Prepare for spring storms before they strike

Remember the good old days when the only things April showers brought were May flowers? These days, they also bring wind, hail, lightning, and floods — weather events that can do a lot of damage to property.

Here are simple things you can do to prepare your home for spring storms, so you can hole up in your snug-as-a-bug home without worry.

Inspect your home

  • Check your roof. Roofs are particularly susceptible to high winds and tornadoes. A do-it-yourself inspection of buildings may reveal weak areas that need attention. Look for loose siding and roofing materials — especially shingles and metal panels. These may blow off easily and take other materials along with them.
  • Make sure you have surge protection. A lightning strike or power outage could fry your expensive devices.
  • Keep up with tree-trimming. Dead branches can cause a lot of damage when they land on your house or your car.
  • Clean out your gutters. If they’re plugged up, the water will find somewhere else to go — like your basement, between the siding and exterior walls, or through leaky windows.
  • Test your sump pump. If it’s not working, it won’t do you much good if water does end in your basement.
  • Batten down the hatches. If you know bad weather is coming, put away or secure any outdoor furniture, toys, bikes, etc.

Pack your emergency kit

Packing emergency kits for your home and your car will prepare you and your family for severe weather. recommends including the following items in your kit.

  • Flashlights and extra batteries.
  • First aid kit that includes necessary medications. If you have small children, also include formula and diapers.
  • Non-perishable food. Include protein-rich foods such as nuts and energy bars and canned foods. Pack a manual can opener, too.
  • Water is even more important than food. Pack at least 1 gallon of water per person per day.
  • Basic tools including pliers, a wrench, and screwdrivers.
  • Radio, either battery-powered or hand-cranked.
  • Clothes including gloves, hat, and rain poncho. You may also want a change of clothes for each member of your family.
  • Blankets or sleeping bags.
  • Cell phone chargers that can be used in the wall or in your car.
  • Pet supplies for your pet, including food and water.
  • Cat litter for better tire traction.
  • Jumper cables for your vehicle.

For more information

Visit for more information about how you and your family can prepare for severe weather. Learn more about Grinnell Mutual’s coverages at