A flood is one of the most prevalent issues you can face in your home, as floods can happen anywhere. Whether it comes from an outside source or an indoor one, any type of flood can damage your home and all your items. That’s why it’s important that you learn how you can best protect your items from a flood.
The Best Protection Is Prevention
Before it comes to protecting your items in a flood, it’s better to learn what you can do to prevent a flood in the first place. These are just a few of the most common methods people use to prevent a flood or mitigate its damage.
The first and most important step to flood prevention is performing frequent inspections of your home and all the normal points of potential leaks. This means checking your pipes for any signs of leaking or bursting and inspecting your home for any abnormal buildup of water. Catching these issues early on can make it easier to avoid a potential flood.
One big problem is that water pools in homes, which leads to floods and damage because the water has nowhere to go. That’s why people like to put in foundation vents that give a path for pooling water to drain from your home.
Coating and Sealant
Another preventative measure is to apply coatings and sealants to your structure to prevent water from leaking through any cracks. This is perfect for places with old walls or in areas that experience frequent storms, as sealants can help keep any water outside your home.
High Point Structure
While this can take quite a bit of preparation and investment, you should ensure that your home sits above the rest of your property and above the flood line, if possible. This will help water naturally steer clear from your home and prevent leaks in the future. If you can’t move your home, you can always change your yard to create pathways for water to flow away from your home.
Rain will naturally gather in the mulch around your home, which can cause all sorts of problems, as your foundation won’t dry if it’s in contact with wet mulch. That’s why putting something to block off the mulch from your foundation can help prevent issues in your foundation and possibly prevent a flood.
Another important step to protect your home from floods is to check your roof every few months to catch any leaks. A leaking roof can lead to horrible floods in a big storm and will often require you to hire emergency water removal services. It’s best if you check the condition of your roof at least once a quarter, with additional checks after significant storms.
While preventing a flood should be your primary focus, sometimes a flood will still occur, and you need to do what you can to protect your belonging and valuables. Here are a few methods you can use before a flood to protect your items from flood water as best as possible.
Prioritize Your Items
The first step is to go through your items to determine what can and can’t get wet. Some materials, like plastic or stainless steel, can withstand most flood water without any issues. Additionally, separate out valuable items that are irreplaceable from items that you can replace.
Valuables in Safe Storage
Once you identify your valuable and irreplaceable items, it’s time to store them in protective bins and boxes. Try finding waterproof options to store your most important belongings, so they can survive a flood even if it gets a bit wet. This will keep your important items, like identity documents, safe and accounted for.
Replaceable Items on Bottom
Not only should you separate your good belongs, but also the items you don’t mind losing if they get wet. You should store these items near the floor and put items you care more about higher and further away from the floor. Since water sits on the floor, you’re protecting your more important items while leaving the replaceable ones at the bottom.
One of the most important things you can do is prioritize your electrical items. Water can completely destroy any electronics and appliances, and the electronics can make the water significantly more dangerous. Do what you can to keep these off the floor or lower surfaces, and make sure your outlets are at least one foot above the flood level to prevent electrical damage.
When storing a bulk of items or creating a storage space, do what you can to get waterproof bins and boxes for the space. This will help protect your items if the storage area does flood, which is very useful in the basement, as water can easily gather in and flood there.
Use Tarps and Linings
While you don’t want to do this for your whole home and every surface, laying down tarps or linings for your items can prevent water damage during a flood. While this method is extremely effective in protecting your items from water, most people only use it in storage areas.
Spread Your Items
One of the last tricks you can do is spread your items around your home, which can help prevent massive damage to all your items. If you keep a lot of items in one place, they can all get wet in one flood; however, spreading them throughout your home makes it difficult for a single flood to soak all your items.
When It Floods
If a flood does occur, there are a few things you should do to best protect yourself and your belongings. First, you should focus on your own safety and the safety of your family members. Don’t touch the water if it’s anywhere near electricity, and try to find somewhere else to stay until you can get a cleaning crew in. This will help keep you safe in case of waterborne disease, electrical hazards, and structural damage.
Working With Insurance
You should call your insurance as soon as possible to report the flood, as it can take a while to work with an insurance company. As soon as you can safely get back home, take pictures of any damage and inventory all your items, as insurance may require documentation in order to cover your losses.
These are the things you can do to protect your home and belongings if a flood takes place. Hopefully, you’ll never need this advice if you practice preventative flood maintenance in your home. However, these steps should help you in case you’re ever dealing with flooding in your home.