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How to Prepare Your Roof for Winter

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It's that time of year again! The leaves are falling, the air is getting colder and we're all preparing for winter. Although it may not be on your mind at the moment, you need to start thinking about winter preparation and how your roof will fare in these tough conditions. Your roof is an important part of what keeps your home safe and warm during cold winter months, so don’t underestimate its importance.

Read on to learn all about getting prepared for winter by knowing when and how to get your roof inspected before the snow starts falling. It can be hard these days with all that we need to do in our daily lives. However, if you plan ahead now then you will save yourself trouble later on down the road. Here are a few things you should do to prepare for this winter. 

Roof Inspections

The first step to preparing your roof for winter is to do a brief visual inspection yourself. You can do this from the ground with a pair of binoculars or if you're feeling daring you can get up on your roof to take a quick look around. This will help you to know what sort of damage has been done already, which is important if you want to avoid further damages during the winter months.

When you're looking at your roof, keep an eye out for any shingles that have been ripped off, any missing pieces or holes. If you have a chimney, be sure to check out the flashing where it connects to the roof to make sure pieces aren’t missing or pulling apart. Also, look for areas that seem to sag and notice if you can see sunlight through the roof in some places. This is typically a good indication of damage!

If your inspection reveals that there are damages on your roof then it's time to call a trusted roofing professional. You'll want to get your roof inspected by a professional because they will be able to tell you if there are any immediate issues with the structure of your roof.

Whether or not you find damages on closer inspection, it's good practice and well worth the time and money spent to have a pro come out and do an even more thorough check once a year.

This is the best time to catch any damages that might be on the horizon before it's too late, but if you're not quite sure then there are still things that can be done to help prevent further damage like repairing damaged shingles and extending your warranty.

Interior Inspection

Before the winter, you should also take a look in your crawl space or attic to inspect your ceilings from signs of roof damage. If you notice any leaks or other damages in these places then it's a good indication that there are probably issues with your roof. If you spot any signs of water damage, contact an experienced roofer. Not only will a roofer find and repair the source of the leak, but they will also be able to tell you if there is a problem with the structure or if they note any signs of mold.

Preventive Maintenance: Check Your Gutters & Trim Trees

You might not realize it, but your roof and gutters can really impact each other. While you're checking your roof for damage, keep an eye out to see that the gutters are draining water away from the house.

If there is a lot of debris in them or they seem clogged with leaves, it could be time to call in some pros to give them a good clean. You can also use a metal rake on your gutters to get rid of any debris that might be stuck in there, just make sure you don't scratch up the surface by using anything too sharp!

Keeping your gutters clean is important to the health of your roof. During heavy rainfall, if your gutters are clogged the weight of all that water could cause damage to your roof. Additionally, leaves and other debris in your gutters can help to create an environment for moss, mold, or mildew. This is very bad news for the structural integrity of your home's roof, so be sure that you check on them regularly.

To keep your roof in great shape this winter, there are some additional preventive measures you can take. If you have trees near your home, try to keep the branches trimmed back so that one of them doesn't crash into your roof and cause damage. If a neighbor’s tree is hanging over your home, it’s time for a friendly neighborly chat!

Caring for Your Roof in Winter

Once the snow begins to fall, you may be tempted to clear it from your roof. However, this can pose serious health risks! Do not attempt to climb your roof in the winter when it is cold, wet, icy, or covered in snow. Additionally, do not attempt to clear snow from the edge of your roof to prevent ice dams. While you may have heard this can prevent roof leaks, ice dams won't form on properly insulated roofs. Which is yet another reason to tend to potential insulation and leaks before winter hits!

One thing you can do in the winter is clear off icicles that hang over doorways and walkways. These pose a threat to people walking beneath them, should they fall. Otherwise, focus on getting your roof in good shape before winter so you don't have to worry about ongoing maintenance during the harsh winter months.

Bottom Line

Winter is tough for everyone, but it doesn’t have to take a toll on your roof. Be sure that you take all these steps to prepare your roof for winter. Protect your home’s interior and exterior from any potential damages or problems that might arise due to inclement weather conditions. And when you use a TrustDALE certified professional, you're always protected by Dale's trademark $10,000 Make-It-Right Guarantee. So start looking for a trusted roofing professional in your area today!