Preparing Your Park Home For Storms And Bad Weather

At this time of year, preparing your park home for storms and bad weather is a priority for many residents. The first three months of the year are usually when most claims for weather damage are made. Recent storms which have hit the UK, particularly Scotland and the north of England, may have added to your concerns about how to protect yourself and your property.

Here are some tips we hope will help you to keep safe, warm and dry in the event of a storm or other bad weather.

First, with the added risk that storms and bad weather bring, it is worth checking your park home insurance to make sure it is up to date (a requirement of most residential parks). Also check that you have the cover you need. You can call us with any questions regarding this on 01604 946 796.

Regularly check the weather forecasts

Forewarned is forearmed as the saying goes. We all know that British weather is notoriously difficult to predict, but don’t let that stop you keeping your eye on the forecasts in the months ahead. If you know that a storm is on its way, you gain valuable preparation time and a chance to minimise any damage or danger the bad weather may cause.

If your home is prone to flooding, the UK government website, which issues flood warnings, is a good source of information. The BBC also issue frequent weather warnings when bad weather is predicted.

Trim your trees

Your park home may be under threat from falling trees or branches in a severe storm. Check whether any trees or large shrubs on your pitch need pruning and engage a professional if you cannot carry out the work yourself.

Also, check trees in the area surrounding your park home and contact the park management if you have any concerns. Regular pruning and maintenance of trees can help reduce the risk of falling branches and may reduce the risk of a falling tree. 

Check your fences

Clear weeds and rubbish away from the fence panels. Make sure there’s adequate drainage around to prevent the base of your fence from getting waterlogged, as wood posts can rot if they’re not maintained properly. Minor damage can be patched up with spare wood and nails, and during warmer months you can apply a fence preservative to help protect the wood. 

Clear gutters and drains

Ever changing weather, particularly high winds and storm conditions, can lead to debris building up and this in turn can lead to water damage and ingress. If blockages are left and water freezes in your guttering, they can be permanently damaged with sagging or even splitting.

Check skirting, cladding and roofing tiles

When you know a storm is coming and conditions are still fine enough for you to do this, it can be a good idea to check your park home’s skirting, cladding and roof tiles for any missing pieces or leaks. Sometimes you can identify a leak in fine weather by using a hose and spraying your roof and walls to see if there is any ingress. Hopefully you will have time, where necessary, to replace any loose tiles or boards so you can be prepared for a storm.

Secure garden furniture

High winds can carry garden furniture a long way off, never to be seen again. This can also present a significant hazard if furniture is left to be freely blown through the air by the wind. In order to keep safe and to keep your outdoor furniture, it might be advisable to store it temporarily in a shed. Alternatively, secure it to the ground, to the outside of your park home or perhaps to a sturdy fence or a tree. 

Park your car safely

If you have a car, think about the safest place to park it during a storm. You may want to look for somewhere away from trees and fences and garden furniture. It might be a good idea to work out where this spot is before you need it. Moving your car in storm conditions may be difficult if you have to decide where to go at the same time. Being prepared and having already identified the safest available place, can help in the confusion of high winds and driving rain.

Ventilate your home

If you can open up your home to fresh air at least once a day for even a short period of time, this can help to avoid condensation and resulting mould. Being shut in due to bad weather can make this more difficult. Now is a good time for you to check your external wall vents and clear them of any debris if necessary. This will help circulate the air in your home if you are unable to open the doors or windows for a while.

What to do during a storm

You may be ill advised to go outside, depending on how bad the storm is. Prepare to spend a protracted amount of time indoors. It may be a good idea to stock up on some food basics and make sure you do not have to make any trips for essential medicine that you need.

 Prepare for power failures

As we have seen in recent storms that have hit the UK, a period without power can often follow a bad storm. Keeping an emergency kit may help you stay indoors and avoid risking a trip outside. Here are a few ideas for what your emergency kit could include:

  • Phone charger and battery pack
  • Torch
  • Spare batteries
  • Candles, matches and lighters
  • Food and drink that doesn’t require cooking or heating
  • Warm clothing and layers
  • Buckets and bowls for any surprise leaks

An emergency kit could be useful if a severe storm is occurring, however you may not need to reach for a kit in the event of a light storm, such as thunder and lightning or moderate to heavy rainfall.

Prepare to be shut in for a while

You also might want to have some indoor activities ready for all the family while you’re sitting out the storm – board games, card games, or even some colouring in.

After the storm, check for damage

When the bad weather has passed it can be a good idea to carry out some checks immediately. This can help you quickly identify any damage that may have occurred and carry out any necessary repairs before the damage worsens. If you do need to make a claim on your park home insurance, then contacting your insurer as soon as possible will help to get your claim under way.

Things to check can include:

  • Gutters and pipes
  • Outdoor furniture
  • Cars
  • Trees
  • Fences
  • Roof tiles and joints
  • Windows and doors

Make a note of any damage and think about whether it’s something you need to submit a park home insurance claim for. It may be helpful to take photos of any damage to assist in your claim. If your phone has a camera, this makes it easy. It may be that in your circumstances, some of these checks are dangerous. If you’re unsure, enlist the help of a trade specialist who can survey damage in detail and give professional advice.

We hope this article helps you to prepare your park home for stormy weather and to keep safe, warm and dry. 

This is a marketing article from Park Home Assist, multi award-winning providers of residential park home insurance.  If you would like to speak to an advisor regarding insurance for your park home, please contact our friendly team in our Northampton office on 01604 946 796.

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