21 Jun Essential Flood Damage Prevention Tips for Homeowners
The biggest investment you will ever make is buying a house. What if I said that even if your house is not in a flood zone, and you don’t need flood insurance, it could still flood? This is a frightening thought but one that you should seriously think about.
How do I prepare my house for flooding?
There are many ways you can make sure your home isn’t destroyed by rising water levels. These tips may seem extreme if your home is not in a flood zone but they are important to remember if you decide to renovate. These tips will help you reduce flood and water damage in the event of a disaster, whether you are building a new house or remodeling an existing one.
Lift your equipment
If your basement is naturally damp, you need to dry it. You can fix this by elevating your water heater, air conditioner compressor, washer and dryer and wall oven.
FEMA suggests raising equipment at least one foot above the Basis Flood Elevation (BFE), (or 2-3 feet, if it’s possible), if you are in floodplains.
Use flood hardy building materials
When you are building a house or remodeling your existing home, it is a smart idea to save money. FEMA suggests these building materials for resistance to moisture and easy removal after flood damage.
- Insulation: Flood-resistant insulation is only available in closed-cell polyurethane foams (SPUF) and sprayed polyurethane foams. Inorganic insulation and all other types of insulation can get wet and must be replaced.
- FEMA recommends that floodplains be insulated with a raised floor system made from either fire-rated rigid foam underneath the floor joists or closed-cell spray foam sandwiched between them.
- Flooring: Easy to remove, decorative concrete, ceramic, porcelain, rubber interlocking tiles, solid vinyl or hardwood, and even rubber tile.
- Exterior and Drywall: Use paperless drywall with a moisture resistant core for your inside walls, and fiber cement and trim to cover the exterior of your home. Fiber cement siding resembles wood or masonry, but it can withstand severe weather conditions (like floods).
- Structural Materials: Concrete, solid lumber and plywood are the best options for structural materials. These products are most resistant to moisture. Avoid using Oriented Strand Board, (OSB), as it is a fake plywood.
These are some of the things you should keep in mind as you plan to upgrade your furnace. You can also get an energy audit for your home to improve your indoor air quality and comfort, or remodel your basement and kitchen. Although it may seem complicated for DIYers, your contractor can help you.
To see the location of your home, you can use this FEMA Flood Map. Flooding can be caused by heavy rainfall for a brief period of time, even if the flood plains are not affected. Prepare!