Cold weather can put a massive strain on your roof. Whether it's from moisture accumulation, snow, or freezing temperatures, the toll winter can take on your roof can have widespread consequences. It's important to evaluate your roof before the winter rolls around, and ensure that it's ready to take on any challenges it may present.
What Cold Weather Does to Your Roof
Whether you’re a commercial or a residential property owner, Winter has the same sapping effect on the health of your roof. Extreme changes in temperature put constant back-and-forth pressure on a building’s infrastructure, and, if left unattended, can quickly turn a freshly minted roof into a withered shell long before its time. Thermal expansion and retraction mean that your roof will bend or crack in small areas over time -- a phenomenon known as “thermal shock,” which can quickly lead to even worse problems. In the colder months, snow or rain can seep into the roof itself, and then freeze, melt, and refreeze again. More than that: the introduction of moisture to the interior of your roof will expose it to the growth of mold and other fungus.
Will Winter Wreck my Roof?
It doesn’t have to! The problems we’re discussing are serious, but so are our local roofing experts. Most roofs on American homes today are designed with time-tested methods and meant to last. Issues like severe thermal shock and fungal infestation occur when we neglect our roofs; with regular, low-intensity maintenance, homeowners can protect their property from cold weather and structural damages. Here are just a few of the many ways you can do this:
Insulate the attic. Insulating your attic is a classic example of addressing two problems at once. Proper insulation can both help lower monthly energy costs, and help protect your roof’s structural integrity. By properly insulating the attic-space of your home, you can create a second trapping point for excess heat, ensuring the heat that rises from the lower floors isn’t lost. Furthermore, it's the shifts between temperature extremes that make roofs susceptible to thermal shock and further damages. By insulating your attic, you can keep your roof within a narrower range of temperatures, making it less susceptible to wear-and-tear.
Keep your roof free of debris.Before the snow falls, it’s important to do what you can to make sure your roof and gutters are free of loose debris like tree branches and dead leaves. Not only does the weight of added snow create a potential hazard, but once it melts away, the largely organic debris on a roof become sites for fungal growth. Otherwise harmless twigs and dead acorns decompose and immediately provide potential points of entry for spores or mold. The point: before moisture makes it three times as heavy, clean off any material from your roof.
Keep your downspouts cleared.
The most important system your roof has for dealing with the constant assault of rain and melting snow is your gutter system. One of the most important, yet most vulnerable parts of your gutter system are your downspouts. Clogging due to icie and other material build-up is a constant concern for every homeowner as the weather starts to turn. The simplest method for thoroughly unblocking your spout is to raise a ladder and carefully detach the downspout from the gutter. Most downspouts have a very lightweight construction and, while unwieldy, can be managed with the help of an alert helper. Once you have the piece in hand and detached from the gutter, give it a firm shake. You would be surprised how much solid debris can be cleared out this way. More serious blockages, of course, may require the attention of a maintenance or contracting professional.
In short: smart, proper, seasonal attention to your roof can help you preserve its value and protect your home for years to come. Builders & Remodelers has been in business for over 60 years, completing tens of thousands of projects. Our easy financing program means no money down, no payments and no interest until 2022, while our wide range of products ensures we have the options you’re looking for. From roof installation and replacement, to maintenance and inspections, Builders and Remodelers covers every aspect of your roofing needs. Contact us today for a free consultation to get started.