As we venture closer to the middle of hurricane season, it is better to be prepared for whatever Mother Nature may throw our way. Hurricane season is a challenging time of year for homeowners. Not only do you need to prepare for the possibility of high winds and torrential rains, but you also need to be ready for potential damage to any area of your home or business, including your plumbing system.
At Certified Plumbing of Brevard, we’ve seen too many homeowners suffer costly and inconvenient plumbing problems during hurricane season. So here’s an overview list of what you can do to prepare your home before a hurricane warning.
Hurricane Season Plumbing Checklist
1. Clear Your Drains and Gutters
One of the most critical steps you can take to prepare your plumbing system for a hurricane is to clear out your drains and gutters. Obstructions in these areas can lead to significant backup and flooding on your property. Especially in Florida, where summer thunderstorms are abundant, make sure to clear your gutters regularly to prevent blockages.
Certified Plumbing of Brevard recommends checking your gutters and drains before the start of hurricane season and after heavy rainfall to make sure they are clear. Otherwise, blocked drains can quickly lead to flooding and water damage. Be sure to clean them out thoroughly, and consider using a cover to keep them clear throughout the storm.
2. Secure Your Outdoor Plumbing Fixtures
Outdoor fixtures like your air conditioning unit, hose bibs, and pool pumps are vulnerable to high winds and debris during a hurricane, which could lead to significant damage. Before the storm, make sure to secure all outdoor plumbing fixtures by fastening them to the ground or a secure structure. During high winds, outdoor pipes, faucets, and fixtures can become dangerous projectiles.
To safeguard your property and minimize the risk of injury, it’s important to fasten them securely to walls or other structures. This can be easily done with straps or brackets, which can be found at most hardware stores. If you have any outdoor pipes, make sure to turn off the water supply and clear the pipes of water to prevent burst pipes.
3. Clear Your Septic System
When heavy rain and flooding occur, septic systems are at greater risk of damage and backups. To prevent your septic system from being overwhelmed, have it pumped and cleared before the start of hurricane season. A well-maintained septic system will help reduce the risk of backups and ensure that your plumbing system runs smoothly after the storm. Keeping your septic system in good condition is one of the best ways to prevent costly damages and ensure smooth-running plumbing throughout Florida’s wet season.
4. Turn off the Main Water Valve
The most critical thing you can do to protect your home during a hurricane is to turn off the main water valve. Hurricanes bring strong winds, torrential rains, and flooding, which can cause significant water damage to your home. By turning off the main water valve, you can reduce the risk of burst pipes or leaking water lines. Burst pipes can cause severe damage to your home and can be costly to fix. Water leaks can also lead to significant water damage to your walls, floors, and furniture, and can increase the risk of mold growth. Therefore, it is essential to turn off the main water valve if you need to evacuate your home during a hurricane. Unsure where your main water valve is? Discover where your water line is here here.
Also, if your home or business is in a flood-prone area, and you are evacuating, as you turn off your main water valve, be sure to also shut off the electricity to avoid electrical hazards.
5. Get Creative with Sandbags
Sandbags can help to keep water out of your home or business, especially if you’re in a flood-prone area. You can place them around vulnerable areas such as the front door, basement windows, or garage entryway to minimize flooding.
6. Check Your Water Heater
In the event of a hurricane, there’s a chance you could lose access to hot water. Therefore, it’s important to check your water heater to ensure that it’s securely anchored. If it’s not, it’s likely to move and cause a gas leak or electrical failure. Also, keep in mind that your water heater should not be located in a flood-prone area. If it is, consider relocating it to a higher elevation.
7. Consider a Generator
When there’s a power outage, it can be challenging to keep your household running smoothly. One way to overcome this problem is to have a generator. A generator can help to power your sump pump, fridge, and other essential appliances. It’s also essential to ensure that your generator is installed safely, preferably by a professional electrician.
8. Inspect and Fix Leaks
Inspect your entire plumbing system for leaks. Leaks waste water and drive up your utility bills, but they can also exacerbate issues during heavy rains. As you check your plumbing, pay particular attention to areas that may have been impacted by previous storms. If you notice any leaks, be sure to repair them promptly to avoid further damage.
9. Install Backflow Prevention Devices
If you live in an area that is prone to flooding, it’s important to install backflow prevention devices to protect your water supply from contamination. These devices prevent sewage or other pollutants from flowing back into your home’s pipes, should your local wastewater system fail during a storm. Certified Plumbing of Brevard are experts in backflow testing and installation.
10. Fill Your Bathtub
During a hurricane, the water supply may get contaminated or might become unavailable due to power outages. Filling your bathtub with water prior to the storm, provides you with access to clean water for drinking, cooking, washing, and flushing. Make sure the water is clean or pump it from a well before the storm hits. Also, a hurricane may block access to your property, this supplies you with extra water for several days.
11. Have Your Plumbing System Inspected
To reduce the risk of plumbing problems during hurricane season, have your plumbing system inspected by a professional plumber, like Certified Plumbing of Brevard. A plumbing inspection will help identify any potential issues before the start of the storm, allowing you to make any necessary repairs before it’s too late. An inspection can also identify any weak points in your plumbing system that you may need to address in the future.
Certified Plumbing of Brevard Can Secure Your Plumbing
You never know when a hurricane will hit, but it’s almost guaranteed in Florida’s hurricane season, so it’s essential to be prepared. Follow these helpful tips to prepare your plumbing system for hurricane season and help prevent costly damage and inconvenience. For all of your plumbing needs in Brevard County, call on the trusted professionals at Certified Plumbing of Brevard at 321-676-0812.We’re here to help you keep your plumbing system running smoothly through every season.
Certified Plumbing of Brevard has been trusted in this county for over 33 years. It is our privilege to be your trusted plumbing service in Brevard County. Looking for other plumbing services? We offer a range of maintenance, installation, and repair services in residential, commercial, and hospital properties. Call us at 321-676-0812 to schedule your plumbing service.