Tennessee’s temperate climate brings warm summers and mild winters to residents of the state – but that does not mean properties in the area do not have to worry about weather-related issues. The state’s distinct topography does make for some uncomfortable conditions at times. Roofing systems, in particular, bear a big brunt of abuse from the outdoors, which is why they should be equipped to handle the worst of the weather.
Roof winterization does exactly just that. It protects your roof’s components, thereby reducing their risk of disintegrating and having to be replaced. Consequently, a structurally stable system grants better protection to your home, which will keep you and your family safe. Simple maintenance in preparation for the winter does not even have to be expensive or difficult.
Clear away debris and leaves. Winter may deposit loads of snow and other wind-driven materials to your roof, and additional baggage born out of previous seasons will only exacerbate the problem. Rake leaves from your roof, and hose it down with a mild cleaning solution.
Cut away overhanging branches. Leaves on your roof are not only driven there by the wind. Trees with branches that overhang the roof must be pruned, too.
Check for and eliminate signs of pest infestation. Some animals may seek refuge from the cold through your gutters, which will cause block-ups and improper water drainage. Insects such as wasps may also build a home in debris. Once spotted, you should immediately remove these signs of infestation.
Clean gutters.De-clogging your gutters is one of the most critical aspects of roof winterization. Debris-filled gutters are a veritable recipe for water damage to siding, foundation, and landscaping. Today, there are accessories you can install over your gutters to keep them clogged-free throughout the year.
Make sure that you are prepared for snow by taking stock of the snow removal tools you have on hand. You should have at least on thick brush broom and one snow shovel available at a moment’s notice for removal of snow or ice from your roof. Large amounts of snow sitting on your roof can put undue stress on you roof supports and also cause melting snow to leak into your home. Stock up on rock salt and get some good gloves!
Additional Key Points
For complete protection, we also recommend the following:
- Repairing damage as soon as it is spotted. Damaged components left to sit will not only affect the performance of the entire roof, they will also be expensive. Checks for splitting, cracking, or loosening and replace them whenever possible.
- Conducting a comprehensive inspection. Inspections are best done before the worst of the weather arrives, and after. Consult your local weather reports to schedule this inspection. Hiring a licensed contractor at this phase is recommended, as there are problems that only a trained eye can spot and stop.
- Making a maintenance plan. Lastly, protecting your roof should not end with winterization, and it certainly should not only happen during winter. Preventive and reactive maintenance programs will help keep your roof at its most functional – as well as extend its service life and defray repair and replacement costs in the long run.
As the owner of Bill Ragan Roofing and Associates, Inc., Bill Ragan gets to interact with a lot of his clients thus making him understand their roofing concerns better. He is passionate in writing so he shares all the learnings he gets from customers and contractors alike to his blog.