How to Prepare your Home for Thunderstorms

heavy rainThunderstorms sometimes seem like a common and standard weather event throughout the country, occurring at any time of year, but they can cause significant damage to a home and property. In some regions, summer is the season when frequent thunderstorms hit, bringing heavy rain, high winds, and hail on occasion. Precipitation and lightning, in particular, can wreak havoc on a home from the outside in. Luckily there are ways to prepare for storms to prevent damage and to stay safe inside your home.

1. Flooding and Water Damage

Flooding is a common result of heavy rainfall that often overtakes a basement, leading to damage of furniture, carpeting, personal items, and your basement’s condition as a whole. Help to prevent flooding by:

  • Making sure your gutters are clear of leaves and debris so they can adequately collect rainwater.
  • Ensuring downspouts drain away from your foundation by at least three feet.
  • Using a sump pump as part of an interior waterproofing system to collect and remove water that seeps into your basement.

2. Power Outages

Power outages often come hand in hand with thunderstorms due to lightning and high winds. A power outage can be inconvenient as well as unsafe, especially if it lasts for more than a few hours. Prepare for short or long term electrical loss by:

  • Having candles and matches, flashlights and extra batteries on hand.
  • Investing in a backup generator that protects your home and family year round from power outages, automatically.

3. Power Surges

Lightning is a commonly known cause of power surges and the most intense source. A power surge can cause damage to electronics or a possible electrical fire. Protect your devices and home by:

  • Using a surge protector for major appliances as well as computers, televisions, and other valuable electronics.
  • Unplugging your devices altogether during a storm to avoid damage and fire.

Don’t forget to keep emergency supplies on hand, as well, such as water, nonperishable food, a first aid kit, and a battery-powered radio in the case of a severe weather situation.

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Tom Gillece Sr. is the founder and president of Gillece Services in Pittsburgh, providing residential Plumbing, Heating, Cooling, Electrical and Waterproofing services throughout Western Pennsylvania. Established in 1980, Gillece has helped homeowners with all of their emergency, maintenance, repair and replacement needs for more than 30 years. For the latest news and offers, Gillece can be found on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+.