Helpful Guide | How To Prep Your Plumbing For Hurricanes in Connecticut

Hurricane season is well underway in the United States and for those of us in Connecticut. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has predicted that we could see 14 to 21 named storms this season, including 3-6 hurricanes with 1-2 being major hurricanes, which could form over the North Atlantic.

It’s important to make sure that our homes are prepared. If you’ve already taken precautionary steps you’ve probably already stocked up on batteries, cut down tree branches (or dead/dying trees).

But have you protected your plumbing if the big one hits this hurricane season?

When it comes to preparing for a storm, the problem is that we sometimes prioritize everything under the sun, except for our plumbing.

Most people don’t consider plumbing as a substantial risk from a hurricane. After all, it’s underground, right? The common assumption is that pipes and drainage systems should be safe and sound. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case.

A-Team Plumbing & Drain suggests Connecticut residents take the following steps to make sure they’re prepared in case of a flood caused by a hurricane.

A Helpful Checklist For Your Household Plumbing

1. Inspect Your Property’s Foundation & Tree Roots

Tree roots can break through sewer pipes, so even when it isn’t hurricane season you should take the time to inspect them. Inspect your property for any roots that might cause problems with your plumbing. If ignored, there’s a chance roots can obstruct your pipes and limit the quality of your water flow.

Also take some time scan the perimeter of your home, inspecting your foundation for cracks and crevices. Rising water could allow for water to enter your basement. Seal what you can with concrete patching and waterproofing, but call a professional if you’re concerned with the structural integrity.

A hurricane could cause more extensive damage if not addressed earlier. A plumbing professional is capable of detecting problem roots & cracks that should be removed or filled before hurricane season – which in Connecticut is late summer through early fall.

2. Check Your Drains

Make sure your drains are completely clear of all leaves and debris. Drains that are clogged or cluttered with dirt and leaves will not be able to handle the overload of rain and other debris that comes along with a hurricane.

You can test to see if your drains are properly working by pouring water through them and seeing how long it will take to drain. If your drains take longer than a few seconds to drain, use a commercial drain cleaning product. If this doesn’t work, call a professional plumber.

You do not want to deal with regret because you didn’t clear out the drains in and around your home.

3. Test Your Sump Pump

Sump pumps are very dependable and can protect the foundation of your home if there is a flood caused by a hurricane. A system will consistently remove water as long as there’s electricity.

It’s important to install a battery backup system with your sump pump, so your system doesn’t fully rely on electricity. Note – Check your system every 2-3 months with these simple tips.

Check out our –  3 Sump Pump Problems: Sump Pump Troubleshooting & Repair in Connecticut

If You Know a Hurricane Will Strike Your Area

1. Consider Shutting Off Your Water

Before the storm, it may be beneficial to shut off your water just before the storm to prevent contaminated water from entering your water supply.

Our team recommends you have plenty of bottled water on hand – both for drinking and for use in flushing toilets. Using bottled water takes the stress off your plumbing during the storm and maybe your only option for a time.

Unsure where to location your shut of valve check out out – Locating the Shutoff Valve in Case of a Plumbing Emergency in Connecticut

2. Turn Off Water Heater

You will not need hot water during a hurricane emergency. It’s best to switch off your water heater. Having it operate during a hurricane just puts unnecessary pressure on your household plumbing system. Remember that technically the water stored in your hot water heater is safe to drink, should you need an extra source of useable water.

What to Do After the Storm

You should thoroughly inspect your plumbing once the hurricane passes. You should switch on your water valve and ensure that all of your plumbing fixtures are in working order.

You should also inspect the outside of your property to ensure that any fallen trees or debris have not impacted your underground plumbing system – however, make sure you watch out for exposed electrical lines before you exit your home!

If you have any concerns about your residential plumbing after the storm, don’t hesitate to call A-Team Plumbing & Drain.