, this is just one of the reasons that taking preventative measures to protect your home from a flood is so important. Here are some of our top tips and recommendations for flood-proofing your home.
Evaluate Your Risk
First things first, it’s important to determine how likely you are to experience a flood where you live. We recommend using the FEMA Flood Map tool to get an idea of the flood risk in your area.
Once you’ve figured out your region’s flood risk, you should also evaluate the way in which water flows in and around your home. An easy way to do this is to assess the surface the next time you experience significant rainfall or snowmelt. Does the water flow toward your house or away from it? Does it pool around specific areas? Taking note of these things will help you to determine your overall risk of flooding and identify areas that are more at risk than others.
Seal Up Cracks in Foundation
Take a walk around your home, and check to see if there are any cracks or gaps in the foundation. If there are, you can purchase some mortar and masonry caulk to fill in the cracks. This is an easy, affordable way to fill gaps in your foundation completely.
Similarly, it’s also a good idea to apply coatings and sealants to your foundation as a way to prevent water from entering your home through cracks. These sealants can also be applied to windows, doorways, and walls for further protection.
Raise Electrical Outlets and Switches
All of the electrical equipment in your home including switches, sockets, circuit breakers, and wires should be at least one foot above flood level. Doing so is imperative when it comes to preventing electrical damage in the event of a flood. Electrical equipment that is too close to flood level can cause big problems when exposed to water.
Protect Your Home’s Appliances
Similar to safeguarding your electrical equipment, your home’s interior and exterior appliances should also be protected. This includes washing machines, drying machines, water heaters, and air conditioning units, to name a few.
These appliances should be raised above flood level, which can be done by placing them on top of concrete blocks. If raising the appliances yourself isn’t possible, be sure to contact a professional to raise your equipment.
Install a Sump Pump or Foundation Vents
Sump pumps work by pumping water that’s inside your house into the outdoors, and they are an effective way to prevent your home from flood and water damage. However, it’s important to note that some sump pumps run on electricity and will not function if the power is out. So, buying a battery-powered sump pump, or one that has a battery backup, is a smart idea.
In addition to sump pumps, foundation vents flood-proof your home by allowing water to flow through the house instead of pooling around it. Not only does this create an outlet for flood water, but it also relieves the pressure that flood water may put on your walls or basement windows.
Install Flood Sensors
Depending on how vulnerable your area is to flooding, installing flood sensors in your home is a good move. Flood sensors can significantly reduce the risk of flood water damage by detecting water in locations that should be dry. If water is detected, the sensors will alert you, allowing you to respond to the situation in a timely manner.
Relocate Valuable Belongings
In terms of protecting your home from flood damage, it’s never a bad idea to move your expensive or valuable belongings to a higher spot. If you live in a home with multiple stories, move your valuables to the highest floor.
If your home is one story, try to move these items as high up as possible, like in a cabinet or shelf. This way, all of your important possessions will be kept out of harm’s way in the event of a flood.
In the Event of Flood Damage, Call the Experts
No matter how many steps you take to protect your home from a flood, things can happen. If you’ve experienced flood or water damage in your home, it’s important to turn to someone you can trust. The experts at Compleat Restorations are skilled in water damage restoration and flood services, and we are ready to help.
Contact us today to learn more about our residential or commercial water damage services.