The use of sandbags is a simple but effective way of reducing or preventing flood damage in your home or business.
Flooding is one of the leading natural disasters in the United States according to most insurance statistics. However, damages from flooding are not included in the homeowners’ insurance policies. For that, you have to buy a separate policy even if you don’t live in a designated flood zone. According to FEMA, floods can happen anywhere and more than 20% of flood claims came from homes that are outside the high-risk flood zone.
When people are warned about an approaching potential flood event, only a few people would try to prepare. You can do several things to ensure that you and your home stay safe during a storm. One simple yet effective way to prevent and lower the risk of flood water damage is the use of sandbags for flooding. Learn this technique by reading this article.
What is Sandbagging?
One flood prevention technique that has been useful for centuries is called sandbagging. This technique uses sandbags or flood bags which act as a barrier to help divert and hinder water from entering doors and foundations.
The most recognizable material for sandbags is burlap. They can also be made of polyethylene, polypropylene, and nylon. You can buy them in your local stores. Other products on the market are self-inflating bags which are easiest to lift, place, and maneuver.
Uses of Sandbags
Sandbags are satisfactory for use in most cases but they don’t guarantee a water-tight seal. Properly filled with soil or sand, sandbags serve as flood barriers and military fortification. Moreover, good seal sandbags are a great choice for the construction of levees, dikes, quick dams, berms, and barricades for erosion control and floodwalls.
During emergencies such as a damaged dike or levee and the threat of rivers overflooding, sandbags are very useful.
Storm preparation includes having them on-hand to prevent further personal and property damage.
How To Use Sandbags for Flood Prevention
Here are some tips and considerations on how to prepare and use sandbags to protect your property:
- Prepare an evacuation plan. If leaving your home is necessary, abandon it and save your life.
- Make sure to install the system in the amount of time you have to get ready for a flood.
- Stockpile sand on your property if you plan to depend on sandbags.
- Sand should be covered to protect it from erosion and animals and should be free of gravel.
- Materials such as sandbags, polyethylene sheeting, a shovel, and caulking are necessary and should be on hand.
- Using polyethylene sheeting will make the performance of any sandbag barrier better.
- Take additional steps to hinder flood water backflow through plumbing since a temporary or permanent levee is an incomplete protection system.
- Have a pump ready to get rid of water from rainfall or underground water seepage.
How To Prepare Sandbags Before Flood Comes
Sandbags help change the direction of stormwater and debris from the area flows away from your home. Here’s how to make your own:
- Fill sandbags one-half full with sand or soil. Take note that filling sandbags is a two-person job. ( one to hold the bag open and one to fill)
- Fold the top of the sandbag down and place the bag on its folded top. Be cautious in stacking and piling up the sandbags.
- Limit placement until three layers unless sandbags are put in a pyramid or a building is used as a backing.
- Press each sandbag down into place, finishing each layer before you start a new layer.
- Get rid of debris and clear paths between buildings.
- Put a plastic sheet in between the building and the bags to control the flow and prevent water seepage into sliding glass doors.
Limitations of Using Sandbags
- Sandbags deteriorate when they are exposed to wetness continuously and dryness for months.
- Sandbags won’t seal out water.
- If sandbags are placed too early, they may not be effective when they are needed.
- Because sandbags are usually for small water flow protection only, larger flow requires a more lasting flood prevention system.
- Sandbags can be exposed to contaminated floodwaters and may pose a hazard to the environment.
Seek Experts for Flood Damage
Sandbags for flooding are very important in preventing further damage in your place. Contact our professionals at Superior Restoration especially if you are experiencing flood damage. Our water damage experts can help you deal with flood-damaged issues. Please contact our local office today, Water Damage Costa Mesa. We offer 24/7 emergency services.