PROTECT YOUR HOME FROM A FLOODING DISASTER August 23, 2021 | Home Maintenance , Safety , Home Inspection | plumbing , summer , foundation , basement , landscaping Water damage has cost homeowners billions of dollars in repairs. Hurricanes, flash floods, and other natural disasters can leave you homeless and wondering how you’ll pay for damages. While you can’t control the weather, you can prepare yourself and your home. A little water can be a big problem. Even if you’re not expecting heavy rainfall, a small amount can create a large issue for your home. Backed-up gutters can cause water to collect around the foundation of your home and make its way inside. If the ground around your home is too saturated or even too dry to hold rain, you could experience more rushing water than usual. Any time you’re supposed to get stormy weather, it’s best to watch the forecast and have an emergency preparedness plan . Understand how your home drains. Knowing how the land surrounding your home is graded gives you an advantage before the rain comes down. Ideally, you want any water to be directed away from the base of your home and towards a storm drain or nearby runoff. If you notice that water tends to collect around your home and not go anywhere, chances are you need to fix the grading. You can attempt to do this yourself or hire out a professional landscaping company. Fix foundation problems beforehand. Have you noticed large gaps in your home’s foundation? As your home settles and shifts with the ground around it, it can cause cracks to form in the foundation. Gaps both large and small are an issue. If your home has a basement, cracks allow water to seep in and collect, promote mold growth, and also widen the crack itself. Cracks that get too large can make the foundation start to crumble and make your home unsafe. Seal up any holes you notice before a storm to keep excess water out and protect your home’s integrity. Secure exterior equipment leading to your home. Pieces like your AC unit, backup generator, and fuel tanks should be properly secured next to your house. Heavy equipment that isn’t anchored down becomes a floating hazard that can smash into your house or your neighbor’s. Any hoses that contain fluid and come loose can leak and pollute the water. After everything has dried out, these contaminants linger in the soil and pose various health problems. You should also raise mechanical equipment high enough to where light flooding won’t affect it. Switch out your water valves. An overwhelmed sewer system can flow back through your plumbing into your home. This leaves you cleaning up sludge and possibly repairing your pipes. Flap or check valves are normally installed in home plumbing to prevent this from happening, but they aren’t the strongest. To have a better chance of keeping out stormwater, try a gate valve. These should be installed on every pipe that enters your house. Take extra steps to be prepared. Doing as much as you can to be ready for a storm can help you get through it better. For extreme flooding, having sandbags or barricades on hand will give you more protection. Take any valuables, especially electronics, and move them to a higher spot in the house, and be sure to shut off electricity through your breaker panel. Of course, you should have a plan of what to do in an emergency to keep everyone in your home safe. Stay safe with a home inspection! A home inspection can reveal otherwise hidden problems within your home before they become major issues. NPI’s network of trained professionals are able to help give you the knowledge you need when it comes time to purchase a home. Schedule an inspection today !