So, we’ve got you ready for the impending hurricane, now we’ve got to make sure you’ve addressed your gutters before a hurricane, too. While you’ve still got a few hours before the storm hits, here’s what you should do.
Your Gutters Before a Hurricane
Get out your ladder. Go around your house and make sure your gutters are free of leaves and debris, NOW! This is a top tip from every government agency and safety service. By late fall, it’s likely more than half your leaves have fallen and they’ve clogged your gutters. Add in the amount of rain that you get with a hurricane, and it’s a recipe for water in your basement, leaky ceilings, and more.
- Extend your downspouts. Keeping water away from your foundation is critical when there is a lot of rain. A downspout that only extends the length of the curve is downright dangerous. Even on that extends three feet isn’t good enough. Downspout extenders or even a length of downspout attached to the downspout elbow can keep the ground around your home from getting over saturated. Water can seep through the walls of your foundation if the ground gets too wet.
- Check your window wells. Cover them if you can to keep out excess water and debris. If a gutter were to clog, it’s often a window well that fills with water first. The seals around the windows won’t keep water from pouring into your home. Keep a bucket handy and check your window wells often during the storm. A little preemptive bailing can keep you from a wet basement.
- Be courteous and don’t dump your leaves in the street. After gutter cleaning, you may want to dump all those leaves out to the street for pick up. Do your street storm drains a big help by not dumping them out there just yet. You’ll wind up putting strain on local resources and services that, in a situation like this, should be going to more important issues. Storm drains will clog if the streets are taxed with extra leaves. They also make it more difficult to get to power lines or downed trees. Once the storm ends, there’s going to be a lot of clean up anyway. Move the leaves to the street after the storm is over.
- Protect the stuff in your basement. If there are places around your home prone to flood occasionally, even if you have dealt with your gutters before a hurricane, make sure you get them off the ground. Plan on checking your basement regularly so anything that does happen can be caught quickly.
- Have gutter guards? Then read our tips for gutter guards in hurricanes.
That’s it! You’re gutters before a hurricane will be as prepared as possible for Hurricane Sandy or whatever hurricane makes landfall in the future.
We at MasterShield hope that everyone is safe this week, has minimal power outages, and that the storm we’re all bracing for is not as harsh as we’re all planning for it to be.
Questions? Feel free to leave your thoughts below.