Protecting Your Roof in Winter
Preparing your roof for winter starts months in advance. In fact, it’s a year-round job and you should be keeping an eye on your roof for damage all the time. Your roof is a huge investment, and major repairs could cause some serious damage to your bank balance if you need a new roof, for example. So it’s always worth checking your roof throughout the year for warning signs that there may be damage up there.
The extreme weather that winter brings can wreak havoc on your rooftop and guttering. Snow and ice can cause cracks to your gutters or lift up tiles that are already loose, causing you problems with the whole roof structure. Before the freezing weather sets in, do an inspection of your roof. Autumn is the perfect time to make your checks and do any roof maintenance required in time for the snow.
Check Your Roof for Damage
A check from the ground should be enough, but if you want to do a closer inspection remember, never attempt to climb on your roof because it may not be strong enough to hold your weight. And never work on the roof in wet or damp weather, so wait until a fine, clear day. If you’re unsure of anything, it’s best to get a trained roofer to check your roof for you – they’ll know what signs to look for and will be able to work safely and quickly to ensure that your roof is prepared for winter.
If you’re checking from the ground, there are certain signs of damage to look for. If there’s moss on the ground, it could spell trouble. Moss is a plant with no roots that can grow and spread very quickly from the trees that surround your home and even from your neighbour’s rooftops. Moss and debris such as leaves can cause damage to your roof, so it’s important to keep your rooftop clean. Because it has no water, moss retains water from the rainfall, so in winter, this water can freeze against your roof and cause frost damage, making the tiles crack.
Another problem area can be your chimney. As it’s often the highest point of your property, your chimney is vulnerable to the stormy weather of winter. Check the chimney for signs of wear and tear, particularly around the flashings, where the chimney joins to the roof. Look for damaged brickwork that could simply need re-pointing and signs of leaking water. Other areas to be aware of are around vents and skylights. If you can’t access the area to check properly, you could still do a check from the ground using binoculars.
Make sure the tiles on your roof are offering you the protection they should – look for buckled or curled shingles, or signs of shingles on the ground, where they’ve disintegrated.
Finally, carry out a check inside your property. Look for signs of water damage such as damp spots and dried water where rainfall has leaked through. Watch out for metalwork that has rusted or timber that is decaying.
Keep Your Roof Clean
Keep your roof guttering clean and your roof should serve you well throughout winter. You should get your guttering cleaned at least once a year to keep them working well and free of leaves and other debris that can cause them to freeze and crack over the winter months.
You can do this effectively by sweeping your roof to dislodge leaves. You can purchase an extended brush handle for the job or contact a roofer who will be able to ensure that your roof is clean and stable ready for winter. If you choose to power wash your roof, be very careful as the powerful spray could cause any problems to worsen – for example, if your roof tiles are curled then water could get underneath or even displace them completely. Roofing should be carried out by a professional roofer unless you’re confident that you know what you’re doing.
For a trained local roofer, contact G&A Roofing and Building. We are a leading roof repairs company that offers a range of services to take care of leaking roofs.
Call our team of trained roofers for affordable roof repairs, free advice and quotations today on 0800 626430.