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Preparing For a Storm: How to Protect Your Roof

Everyone wants rainbows but no one wants to do what it takes to prepare to get through the rain. Indeed, to experience the good, you have to be ready for the bad. This includes knowing how to protect your roof from potential storm damage.

When it comes to your home, you must expect the best but prepare for the worst. Your roof is your home’s first line of defense against storms and other severe weather so it’s vital that you know how to protect it. Otherwise, the storm will wreak havoc inside your home, and no one wants that.

Steps to take even before you prepare your roof

Storms are unpredictable. Meteorologists try to give us advance warning, but some storms hit fast, leaving us scrambling to prepare. Hail, sleet, snow, strong winds, and falling objects can cause major damage to your home and roof. It’s essential that you do everything possible for all-around, comprehensive protection.

Examine your insurance policies – after a major storm is not the time to learn what’s covered and what’s not. You should also know details such as what your deductible is and how to file a claim. For example, some types of roof damage may be covered and others not. It’s also a good idea to take photos of your home, inside and out, beforehand. That will make it easier for the claims adjuster to make comparisons.

Have a reliable way to check the weather – whether you are a devotee of the Old Farmer’s Almanac or you have a TV weatherperson living next door, everyone should have a trusted weather source. And listen to the advice given. It’s also wise to have a battery-powered radio so you will know what to expect even if the power goes out. Remember that it’s better to have something and not need it than to need it and not have it.

Create and keep a list of important numbers, including a trusted local contractor – this should be written somewhere and accessible in an emergency. If you are like most of us, you put everything in your phone. But what happens if something goes wrong with it? Always have a backup.

Develop an emergency kit and have a safety plan – you should keep items like batteries and extra water in a safe place. Also, if the weather is particularly brutal, don’t be afraid to leave. Your life, your family and your safety are far more important than a house. Remember that the home can be repaired.

What you can do to protect your roof

  1. Perform a visual inspection

Look for things like loose or missing shingles. These issues will only become worse during a storm. Make any necessary repairs before a storm hits to prevent this problem.

  1. Make sure your gutters are clean and unblocked

Gutters help water get off your roof. When that path gets blocked, the water stays on your roof, which can pool and cause leaks or other disasters. Additionally, if gutters become too heavy, they can break off and fall, perhaps taking a bit of your roof along with it.

  1. Cut or prune trees

Powerful winds and rain can cause trees or large branches to fall on your roof. This can not only create punctures but may even result in a roof collapse. Trees, branches and other debris can damage the roof supports and crack shingles or tiles. These problems can be expensive to repair. Not only that but if your trees fall onto neighboring property or buildings, you will be liable for those damages as well. A good rule of thumb is that trees should not be within six feet of your home or other structure. Branches should be trimmed as necessary. Even if they don’t break, the wind could turn them into a natural whip, which can damage your roof system. They can also impair the edge of your roof, and since you need this area to prevent damaging airlifts, it’s crucial that it stays protected.

  1. Remove or secure anything that could fly around and become hazardous

Items like patio furniture, yard equipment, and children’s toys are harmless during nice weather but can become dangerous projectiles during a storm. Even something as simple as a rubber trash container could turn into a missile if flying around with severe winds helping it along. These things might not hit your roof, but they could break your windows. Once air makes it into your home, the force will push it upwards, resulting in eventual roof failure. Anything that cannot be put away must be securely tied down.

  1. Close all doors and windows tightly

Since we are discussing roofs, you may be wondering what doors and windows have to do with it. It has to do with the same air pressure problem of something flying through your window. This pressure will drive the air up, decreasing the strength of your roof. If you have time to cover your windows with plywood, you should do so.

  1. Don’t ignore weather warnings

It can often seem like there is always some pending weather event in this area. Sometimes it happens and other times the weather is not as severe as originally predicted. This can leave you with an apathetic attitude about weather forecasts. However, just like the story “The Boy Who Cried Wolf,” one day the boy was right and no one was listening anymore. Don’t let that happen to you. Treat every warning as a real threat. That way, you will never be caught off guard.

Hire a professional roofing company

This area experiences all types of severe weather, from hurricanes to hail storms. But you don’t have to handle this all alone.

A top quality roofer can perform a professional inspection and identify areas you may have missed. It’s possible that installing roof ties is all it will take to prepare your roof for the next storm. Since they know what to look for, they can suggest repairs and provide ideas about storm preparation best practices.

Contact Blue Nail today to discuss ways to protect your roof or to schedule an inspection.

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