Follow these recommendations to reduce the likelihood of flood damage to your home.
Learn your BFE
Learn the base flood elevation (BFE) for your property and determine whether the elevation of your building’s lowest floor is above or below the BFE.
If below, consider elevating your structure to reduce the chances it will flood. Buildings should be at least 3 feet above the BFE to account for higher-than-expected flood levels.
Purchase flood insurance
Purchase flood insurance, especially if you find you are in or near a high-risk flood zone (Special Flood Hazard Area). Flood insurance is provided through the federal National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), and can be purchased through private insurance agents and companies.
Raise electrical components
Hire a licensed electrician to raise electric components (switches, sockets, circuit breakers, and wiring) at least 12 inches above the BFE for your area. This will help prevent damage to the electrical system and reduce the chance of fire from short circuits in flooded systems.
Raise or floodproof HVAC
Raise or floodproof heating, ventilation, and cooling (HVAC) equipment to prevent damage. Have a contractor move it to an upper floor or build a floodproof wall around the equipment.
Make sure the slope of the land directs water away from the building.
Anchor fuel tanks
Anchor fuel tanks, which can otherwise damage your building or be swept downstream, damaging other properties. When they break away, the contents may leak, creating fire, explosion and pollution risks that can adversely affect health and the environment.
Install sewer blackflow valve
Have a licensed plumber install an interior or exterior sewer backflow valve to prevent sewage from sanitary sewer lines from backing up through drain pipes into the building.
Have a licensed well-drilling contractor inspect your well and suggest improvements to protect it from floodwater contamination.
Do not store valuables in any crawlspace or basement where flooding is possible.