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Tuesday, April 7,2015

Hurricane Preparation

By Roger Zona  



Do I really have to go through all that hurricane preparation?


Look at it another way. Yes, hurricane preparation and protection is vital to your safety and the protection of your home. If you wait much longer, all the trades will be busy. (Been there – done that!)  Now is the time to determine what safeguards are needed and how to get them done.

Begin by making a thorough inspection of  the exterior of your home.

On older homes (pre 2000) the roof seems to be the weak spot. Do any tiles or shingles look out of line?... or cracked? Asphalt shingles become dry and brittle over the years. The age of your roof covering will impact the premium on your insurance.

Do you have impact type windows and doors?  If so, remember, they can still be penetrated by flying debris and that allows the wind pressure to build up on the inside of your home and allow rain inside also. I still prefer shutters or panels for all my windows and doors. They are a job to attach to the house but the protection is good.  The downside is that flying debris can dent the panels and shatter glass.  

Buyers of older homes may think the home is protected because it has shutters or panels. The building code changes whenever we have a hurricane and the minimum wind pressure keeps going up. What was once a 90 mile per hour wind in a category 3 hurricane is now 120 and a category 5 hurricane starts at 157 mph. Some insurance companies will notwrite a policy on a home that is east of I-95.

Back to the inspection... Check the caulking around windows and doors. It’s quite amazing how much water can penetrate through such a small opening. If you have a swimming pool, it will undoubtedly overflow because of the rains that a hurricane generates.

Move all items that can become airborne such as patio furniture, potted plants, decorative fencing and even light fixtures. That boat on a trailer can roll around. Anchor it solidly to a palm tree or use hurricane twist anchors and a large rope.

The list of hurricane supplies published by the TV stations and supermarkets will give you an idea of how much you should prepare. Having the right type of foods and water supply can be a comfort when you have that power outage. Our last one was for 12 days!

Again, yes you really must be hurricane ready! 




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