How to Prevent Roof Storm Damage

Your roofing system is one of the most important parts of your home. It protects you and your family from extreme weather conditions and outdoor elements all year round. While your roof is designed to withstand a strong storm, there may come a time when it sustains extensive storm damage. 

How to Prevent Roof Storm Damage

Although it’s impossible to prevent a storm, there are a few things you can do to minimize the damage to your home. In today’s article, Sterling Exteriors, your expert roofer in the area, discusses the impact of the storm on your roof and shares tips to help you reduce storm roof damage. 

The Impact of Storm on Your Roof

The level of roof damage may vary depending on the severity of the storm. Strong winds, for instance, can directly impact your roof by ripping off the outer roof covering and, in some cases, the decking. Gutters can also be pulled from the side of your roof, which can lead to further damage to nearby areas. Strong winds can also cause tree limbs or flying objects to hit your roof, causing shingles and tiles to tear away or even create openings.

This is quite similar to the effects of hail damage. Even if the hailstone is small, it may loosen shingles or chip away the outer layers of the roofing structure. If the stones have created gaps or holes in your roof, however, the only thing you can do is repair or replace it. Meanwhile, heavy rain can cause excessive wear and tear on your roof. If your roof has already sustained prior damage due to wear and tear, it can suffer severe water damage, further compromising your home. 

It’s also worth noting that the most common cause of storm damage is water leaks, which can be a result of broken tiles or shingles. When water seeps into your home, it can lead to a plethora of issues, including mold growth and rotten plywood. For this reason, it’s important to get professional roof maintenance, especially if previous storms have already done a number on it. Additionally, there are several different ways to protect your roof. 

Steps to Take Before the Storm to Reduce Damage

While the coastal areas and eastern portions of the United States are more prone to hurricanes, that doesn’t mean that other regions don’t experience strong storms. As such, every homeowner must prepare their home to reduce storm damage. Without proper preparation, your roof may become worn down further, expediting its premature failure in the process. 

Below, we list a few tips to help you prepare your home for the drastic effects of storms: 

  • Place Protective Plywood on Your Roof

Asphalt shingle is one of the most popular roofing materials, thanks to their aesthetic appeal and versatility. However, the biggest problem with asphalt shingles is that they are susceptible to cracks and splits. This is particularly true in the event of a hurricane. Fortunately, you can give your asphalt shingle roof an extra layer of protection by using plywood as a protective sheet. 

Although plywood is more expensive than asphalt shingles, it can be an effective way to protect your roof. Make sure that the plywood you choose should be treated with a water-resistant product for superior protection. 

  • Trim the Trees Around Your Home

Having large trees around your home help boost curb appeal and add color to your exteriors. When it comes to storms with high winds or heavy rainfall, however, these trees can pose a risk to your roof. Branches close to your roof can damage or lift shingles while dead limbs can land on your roof, cracking roof beams or breaking the structure completely. 

Thus, take the time to trim tree limbs or small branches that extend over your house. For best results, keep branches six feet or more away from your roofing system to minimize falling branches. If you think there are weak or diseased trees near your home, consider calling a professional to determine whether it’s best to have them removed to ensure your roof is in danger. 

  • Remove Outdoor Items Before the Storm Arrives

Before the storm arrives, it’s also a good idea to remove outdoor items. Chances are the winds may move them around or lift them up, causing damage not only to your home but to other homes around you. Consider relocating patio furniture, lawn decorations or any loose items . If they are too heavy to remove, you can tie them down to prevent them from damaging your home or someone else’s. It’s also recommended to leave most of your home undecorated before an upcoming to avoid more damage. Also, If you have cars in your driveway, you may want to park them in your garage. This way, you prevent damage and accidental car-inflicted damage to your home. 

  • Clean Gutters and Downspouts

Gutters and downspouts divert water away from your property to protect your roofing system from the damaging effects of water runoff. If they are clogged, however, water can back up and seep under the shingles, which can eventually leak into your home. Not only that, but dented or uneven gutters can also prevent water from flowing to the downspouts, allowing water runoff to pool and overflow to the sides and onto your landscaping. When cleaning your gutters, don’t forget to check for loose or weak fasteners. When leaves and debris build up, the gutters can break away from the roof, taking the eaves with them.

  • Check Your Insurance Policy

If you have an insurance policy, it’s best to review it before the storm hits your home. Familiarize yourself with what it covers and make sure it’s up to date. In addition, keep your roof warranty and insurance policy together to make them easy to find should you need them. In case of power outages, you may want to download a claims form to keep you from accessing your policy online. 

If your roof suffered extensive damage following a storm, take photos or videos to document the condition of your roof. Doing so helps you strengthen your claim and get it approved by your insurance provider.

Trust Sterling Exteriors for Your Roofing Needs

If your area was hit by a recent storm, schedule a professional roof inspection right away. At Sterling Exteriors, we are determined to assist you in protecting your roof from storm damage. Call us today at (513) 685-8055, or fill out our online contact form to request a quote. We offer top-quality roofing services in Cincinnati, Loveland, Newtown and the surrounding areas.