Winters are getting noticeably wetter. Nowadays it is common to see on the news, the flooding that some poor wretches have to endure on a regular basis. Flooding is causing insurance premiums to rise, and disasters are testing the quality of the insurance companies to the limit. Are they able to deliver the assistance and speedy repairs that were promised when they sold the policy to you? In most cases, the answer is yes but there are a few sad cases where people have still not been able to return to their homes after they were flooded out a year ago. Some find their homes flooded again, so the whole process repeats itself.
So what can be done to protect your home if it is in danger of being flooded? If the water levels are going to rise high, i’m afraid your options are few. There will be a lot of damage caused and the house will take a long time to dry out. Let’s hope that the flood won’t be too deep, however, and look positively at steps we can take to minimise the damage caused, and repair bills.
It is a straightforward job for an electrician to spend a couple of days raising the sockets in your home to the same height as the light switches. If the floor downstairs is concrete, the wiring to the sockets will come down the walls, so it is a simple case of shortening the cables and moving the sockets. If there is a basement, the chances are that the wiring runs through it. I would suggest a rewire of the sockets so that no wiring runs low down. The consumer unit and meter can also be repositioned higher up, and any joints needed to the supply cable be made waterproof.
You can never have too many sandbags if there is a risk of flooding. Use boards against outside doors and pile sandbags against them. Also block any air vents with sandbags. You are fighting a losing battle if the water level continues to rise, but if the flood is not too serious, fortifying your home may enable you to avoid the need to hire pumping equipment from the likes of Pump and Plant, or other equipment suppliers online.
If you enter any home that has been flooded, you will see that the plaster has been removed from the walls to a few inches higher than the watermark. Not only is the plaster damaged, it is also contaminated. If you were to remove the plaster half way up the walls and replace it with removable wood paneling sections, they could be removed and taken upstairs in an emergency.
This idea can cut your repair bills considerably.
Fitted carpets may not be the best option for you if there is a flood risk. Rugs can be easily rolled up and carried to safety in a very short time.
Train Hard, Fight Easy
Educate the whole family in an emergency drill. Valuable seconds can be saved when moving furniture and appliances upstairs in the middle of the night if everyone knows their role. Practice, practice, practice!
I hope this little article will open your mind to some possibilities that could help to save your home and belongings in an emergency. At least, maybe it will spur your mind to think outside the box and work around the flood menace to minimise its impact. Then you will be able to feel smug and do some fishing out of the bedroom window. Tight lines.