According to Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology, there are about 10-13 tropical cyclones each season. These storms can wreak havoc in one’s home, causing damage on the house’s structure, interior, and exterior, and can cause irreparable (or at least costly) water damage. That said, it’s best for homeowners to take necessary precautions before the cyclone season, which is generally between November to April. As such, we’ll be taking a look at different tips to help you cyclone-proof your home in order to prevent or, at least, minimise storm damage.
In many cases, homeowners prepare for a cyclone by securing the entire structure. However, many homeowners often neglect to prune surrounding and adjacent trees in their property. Heavy overhanging branches can potentially break off and fall on to roofs, gutters, and windows, causing dents and other damages which may also lead to water leaking into one’s home. That said, it’s best to consult your local authority and a landscaping/tree trimming professional with regards to cutting down branches that can potentially break and fall off due to strong winds.
Roof and Rain Gutter Cleaning and Maintenance
It’s important for you to clean your roof and rain gutters before and after the storm. Although well-made roofs can endure a lot of punishment, they eventually suffer from wear and tear that result in holes and gaps which allow water to leak into your ceilings and walls. Water leakage can cause damage to the house’s structure, electrical system, and anything inside the house. On the other hand, rain gutters help divert the flow of rainwater away from your home to prevent foundation damage and potential basement flooding. But if rain gutters are filled with leaves and other debris, it won’t be able to function properly, and the weight of water and debris may even cause it to loosen. As such, make sure that you constantly clean and maintain your roof and rain gutters. If you don’t have time to have holes and gaps patched up, a silicone adhesive sealant can be a quick and affordable solution.
Weather-stripping and Sealing Windows and Doors
Water can enter through cracks and gaps in your windows, and through the gaps on your doors (including your garage door). So make sure to watch out for drafts in your windows and caulk them to prevent water from seeping in. Your entryway doors (and garage door) should also have weather-stripping to protect your home’s interior from the elements.
Protect Your Windows
The windows are perhaps the most vulnerable parts of your home during a cyclone, as strong winds can carry debris which can crack the glass and let water and wind into your house. That said, it’s best to get impact-rated windows in your home, or have cyclone shutters installed to protect your windows and doors from any potential storm damage.
Lastly, you have to accept the fact that, even with all these cyclone-proofing methods, there’s still a chance of your home getting damaged during the storm. That said, it’s best to check if your home insurance covers cyclone damage as not all insurance packages have them, and, if not, buy a policy when there’s a forecast of a strong cyclone. This way, you’ll be able to claim for damages after the storm to cover the cost for repairs.
A cyclone can be very destructive, which is why it’s best to apply these cyclone-proofing tips in order to protect your home for the upcoming cyclone season.