Plumbing Checklist: Before and After a Hurricane
Everyone sees the destruction that hurricanes can cause to streets, cars, and the exteriors of commercial buildings and homes. What many overlook is the hidden damage such as cracked pipes. We’re highlighting key ways to keep your properties protected from extensive plumbing damage during the hurricane season.
4 Common Pre-Hurricane Preparedness Actions and Post-Hurricane Plumbing Repairs
- Gas Line Leaks – The combination of high winds, rain, and flying debris makes for a probability that your gas line could have damage. If you smell rotten eggs or notice a hissing sound coming from a line, you probably have a gas leak. This can be very dangerous since gas is flammable and also toxic to both humans and pets. The best course of action is to immediately call the gas company and stay away from the property until professionals determine it’s safe to return.
Pre-Hurricane Preparedness Action: If you evacuate your home, turn off the natural gas both inside and outside your home. Leave your meter alone, instead use the shut-off valve for every gas appliance so your gas pipeline isn’t exposed and damaged.
- Sewer Line Issues – Sewer lines are underground, but strong storms with lots of rain can damage and move lines. An uprooted tree root can impede a pipe as well. Schedule a sewer line inspection if your water pressure is significantly lower or you notice sewage backing up in your shower. A licensed plumber will be able to find where sewer line crack is present and execute repairs with minimal damage to the surrounding area.
Pre-Hurricane Preparedness Action: Know where the sewer lines are on your property. Check where there might be tree roots and make a mental note of what they look like. Make sure to check after the storm if those tree roots are visible.
- No Hot Water – Water heaters can become damaged in a storm by shorting out. If your water will not get hot, you may have a short in one of the heating elements. You may be able to have warm water, but it won’t get hot. Call the professionals to look at and repair your water heater.
Pre-Hurricane Preparedness Action: Turn off your water heater before a hurricane. Running your water heater during a storm puts pressure on your already stressed water system. Make sure you turn off your electricity or gas supply to your water heater as well to ensure that it does not turn on while the main water supply is off.
- Hidden Water Leaks – It’s common for leaks to surface after a hurricane. Your home’s pipes could burst or sustain damage that causes leaks due to the pressure and damage a hurricane can cause. You may have to have your home repiped. Inspect your water meter, if the meter is running, but no water is running, you likely have a leak. Immediately call a professional to avoid further damages, flooding, and water bill expense.
Pre-Hurricane Preparedness Action: Shut Off Your Water. This prevents contaminated water from entering your home’s supply. Open a faucet furthest away from the mainline so air can enter the system, and you’re ready to ration water. Also, if you have a sump pump, it can help minimize flood damage to plumbing pipes networking through your home’s walls.
Something Doesn’t Seem Right – Safety First
If something doesn’t seem right make sure you call a professional. Be safe when entering your home after a hurricane. There are many things to deal with after a hurricane hits. Make sure when it comes to dealing with post-hurricane plumbing issues, you hire professionals you can trust. Contact Brevard’s Best Plumbing with all your Pre and Post Hurricane plumbing questions.