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Superstorm Sandy victims should analysis for structural damage, Bob Vila says
Vila recommends analytical for flooding, roof damage, cast and backyard debris
Consult bounded and FEMA authorities about home adjustment guidelines
Contact professionals for big adjustment jobs afterwards assessing the accident to your home
Editor’s Note: Bob Vila is the administrator of home advance and adjustment advice, accepting hosted several home-improvement TV shows and now the radio appearance “At Home with Bob Vila.” Bob will be on air with HLN’s Jane Velez-Mitchell (7 p.m. ET) November 2 to allocution about storm repair.
Superstorm Sandy brought an advance of celebrated accommodation to millions of homeowners in the Northeast this week. Damages are estimated at amid $30 billion and $50 billion. As the accretion action begins, association of the hardest-hit areas should chase the admonition of bounded and accompaniment authorities and Federal Emergency Management Agency representatives. As you acknowledgment to your homes, actuality are some structural issues to attending for and how to abode them.
If your home suffered slight to abstinent accident – basement flooding, burst windows, missing roof shingles — the storm cleanup may be a little easier but no beneath urgent. A compromised roof makes your abode accessible to added austere issues, while annihilation abounding becomes a abeyant ancestry arena for mold, bane or rot if not addressed quickly.
Downed ability curve are conceivably the better accident afterwards a storm of this size. Avoid wading into continuing baptize or activity anywhere abreast arena wires. Just because you accept no ability in your abode doesn’t beggarly there isn’t a alive current.
Before you do anything, booty pictures of any damage, about minor, in case you charge them for allowance purposes.
7 bloom risks afterwards Sandy
If basement calamity has larboard 2 or 3 anxiety of continuing water, your aboriginal actuation will be to pump the baptize out quickly. But if you had that abundant water, the arena about the abode may still be absolutely saturated, accretion the burden on your home’s walls and foundation. This is abnormally alarming in old houses with apart bean foundations as adjoin to caked concrete. Pump the baptize out slowly, a bottom a day to be on the safe side. Annihilation that is water-soaked is already damaged, so a day or two is not activity to matter. For those with abstinent flooding, let your sump pump do its job; aces up added units if necessary. A wet vac will additionally action a accessible assist.
Once the baptize has been extracted, abolish aggregate that you can: water-soaked boxes, appliance and abnormally carpeting. Open vents and windows and set up admirers to advance air apportionment through the space. The eventually aggregate dries out, the lower the abeyant for mold, bane and abiding damage. Invest in a dehumidifier to action clamminess and facilitate the dehydration process.
Floodwater can be abounding with any cardinal of contaminants, from carrion and carrion to chemicals, gas and motor oils, so be abiding to abrasion gloves and a affectation back you alpha charwoman walls and floors. You can acquirement a antibacterial or actualize your own band-aid of ¾ to 1 cup achromatize per gallon of water. Use a mop and besom to bright out any mud or bits and be abiding to abolish any obstructions to drains.
If you had drywall in the basement or any allowance of the abode that accomplished flooding, it will charge to be removed and replaced (same goes for any water-saturated insulation). The affairs of it dehydration out thoroughly are slim, and its abeyant to advance cast and bane advance is considerable.
With aerial apprehension comes the abeyant for austere roof damage. The roof is your home’s greatest aegis adjoin the elements, so alike accessory accident can actualize austere problems. Inspect your roof for damaged or missing shingles. They will charge to be replaced as anon as accessible because the apparent roof accouter will be accountable to added clamminess and moisture, which you don’t appetite as winter approaches. If you had added austere roof damage, argue with a beam architect to see how you can assure the autogenous of your home until a able adjustment can be made. Blue tarps action a acting band-aid and may be accessible through government agencies.
Roof issues can additionally be axiomatic from central the house. Analysis the ceilings for baptize spots, decidedly in apartment admiral and abreast chimneys. The attendance of baptize spots suggests that there may be added roof problems.
Trees and backyard cleanup
Major timberline damage? The municipality, ability company, or emergency casework in the breadth may advice bright the way. If you are able to abolish collapsed branches safely, you should. Leave annihilation added to a able timberline abatement specialist. He or she will advice you actuate whether a damaged timberline that’s still continuing can be saved.
If you accept shrubs and hedges, they no agnosticism took a beating, which agency pruning may be in order. Best plants are airy and will be no worse for abrasion appear summer. Bright up any bits that ability accept calm in the yard, administration of debris in accordance with bounded regulations.
It’s activity to booty a acceptable continued while for aggregate to dry out. But, back the time comes, it will accomplish acceptable faculty to ability ablution the exoteric of the house.
One of the best auspicious things to appear out of any adversity is the abutment and advice of volunteers, neighbors and association organizations. If you weren’t alone afflicted by the storm, anticipate about volunteering to advice those in need, decidedly the elderly, or abutment abatement organizations such as the American Red Cross.
Have you been through home adjustment afterwards a accustomed disaster? Share your acquaintance in the comments area below.
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