Here, in Southwest Florida, we encounter some of the most brutal hurricane seasons in the country. Hurricanes Ian and Irma have forever changed many lives in Southwest Florida. As homeowners, we are challenged with prepping our residences for this unpredictable time of the year. The hurricane damage we will face every season is unknown, but we can still follow some tips to prepare the best we can.
Gutter systems are crucial components of a home exterior. It is recommended to do a thorough inspection of your home’s gutter system. Look for cracks, splits, and signs of extreme wear that might indicate it is time for some part replacements. It is always a good idea to inspect the sealant that can be found between the gutter and where it meets your home’s exterior wall, or around the attachment components connected to the fascia. Sealant failure in these areas can lead to potential water intrusion during periods of rain. Water flows seamlessly in a functioning and clean gutter system; any blockage can impact that needed flow. Cleaning your gutters allows the system to direct water and serve its intended use.
The roof flashing around the base of a chimney, and around the base of the second story of a home is crucial in protecting a home from water intrusion. Close inspection should be done in this area. Cracks in the stucco on top of the flashing, and signs of bubbling or lifting need to be addressed as quickly as possible. The repairs to faulty flashing, or to the compromised stucco that covers it on a home should be done before hurricane season if possible.
Caulk & Seal
Caulking and sealants around doors and windows must be inspected. Most exterior caulking and sealants are rated to stand up to the elements for years, but an inspection before hurricane season is recommended. If any signs of cracking or lifting are discovered in the caulking or sealants, they must be removed and re-caulked with a high-grade exterior caulk or sealant.
Southwest Florida is undoubtedly a beautiful place to live, and our unpredictable hurricane seasons do not change that. Equipped with the best information we can brave any storm.