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Hurricane Season

Jun 14, 2011

Protecting Your Home Before – and During – Florida’s Hurricane Season

The Atlantic hurricane season is officially from June 1st to November 30th. Still, hurricanes have occurred outside of these six months, but these dates were selected to encompass over 97% of tropical activity. June 1st has been the traditional start of the Atlantic hurricane season for decades.

Most homeowners living in Florida are no strangers to severe weather such as hurricanes.  However, with adequate planning and protection, you can protect your home with some basic precautionary measures to ensure your property won’t become too badly damaged if a ‘big one’ hits.  Here are some tips to help you secure your home.

Windows and glass doors – Some people will simply put up some plywood over their windows and doors but often this may not be enough to fully protect the property from damage.  Consider making an investment in some properly installed metal shutters for your windows and doors in order to better protect your home. Also consider getting properly installed high impact-resistant windows that can withstand high winds and high velocity projectiles that are thrown into the air by hurricane strength winds.

Stock extra supplies – If a hurricane for example, knocks out the power in your area, floods your area, causes some road damage, or even disables your vehicle you will not be able to go anywhere to buy essentials so make sure you have things such as batteries, bottled water, canned food, extra blankets, first aid supplies, and any medications you might need etc. on hand in case this happens. Another good tip is to buy a generator and to use it properly and safely in case of power blackouts.

Trim Nearby Trees And Foliage – It is often flying debris that causes the major damage to properties during hurricane season so make sure that there aren’t any loose tree branches or other potentially dangerous debris lying near your home and make sure that all the foliage close to your home is well-trimmed.

Have Evacuation Plans – On occasion there will be a hurricane that is deemed powerful enough for the state to intervene and order everyone to evacuate.  If this happens, it is vital to have an evacuation plan in place to ensure a smooth departure.  Know in advance where you will be staying and make sure you have all the necessary supplies with you. And remember, you don’t have to go far to be safe. Do your research and find places near you that are deemed safe evacuation zones by the proper authorities.

Protect Your Roof — The roof on your property can be the first line of defense during a hurricane. The most important step you can take is to secure and protect the roof on your property before hurricane season starts.

A roof with an existing leak is weak and this can set up a domino effect resulting in greater damage. The best defense is to have a roofing professional inspect your roof to determine any weak points. Depending on the type of roof system, part of the action plan could include:

• Repairing loose shingles or tiles and repairing any leaks.

• Checking to make sure roof sheathing is properly attached.

• Bracing and securing gabled roofs.

• Checking and sealing flashings and fasteners.

• Insuring gutters are properly attached.

• Complete replacement of the roof to meet new code requirements.

A roof in good condition is much better able to stand the punishment inflicted upon it by a storm and provide that much needed first line of defense against hurricanes. Keep your home properly protected and be prepared.

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