There are two types of people in the world: those who enjoy storms and those who hate them. Some people feel relaxed and cozy hearing the pounding of raindrops on their rooftops, while some people get uptight listening to the howling wind around them. No matter what type of person you are, storms don’t need to make you worry about your home’s exterior.
Storm damage is inevitable — to a certain degree that is. But did you know you can lessen the amount of damage a storm does to your home’s exterior or even alleviate it all together? Here are our professional tips on how to protect your home’s exterior from storms.
1. Yard Preparation
Items left lying around your yard when a storm hits can turn into a tool mother nature can use to damage your home’s exterior! Begin your storm preparation in your yard.
Clear the Exterior of Your Property— When you know a storm is rolling in, put your lawn mower, yard tools, and trash cans inside, whether in your home’s garage or a shed. Don’t leave items lying around to potentially become flying debris. If you own patio furniture or a grill and can store them inside, do so. However, if you cannot, cover them with a tarp and tie it down. You can also cover your plants and landscaping with tarps to help prevent severe damage.
Trim Trees and Shrubs— Who would think that yard work could help with storms? But in reality, yard work is extremely important for your home’s protection. Clearing fallen branches or dead plants gives heavy winds less debris to toss around. Trim dead branches and any limbs that may overhang your rooftop. Trim shrubs and plants that are close to your home to prevent them from scraping your siding.
2. Exterior Preparation
The condition of your home and the products protecting it influence the level of damage that occurs during storm season. The best way to protect your home’s exterior is with proper care and product selection.
Clear out Gutters and Downspouts— Heavy rainfall requires good roof drainage, so have your gutters cleared of all leaves and branches before a storm hits. Consider installing a gutter protection system to keep your gutters clear. You should also check your gutters for cracks. After all of the debris has been removed, run water from a hose through the gutters to ensure there are no leaks. If everything is in proper working order, make sure the downspouts are draining water away from your home.
Improper drainage can cause roof, yard, or even foundation damage, especially during a major storm. Without proper drainage, parts of your home could even experience flooding. So don’t overlook this detail.
Invest in Storm Shutters– The items most likely to break during a storm are, of course, the windows. Windows need additional protection during heavy winds and hail. Therefore, investing in storm shutters can keep you from expensive window replacements. While many homeowners try the DIY approach, investing in professionally designed and manufactured shutters will provide the greatest level of protection.
Consider Steel Doors— Steel doors are becoming an increasingly popular choice among homeowners, especially for homeowners who live in storm-prone areas. Steel doors have good insulation and are extremely durable, ready to withstand the elements. With the strong winds and hail seasons that St. Louis experiences, replacing all exterior touching doors with steel doors provides great protection for your home. Not to mention, steel doors typically have an over 100% return on investment during resale.
Install Impact-Resistant Roof Shingles— The first item affected by stormy weather is your roof. It will get hounded by rain, wind, hail, debris, and a plethora of other storm-related conditions. Superior roofing is therefore essential in minimizing storm damage. This is where impact resistant (IR) shingles step in.
IR shingles are class 4 shingles, meaning they can undergo larger amounts of impact without breaking or cracking. They are the best solution for areas that experience strong winds or high levels of hail. In certain areas, IR shingles can even lower the cost of homeowner’s insurance, making them the smarter roofing choice for multiple reasons.
If you are not yet ready for a complete roof replacement, have a professional ensure your roof is secure and perform any necessary repairs.
Upgrade Your Siding— Next to installing an impact resistant roof, weatherproof siding is one of the best things you can do to storm-proof your home. At the very least, make sure your siding is freshly painted and repaired of damage, but to truly minimize the effects of storm damage, a new, upgraded siding should be installed.
One of the best options for storm-resistant siding remains James Hardie® fiber cement. Hardie® siding is weather resistant, fire resistant, and hail proof. It can withstand all forms of weather and greater amounts of impact than other forms of siding.
3. Insurance Preparation
The reason you pay for homeowners insurance is to protect your greatest asset in the event that disaster strikes, but not all insurance policies are created equal. If you carry only the minimum requirement for homeowners insurance, your home may not be covered from the flooding, tornados, earthquakes, or other natural disasters.
Give your insurance company a call to make sure that your level of coverage matches your needs and leaves you feeling secure. Trust us; you do not want to get caught without the right type of insurance protecting your home.
Protect Your Greatest Investment
Storms don’t have to be stressful. With the right materials for safeguarding your home, you can feel secure that it has the best protection possible. If you are ready for an exterior that will withstand the elements, see how our installation of James Hardie® siding can help protect your home today. Or contact us at (636) 978-5000 to schedule a free, no obligation consultation.