Tag Archives: seasonal

Hurricane Season: What to Check for and How to Prep Your Roof

People who live on the coast know all about hurricane season and all of the damage these storms can do. The common home is no exception. How many times have we heard about a hurricane ripping apart a whole neighborhood of houses? Who hasn’t seen footage containing the aftermath of such hurricanes? During hurricane season, your home is in danger. This is a fact almost everyone has to deal with. It just comes with the territory of living on the coast.

However, a silver lining does exist. While your home is in imminent danger during hurricane season, there are numerous ways to prepare your home for when these storms hit. There are many methods that exist which will cost little money and time. As many who have dealt with hurricanes would say, there is no such thing as being “too prepared” for hurricane season. And the roof of your home, and other things involving it, is no exception.

What to Expect During Hurricane Season  

This section is for anybody who is not familiar with places that are frequently hit by hurricanes. Hurricanes contain intense high powered wind, followed by heavy rain. This wind can take debris and throw it into your car or home. Anything and every car or home you own, no matter what, is suspect to getting some semblance of damage when a hurricane hits. It cannot be avoided, but the damage that your home, roof in particular, can be drastically lessened if you just prepare properly.

The Most Common and Popular Ways to Prepare Your Roof for Hurricane Season

Preparing your roof for hurricane season is not as difficult or as time-consuming as you may think. There are many things that you can do to make sure that your roof can survive as much as it possibly can during hurricane season. Although it can be a nuisance, and most roof work is, if you do these things, they will ensure that your roof will be protected as much as it can be. Certain things are only ideal for certain rooftops, and this will be mentioned in the list below.

  1. Use roof tie-downs: While this is not easy nor time-consuming, it may be necessary if you live in a crowded area that could be affected by a hurricane. A roof tie-down will essentially lock your roof in place, this way it doesn’t get blown around as much as the same roof would if a strong hurricane hits.
  2. Update the shingles on your roof: Compared to using tie-downs, this is much easier to do and can save quite a bit of time. If you do not live in a crowded area or you have a relatively new roof that may just need some of the shingles re-tightened. This is fairly easy to do. Just apply roof adhesive to any loose shingles. If this is done 2 to 4 weeks before hurricane season begins, it will ensure that the shingles on your roof do not fly off of your roof during hurricanes.
  3. Trim the trees around your house: This is another method that is very simple. It is almost necessary to do this if you live in a place that has a lot of trees. If you forget or just decide to ignore this task, these trees could get blown apart during a hurricane, landing on your roof and then damaging your roof.
  4. Clean the gutters and drain systems: This is not pleasant work. It can be time-consuming as well as dirty. But it is a very important thing to do to prepare your roof for hurricane season. If you do not clean the gutters and drain the system, you run the risk of backing up water from entering the drains. This can overfill the gutters and cause them to tumble down. Being from a place that is privy to hurricanes, I have actually witnessed this happen. While cleaning out the gutters, look for granules, which are fragmented shingles. Unless you have a brand new roof, granules in the gutter is usually a sign that a roof needs to be replaced.
  5. Reinforcing the roofing system (if necessary): This is an unconventional, yet efficient way to prepare your roof for hurricane season. There are two methods of doing this: The first is to just hire a roofer to do it. The second way is to attach and overlap 2×4 pieces of wood along the trusses of the roof, leaving roughly 11 and ½ feet of space in between each piece of wood. This method can cost some time and money, but it will protect your roof from a hurricane.
  6. Using hurricane straps: What does everyone do to their windows during hurricane season? That’s right, they place shutters in front of the windows. Would it not also be a good idea if you could place shutters on your roof? Hurricane straps function as shutters, but for a roof. They will protect the roof from everything involved in a hurricane.

Routine Roof Maintenance Should Never be Ignored

Among the aforementioned preparation procedures, some of them do indeed require you to hire a professional roofing contractor to do work. But there are certain things that do not require hiring a roofer that you can do to prepare for hurricane season. Things, like trimming the trees around the house and cleaning the gutters, can go a long way in making sure your home will be as protected as it can for the hurricanes to come.

The reason why these kinds of things are ignored is that they are not part of a routine. When something is not part of a routine, it can be ignored for weeks, months, or even years. Making sure your roof is in decent condition and ready for hurricane season would seem like it should only be a preparation to make once a year. But if you do this once a month, it will become a routine, which will then become a habit. If you do not want to spend a lot of money on repairing a roof after a hurricane, then you should consider inspecting your roof at least once a month.

This begs the question: How does one inspect a roof? Are you supposed to just walk around on the roof looking for torn up shingles, nails that can be hammered down, and rust on the flashings? According to some professionals, it is dangerous to casually walk on a roof. Most experts suggest climbing above the roof of your house, and with a pair of binoculars, seeing what needs to be taken care of. Then hiring the necessary crew (if any) after that.

Preparing for anything, let alone a roof for hurricane season, can be tedious. It can appear like a waste of time and something that is permissible to be ignored. However, long term consequences should be considered, especially when it comes to something like a home that you own. The few hours that you spend every month to make sure that your roof is in good shape will ensure that you will not need to spend as much money preparing your roof down the road.

prep roof for hurricane

Share this Image On Your Site
Please include attribution to https://accentroofing.com with this graphic.

What to Check on Your Roof After the Winter Season

The cold, hard winter can be a trying time for your roof. It’s the part of your house that can get the worst damage from winter’s harsh elements. From ice dams to melting snow, it can be hard to bandage your roof after winter’s long gone. But if you know what to look for and what problems may reveal themselves dealing with the damage might be easier than you think.

Roof Damage from the Inside

There are many ways that you can check for winter roof damage without even leaving the comfort of your own home. Be on the lookout for water damage and discoloration on the ceiling. That may be a sign of a leaky roof which can lead to bigger problems down the road dealing with rain and snow. Your roof might not be completely sealed. Head up to the attic with a flashlight and look for more signs of water damage like mold and discoloration. Make note of the location of the damage so you can look for the opening on the outside of the roof.

Even if there isn’t any obvious damage to the inside of the roof, there still might be an opening that could cause more damage in the future. Turn all the lights off in the attic and look for any part of the roof that reveals the sunshine of the inside. The crack, no matter how small, will make problems for you in the future. Also, check around the protrusions of your home like vents and chimneys. These are places where cracks often form in the shingles. If you make checking your attic into a routine then you’ll be able to catch problems before they turn into a big deal.

Roof Damage from the Outside

As the weather’s beginning to get warmer, it’s the perfect time to get outside and check out your roof. Before you climb onto the roof, make sure that you find a helper to spot you while you’re climbing up there. This can turn into a dangerous situation very quickly and you need to make sure that someone’s looking out for you when you’re up on the roof. Once you have a helper strap on some gloves, get a sturdy ladder, and start the investigation.

If there are places on your roof that you know have been cemented or sealed in the past, make sure to give those a look. They might have cracked due to the cold weather. After that, go check out your shingles. There could be obvious damage like a broken shingle, but be sure to look out for less significant damage like cracks or raising. This could have happened due to the sudden temperature change that can happen during the winter season, or in the transition from winter to spring. There also might be snow or ice on it that had randomly thawed, causing the shingle to raise. Depending on the damage, the shingle might not even have to be replaced. It could just need to be resealed.

Inspect your gutters and eaves. If you see water damage through these areas, it might have to do with the area being overtaken with ice. This often happens because the snow thawed and froze at a fast rate, causing things to expand and holes to form throughout your roof. As soon as the weather gets consistently warm and you feel comfortable checking out your roof, you should do so as soon as possible. This will give you a base of problems that you’ll need to take care of as spring blooms throughout your home.

Preventive Roof Maintenance for Next Winter

Investing in preventative care for your roof will prevent hefty price tags in the future. Once you have realized the types of problems that your roof often has you can pay a premium now to save money and hassle in the future. Be sure to check your gutters and downspouts making sure that they’re clean and open. These places are often where ice dams occur. Things like leaves and debris can pack up gutters during other seasons. This makes for improper drainage. When improper drainage occurs it can back up the whole water system and make for very costly damage come winter.

Keep the ventilation levels high in the attic and seal the vents. This will reduce heat levels on the roof and cause snow and ice to melt at a less rapid rate to prevent pooling at the roof’s edge. Keep an eye out for the snow that might be lying around on the roof. If it’s looking to be a lot (for example, over 12 inches) you might want to try and remove it from the roof. Make sure that you do this as safely as possible if you wish to attempt it.

Consistently check parts of the roof that cause breaks in the infrastructure such as vents and chimneys. These parts have more potential to crack and break than other parts of the roof. Once you catch a problem, be sure to reseal the shingles or replace them as needed. Be sure to make it a habit to consistently check the current status of your roof and make sure that you are aware of the age of your roof. Winter is the worst possible time to notice that you have a serious problem with your roof, or that it’s a lot older than you thought it was. If you incorporate some of these things into your roof maintenance routine you will save yourself a headache along with a few hundred bucks.

After the winter season, your roof deserves all the TLC that it possibly can. It can go through many different problems that will force you to invest your time, money, and effort into getting your roof back in shape. But it will do you nothing but good to attempt to catch these problems early. If you’re proactive about the damage to your roof, the future will be even better. Winter won’t even know how to feel about it, and you can relax in your home for seasons on seasons to come.


Share this Image On Your Site