Following a hurricane evacuation plan helps keep you and your family safe. Protect the property you leave behind with these hurricane preparation tips:
Reinforce the structure
Before a hurricane hits, add strength to the structure of your home to help prevent wind and water damage.
- Help prevent broken windows. But don't tape them. Instead, install impact-resistant permanent storm shutters for the best protection during a hurricane. If those are not an option, add permanent fasteners to windows so protective plywood panels can quickly be put in place.
- Brace the roof. Follow instructions from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for installing braces at the gables or through the trusses of the roof. Attach hurricane clips at the studs and rafters. Use polyurethane sealant and stainless steel screws to secure soffits to the walls and fascia.
- Keep shingles secure. Ask a roofing professional to set extra roofing cement under shingles to keep them in place during a hurricane.
- Waterproof the basement. Fill cracks with hydraulic cement, and coat walls with waterproof masonry cement.
- Protect the garage. Retrofit garage doors with vertical boards, install hurricane-resistant garage doors or use a steel bracing kit to support the door against wind pressure.
- Avoid damage to doors. Ensure all entry doors have three hinges and a dead bolt lock with at least a one-inch bolt throw length.
- Seal small openings. Add caulk to any cracks or holes where cables, pipes or wires enter your home.
Remove excess from the exterior
Store any non-secure items or non-structural elements from around your property, such as:
- Patio furniture
- Garbage bins
- Porch swings
- Landscaping ornaments, such as sculptures or bird baths
If you own a boat, follow these tips to protect it during a hurricane
Protect against extreme conditions
Be prepared for any situation.
- Trim trees and bushes to make them more wind resistant.
- Clear gutters of any debris so water can flow freely.
- Apply sealant around windows and doors.
- Consider flood or wind insurance to help you recover from hurricane damage.
- Protect utilities " such as your furnace and electrical panel " by turning them off right before you evacuate. If possible, move utilities to the second level of your home.
- Unplug electronics before you leave.
When preparing your home for extreme weather, it's also important to review your insurance coverage, create or update your home inventory and plan your evacuation route. Find more hurricane safety tips here.
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The information in this article was obtained from various sources not associated with State Farm. While we believe it to be reliable and accurate, we do not warrant the accuracy or reliability of the information. These suggestions are not a complete list of every loss control measure. The information is not intended to replace manuals or instructions provided by the manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional. Nor is it intended to effect coverage under our policy. State Farm makes no guarantees of results from use of this information.