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Preventing home flooding during El Niño

Severe Storms Ahead road sign

With this year's expected strong El Niño, it is important to consider ways we can help prevent damage to our homes and communities. El Niño this year is expected to be one of the strongest on record and will continue to rage throughout the winter. Before the storm hits, follow these five steps to help protect your home from flooding.

  1. Clean out gutters

    Leaves, twigs, and other debris that has been dropped by birds or the wind can quickly build up in your gutters. Go around your house and make sure the gutters are clear of any leaves or debris to keep leaking and clogging to a minimum.
  2. Reattach loose gutters

    After years of powerful wind and weather, your gutters may not be as securely fastened to your roof as they once were. Make sure they are tightly secured to decrease the possibility of detachment.
  3. Extend gutters and downspouts

    Keeping water away from your foundation is critical during a downpour — extended gutters and downspouts will keep that rain water far away. A downspout should extend at least three feet from the foundation of your home — gutters work best when 7-8 inches wide. These changes will decrease the likelihood of your home's foundation from being saturated, which could lead to a flooded basement.
  4. Cover window wells

    Covering your window wells will prevent water and debris from filling the area if a gutter clog occurred during the storm. Check these window wells often during the storm in case of leakage.
  5. Keep storm drains clear

    After gutter cleaning, you might have a lot of debris to dispose of — consider putting that debris in eco-friendly yard bags to keep streets clear. Dumping the waste on the side of the street will clog storm drains alongside the road and put a strain on your local resources and services. Do your streets a favor and keep those leaves contained.

It's important to know that most home policies don't cover flooding — just a few inches of water damage can cost thousands! Taking action before the storm hits can help protect your home from flooding.

Tips provided by Master Shield and Champion Chimneys.

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