Can You Hurricane-Proof a Myrtle Beach House?
The short answer is no. With some unprecedented and devastating hurricanes in recent memory, it’s unlikely that anyone can fully “hurricane-proof” a home. It’s unrealistic to make claims that a residential structure near the ocean can withstand all future natural disasters. It’s one of the risks of living where we do. It’s also one of the reasons why we pay higher insurance premiums for windstorm, hail, and flooding.
However, there are many measures you can take to prepare your home for hurricane force winds and storm surges. Today’s blog will cover some of those so you can be safe and prepared when storms come!
Hurricane Clip the Rafters
If your home doesn’t already have hurricane clips, add these first. Hurricane clips are galvanized, corrosion-resistant connectors that secure the roof rafters to the top plate. They offer some additional security against high winds that threaten to literally blow the roof off. Popular brands like Simpson Strong-Tie come with ratings between 300 and 1500 pounds.
This upgrade to “hurricane-proofing” requires you to buy a retro-fitting kit, and depending on your home, it may involve some installation in an attic’s tight quarters. This is a relatively easy installation for contractors, but if you are particularly handy, this could be a DIY job, and there are certainly many tutorials on the web for do-it-yourselfers.
Upgrade the Roof
A metal roof is much more resistant to hurricane winds and water than a traditional shingled roof. Interlocking metal panels fit your home’s roof, and the life-expectancy is typically double that of traditional shingles.
Storm-Resistant Windows, or “Impact Glass”
Impact-resistant glass windows aren’t cheap, but they can definitely save you lots of money in water damage. Once a window breaks, hurricane winds have a clear point of entry and room to build dangerous indoor pressure. The solution is high impact-resistant glass. Manufacturers design these storm windows for hurricane winds, rain, and hail, and they are an easy upgrade for a contractor.
Upgrade Door and Garage to Hurricane-Proof Materials
It doesn’t take much for the wolf to blow down the house made a sticks. Likewise, a wooden front door can be blown in by the hurricane force winds we see on the Grand Strand. A hurricane-proof fiberglass door resembles wood but offers the benefits of high-impact resistance and better protection against the elements. They also will not warp, bend, or scratch like traditional wooden doors.
Additionally, your garage door is an important place to upgrade. Moreover, it’s important to install a steel-reinforced hurricane-grade garage door protect the interior of your house from wind, water, and debris.
Clean Up the Yard and Outdoor Area
It’s always a good idea to remove items from your yard that might be lifted and thrown by high winds in a hurricane. Bring in your grill, patio furniture, and pick up and loose debris that may be nearby.
You can also prepare your outdoor HVAC for the storm as well by cleaning the area around it or adding hurricane tie-downs.
Prepare for Long-Term Power Outages
Often the power is out for a longtime after the storm has left. Coupled with flooded roads and down lines, you may be stuck in your Myrtle Beach house without power for quite a while.
A residential generator is a permanently-installed system that ties directly to fuel lines and the main power box for your home. It automatically detects power disruption and switches from utility power to generator power. A residential generator allows homeowners to have full, whole-house power including HVAC, appliances, lights, and outlets.
Always Prepare and Evacuate if Needed
Most importantly, always prepare for the worst. Ready.gov is a great resource for preparedness kits, check lists, and other resources. If you are remaining in your home, have emergency supplies, water, batteries, first aid, etc. If state or federal authorities encourage or order evacuation, please do so.
Take Care of Post-Storm Cleanup
South Carolina saw a lot of home damage after Hurricane Matthew. It’s important to note that hurricane-proof upgrades can reduce only reduce the risk of residential damage. After the hurricane has safely passed, it is time to begin the cleanup process. Assessing damage, dealing with insurance, and working to make sure your home is safe to live in again can be frustrating, especially if you’ve incurred damages that make living in your home an impossibility.
It is important that if your home has seen flooding or water damage that you work with a professional service like MasterTech of Myrtle Beach with licenses to handle water damage restoration and mold removal, as well as a professional electrician like Cooper Mechanical Services who can inspect your home’s electrical system.
DO NOT enter a home that has standing water in it without the clearance from an electrical inspector or public safety official. If your power has not been disconnected fully, you may be wading in to a fatal situation.
Learn More with Odom Design
For more information about hurricane-proof upgrades, or to learn more about weather-resistant upgrades for your home, contact Odom Design today.