With all the recent damaging weather events in the news, it makes good sense to take the time to prepare your home for just such an emergency. Here are some helpful tips to guide you through the process.

When there is plenty of time to prepare:

  • Home Window Repair Mr. Handyman Technician Prepare your emergency plan and your "safe room."
  • Have broken fence posts replaced and loose fence panels reattached.
  • Cut and haul off dangerous tree limbs.
  • Check for and reattach loose window shutters and gutters.
  • Chimneys should have caps in good shape and well attached flue protectors - add one or make sure yours is secure.
  • Purchase and install surge protectors for expensive and sensitive electronics and appliances - a lightning strike can destroy them.
  • Purchase flashlights (at least one crank style) and a weather radio (crank styles of these are available too.) Keep an inventory of fresh batteries to fit your radios and flashlights.
  • Consider purchasing a generator if you store a lot of frozen food or need to keep lighting, appliances or computers available for use in case of a prolonged outage.
  • Take digital photos of your home (inside and out), its contents, your autos, boat, etc. and store them off-site. You may need them for insurance claims.
  • Make plans with family members on where to meet and how to communicate after a storm in case cell phone networks aren't working or essential roads are undriveable, or it's simply too dangerous to travel. The Arlington CERT site has an online form to fill out (even if you're not an Arlington resident). Go here.
  • Kids in school or day care? Know the facility emergency plan and requirements if someone besides a parent must pick them up.
Last minute tips:
  • Check your safe room for necessary items (flashlights, radio, water, snacks, first aid kit, etc.
  • Store or secure outdoor furniture. High winds can blow even heavyweight chairs and tables across your yard and maybe into your house or pool.
  • Garage Shelving - Custom Solutions from Mr. Handyman Park your vehicles in your garage (If you don't have room, call us and we'll help you organize and build some shelves to free up the space.)
  • Clean your gutters so the rain will drain away quickly.
  • Do you have skylights? If so, have enough waterproof tarps stored to cover them if they are shattered by hail.
  • Move your potted plants to a protected area.
  • Locate your flashlights and weather radio and make sure the batteries are charged or fresh. Put them where you can easily and safely find them in the dark.
What to do (and not do) during the storm:
  • Go to your safe room when extreme winds or tornados are a threat.
  • Listen to your weather radio and/or monitor the weather on TV, radio and internet if possible.
  • Avoid windows and skylights during high winds and hail.
  • Stay inside! Never go out into hail, high winds and lightning to rescue pets or plants.
Things to do after the storm:
  • Handyman consults a homeowner regarding Home Repairs Be very careful exiting your home after a storm. Beware of downed power lines, trees and broken limbs that may be ready to fall and ruptured gas lines. Report them as soon as possible.
  • Clean debris from gutters and drainage areas.
  • After a hail storm, have your roof checked for damage by a professional. (We'll be glad to give you a referral if you need one.)
  • Also after hail, walk the perimeter of your home and check for damage to screens, windows, siding, fences, decks and outdoor furniture.
  • Call Mr. Handyman, your professional handyman , to help with your evaluation, clean-up and repairs.