The winters throughout Northeast Ohio can be extreme, but there are some steps you can take during the fall and winter months to care for your roof and prevent damage from the harsh weather conditions. Following these steps can help reduce the chance you’ll need a roof repair or replacement due to the weather.
Below is your Ohio Winter Roof Checklist to ensure you get through the worst winter weather with a reliable roof.
1. Clean the Gutters and Downspouts
Clogged gutters can lead to more significant problems like ice dams or roof leaks. Ensure proper drainage through the gutters and downspouts by removing leaves, debris, and other blockages. Additionally, after a heavy snowfall, backed-up gutters add to the stress put on your roof.
2. Clear Snow and Ice Off Your Roof
We are all familiar with shoveling snow off of our driveways, but the majority of us forget about our roof. After a heavy snow, it’s common for it to accumulate over the roof. You can use a rake or a long-handled broom to help clear it off. This may seem obvious, but it’s important to keep in mind that a standard snow shovel can damage your shingles and should be avoided!
3. Trim Tree Branches to Protect Your Roof
Branches weighed down by heavy snow or flailing in heavy winds can snap and break, causing damage to the structure of your roof. Think about how you make a fire during the fall and winter using brittle sticks that crack easily. Eliminating weak branches above your roof can keep you out of a lot of trouble! You can trim those branches back before the weather ever becomes a factor.
4. Inspect and Replace Shingles
Damaged or missing shingles can reduce the effectiveness of your roof. Visually inspect your roof and replace any shingles that are cracked, curled, loose, or missing to prevent any eventual leaks. Roof repairs should be made by an experienced roofing contractor to ensure missing or damaged shingles are repaired correctly and match your roof.
5. Check Flashing and Seals for Leaks
When your attic is properly insulated it’s a layer of protection against heat loss and ice dams. The warmth from the insulation prevents a build-up of ice and prevents the heated interior air from escaping. If your attic and roof are missing proper ventilation, consider installing a reliable roof vent.
6. Ensure Proper Attic Ventilation
Examine the flashing around chimneys, skylights, vents, and other roof features. Make sure the seal is strong and there are no other cracks or gaps. Additionally, inspect the walls and ceiling around these vulnerable areas for signs of moisture inside your home. Avoiding potential leaks can save you thousands of dollars and protect the longevity of your roof.
It’s important to know the condition of your roof before we enter the long winter months. A professional roofer can more easily tell you what repairs will need to be completed to protect your roof and your home. If you’d like to schedule a roof inspection, contact us today and schedule a free roof inspection!