As a North Carolina homeowner, you know summer storms are a fact of life. Adhering to these easy home maintenance tips is an essential component of being proactive in preparing your home for summer storms. The other component is taking additional steps when a storm is in the forecast.
Maintenance Tips for a Storm Ready Home
- Inspect Your Roof
At the beginning of summer and after a major storm, you need to inspect your roof. No ladder or climbing is required as you can perform this inspection from the ground. You’re trying to identify minor issues to repair before they become major (and expensive) problems. Specifically, you’re looking for:
- Curling, missing, or damaged shingles
- Dirt or debris
- Standing water
- Blocked gutters or downspouts
In addition, you should take a careful look at all the roof’s exterior fixtures like skylights, chimneys, vents, decking, soffit, fascia, and flashing. You want to see if the fixtures have signs of damage such as rot, leaks, or missing parts. You should have any damage you find during your roof inspection repaired before a storm comes.
- Keep Gutters and Downspouts Clean
Clogged gutters cannot do their job of getting stormwater to the downspouts and away from your home’s foundation. Removing leaves and debris from your gutters should be part of your routine home maintenance. You may want to hire someone to do this if you don’t feel comfortable climbing a ladder.
When you’re cleaning your gutters and downspouts, take a look at their condition. Gutters should be firmly attached. Your downspouts need to direct water at least six feet from the foundation. If they don’t, install downspout extenders.
- Trim Foliage
Keeping trees and other foliage trimmed is important for several reasons. First, trimming helps keep gutters clean by decreasing the foliage available to land in them. Also, trimming can keep leaves and twigs from ending up on your roof where they can trap moisture, which can damage the roof. Trimming lowers the possibility large limbs will damage your home during a storm.
If possible, trim trees to the extent they can’t brush against your home in the event of high winds. While trimming, make sure you remove all dead or damaged limbs. High winds could cause a tree in poor health to fall and damage your home or your neighbor’s property. Consider removing it.
When a Storm is in the Forecast
- Remove or Secure Outdoor Furnishings
Strong winds, heavy rains, and hail can damage home decor items in your yard. Also, strong winds may cause outdoor furnishings to strike and damage your windows or other parts of your home. The best plan is to bring inside items like barbeque grills, toys, flower pots, hammocks, patio furniture, garden lights, trash cans, and umbrellas. Secure and cover anything you’re not able to bring indoors.
- Make a Final Inspection of Downspouts and Exterior Drains.
Performing this quick inspection is an important last step. You want to make sure stormwater can drain away from your house. Check drains on wells around basement windows to ensure they’re not clogged. Make sure leaves and twigs aren’t blocking the drain near your basement door. Have your downspouts become blocked since your roof inspection? Also, make sure any downspout extenders are connected and pointed away from the foundation.
We hope you’ve found these summer storm preparation tips helpful. You should call a professional to make repairs to get your home storm ready if you discover damage that’s beyond your DIY maintenance skills. At Robuck Homes, our relationship with homeowners doesn’t end at closing. We love providing tips for keeping your home safe and enjoyable.