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With storms and possible flooding in the forecast , it is a good time for homeowners to make sure they are ready to weather the storm. Vehicle flood damage may be likely during a storm.
State Farm is reminding property owners to prepare for the storm and stay safe. Be ready to handle flood damage after the storm. Please share these tips with your audience.
Here are a few safety and recovery ideas that might help
Whether it’s a plumbing leak, roof leak or a basement filled with water, water damage can require a costly fix. Here are a few home improvements to make water damage less likely:
- Add or update drainage. Use gutters and downspouts to make sure water is diverted away from your home and its foundation.
- The easiest solutions to overflowing gutters are to either add another downspout on that run of gutter or to increase the size of the downspout. The best solution between these two is probably adding another downspout; the second downspout can act as a backup if the first one gets blocked.
- If you choose to replace the existing downspout with a larger one, make sure the contractor increases the size of the corresponding hole in the gutter.
- Install a sump pump. Try this addition if water damage has been a serious problem in your home’s lower level. Choose a cast iron sump pump, which may last longer, and consider buying a backup battery-powered pump in case the power goes out. Test your pump twice a year or as suggested by the manufacturer.
- Install a water leak detection system. An automatic water shut-off valve is a water leak detection system that will shut off the water supply to the home when it detects water on the floor or an irregular flow in the pipe.
- Regularly check your roof for signs of damage. Look for things like excessive wear on shingles or missing shingles.
- Seal your basement. Thick coatings, paint and silicate-based sealers may help minimize or prevent water damage. Each method varies in application and cost.
After the storm:
Sump pump basics
Many homes have sump pits built right into the basement floor. If this is the case, all you’ll need is the pump itself. If your home is not equipped with a sump pit, a drain expert or contractor should be able to tell you if it’s possible to retrofit your basement.
Vehicle Flood Damage Checklist
- Survey potential damage. Note the depth of the floodwaters in relation to your car. Avoid starting a flooded car — this will cause more damage if there is water in the engine.
- Act quickly. Submersion of a vehicle in salt water — which is more damaging than fresh water — makes the chances of corrosion much higher. Start drying out your vehicle as quickly as possible, and contact a towing service to get it back to higher ground. Oil, transmission fluid and lube may need draining before a tow.
- File a claim. Your insurance company along with a qualified mechanic will uncover how extensive the problems caused by flood damage may be. Among other inspections, they will:
- Check the oil dipstick. Look for water droplets, which likely indicate that there is water in your engine. If that’s the case, the cylinders, which are supposed to compress air instead of water, will be broken.
- Remove water-damaged cylinders and check for corroded spots.
- Change the oil and transmission fluid. If the car is not totaled, you’ll want to do this again after the car is in good condition and you’ve been driving it for several hundred miles.
- Check the interior. If floodwaters were more than a few feet deep, water probably made it to the inside of your car.
- Remove all moisture. They might use a wet/dry vacuum to collect standing water in your vehicle, cloth towels to absorb water that has soaked into the seats and carpet, and fans and dehumidifiers to accelerate the drying process.
- Check electrical components. The mechanic might need to replace electrical components.
- Check the fuel tank and line. A siphon pump might be used to remove some fuel. in order to see if water is present. If water is found in the fuel (which would naturally separate from the fuel), they will empty the fuel tank completely.
Once the extent of your car, truck, or SUV’s flood damage is determined, your insurance company will weigh the costs to repair the vehicle against the cost of replacing it. If your car is totaled (considered a total loss) by the insurance, be sure to review what that means with your insurance agent.
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