Brace Your Space: 5 Ways You Can Prepare Your Home for Summer Storms

Summer storms can strike with little warning, leaving a trail of destruction. Don’t get caught off-guard. This guide outlines “5 ways you can prepare your home for summer storms”, tackling roof security to emergency planning. It’s straightforward advice, minus the fluff, focused on practical steps for a sturdy, storm-proof home.

Key Takeaways

  • Homeowners can protect their homes from summer storms by ensuring their roofs are in good condition, choosing storm-resistant materials, and performing regular maintenance, including trimming overhanging branches.

  • Securing windows and doors against storms involves using impact-resistant solutions, such as storm shutters or specially designed windows, ensuring proper sealing, and relying on professional installation for optimal protection.

  • Preparation for power outages and supply disruptions caused by storms should include assembling an emergency kit with sufficient food, water, power sources, and a first aid kit, and creating a detailed storm safety plan that includes a designated safe space and evacuation readiness.

Fortify Your Roof Against High Winds

Roof inspection for vulnerabilities

The roof is the unsung hero of your home when a summer storm takes center stage. It shields your home and its occupants from wind and hail damage, standing strong against the elements. However, a sturdy roof doesn’t just happen; it’s the result of careful planning, selection of storm-resistant materials, and regular maintenance.

Rapid Roofing is one of the companies offering comprehensive services to strengthen your roof against high winds. They provide a 50-year warranty on materials and wind coverage up to 130 mph, ensuring your roof’s readiness for summer storms.

Inspect for Vulnerabilities

A visual inspection of your roof is a fundamental first step in storm preparation. You’re looking for signs of loose or damaged shingles, wear, and any compromised areas that are prone to wind damage.

The susceptibility of a roof to wind damage is influenced by its age and condition, with older roofs generally being more at risk. Certain roof designs, like gable roofs, may have inherent vulnerabilities to wind that need specific assessment and mitigation. Scheduling regular inspections with roofing professionals such as those from Rapid Roofing is vital to uncover hidden issues and receive advice on necessary repairs.

Choose the Right Materials

Selecting appropriate materials for your roof is a crucial choice to make, as not all materials hold up equally well in the face of a summer storm.

Impact-resistant shingles are engineered to withstand the force of high winds and protect against the impacts from flying debris during storms. On the other hand, metal roofing offers exceptional durability and the ability to resist strong winds. Consideration of wind ratings and certifications, like ASTM D7158 and UL 580, which signify the material’s capacity to withstand certain wind speeds, is critical when opting for materials.

Regular Maintenance

Similar to attending a dental check-up, regular roof maintenance might lack excitement, but it’s an indispensable task nonetheless. With regular checks and timely repairs, you’re not just maintaining your roof; you’re extending its lifespan and saving yourself from costly, significant repairs down the line.

Maintenance isn’t just about the roof itself. Consider the surrounding elements too. Overhanging branches and weak trees can pose a risk to the roof during windstorms. Incorporating the trimming of these into your roof maintenance routine is crucial.

Secure and Seal Windows and Doors

Installation of storm shutters on windows

Now that you’ve fortified your roof, it’s time to turn your attention to your windows and doors. These are the gateways to your home, and during a storm, they can become the gateways for wind and rain if not properly secured and sealed.

The objective of boarding up your windows with seven-inch-thick plywood, installing storm shutters, or opting for impact-resistant windows is the same – to protect your windows and doors against the storm. Companies like Rapid Roofing can also offer siding installation expertise, providing an additional layer of protection.

Storm Shutters vs. Impact-Resistant Solutions

When it comes to protecting your windows and doors, you have options. Two favored options are storm shutters and impact-resistant windows, each offering unique benefits and considerations.

Impact-resistant windows, while more costly upfront, are shatterproof and can withstand high winds and flying debris without cracking. They also offer the added benefits of blocking UV rays and sound for energy efficiency.

On the other hand, hurricane shutters:

  • are a cost-effective option

  • can enhance the appearance of your home

  • require manual closing before storms

  • require regular maintenance to prevent them from becoming hazardous debris.

Proper Sealing Techniques

Proper sealing of your windows and doors is crucial in keeping wind and water at bay during a storm. This is a routine task that often gets overlooked but can make a significant difference during a severe storm.

Regularly inspect your window and door seals, resealing them when necessary, especially during hurricane season. All windows and doors should be closed and securely locked during a hurricane to maintain the integrity of the seals. Reinforcing soffits and fascia on your property can also help block hurricane force winds and wind-driven rain from entering and causing damage.

Importance of Professional Installation

Even though a Do-It-Yourself method might appeal, it’s vital to opt for professional installation of hurricane-resistant windows and doors to ensure their optimal performance in providing strong resistance against high winds and storm damage prevention. Qualified technicians offer additional advantages such as energy-efficient tinted glass options, different frame styles, and extensive warranties for both products and installation.

Professionally trained manufacturers are necessary to perform window and door replacements that meet specific safety codes, especially in buildings such as condos that are subject to regular inspections.

Assemble an Emergency Supply Kit

Emergency supply kit preparation for storms

Now that your house is prepared, it’s time to prepare yourself and your family. Assembling an emergency supply kit is one of the most effective ways to ensure you have the essentials at hand should a severe storm hit.

An emergency kit should include:

  • A flashlight with extra batteries for power outages

  • A water reserve of at least 1 gallon per person per day for hydration and sanitation

  • Non-perishable food items

  • A first aid kit

  • Personal hygiene items

  • A whistle

  • Important documents

  • Emergency reference materials

Essentials for Power Outages

Potential power outages, often caused by downed power lines, are a common consequence of severe storms. Your emergency kit should be equipped with essentials to help you navigate through these periods of darkness.

Every member of the household should possess:

  • A battery-powered flashlight to reduce fire hazards from candles or gas torches during power outages

  • A battery-powered or hand-crank radio, along with a NOAA Weather radio, to receive updates on the storm’s progress and important safety instructions when the power is out

  • Portable chargers or power banks that are kept fully charged and ready as a backup power source for mobile devices.

Sustenance and Hydration

During a storm, having enough food and water is critical. It’s important to stock non-perishable food items and a substantial amount of water in your emergency kit.

Your emergency supply should include:

  • At least 1 gallon of water per person per day to guarantee sufficient hydration

  • Nutrient-rich foods like canned beans for protein and fiber, canned vegetables for vitamins, and dried fruits for potassium and dietary fiber

  • A manual can opener to access those canned goods if electronic ones aren’t functioning during a power outage

  • An LP fuel supply for backup energy needs in case of a power outage.

First-Aid and Safety Items

Any emergency kit should invariably contain emergency supplies, such as first aid supplies and safety items. These essentials can significantly aid in managing minor injuries and maintaining safety during a storm.

Your first aid kit should include a variety of bandages, ointment for cuts and bruises, and disinfectant wipes. Additionally, installing carbon monoxide detectors with battery backup in the home is important. Include a whistle in your emergency kit to signal for help in situations where voice may not be sufficient.

Optimize Your Property’s Drainage

Cleaning gutters to optimize property drainage

An often-overlooked aspect of storm preparation is the property’s drainage system. A well-maintained and efficient drainage system can prevent water damage and flooding during severe storms.

It’s imperative to regularly check and clear downspouts to avert water damage and flooding during storms. Proper property grading, with the ground sloping away from the house, is essential to prevent water from pooling near the foundation and causing damage. Rapid Roofing offers services including skylight and gutter installations that can enhance a property’s drainage system and storm readiness.

Clean Gutters and Downspouts

Your gutters and downspouts play a vital role in directing rainwater away from your home. Regular cleaning and inspection can prevent debris accumulation that could block water flow and cause overflow, which might result in water damage to the property.

To clean gutters effectively, follow these steps:

  1. Manually remove debris like leaves and branches from the gutters.

  2. Rinse out any remaining debris with a hose.

  3. After cleaning, inspect the gutters for damage such as loose connections and rust.

  4. Check for leaks by running water through the gutters.

Enhancements like installing gutter guards and downspout extenders can reduce maintenance needs, prevent clogs during hurricanes, and direct water away from the home’s foundation.

Assess Property Grading

Another key factor in warding off water damage during storms is property grading. The terrain surrounding your home should be inclined away from your foundation to stop water accumulation and resultant damage.

To enhance lot grading, elevate depressed areas with fill, compact soil near the foundation, and create channels to lead water away. Property grading is particularly effective at protecting structures from slow-moving, shallow flooding rather than rapid, deep flood events. Always consult local stormwater and building authorities for guidance before regrading.

Install Back-Up Systems

The installation of back-up systems such as sump pumps and backwater valves can considerably mitigate the risk of flooding and water damage in the face of severe storms. Sump pumps work by automatically pumping out collected water from a sump pit, with backwater valves acting as a passive defense that automatically closes to prevent sewer backup during system overflows.

Many municipalities mandate the installation of backwater valves to prevent municipal sewer systems from backing up into homes during flooding events.

Create a Storm Safety Plan Family discussing storm safety plan

A storm safety plan serves as your guide to safety amidst a severe storm, delineating the measures your family should adopt to remain safe, be it at home, work, or in public buildings.

A comprehensive storm safety plan must consider various severe weather threats, especially when a storm hits, including:

  • Thunderstorms

  • Wind

  • Hail

  • Lightning

  • Tornadoes

It should also outline the safest place in the home, such as a bathroom or closet on the lowest floor, away from windows, to take shelter during tornado warnings or intense storms, and provide information on nearby shelter locations.

Communication means should also be secure, keeping cell phones charged to maintain contact and receive emergency updates during the storm.

Designating a Safe Place

In the event of a severe storm, it’s of utmost importance that all inhabitants of your home are aware of their safe spot. Designating such a space in your home can notably boost your safety prospects.

Choose a safe room or above-ground tornado shelter, as they provide the best protection during a tornado. If a storm shelter is not available, identify an interior location such as a small room on the lowest floor, away from doors, windows, and outside walls. Bathrooms, closets, and spaces underneath stairwells can often serve as a sturdy and safe area.

Protective coverings such as:

  • pillows

  • blankets

  • sleeping bags

  • a mattress

Installing storm surge barriers can help protect from falling or flying debris during a tropical storm.

Communication Strategies

Maintaining communication during a storm is vital. It enables you to receive storm updates, stay connected with family members, and seek help when necessary.

Keep charged batteries and car-phone chargers readily available to maintain cell phone power during a storm. Conserve cell phone battery life during a storm by reducing screen brightness, enabling airplane mode, and closing unnecessary apps. Use your car to charge your cell phone if home power is lost.

To minimize overload on voice networks during a storm, use text messaging, emails, or social media for non-emergency communication.

Evacuation Preparedness

Although the hope remains to never have to evacuate your home amidst a storm, preparation for such a possibility is always advisable.

If officials advise or order an evacuation, you should immediately grab your emergency kit and follow their instructions. Your evacuation emergency kit should include tools such as a wrench or pliers to turn off utilities when necessary.


As we’ve seen, preparing your home for summer storms involves multiple steps, from fortifying your roof to creating an emergency supply kit, optimizing your property’s drainage, and creating a storm safety plan. Each of these steps plays a crucial role in ensuring that you and your home are ready to withstand the unpredictable weather that hurricane season brings.

Remember, it’s always better to be over-prepared than under-prepared when it comes to severe weather. Take the time now to get your home ready, so when the storm hits, you can focus on keeping yourself and your family safe.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you prepare for a summer storm?

Prepare for a summer storm by purchasing a whole-home generator, installing a carbon monoxide alarm, charging your phone, preparing a storm kit, filling your bathtub with water, checking downspouts, clearing your property, and boarding up your windows if a hurricane is expected. Stay safe!

What are the safety tips for summer storms?

In summer storms, seek shelter in a sturdy building or hardtop automobile immediately if caught outside. Avoid open spaces, high ground, and metallic objects, and stay away from bodies of water. If you can hear thunder, you are close enough to be struck by lightning. Pay attention to weather alerts and local information, and postpone outdoor activities if thunderstorms are forecasted. When thunder roars, go indoors.

How can I protect my house from a storm?

To protect your house from a storm, you can take steps such as clearing outdoor items, trimming trees, installing storm shutters, having standby power, flood-proofing your home, making plans for where to go, and checking your house for weaknesses. Stay safe during stormy weather.

What will you do before the storm?

Before the storm, it’s crucial to prepare an emergency kit, create a family communications plan, remove potential hazards like dead trees, and secure outdoor objects. Additionally, be ready to cover windows and door openings, check and stock up on essentials, and bring in outdoor items.

What are some options for protecting my windows and doors during a storm?

To protect your windows and doors during a storm, consider boarding them up with plywood, installing storm shutters, or choosing impact-resistant windows. These options can help safeguard your home during severe weather.