When the cooler weather begins, it may be time for you to consider preparing your roof for all possible weather conditions. Fixing the most common issues early in the season can prevent your roof from failing at the worst possible time.
Check Structural Integrity
Whether you typically have a mild or harsh winter, the structural integrity of your roof is critical for preventing significant problems. Once the weather cools off, one concern you may face is that small failures in your roof may be exploited by pests. Many types of pests, whether they are roaches or larger animals, will want to seek refuge in a warm environment and your home is the perfect place. Have your roof evaluated for smaller cracks that can easily allow insects inside and somewhat larger areas that can be chewed to allow mice, rats, or squirrels to enter. Even if you cannot afford significant repairs to your roof, a roofing contractor from a place like A&W Custom Carpentry and Roofing may be able to patch different areas to help you make it through fall and winter without any problems.
Similarly, the structural integrity of your roof can become a major problem if winter brings significant frozen precipitation. If you live in an area that only receives modest accumulations of frozen precipitation, disaster may strike if the aberrant blizzard happens. Much like the potential for pests, small structural problems in your roof can become larger if moisture can infiltrate your roof and freeze. The thaw/freeze cycle will quickly widen cracks and lead to roof leaks. Additionally, it does not take much frozen precipitation to accumulate on your roof and potentially lead to a catastrophic roof failure. Snow and/or ice can be heavy and it may take days of direct sunshine and above freezing temperatures to melt.
Think About Insulation
You should consider having insulation added or replaced. Since heat rises, you can lose a significant amount of energy via your roof, which can lead to skyrocketing utility bills. Fiberglass insulation is frequently used in ceilings to reduce heat loss from the roof. Unfortunately, it can be difficult and costly to have new fiberglass insulation installed in a pre-existing home because it will require removal of the ceiling to access the framework. It is generally better to choose insulation that can be installed via small holes in the ceiling, such as pellets that are blown in or foam. If you have the opportunity, choose foam insulation because it has several benefits. In addition to helping insulate the ceiling, the foam expands and can seal cracks. This can reduce the chance of moisture damage and eliminate weaknesses that would otherwise need to be caulked prior to installing insulation.
Consider A Roof Upgrade
Winter can be especially harsh on your roof and it may be time to consider an updated roof. With many options available for materials, it can be difficult to find the right combination of features and stick within your budget. If you typically deal with harsh winters, metal is generally a preferred option. One of the advantages of metal is it is less likely to accumulate snow and ice because of its reflective surface. Even when frozen precipitation accumulates, it tends to melt faster on a metal roof than on other roofing materials. When harsh winters are common, a metal roof is possibly one of the best investments to preserve the integrity of your home.
Other rugged materials include concrete tiles. One problem with concrete is the material is heavy, which means it is not suitable for every structure. The weight of the material also makes it more durable and resistant to windy conditions and damage from hail or sleet pellets. Typically, dense roofing materials also provides some insulation benefits. If you would prefer a heavier material, you need to take into consideration the combined weight of the roof and the potential for frozen precipitation on top of the roof. Although your home may be fine with a heavier roof, the combined weight of the roof and snow/ice might be disastrous.
Ideally, you should set a reminder to have your roof evaluated each year before the cooler weather approaches. Regular evaluations can prevent small issues from turning into a major expense.