Let’s face it when it comes to our Irish weather it is not uncommon to experience the entire four seasons in one week (or a day!). Our AA Home Insurance team have put together some tips on how to help protect your home in the event of a storm.
Protecting Your Home From Extreme Weather
- Check for severe weather warnings in your area, and be prepared if there is a risk of a power cut.
- Visually inspect your roof for loose tiles or damaged chimney pots and get any problems repaired. Also make sure your TV aerial is secured.
- Clear your guttering and drain pipes to avoid blockages. Consider fitting gutter leaf guards, especially if there are tall trees near your home.
- Trim back any bushes or small trees that could damage your windows in a high wind.
- Put a storm kit together that includes food, bottled water, a first aid kit, any necessary medication, emergency phone numbers, clothes, blankets, bin bags, a torch, batteries, a wind-up radio and a disposable camera or a smartphone (to take photos of any damage for your insurance company).
- Make sure you know where to turn off your electricity, gas and water supplies.
Before a storm arrives
- Secure any loose garden items, such as tools and chairs, to prevent them from being blown away.
- Unplug all non-essential electrical devices to avoid damage from power surges caused by lightning strikes.
- Park your car in a garage if possible or move it away from buildings and trees.
During a storm
- Keep your doors, windows and storm shutters (if you have them) closed.
- Close your curtains to protect against breaking glass.
- Only open internal doors when needed and close them behind you.
- Don’t try and repair any damage outside until the storm has passed.
- If you need to evacuate, turn off your gas, water and electricity before you leave (if safe to do so).
After a storm has passed
- If your home has been damaged by the storm, contact your insurance company immediately.
- Keep away from trees and outside walls as they may have been damaged in the storm.
- If you’ve lost power at night, use torches rather than candles for light to avoid a fire hazard.
Image: Chris Bartnik