Preparing Your Roof for Winter: 6 Easy Steps
Fall is the perfect time to get ahead of inspecting and preparing your roof before the rough weather hits. Proper care and maintenance of your roof can extend its longevity and help protect against serious damage – and can help you avoid an insurance claim. Here are top tips for making sure your roof is ready for the season:
Be sure your gutters are clean of debris
Clear your gutters, spouts, and drains of all debris. Cleaning your gutters helps prevent water damage from blocked downspouts, keeps pests from causing trouble, reduces risks of a cracked foundation, and—in short—saves you money. You should clean your gutters at least twice a year, and especially in the fall. It’s also important to check that your gutters are secure—loose gutters can lead to overflow, causing unwanted damage to the exterior and roof of your home. There are companies that will come clean your gutters for you. If you’re taking on the task yourself please use caution.
Have your roof inspected
Having a professional inspect your roof’s framework and address any signs of sagging or other trouble that could cause a leak, is a smart way to stop damage before it starts. You should check your flashing at least once per year. Leaks commonly occur in the area around your roof’s flashing, especially after a storm, so make sure you or your roofer pays special attention to make sure it is well sealed. Valleys in your roof are also prone to leaks. Make sure you keep them clear of debris, which can put added weight and stress on your roof, causing increased wear and tear. Shingles can loosen after a storm, so be sure to check for curling, missing granules, and other signs that your shingles may need to be replaced.
Have the sealer checked around the base of any features on your roof, like antennas, plumbing, or brick stacks, and either replace or have your roofer replace any that has cracked or worn.
Check your chimney—thoroughly
Ask your regular roofer or contractor to inspect your chimney. They should check for any loose bricks and missing chunks of mortar, which should be repaired before you head into winter. You may have to bring in a brickwork specialist to fix the problems you find, but it could be worth it for the damage it can prevent.
Inspect the attic
Don’t forget your attic! Insulation should be evenly distributed, not just to help keep your house warm but to prevent heat from becoming trapped in your shingles. Trapped heat can lead to ice dams, which can easily cause damage to your roof.
Monitor and let the professionals handle it
Always monitor your roof in cold weather for signs of wear and tear—but don’t get up on an icy roof to DIY! Allowing professional contractors to handle roof maintenance and repair is always the best move, both for your personal safety and the safety of your home.
With these easy steps, your roof should be prepared to weather even the roughest New England winter. Before the long season hits, make sure you understand your homeowners coverage in the event damage occurs. Contact your local Bearingstar agent today at 877-801-7424 in Massachusetts, and 888-519-9996 in Connecticut.
- 10 Essential Roof Preparation Tips for Winter. HuffPost. https://www.huffpost.com/entry/10-essential-roof-preparation-tips-for-winter_b_57ee7b24e4b0972364deb14c
- Get Your Roof Ready for Winter. Iko. https://www.iko.com/na/learning-center/roofing-101/get-your-roof-ready-for-winter/