Is your area prone to flooding? Learn how you can prevent your house from flooding.
According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, flooding is among the most common natural disasters in the US. Even if you exclude the Harvey, Maria, and Irma hurricane-related tolls, the federal flood insurance claims from 2006 to 2015 averaged $1.9 billion annually.
If your region has a potential flood risk, you should undertake the necessary measures to protect your house such as by installing a flood control system. Follow these tips to prepare your house to resist flooding:
Raise Your Home Above the Flood Level
As little as an inch of floodwater can prove disastrous for your home, causing considerable damage. Thus, it makes sense to raise your house’s flood level to minimize the damage. Even though it’s going to be expensive, raising your house on stilts is an effective way to keep floodwater out of your home.
Floodwater wouldn’t enter your home if not for the cracks in various parts of your house. Sealants and coatings are a form of dry flood-proofing that can be applied to walls, doorways, windows, and foundations. This should ensure that floodwater doesn’t leak into your house through cracks present at these portions.
Install Valves to Your Pipes
A flooded sewage system is another common cause of flooding at homes. To prevent your sewage systems from flooding, install valves on all pipes entering your home. Gate valves offer a better seal against floodwater than flap valves, so you should consider installing gate valves.
Regrade Your Lawn
If you have a lawn at home that tilts towards your home, it will direct water into your home during rainfall and floods. To avoid this, grade your lawn away from the house so that the surface runoff empties in a different direction, perhaps into a street gutter. Heavy soil containing sand and clay content is perfect to adjust the lawn surface.
Elevate Outdoor Equipment
Anchor and raise fuel tanks, generators, and air-conditioning units above flood level. This is because prolonged direct exposure to floodwater can cause this equipment to break free and their supply lines can significantly contaminate the ground. Hence, make sure these power units don't sit on the ground.
Wet-Proof Your Home
Wet-proofing involves installing foundation vents that will prevent the water from rising inside and causing damage by letting it flow through the building. Flood vents of 7 square feet should be enough for a 1000-square feet house.
What to Do When Flood is Imminent?
There are also some last-minute measures that should be taken when floods are expected. Take the time to clear the drains, downspouts, and gutters. Then, turn to major appliances and elevate them onto concrete blocks. Next, raise the furniture, other electronics, and rugs above the ground. As it starts flooding, shut off the electricity from the main switch.
Following the above-stated steps should help you protect your home from floodwater damage.
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