There are a number of practical steps you can take to protect your roof against leaks this winter season.
As part of your regular roofing maintenance, you should get the exterior of your roof checked by professionals around every six months. However, regular maintenance may not be enough to prepare your roof for the winter. Whether you have a slate roof or cedar shake roof, you can take a number of steps to protect your roof against leaks this winter season.
Any leak in your roof may cause serious damage to your house. If water leaks through the shingles in your roof, it may cause serious damage to your roof’s underlayment. Moreover, if water seeps into the attic, it may encourage mold growth. If a leak affects the interior of your house, you need to seek professional help as soon as possible. Depending on your problem, professionals may recommend you to replace or repair the drywall floor coverings or home insulation. Here are some steps you can take to prevent your roof from leaking this winter season.
It is always a good idea to get an attic inspection done every year before the winter seasons starts. If you can detect a leak one or two months before the winter, you will have enough time to get the problem fixed and thus prevent any further damage to the roof. It is generally easier to spot any leaks during the rainy season or fall. However, if the weather is dry, you can look for other signs of a leak, such as:
- Stains on insulation
- Mold growth around the vents, gaps, and seams in the attic
- Warped wood
If you get your roof inspected during the rainy season, you may notice water leaking from wood, insulation, and vent areas. It is always important to maintain a properly vented attic. This helps to maintain the roofing shingles and extend the lifespan of your roof. An attic inspection a few months prior to the winter is essential for proper roofing maintenance.
Ice Dam Prevention
Accumulation of ice dams on the roof is a leading cause of many roofing problems during the winter season. As snowfall starts, ice dams build up on your roof. If you don’t clean the ice dams regularly, it may cause a problem in the drainage of rainwater. Even though shingle roofs are generally water resistant, the water trapped in the ice dams for a long time can still cause damage to the shingles of your roof. This may eventually result in a leaking roof. One way to prevent ice dams is by ensuring proper ventilation in your attic. Ideally, the temperature of your attic should be the same as the temperature of the exterior, and other parts of your roof. Moreover, you should ensure proper insulation between the rafters.
Limit Access to the Roof
Winter is the season of holidays. So, you can expect more walking on your roof for decoration, hanging lights, etc. This increases the risk of a roof leaking due to cracks in the shingles. If possible, you should limit access to the roof and make sure that no one steps on any cracked or weather warped shingles.
Finally, do not forget to contact an expert roofer a few months before the winter seasons starts. Get everything checked and seek advice from the expert on how to prepare your roof for the winter.