While April showers may bring May flowers, there is another thing it can bring as well — flooding. Floods are very dangerous natural disasters that can not only cause significant damage to your property but can also harm you, your family and pets. As a way to keep us all safe, we created this guide to help prepare your house for flooding.
Install Waterproof Flooring
Most flooring cannot withstand excessive water exposure, which means you have to install new flooring every time it floods. Installing new floors can be quite expensive, especially if you live in an area that floods frequently. Save yourself that money by installing waterproof flooring. Waterproof flooring is 100% waterproof, which means you can remove them, let them dry out and reinstall them back in. To learn more about the amazing benefits of this flooring, check out this guide. And if you want to check out samples or install them, call Valor Home Services to help.
Move Valuables to Upper Floors
All valuables and important paperwork need to be moved to higher floors, preferably the highest floor of your house. On these upper floors, you will also want an emergency first aid kit as well as an emergency food and water supply. You may be camped upstairs for a few days while the water descends. You should also store all your important documents like social security cards, birth certificates, marriage certificates, passports and other relevant paperwork and jewelry in a waterproof safe or container. Keep your flood insurance in this safe as well. If you incur any damages, you will want to have your insurance right on hand.
Install Backflow Valves
Did you know that during a flood, your sewer and storm drains can back up causing sewage to seep or overflow your sinks, bathtub and other pipes? Flooding is bad enough. You do not want sewage taking over your home as well. Trust us, cleaning after this is not a pretty experience. Instead, call a plumber to come and install backflow valves and plugs to prevent this from happening.
Have Backup Water System
Do not drink water from your home after it floods until it has been tested and verified as safe by your local health department. Sewage and other harmful bacteria can hang around your water system after a major storm. Instead, store five-gallon water bottles or have an advanced water filtration system for you to drink. While typically, you only need a few days worth, some major storms can cause water issues for up to two weeks or even months.
Call an Electrician
Once the water resides, you may want to check on your water and power supply. We advise you not to touch any wires or electrical equipment after a flood. Loose or broken wires in wet areas can electrocute you. Due to how dangerous electrical wires can be, you should call an electrician immediately after the storm and vacate to a safer zone. However, before the storm, you should place electrical outlets, switches and wiring at least 12 inches above the predicted flood levels.
Create Evacuation Plan
If you decided to wait out the storm, but the water gets too high, then you have to have a way out. That is where an evacuation plan comes to play. You will want a few different routes to help you and your family reach a safety spot, whether that be a friend’s or relative’s house. Your evacuation plan should also remember to include your pets and their must-have items as well as anything else your family or small children may need. For example, formula, baby food and medications are important items to have ready to go in your plan. Once you have your plan set, you should have practice runs with your family a few times a year.
Secure Breakable Items
Water is a powerful force that allows many items, especially glass objects to float around. Once these breakable items hit a hard surface, they can break. Any time there are broken pieces of glass or other sharp objects lying around, there is always the possibility of it harming you, your family or pets. No one wants to get hurt. That is why before the storm, you need to place all your breakables in a secure location. This location can be in a locked cabinet, dresser or box or even on another level of your home.
Floods can be a scary and serious situation. But there is no need to fear. As long as you follow this list, you and your family can make it through the bad storm. And, if you ever need help cleaning, remodeling, repairing or renovating your home after a flood, we are ready to help. We have been serving our clients in Belleville, O’Fallon, Edwardsville and the surrounding areas for over 20 years. To schedule an appointment with us, contact us today.