June to November is hurricane season. Anyone along a prone coastline knows preparing for a storm is an essential part of home maintenance and security planning. While knowing evacuation routes is common knowledge to most residents of these areas, protecting valuable electronics can get overlooked when the time comes to evacuate. Having an executable plan will make a hurricane warning less stressful for you and your entire family and less expensive in the event your home is damaged.
Add a mini-checklist to your existing hurricane prep list. Have a plan specifically for your electronics. Writing a plan ahead of time will keep you and your family safe and focused if evacuation orders are issued.
Decide what items will be packed to go with you and which items will need to stay. Small items like cell phones, laptops and hand-held video games are simple to pack and do not require lots of space. It is less practical to take your television and desktop computer if you have to evacuate.
Plan to tie down and cover valuable home theater elements that will stay. Add plastic trash bags or other coverings to existing prep list. Make sure to stock up on these items before a storm is coming because most retail stores will sell out or close once a hurricane warning is issued.
Record models and serial numbers of all your home theater equipment. Also take pictures if possible. These will be used as evidence in the event you have to file a loss claim with your insurance company. Put these records with other important documents you plan to bring. They will be useless if damaged during a storm.
Check that all wiring going into your home is secured off the ground. Catching a problem now will save time and frustration when you are packing to evacuate.
Label your breakers. Know which ones will be turned off and which, if any, will remain on.Executing
Use wrenches to remove your satellite dish and antenna. These can cause major damage if dislodged during high winds. Store them in a shed or other secure location. Also, lower your telescopic pole if applicable.
Recheck wires going into your home.They should be secure and elevated. Flood waters can cause damage to your cable wires.
Remove your mounted television and cover it with blanket or sheet. Place it screen down on an elevated surface, like a dining table. Cover it with plastic that is weighted down on the surface. This should protect the television from both wind and water.
Unplug, raise and cover any other items from your “Leave behind” list. Cover computer monitors, small printers, cable and satellite boxes, DVD players, surround sound systems and any other small elements of your home theater system with trash bags to protect from water and humidity. Move any items away from windows.
After all items are unplugged, turn your breakers off. Electricity will most likely surge or go out completely.