If you’re in the path of a hurricane, you want to prepare your house. Get ready with these Tips To Prepare Your Home For A Hurricane.
For more tips, check out all of our hurricane posts.
We live in an area that attracts hurricanes. We’ve gotten lucky and have been able to avoid a bunch of them, but not all of them. We’ve stayed home through most of them, but evacuated for the biggest one (mostly because we already had plans to go out of town anyway).
Before we evacuated, we had to make sure our home was hurricane ready.
So, just in case you are in a hurricane’s path and need to get your home ready (regardless of if you’re staying home or evacuating), these tips will help.
This Tips To Prepare Your Home For A Hurricane is just one of the many posts about hurricane prep in our How To Prepare For A Hurricane Guide. Click that link to find out more so you’re the most prepared if and when when the storm hits.
Tips To Prepare Your Home For A Hurricane
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This focuses on just your home. For more prep, check out our Hurricane Preparedness Checklist & Tips (free printable!) post too.
Prepare The Outside Of Your Home
Bring outdoor furniture/decorations indoors.
All your outdoor furniture and decorations need to come inside. That garden gnome looks cute until it becomes a projectile and smashes through your window.
If you have a garage, that’s a good place to store any outdoor tables, chairs, flower pots, etc. We even pull up our shepherds hooks and bring those inside as well because that can become a dangerous javelin with enough wind.
For anything you can’t bring indoors, make sure you secure it down. Turning heavy tables (like ones made of wrought iron) upside down is a good backup plan if you don’t have anywhere to store it inside. We don’t recommend that with tables with a glass top because the glass can shatter and cause a lot of problems.
We also use this as an opportunity to look for any large rocks that could potentially be launched at our house and dispose of them.
Trim any loose branches.
So many of the trees in our area were completely ripped out of the ground, like from the roots. We lost a couple in the woods in our backyard, and we lost a ton of branches.
While you’re doing your prep, grab a sawzall and chop down any branches that look like they could come down during the storm. It’s better to get rid of them now than to have nature do it for you and launch those branches towards your home.
Cover windows and doors with storm shutters and plywood.
If a hurricane is heading your way, you want to make sure that your windows and doors are protected. You don’t want to be in your home when a glass window shatters because of heavy winds and rain.
Use storm shutters or plywood to cover the outside your windows. If you’re evacuating, you can cover your doors as well, but if you’re not evacuating, don’t do this.
Turn your water off.
If you’re evacuating, you’ll want to turn your water off before you leave. You don’t want to come home to a pipe that burst that floods your home the entire time you’re gone.
So, when you’re doing your storm prep, make note of where your water shutoff is (ours is outside) and figure out how to turn it off, and then back on, in case you need to know.
Prepare The Inside Of Your Home
Fill a bathtub with water.
If you have multiple bathtubs in your home, fill one of them with as much water as it will hold.
If you lose water because of the storm, you’ll be able to take water out of the tub and use it to flush the toilets. You can also use this water to water any plants you have in the home as well. And if you need water for cleaning, it’ll work.
We don’t recommend using this as drinking water. Quick note about drinking water: You want to have one gallon of water per person per day, if you decide to stay. You can use this water to drink, brush your teeth, boil for tea, etc.
Freeze containers of water.
While you’re doing your hurricane prep, fill empty containers with water and freeze them. You’ll be able to use those as ice for perishables, in case you lose power. In that case, move the frozen containers from the freezer to the fridge so they can help your fridge contents cold.
You could also put them and your perishables in a cooler, if you don’t have that much. Since that’s much smaller than a fridge, things will be packed in tighter and will stay colder longer.
Also, don’t forget The Quarter On A Cup Of Ice Trick to see if you have a power outage while you’re evacuated.
Make a fire starter from dryer lint.
When you’re doing your laundry prior to the storm, save your dryer lint. When you’re going to the bathroom, save your empty toilet paper roll.
Then, in case of an emergency, you can stuff the dryer lint in the empty toilet paper roll and use it as a fire starter.
Get your generator ready.
A generator is so handy to have in case you lose power. You won’t be able to run all your appliances at once, and you can’t run your air conditioning constantly, but you’ll be able to keep your food cold and power your devices.
Before the hurricane hits, make sure that your generator is working, that you have gas (or propane) for it, and that you know how to use it. You don’t want to find out that it’s broken when you need it.
If you don’t have a generator, make sure you have all these Emergency Lighting Options available before the hurricane arrives.
Test your CO2 and fire alarms.
Double check that your home’s CO2 alarm is working. Portable generators create a risk of CO poisoning, which can be deadly. So definitely make sure your CO2 alarm is working so he can detect any potential hazard.
And, while you’re doing that, make sure you fire alarms are working too. You don’t want something to happen to your home’s wiring during the storm and you find yourself in a terrible situation.
Close all windows and interior doors.
If you’re evacuating, you want to make sure all windows and interior doors are closed before you leave. If a window breaks, wind will find its way in. If door are closed, that wind will be compartmentalized and will stay in that room (hopefully) reducing the chance of roof damage. Because once that wind gets in, it’ll want to go up and try and blow your roof off.
More Hurricane Preparedness:
Prepping your home isn’t the only thing you need to take care of before a hurricane. You want to fill your car with gas before a hurricane (Why? Our Reasons To Fill Up Your Car Before A Storm post answers all that).
If you’re staying home and need to eat, our What You Can Do With Bread During A Storm and Meals To Eat When You Lose Power During A Hurricane (Plus 30 shelf-stable foods to buy now) posts will be a big help.
If you’re evacuating, check out our What To Pack If You Have To Evacuate For A Hurricane post first.
And, if you’re traveling, our Hurricane Travel Tips and our 5 Tips For Driving After A Hurricane will be a big help.
Which of these Tips To Prepare Your Home For A Hurricane is one you almost forgot about? Let us know in the comments.