While a light rain isn’t a threat to your home, weeks of heavy, continuous rain can lead to all sorts of problems, including flooding, mold, and more. Prevent damage and keep your home in great shape with these tips:
1. KEEP YOUR GUTTERS CLEAN
Gutters are your home’s first line of defense against heavy rains. Designed to catch rainwater and direct it away from your home, gutters can go a long way toward preventing rot, mold, and other rain-related problems.
Unfortunately, they don’t work if they’re clogged. When a gutter gets backed up with pine needles or other debris, it can’t channel water efficiently. In fact, the debris create a dam which can push water back up under your roof, or down the siding of your house.
With this in mind, keep your gutters clean, especially when you’re expecting heavy spring rains. While there are many ways to clean gutters, rinsing them with a garden hose is typically sufficient.
2. RE-SEAL YOUR WINDOWS AND DOORS
When it rains for weeks at a time, your windows and doors act as defense mechanisms for your home. If they’re poorly or improperly sealed, though, they could wind up leaking a lot of heat or allowing water to enter the home. With this in mind, be sure to reseal your windows and doors before the heavy rains start. Use weather stripping, foam tape, caulk, rigid foam insulation, or window film to block any air or water leaks and keep your home cozy (and dry) during the spring deluge.
3. HAVE YOUR BASEMENT INSPECTED
If you live in a wet environment, your basement could be at significant risk of flooding when the rainy season starts up.
With this in mind, it’s smart to have the space professionally inspected before the rains start. A professional will be able to evaluate your basement for leaks, structural weak spots, and other risk factors that could lead to problems during heavy rain.
If the inspection uncovers mold, electrical damage, or mildew, it’s wise to hire a disaster cleanup or restoration company to address these issues before the rain starts to fall.
If you have a sump pump in your basement, ensure it’s in proper working order and that there is a backup system in place, in case the power goes out during a big storm.
4. INSPECT YOUR ROOF
If your roof is missing shingles, sagging, or just plain old, have it inspected before it starts to rain. If there are areas that need attention, have them fixed now rather than waiting until Spring is over. Don’t forget to check your chimney for cracks, gaps, or missing tiles that could allow leaks
5. TRIM THE TREES AROUND YOUR HOME
While you might not think much about trees, branches, and other items around your home, it’s important to remember that fallen trees and tree limbs are the top cause of preventable property damage in the U.S.! Keeping these landscape elements trimmed back during the spring is especially important, as heavy rainstorms often create high winds that can bring down debris.
The better-kept your trees and bushes are, the less likely it is they’ll damage your home in a severe storm.
6. PREPARE FOR FLOODING
If you live in a flood-prone area, or your home (or basement) has flooded before, take some time to prepare for rising tides. Move electrical cords up off the floor, elevate anything delicate or easy to damage, and move boxes of documents, furniture, or other special items to higher ground. You may also want to ensure you’ve got a stock of candles, batteries, and non-electric lights stashed somewhere, just in case the power goes out.