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04.4 - protecting your plumbing from hurricane

Hurricane Preparedness Guide: Protecting Your Home and Plumbing

Living in New Jersey means living with the reality of hurricane seasons. Every year, the people of this beautiful region gear up with essential supplies like food, water, and cash, bracing for the unpredictable storms that Mother Nature throws their way. While stockpiling these basics is crucial, true hurricane readiness goes further, extending to safeguarding your home, including its vital plumbing systems. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll take you through the essential plumbing precautions needed to ensure you’re fully prepared for the next hurricane.

Understanding Hurricane Essentials

When hurricane warnings flash across your TV screen or phone, you know it’s time to act. While securing your home and stocking up on supplies like water and non-perishable food is essential, we often forget that our homes’ inner workings need attention too. This guide delves into the often-overlooked aspect of hurricane readiness: your plumbing. 

1. Store More Than Just Drinking Water

It’s common knowledge that having enough drinking water is a must during a hurricane. The standard advice is to store one gallon of water per person per day for basic survival. But here’s the kicker: this estimate only covers drinking. During a hurricane and its aftermath, water becomes a precious commodity for a range of needs beyond thirst. Consider how much water you’ll need for washing dishes, doing laundry, maintaining personal hygiene (think brushing teeth and bathing), and basic handwashing. These activities might not be on your mind when the storm hits, but they’re essential for maintaining health and comfort. Having extra water on hand ensures you won’t run dry when you need it most.

2. Know Your Water Shut Off Valve

Picture this: a hurricane damages your water supply line, flooding your home. Panic sets in. You scramble to find a solution, but there’s a simple step that could save you from thousands of dollars in damage – knowing where your water shut off valve is. It’s a common misconception that if your pipes are safely concealed within your home, there’s no need to find and shut off the water supply during a hurricane. This is far from the truth. Understanding the precise location of your water shut off valve and how to operate it is essential. In the event of a water line rupture due to the storm, being able to quickly turn off the water can prevent significant property damage. Take the time now to locate your shut off valve and ensure it’s in good working order.

3. Service Your Sump Pump

Many homes have crawl spaces equipped with sump pumps, often overlooked but incredibly crucial during a hurricane. These pumps play a vital role in preventing water damage by removing excess water from your crawl space. However, like any machinery, they require regular maintenance to perform at their best. Before hurricane season arrives, it’s essential to have a qualified technician service your sump pump. They can ensure it’s set up correctly and operating at peak efficiency with a single visit. 

In addition, consider providing a backup power source for your sump pump. Hurricanes often cause power outages, which can render your pump useless without a backup. Investing in this extra layer of protection ensures your pump can continue to work when you need it most.

4. Secure Your Water Heater

During a hurricane, powerful winds and flying debris pose threats to your home, including your water heater. To prevent potential damage, it’s wise to have a certified technician secure your water heater to the wall in your utility area using earthquake straps. These simple yet effective straps ensure that both the water heater and its expansion tank remain firmly in place, even if a window shatters during the hurricane’s fury.

Wrapping It Up: Your Hurricane-Ready Plumbing

Taking the time now to prepare your home and family offers unparalleled peace of mind when hurricane season arrives. If the worst should happen, you can rest easy, knowing you’ve taken essential steps to safeguard your home and loved ones.

Hurricane preparedness is not solely about stocking up on supplies; it’s also about safeguarding your home’s plumbing. By storing extra water, knowing your water shut-off valve’s location, servicing your sump pump, and securing your water heater, you’ll be well-prepared for hurricane season’s challenges. Don’t wait until it’s too late; start your preparations today by contacting professionals plumbers, such as those from CBJ Plumbers West New York, to ensure you’re ready for whatever weather comes your way. Your home and family’s safety and comfort are well worth the effort.