Summer is coming, and with it comes intense summer storms with their accompanying thunder, lightning, and torrential rains. These storms can be thrilling, at least in hindsight, but they can also be dangerous. Our professionals at Peachtree City roofers offer these tips to help keep a household safe during a summer storm:

1. Make Sure the Home Insurance Policy Is In Order

Ideally, this should be done before a storm is even expected. Make sure you have a replacement cost value (RVC) policy. This makes sure that the insurer pays the current market value needed to replace any damage, including damage to the roof. Actual cash value (ACV) policies are cheaper, but they are a gamble. With an ACV policy, coverage takes into account depreciation. So, if your roof has reached half of its expected lifespan, you are only covered for half the roof’s value. Whichever policy you choose, make sure the insurance policy is in a secure place. Keeping a digital copy in your favorite cloud storage will ensure that you have your policy at any time and any place.

2. Clean Out The Gutters

A clogged gutter can cause water to spill over the gutters and right into the foundation of your home. It can even get behind the walls. If you don’t want to clean out the gutters, hiring a professional is not that expensive. However you go about it, make sure your gutters are clear before the heavy summer downpours. Blocked gutters serve no function and can lead to severe water damage to your home.

3. Check the Trees Around the House

A tree whose top branches are empty while the rest has leafed out may be sick and is at risk of falling on your home in a storm. If it is growing on uneven ground or has a lot of dead wood, that may be a problem, too. Play it safe and get a trained arborist to evaluate your tree. If necessary, have the tree removed as soon as possible.

It is also vital to cut back tree branches that hang close to your roof, even on a healthy tree. Blowing tree limbs can scrape your roof, detaching the protective granules from your asphalt shingles. High winds and pelting rain can also knock small branches, leaves, and other debris onto your roof from an overhanging branch. Any debris on your roof will trap moisture, which is a recipe for roof rot, mold, and water damage.

4. Check the Basement

Make sure that the sump pump is working and that its back-up battery is working as well. If water gets into your basement, the sump pump is the only thing that stands between rainwater and total disaster. A wet basement can lead to mold. If your basement develops mold, the remediation can be quite expensive.

5. Listen to the Radio For Storm Updates

Purchase a battery-powered transistor radio that’s small enough to be carried. Make sure that there are fresh batteries to power the radio and a few flashlights. If you’re worried about keeping new batteries, you can purchase a radio with a manual wind-up generator. On these specialized radios, turning a crank can charge an internal battery to keep your radio going even without fresh batteries.

6. Don’t Touch Electrical Appliances Once the Storm Arrives

Unplug electrical appliances before a severe storm comes, and don’t use the phone during the storm unless it’s an absolute emergency. Lighting can cause powerful surges. While it isn’t common, a nearby lightning strike could cause a jolt powerful enough to injure anyone who makes contact with an item that is plugged in.

7. Don’t Go Outside

It may seem exciting to watch powerful summer storms, but you should stay indoors during a severe storm. If the storm is severe or if you receive a tornado warning, shelter in a windowless space near the center of the house.

8. After the Storm

When summer storms are over, check your home and property for damage. If you see any signs of damage, call your insurance company right away, and make sure to take pictures. If there’s damage to the roof, don’t forget to contact Eagle Watch Roofing. We’llWe’ll inspect your roof and work with your insurance company to get you the best deal on repairs or a new roof.

Get Ready for Summer Storms [infographic]