Hurricane Prep List: What You Should Do Before the Storm

Is your home ready for hurricane season? Here are some common questions about how to prepare for severe weather. Tackle this hurricane prep list now, so you don’t have to worry about these things later.

Concrete patio with dining set and umbrella
Beautiful patio furniture today can become dangerous projectiles tomorrow. Secure items that can become airborne.

How can we prepare for hurricane season?

  • Plan, plan and plan. First, plan to secure outdoor items. This includes items like patio furniture, lingering toys and your grill, which will become airborne when storms really start hitting.
  • Plan to secure your windows. Impact-resistant windows are expensive, and most people don’t have them. You will need to plan to cover all windows.
  • Plan to protect your home from heavy rain. Horizontal rain pounds homes and forces its way inside them, so make sure your hurricane prep list covers it.

Joe Truini cleaning gutters with leaf blower and downspout
Maintaining gutters and downspouts prevents them from clogging. Watch this video for a fast way to clean gutters.

What can we do to prevent water damage?

  • Maintain your gutters and downspouts. If you can, purchase larger gutters — they have more room, so it’s easier to keep them nice and clean. When heavy rain hits, sized-up guttering can handle it.
  • Check weatherstripping and door seals and replace them as needed. You can’t prevent rain from pounding your home, but you can secure your thresholds.
  • Have tarps on hand for unexpected leaks. Tarps are inexpensive and prevent further damage, so they should be on every homeowner’s hurricane prep list.

Man prepares for hurricane by covering his windows with plywood panels
Covering windows with plywood is a tried-and-true option for hurricane preparation. (DepositPhotos)

What are the options for protecting windows?

  • Don’t tape your windows. It’s old-school and ineffective. In fact, taped windows can send large, taped-together shards of glass airborne.
  • Install decorative working shutters. They look great outside of storm season and easily close to protect your home during severe weather.
  • Purchase pre-cut plywood panels. Visit your local home center and have them cut 5/8-inch plywood sized to your window openings. Purchase it now before there’s a big rush just before a storm. Then, number the boards (to match the windows they will cover) for easy organization.
  • Purchase hurricane fabric. It’s made from the same material that’s in bullet-proof vests, reusable and screws right into the home’s studs. It can be stronger than plywood, but also more costly. If you can afford it, add it to your hurricane prep list.

Further Reading

Watch Danny’s segment on The Weather Channel in the video above and share your hurricane prep tips below!


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