With spring upon us, homeowners will begin to tackle spring cleaning projects. It’s important to remember that while the inside of your home deserves attention, the outside of your home does as well. The outside of your home is the shell that protects the inside, so maintenance and regular cleanup can help reduce the damage that might occur during a storm or heavy rains. Remind your policyholders to also prepare their homes for the frequent and heavy rains ahead by addressing these three areas of their properties:
1. Inspect Gutters and Downspouts
Check for loose downspouts and sagging gutters. Tighten any loose gutter straps and reconnect any spout extensions that have come loose. Consider adding a screen to cover gutter spouts or gutter cap systems that help keep gutters and downspouts free flowing.
2. Re-grade Around Foundation, If Needed
If water pools against the home’s foundation, it’s only a matter of time before it finds its way into the house. A small area should only need a vertical drop of about half an inch per foot. Once enough of the soil has been moved, tamp it down well to make sure it stays in place. Then add back covering mulch.
3. Test Sump Pump
To test a sump pump, take the plugs apart, take the back plug, plug it in and watch the pump run, or with the plugs plugged in, lift the float to simulate a full pit. The pump should start pumping out water.