As the first tropical threat of 2005 arrives on radar screens, the Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS) offers simple tips to keep wind-driven rain out of homes and businesses, whether from Tropical Storm Arlene or what may follow.
Rain can blow in directions other than down. To reduce the likelihood of water intrusion, make sure window and door seals are pliable. Use a high-quality silicone caulk around outside wall openings such as
clothes dryer, kitchen or bathroom vents, outdoor electrical outlets and locations where cables or pipes go through the wall.
To reduce flooding problems from poor drainage or excessive rainfall
amounts, make sure the yard’s grading directs water away from buildings, and clear drains of debris.
Check perimeter flashing around the roof and have it re-nailed or replaced if it is loose or rusted.
As storms approach
If a storm starts to head one’s way, “batten down the hatches” by closing and locking all windows, doors, skylights and vents to prevent water intrusion.
Shutter and seal gable end vents to prevent wind-driven rain from entering attic space. Close dryer and bathroom vents with duct tape (remove it after storm before using vents).
If in a flood prone area or roads are expected to flood, seal off
the base of doors with sand bags or plastic sheeting and tape.
For more information on protecting homes and businesses from disasters, visit the IBHS Web site http://www.disastersafety.org .
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