Hurricanes can pack winds exceeding 150 mph. Your roof bears the brunt of these winds, which can pull off tiles, shingles, and even the entire roof itself.
Even if your roof is new, a particularly strong hurricane can damage or even completely wreck it. Older roofs in houses that don’t meet the most recent building codes are particularly susceptible. Fortunately, there are things you can do before hurricane season arrives to keep your roof safe and avoid wind damage and water infiltration.
Remember to accomplish these three tasks before hurricane season:
Have your roof inspected
If your roof receives regular upkeep, it will be in a better position to resist battering winds and heavy downpour. Before hurricane season arrives (ideally, months in advance) schedule a roof inspection with a local professional roofer.
Skilled roofers will look for missing, loose, or curled shingles or tiles and replace them. They will check the edges of your roof, as well as the gutters and the drainage system.
The drainage system plays a very important role in preventing water damage from storms. If your drainage system is not working properly during a hurricane, water will pool on the roof and leak into your house, ruining your ceilings, walls, and the roof itself. Professional roofers will clean out your gutter and ensure the proper functioning of your drainage system so that when the rains come, water will flow in an unobstructed stream off your roof.
Expert roofers will also check the spacing between the nails holding the shingles and the underlying roof deck down. Those nails should be about four inches apart.
Your roofers may also want to inspect your roof from the inside. If they can access your attic, they will check for points of light poking through the roof. These indicate gaps that can allow water and wind in during a hurricane.
Roofers will also check the rafters or trusses for nail tips, which are an indication that the roof deck is not secured and can be torn off by high winds.
Trim back surrounding trees
Tree branches can get ripped off and fall on your roof, causing extensive damage and reducing your roof’s structural integrity. Smaller branches can fly off and pierce your roof or other parts of your house.
Before hurricane season starts, cut down all loose branches from the trees in and around your property. Make sure there are no tree branches within six feet of your home.
Protect your roof from strong winds
You can protect your roof from hurricane-force winds by applying roofing cement to the edges of the shingles, applying construction adhesive along the edges of rafters or trusses, and replacing missing nails in your shingles and at the points where the roof deck meets the rafters.
Your roofer may also install hurricane clips connecting your roof to the walls of your home. This added support helps prevent your roof from getting blown off by strong winds.
Consult with a roofing company as well so that you will know how to protect your home from any inclement weather, regardless of your location.
Your roof protects your home and your family, so you should always ensure that it is in tiptop shape. Making sure that your roof survives a storm is important, but above all, you should take steps to ensure your family’s safety during hurricane season. Good luck!