6 Ways to Protect Your Home and Family During Spring and Summer Storms
After an unusually warm and calm winter in the Durham area, spring has entered like a roaring lion. Strong to severe storms delayed schools, and families were reminded to review their tornado drills. Thunderstorms with strong, damaging winds, heavy rain, and hail are possible throughout the year, but most prevalent from March through August.
With most of spring and summer still in front of us, we wanted to discuss principles homeowners can put in place to help ensure their homes and families are safe during strong thunderstorms. In this article, we will discuss eight ways to protect your home and family when the storms roll in:
1) Regularly Inspect and Clean Your Gutters
When leaves and other debris collect in your gutters, heavy rains will cause water to drain unevenly, potentially damaging your roof or foundation. What can you do about it?
- Keep gutters clean and free of debris
- Replace broken or damaged gutters before the storm
- Correct drainage issues around your home’s foundation
- Check your basement or crawlspace for signs of excess moisture
2) Check for Roof Leaks and Damage
During spring storms, rain, hail, and wind can damage your roof. After the storm, check your roof for missing shingles, soft spots, or signs of damage. Furthermore, check your attic for wet spots or water damage. Act quickly, mold can develop within 48 hours of the occurrence of water damage. If your roof is aging or damaged, it is best to correct issues before the storm hits.
3) Repair or Replace Damaged and Drafty Windows and Doors
In addition to being a hazard during strong storms, drafty doors and windows can release as much as 25% of your home’s heating and air conditioning energy. It is important to pay attention to the signs your windows and doors need to be replaced:
- Condensation on window sills or inside window panes
- Broken glass or cracked window panes
- Worn and cracked weather stripping
- High than normal energy costs
- A stiff breeze flowing through your home
Improving the efficiently of your doors and windows can help reduce energy costs, and extend the life of your HVAC system, contact us.
4) Put Together Home Emergency Preparedness Kit
Durham, NC is susceptible to a wide variety of impacts from spring and summer storms. It is important for you and your family to have an accessible emergency preparedness kit for power outages and storm damage. Your storm preparedness kit should include:
- Flashlights, batteries, and candles
- Non-perishable food sources
- First aid supplies
- Back-up power for cell phones
- Board games and things for the kids
5) Prepare for Potential Wind Damage
Wind damage is relatively common with spring and summer thunderstorms, and central North Carolina is well-acquainted with tropical storms and hurricanes wreaking havoc inland. Prepare your home for potential wind damage by following these steps:
- Trees: Have dangerous limbs and trees removed
- Roofing: Make your roof is well-maintained
- Furniture: Tie down loose lawn furniture and trash cans
- Siding: Make sure your home has high quality, well-maintained siding
6) Maintain Your HVAC System
Spring and summer months are notoriously humid in Durham. When humidity and moisture are in excess, you air conditioning system is your greatest ally against the development of mold and mildew. Quick HVAC maintenance steps include:
- Regularly replace air filters
- Open all vents to maximize airflow
- Clear unit of leaves and other debris
- Identify potential limbs or lawn equipment that could fall on the unit during a storm
- Regularly check for leaking refrigerant lines
- Repair issues as soon as you find them
For more information on how to make sure your HVAC system is ready for the heat and humidity of the spring and summer months, give us a call. Our professionally trained technicians are here to help.