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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Protecting Your Home Against Flood Water and Storm Damage

10/29/2021 (Permalink)

Hands protecting a tree from lightning. Storms can produce water damage and flooding in your South Boston, VA home.

It doesn't take much for flood water to damage your home. A couple of inches can ruin flooring and lead to foundational concerns and damage. Keeping your home safe against rising waters might seem impossible. Still, there are several steps you can take to limit or avoid extensive damage, according to water mitigation experts in South Boston, VA.

4 Ways To Protect Your Home and Belongings From Flood Water

A flooded building has many vulnerabilities, from structure to electrical systems. As homeowners, your insight is to salvage as much as possible before the water level gets too high. Unfortunately, not every flood will provide enough time to adjust your living space and save vulnerable items. Therefore, it is best to consider the four ways to protect your home and belongings from flooding.

1. Waterproof Your Basement

If your goal is to avoid water damage, consider waterproofing your basement. There are a couple of ways to waterproof: internally and externally. Using a coating system inside your home can significantly reduce your risks of damage, but these systems are not as effective as external waterproofing methods; however, they are much cheaper and more practical.

External waterproofing involves digging down around your home's foundation and adhering a waterproofing membrane to the house. External methods are more effective than internal sealing methods, but because of the labor involved, they are more expensive and time-consuming.

2. Purchase Flood Insurance

While purchasing flood insurance will not protect your physical belongings from water, it does provide monetary protection against flooding. However, when you buy flood insurance for your home, make sure you read the policy carefully. Most insurance policies will come with a list of exclusions — circumstances that are not covered.

A policy might cover internal floods, like sewage backups or supply line breaks, but it will not cover external flooding from storms or public sewer overflow. Reading your policy and asking questions is the best way to ensure you get the coverage you want and need.

3. Elevate Electrical Components and Valuables

If you are aware of an impending flood or storm surge, take action to protect vulnerable items in your home. You will want to unplug all appliances and electronics and elevate them. It would be best if you tried to move all items to the highest level in your home, a second floor or attic space. If there is time, transport your valuables to an external storage unit well outside of the flood zone.

Additionally, refrain from using any electrical outlets after the flood recedes. It is always best to have electrical systems inspected, even if they appear to be working.

4. Pack an Emergency Kit

When a flood occurs, you have no way of knowing how fast the waters will rise or when they will stop. FEMA recommends having an emergency kit packed and ready to go at all times. The emergency pack should include food, water, first aid, and any medications you need. Each family member should have their own kit.

Protecting your home against flood water is about more than physical preparations; insurance and emergency planning are just as important to the process. Check out the FEMA website for more information.

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