How to Prepare for a Flood


Floods are among the most frequent and costly natural disasters. Preparing for a flood can significantly decrease the potential for damage and harm. This guide will walk you through some steps you should take to protect your home and your family if floodwaters are heading your way.

What Should You Do Before a Flood?

When a flood is coming, take advantage of what time you have to prepare your home, family, and valuables for potential disaster. Below are some tips:

Get Flood Insurance

The hours leading up to a flood wouldn’t be the best time to secure a flood insurance policy, so if you live somewhere where flooding is likely, ensure your annual flood coverage is up to date at a predetermined time each year to avoid any unwelcome surprises. Flooding insurance isn’t included in standard homeowner’s insurance policies and must be purchased separately through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) or private insurer.

Determine Your Flood Risk

If you’re unsure about your flood risk level, it’s essential to determine this before a potential disaster strikes. You can check with your local emergency management agency or FEMA for information on flood zones in your area and whether you live in a high-risk or moderate-risk flood zone. If you live in a high-risk area, this should help you determine what steps to take next, including moving appliances or important electronics to higher ground or potentially evacuating to safety.

Gather Emergency Supplies

Having emergency supplies readily available can make all the difference during a disaster. While you may not use or need everything for every flood, being ready for the worst-case scenario will help you weather the unpredictability of floods. 

Be prepared with enough non-perishable food, water, and medical supplies to last at least three days for each household member. According to the Red Cross, if you’re in a high-risk flood zone, you may want to increase that to at least two weeks’ worth of supplies in case an outage lasts for a long time.

It’s also important to have flashlights, a battery-powered radio, and extra batteries on hand in case of power outages. Also, include anything else you may need in your emergency kit to ensure you’re prepared.

Pro Tip: Don’t forget to have an emergency kit for your pets if you have any. This kit should include enough food, water, and medications for at least a few days.

Secure Valuables

Before a flood hits, secure your valuables as much as possible. Move important documents such as passports, birth certificates, and insurance policies to a safe location that’s both waterproof and easily accessible. 

Consider taking photos or making digital copies of these critical documents, just in case. Protect valuable electronics by moving them to higher ground, unplugging them, and wrapping them in thick plastic bags.

Create a Family Safety Plan

Create a family safety plan before disaster strikes to ensure everyone knows what to do if flooding occurs. This plan should include designated meeting areas, evacuation routes, and emergency contacts. Make sure all family members are aware of the plan and know what to do in the event of an emergency.

Not sure where to start? Check with your community or local government for any specific disaster plans they may have in place. Doing so can help you know what to expect and how to stay safe during a flood.

Prep Your Home

Take some time to prepare your home for flooding. How you prepare can look different for every home, but you may want to consider installing sump pump backups, elevating appliances and electronics, and sealing any cracks in your foundation. 

Consider raising or relocating your HVAC system or electrical panel above the expected flood level if possible. Additionally, if you have a basement or crawlspace, consider sealing off the openings with waterproof materials to prevent water from seeping in.

Install a Backup Energy Supply

Having an emergency power supply can be incredibly helpful in case of power outages during a flood. A portable power station like EcoFlow’s DELTA 2 is an excellent option for entry-level home backup in emergencies like these. 

If your flooding risk isn’t as high, consider a more compact option like EcoFlow’s RIVER 2 to charge personal devices. Are you looking for a power solution somewhere in the middle? EcoFlow’s RIVER 2 Pro + 220W Solar Panel pairs the EcoFlow River 2 Pro with a 220W solar panel to give you a solar generator.

If you’d prefer to expand your power options and not limit yourself solely to solar generation or are looking for a last-resort backup for your solar generator, the EcoFlow Smart Generator (Dual Fuel) allows you to choose between gas or propane in worst-case scenarios.

What Steps Should Be Taken During a Flood?

Knowing what to do when water floods your home can keep you safe. Here are some steps to take if you find yourself in this situation.

  • Evacuate immediately if ordered to do so
  • Tune into weather radio or local alerting systems
  • Get to higher ground
  • Avoid electric outlets, cords, and plugs
  • Don’t walk through flood waters
  • Stay together

Staying Safe After a Flood

Even after a flood passes, it’s important to continue taking precautions. Here are some tips for staying safe and getting back on track after a flood.

  • Avoid flood waters
  • Avoid driving except in emergencies
  • Assess the damage
  • Contact your flood insurance company
  • Take photos for documentation
  • Clean up contaminated items and areas
  • Seek professional help if needed
  • Be wary of mold growth

Remember, floods can be unpredictable and dangerous. Always follow the guidance of local authorities and take appropriate safety measures to protect yourself and your loved ones during a flood. The National Weather Service provides additional information on flood safety. 

Final Thoughts

While the tips we’ve covered here are a great starting place, you may still want to take additional steps to ensure your safety. Make sure you consult information from the government or similar resources so you are fully prepared. 

Preparing and knowing what to do before, during, and after a flood can make all the difference. Taking steps such as making a plan, gathering supplies, securing your home, and more can help keep you safe during an emergency. 

For backup power options, consider EcoFlow’s DELTA 2 Power Station to keep you powered during an emergency. 

Most importantly, stay safe and listen to local authorities for guidance during a flood. By taking these steps, you can help minimize damage and keep yourself and your loved ones safe.

EcoFlow is a portable power and renewable energy solutions company. Since its founding in 2017, EcoFlow has provided peace-of-mind power to customers in over 85 markets through its DELTA and RIVER product lines of portable power stations and eco-friendly accessories.

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