Santa Ana season brings extreme humidity, coupled with enormous wind storms. It’s important to prepare your home, and your roof during this time of year to prevent wind damage.
Your roof is the most essential part of your home, as well as one of the most expensive to replace. If it gets damaged, you’re inviting all kinds of damage to the rest of your home as well as large repair bills. Luckily, there are steps you can take to prevent wind damage to your roof in the coming season.
Here’s what you can do to keep that roof in the best condition possible.
1. Trim And Remove Trees
Trees are a real danger to your roof in high winds. They can easily have a branch pulled off, which can land on your roof. When that happens, they can pull shingles off or even punch a hole in the roof itself. This obviously will allow water into your roof, causing even more damage along the way.
To stop this happening, you need to trim your trees so they won’t be a danger to your roof. As a general rule, a tree should be as far away from your roof as tall as it will be when it’s fully grown.
So, if there’s a 20 foot tree in your yard, it needs to be 20 feet away from the home by the ends of its branches.
If this isn’t the case for any trees in your yard, get them trimmed now before the high winds hit. The further away from your house they are, the better. If the tree is too close to your home, you’ll need to have it removed. Talk to a local tree cutting service and see how soon they can remove the tree for you.
2. Secure Your Shingles
While you’re looking at your roof, you’ll probably see that some shingles are broken or missing. This is something you need to correct very quickly before the winds come in. If a shingle is loose, it will easily come away with the wind, again allowing water into your roof.
This is a job you can do yourself if you have the time and the expertise. It’s fairly simple to replace shingles, so ensure that you do so now.
If you ever get a new roof installed, make sure you keep an extra box of shingles stored away. If you ever do need to replace shingles, you’ll have some on hand that are the right color and shape.
3. Clear Your Gutters
If you’ve already had some wind, you may find that there are leaves and other debris in your gutters. You’ll need to clear this out as soon as possible. Blocked gutters lead to water overflowing onto the roof, potentially even leading to ice dams and other damage. Luckily, it’s very easy to solve this problem.
All you have to do is get on a ladder, grab some gloves and just scoop the debris out by hand. If you don’t want to do this again, install a gutter guard or brush. These catch debris before it can land in your guttering, stopping it from getting blocked again. It’s an inexpensive fix, so you should consider doing it.
3. Secure Metal Roofing
Metal roofing doesn’t use shingles, but it will still need securing against the weather. Just like metal siding, if the wind gets under it it can be easily torn off.
You’ll need to fasten it down tightly to ensure that this doesn’t happen. It’s usually best to call in experts to handle this for you.
4. Check Your Flashing
Something else you need to inspect is the flashing on your roof. This should be attached snugly to every part of the roof it’s installed on. If it’s loose or coming away, that’s going to be a danger in high winds. It could be ripped away, becoming a projectile.
Once it’s gone, you will see water coming into the roof in the seams that the flashing was protecting.
If you see any flashing that’s coming loose or otherwise isn’t working as it should, you’ll need to have it repaired right away. Again, this is a job that you’ll need to call on experts to help you with.
5. Fasten Down Any Loose Items
Once you’ve done all of this, you’ll need to fasten down any loose items on your roof or in your yard in general. You’ll be surprised at what can come loose and cause damage. If you can, bring items inside where they can’t cause damage.
If they can’t be brought inside, fasten them down with chains. Don’t forget things like cars and bikes, park them in the garage so they won’t be affected.
6. How To Clear Up Storm Wind Damage
Once a storm has passed, you’ll need to go out and assess the wind damage. If you took these precautions, there shouldn’t be much for you to do. But, if there is any damage though, it needs to be addressed as soon as possible to avoid any further problems.
If a tree branch has fallen on your house, leave the building as soon as you see it and call for help. Call for the fire service, or for a tree trimming service to come and remove it for you. Once it’s been removed, you’ll be able to see what damage needs to be repaired.
You’ll also need to look for any shingles that came off in the winds. Replace them now, so water doesn’t have a chance to get in.
Finally, inspect your roof and check your gutters for debris. If you trimmed your trees and cleared them beforehand, there shouldn’t be much in there. If there is any debris, clear it out now so it won’t cause a problem later down the line.
The key is to be quick in what you do. If there is any wind damage, you’ll need to correct it as soon as possible to stop it getting worse.
If you take the right steps, high winds won’t affect your roof. Secure down shingles, metal roofs, and flashing so they don’t come loose. Clear the gutters, and trim trees so they’re not going to pose a danger to your home.
When you do this, you know your roof will stay safe.