Hurricane Florence: Time to Prepare

While the forecast is improving somewhat for the DC Metro area, area weather forecasters believe Hurricane Florence will significantly impact our area. Our Capital Estate Group is here to help you with everything related to house and home, so we’ve prepared a summary of the latest forecast and our tips and resources for preparing for the storm.

Current Forecast:

With the ground already saturated from record rainfall this year, additional heavy rain and winds could result in downed trees and power outages. Impacts could be felt as early as late Thursday, and heavy rain, thunderstorms and wind will come Friday ending sometime Saturday, with pop up showers on Saturday and Sunday. Be aware; forecasters believe the remnants of the storm may double back on the DC area next week bringing heavy rain. The current forecasts call for rain late Monday into Wednesday and Thursday next week.

Tips and Resources:

We’ll definitely receive more rain, and regardless of when and how heavy, here are our tips and resources for preparing for rain storms:

  • Clear any debris from any drainage systems on your property to prepare for heavy rain. Report blocked drainage if you see it in the public space; you can more about reporting public drainage here. 
  • You should clean your entire gutter system before severe weather arrives. If you can schedule it or do it yourself, time your preparatory gutter cleaning for the day of the anticipated storm, taking note of the winds. The winds that build-up before the “official” storm can be a big culprit, with flying leaves, pine needles, and assorted debris from the neighborhood making their way into your gutters. At that point, the table has set for the coming rainwater (and more debris) to collect. The more debris-free the gutters are moments before the storm the more likely your gutters will do their job in funneling rainwater away from your home. Exercise the upmost caution – do not climb on the roof if the storm has already started. If you’re uneasy in anyway, and/or do not have a strong ladder with a helper down below, don’t do it. It’s much easier to repair gutters and house damage than damage to your body.
  • Downspouts are often neglected during storm weather preparations. They are considered more out of harm’s way during heavy winds and rains compared to the gutters on the roof. However, downspouts also need extra attention before bad weather. Storm water will be expelled from the downspouts, so check them carefully for debris. Run your hose at high-pressure from both below (shoot water up the opening) and above (on the roof pointing down the downspout where it connects to your gutters) to loosen up any debris. You may need to use a plumber snake to remove any excess. Once clean, check the screw and brackets and the extension (which jettisons rainwater at least 3’ away from your home) at the end of the downspout to make sure it’s sturdy.
  • Existing broken windows or damaged roofs become water entry points that could lead to major water damage. Before the storm, look to cover broken windows with nail polish, packing tape or plexiglass, depending on the size of the window break, and roofs with reinforced tarps. Again, exercise caution – if you’re uneasy in anyway, leave broken glass and roof protection to a professional. After the storm, your focus should be on cleanup, repair and getting through long periods of time.

If you need a professional to clean your gutters or a roofer to assist, or you have an emergency, we have preferred professionals that can help you – as always, we are a call, text or email away.

You can find more tips on getting your house ready for a storm here.

Click Below for Outage Maps for Our Area:

Baltimore Gas & Electric

Dominion Power