Preparing For Thunderstorm Season: A Guide For Homeowners

Summer is in full swing, and in many areas, that means there are bound to be at least a few thunderstorms in the next few months. Between the high winds, heavy rain and lightning, the storm season can lead to quite a lot of home and property damage. By preparing in advance with these tips, you can prevent a lot of issues and save yourself some cash on repairs, too.

Have your trees trimmed.

High winds and lightning are more likely to dislodge branches that are already damaged or dead. By having your trees trimmed to remove these branches, you can decrease the chances of a branch landing on your roof, piercing your window, or crushing your fence. Make sure any trees overhanging your roof, in particular, are trimmed back sufficiently. If you're not confident climbing up on a ladder and trimming a tree, hire a professional to do it for you. Most tree care companies offer a basic "tidying up" service for a reasonable price. For more information, contact Show Me Tree Service or a similar company.

Secure your gutters.

Give each downspout a jiggle. If it moves or sways against your house, use a screwdriver to tighten the metal fasteners that are attaching it to your home. You won't want the downspout to blow off in a storm. Not only will it cause damage if it hits something, but its absence will prevent your gutters from draining properly, which may lead to water damage on your roof.

Check your flashing.

Climb up on a ladder (or climb directly onto your roof if you feel confident enough to do so). Take a look at the metal sheathing that surrounds your chimney and any other projections from your roof. This sheathing, known as flashing, sometimes becomes bent or deteriorated, causing roof leaks. If the flashing has some minor cracks or spots of erosion, use a paint spatula to spread a layer of roofing cement over them. If the flashing is badly bent or really beginning to come unfastened, call a roofing company to come replace it.

Make sure your generator works.

Thunderstorms often mean power outages! If you have a generator, take this time to practice hooking it up and turning it on, so that you know how to do this if the power does go out. Make sure you have fuel on hand—whether that be gas or propane—so you're prepared for a power outage. Have a plan for which appliances you will hook up to the generator in the case of a power outage.