Storms can occur anytime in Australia. Any storm large or small can cause extensive damage to property due to flooding, strong winds, lightning, and hail.
Flooding can do damage outside and inside of your property. Water damage from a leaking roof or water coming inside the house due to rising flood waters can indeed be a serious problem. Strong winds may cause branches to break and trees to fall and may result in damage to roofs, windows, and walls which could lead to water going inside the house and causing water damage.
Heavy hailstorms can also cause damage to roofs and house structures. Severe lightning strikes on the other hand can result to fire breaking out. It’s very hard to prevent damages caused by storms but there are things that we can do to prevent and lessen the damage from these storms.
Here are some ways to prevent storm damage:
1. Check that roof gutters and drainage systems such as downpipes and rain heads are properly sized for sudden downpours and hailstorms. If your gutters are too small and downpipes are not sized adequately enough to handle a deluge of rainwater, these might cause water to leak into the ceiling or cause the ceiling to gain weight and possibly collapse. (If your unsure if your gutters and downpipes are sized correctly then please call us for some advice.)
2. Check that gutters and downpipes are securely attached especially during strong winds. A sudden gust of wind during storms might dislodge and blow away an inadequately attached gutter or downpipe causing water to spill into the roof and run down the walls.
3. Trim overhanging trees regularly and install gutter guards so as to prevent leaves and branches from blocking the gutter. It’s always good to ensure that your gutters and downpipes are clear and clean from leaves, litter, and debris so that rainwater would run down unhampered straight to your stormwater drains.
4. Check windows and doorways for any gaps where water might come in and seal them. Storms bring in a lot of water and wind that might push water inside cracks and openings on your windows and doors thereby causing water damage inside your house. Fixing such gaps and openings would help ensure to keep water going inside your property in the event of a storm.
5. Ensure stormwater drains are not blocked, clear and adequate during sudden downpours which can cause water to back up from the ground level. Remember, rainwater goes to your stormwater drains and if it is not clear, this would cause water to flood on your backyard and possibly get inside your house during a storm. The best way to make sure that your stormwater drain is clear is by having an annual camera inspection and cleared by a water jetter or an electric eel.
Q: How would a plumber clear my blocked stormwater drains?
A: There are a couple of steps plumbers or drainers clear a drain, the following are just some of them.
- High pressured water jetter
- Electric Eel
- Pipe Reline
- CCTV Camera inspection
- Dig up pipe replacement
6. Clear the yard of any loose materials and object that might block the stormwater drains. Your stormwater drain should not be impeded by things that might block rainwater from going down. Again, you do not want rainwater flooding your yard and possibly going inside your house and causing water damage inside.
7. Make sure you know where and how to turn off the main power, water, gas and solar power. This is important in such cases wherein a sudden electrical problem might occur or if water has gone inside the house. Knowing where to turn off the mains for these would be extremely helpful not only for everyone’s safety as well as to prevent more damage occurring inside your property.
8. Install a Surge Diverter at your circuit board which will protect your home, and any devices plugged in to your power supply down the line from the device. These diverters act like a switch – when they detect a sudden surge in the flow of electricity into your home they divert the surge safely away to the earth, protecting you and your appliances.
Here is another article that you may find interesting in regards to “Clearing drains the good old fashioned way”.
If you got any electrical and plumbing problems after a storm, don’t hesitate to call us at 13 10 91 to fix the problem right away. We serve Canberra, Newcastle, Central Coast, Hunter Valley, Lake Macquarie & Port Stephens.
At The Plumbing and Electrical Doctor we have made these articles downloadable to PDF for our customers convenience.