The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued an above average flood season for the Midwest during their recent Significant River Flood Outlook. This spring river flood forecast predicts that over 300 locations in the Midwest have a 50% or great chance of reaching moderate to major flood stages. With some locations in the northern Midwest expected to surpass historical measurements due to spring rain combined with snowmelt. Before it’s too late, prepare ahead of time with these 10 flood prevention tips.
1. Check for pipe leaks: It has been a wild winter for most around the Midwest. Pipes at your property could have frozen during the below zero temperatures this Winter. Be sure to check your basement, attic, crawlspace, and other spaces where your pipes are located to make sure your water pipes did not freeze and burst over the winter.
2. Locate Your Water Shut Off Valve: Know where your water shut off valve is and mark it with a water shut off tag. If water damage does occur, shutting off your water right away could cause your property from having major water damage problems.
3. Trim Trees Around Your Business or House: Trees can fall on your roof and through your windows during a storm. If this happens, rain could come in. Make sure to remove all dead limbs and trim your trees so they are not able to hit your property.
4. Clean Gutters and Downspouts Seasonally: Clogged gutters and downspouts can cause water wall leaks and interior mold. Remove all debris, then test your gutters and downspouts with a hose to make sure they are doing their job properly.
5. Check and Replace Appliance Hoses: Faulty appliance hoses can cause major water damage. Appliance hoses can be found in your refrigerator, washing machine, dryer, and dishwasher. Check for crimping, bending and tears that would cause the hose to break. Replace your hoses every five years even if there are no signs of damage.
6. Inspect Air Conditioner Before You Turn It On: An air conditioner’s drain lines, filter, and coils should be cleaned and checked before turning the air conditioner on. If they are not properly maintained, your property could flood.
7. Monitor Outside Windows and Doors: If windows and doors are not sealed tight, your property is at risk for water seeping in. If you find a leak, use expanding foam or caulk to make sure water does not come through the opening.
8. Install and Test Sump Pump Regularly: Sump pump failure causes thousands of basements to flood each year. To ensure this doesn’t happen, you should check your sump pump periodically.
9. Inspect and Shingle Your Roof: Spring rain can cause property damage to your roof. Check your roof for holes and missing shingles. Your roof should be shingled every 10-15 years even if you do not see any damage.
10. Be Careful Where You Plant: Roots from trees, shrubs and plants can grow into your water lines and foundation. If your water lines or foundations crack, water can come into your home. Always check how big a root can get on your plants before placing them in the ground by your home.
Sometimes even when you take all the preventative steps, your property can still have a water damage. If this happens and you need water mitigation services remember, that our ServiceMaster DSI experts are available 24/7/365. Contact us at 844-413-3130 or click here to request service right away.