Flood Preparation Tips

Prepare a Personal “Flood File”

Make sure to store the file in a secure place and/or in a waterproof container.  Suggested items to include are listed.

  • Copies of insurance policies, with agent’s contact information.
  • Inventory list of possessions, including receipts, photos, and videos.
  • Other critical or legal documents, finance records, and birth records.

Prepare Your Home

Ensure that your home is prepared for a flood emergency by following our list of tips.

  • Verify sump pump is in working order.
  • Seal off the floor drains and shower drains to prevent sewage from backing up into your basement.  You may be able to use tennis balls, polyethylene and sand bags to try to seal those areas off.  If you use a tennis ball, make sure it is large enough so it will not slide completely in the pipe. If it slides into the pipe, you may have to hire a plumber to remove it.
  • Remove your bathroom fixtures and seal off the sanitary sewer pipe to prevent sewage from backing up into your basement.
  • Anchor fuel tanks (if applicable).
  • Shut off all utilities at the main switches and valves (water, gas, oil and electric).
  • Remove wall and outlet plates and cover them with rubberized tape.
  • Raise electrical components (switches, sockets, circuit breakers and wiring) at least 12 inches above the projected flood elevation.
  • Place furnace, water heater, and washer/dryer on cement blocks at least 12 inches above the projected flood elevation.
  • Turn off power to private wells and seal with plastic sheeting to keep out silt and debris.
  • Move valuables and important documents to a safe place. 
  • Remove items that can absorb water, such as boxes, books, clothing, rugs, to prevent mold growth and ease clean-up.
  • Remove all items from basements and/or crawl spaces.
  • Open basement windows so water can enter and equalize pressure.      
  • Consider installing “check valves” in sewer traps to prevent flood water from backing up into drains.