Spring storms are too common in the North Mississippi area
This weekend was the 5-year anniversary of the devastating tornadoes that hit Tupelo. For those that went through it remember as if it was yesterday. Even those that were not in the direct path, were without electricity for over a week.
Tornadoes are not the only force of nature that North Mississippi residents should watch for. We have violent thunderstorms in the Spring and Fall months and hurricanes in the summers.
Prepare your house and yard to avoid disasters
Storm damage is all too common; each year countless homes suffer damage from storm-related incidents. Reducing your risk of damage, believe it or not, is not complicated; many of these tips are a simple matter of common-sense upkeep of your home and yard.
So put on your work clothes or call your contractor – storm season has started and these tips will protect your home from a multitude of storm-related damage risks such as water damage, fires, and power outages.
Clean Your Gutters to Prevent Water Damage
We are all guilty of putting this task off; who wants to spend the afternoon up on a ladder scooping out decomposing leaves?
You do. Clogged gutters cause stormwater to overflow to the ground below next to the foundation, saturating the ground and possibly penetrating your home’s foundation. A buildup of water in the gutters can also cause water to seep into the attic and damage walls and insulation.
Don’t forget to check downspouts for clogs; use a garden hose to flush them with water.
Sounds too difficult? Hire a pro to do it; you will pay much less for this service than you will pay for water damage that may occur once the gutters are clogged.
Trim Trees to Protect Your Roof from Storm Damage
Trimming tree branches that are hanging over your house will reduce their weight and the likelihood of them breaking during a storm. Make sure any remaining limbs are at least 4 feet above the roof to discourage critters from climbing onto your roof and trying to find a way into your attic.
Install a French Drain to Keep Storm Water Away
A French drain is a lightly sloped trench with a pipe in the bottom that diverts water away from the house. The pipe is covered with gravel to create a natural appearance that adds beauty to your landscape. Having a French drain ensures that water from heavy storms will drain away from the house quickly to prevent flooding.
French drains can be deep or shallow depending on the amount of water you need to divert. Our friends at Cornerstone Landscaping can tell you more about French drains; contact them if you would like this job handled by a professional.
Purchase a Generator to Prepare for a Power Outage
Investing in a generator will prevent loss due to spoiled food caused by power outages, and in addition, minimize the inconvenience that storm-related power outages cause. For people who need to power medical equipment, it is especially critical.
Generators come in both portable and standby varieties and in various wattage, so you will need to balance the amount of power you need with the amount you want to spend.
Prevent Fires with a Clean Yard and Hardscaping
Well-maintained yards are not just attractive, they reduce the risk of fire. By removing dead foliage, dry leaves, and dead wood and adding stone features such as patios and walkways, you are reducing fuel for any fires a storm can trigger.
Install Impact-Resistant Windows and Doors
We all know that high winds can cause damage to a house. But did you know that impact-resistant doors, windows, and garage doors can help protect your house from storm damage? On top of that, some insurance companies offer a discount on your home insurance rates if you install them.
Added bonuses of impact-resistant windows and doors include protecting your house from break-ins, stopping warm or cool air from escaping (which saves you $ on heat and A/C bills), and reducing outside noise.
Keep Your Insurance Up-To-Date
Reviewing your homeowner’s insurance annually is a must-do. Each year make a list of any updates or home improvements you have done, and look at your coverage amounts to make sure they are high enough to allow you to rebuild your house in case of a disaster. Also, check to make sure you have insurance that covers flood damage.
Check Fire Extinguishers and Change Smoke Detector Batteries
When fires do happen, you need to be prepared. Doing so will save your life and minimize potential damage.
Fire extinguishers can deteriorate over time. Check each extinguisher to make sure the locking pin is in place and that the pressure gauge is indicating full pressure. If you don’t have a fire extinguisher on each floor, it’s time to go shopping!
At the same time, put a new battery in each smoke detector in the house and write the date on it with a sharpie. Too many people lose their lives each year because the smoke detector did not go off due to a dead or removed battery.
Pick Wildfire-Wise Plants
Be mindful of your plant choices when landscaping close to your house. Certain plants contain wax, terpenes, or oils in their stems and are extremely flammable, as are plants such as hollies, eucalyptus, pine, and junipers.
If you live in a wildfire-prone area, landscape with fire-resistant plantings such as boxwood, azaleas, hydrangeas, and burning bushes (no pun intended!). Succulents, such as sedum, are also good choices as they have a high water content which makes them less flammable. For more fire-smart planting ideas visit www.firewise.org.
If you use bark mulch make sure you keep it moist as it is highly flammable. Safer mulching choices would be gravel, decorative rock, or rock/bark combinations.
If you are impacted by North Mississippi storms, we are here to help.
Absolute Cleaning and Restoration has extensive experience in cleaning up your home from storm damage whether it is flooding or fire.
Customers keep coming back to Absolute Cleaning and Restoration because of the quality service we provide at reasonable prices. Previous clients know that our company truly cares about each of our clients and they continue to recommend us to others. People know we are a locally owned and family run business that will always be here to take care of our customers – give us a call today at 662-760-4348.