Dallas Metroplex residents are no stranger to harsh summer and winter conditions; it leaves many homeowners wondering “should I winterize my roof?” Partial or complete roof collapses under conditions such as snow or ice are more common in North Texas that what you would think but completely preventable. Freezing rain, sleet, freezing high winds, snow and ice are all common occurrences in the North Texas area during November-March timeframe but “winterizing your roof” should occur in the fall months prior to the cold season. Precautionary steps should be taken by contacting your roofer for an inspection, a complete inspection will survey the structural deck, flashing, surfacing, membrane, insulation and gutter system. There are plenty of North Texas homeowners that are do-it-yourselfers but please leave it to the professionals. Attempting to walk on a roof can be dangerous, especially residential homes that are steep and typically not flat.
Great tips to Winterize my Roof
- Make necessary repairs-Winter weather can exploit the weaknesses in your roof system. Your roofer will check for loose shingles, stains, mold, leaks and rotting wood. Ice in cracks can expand and create leaks within the home, replacing old, wrinkled, cracked caulking can help prevent the elements from damaging your home’s interior. Your roofer will check areas where shingle meets flashing, plumbing, antenna attachments and brick to ensure sealants are still suitable for protecting your home from water.
- Clean your roof and gutter system– Moss and algae on your roof can expand in cold weather and reveal vulnerable roofing material to the elements, algae can grow below and above the roof shingles. Gutters and downspouts should be cleared of debris before the first freezing rain or snow. Your roofer can run a bit of water through a garden hose to ensure the gutter system is still carry’s water away from your home’s foundation. Investing in gutter guards will prevent the need for cleaning out gutters but can also prevent the formation of ice dams caused by debris in gutters.
- Make sure critters aren’t entering your home-Your roofer knows how to spot signs of a pest invasion within your roofing system. Part of winterizing your roof with include the removal of unwanted squirrels, raccoons, birds, and roof rats. It’s common for rodents to look for a warm place to nest during the harsh cold weather but they can leave poor air ventilation and rot from their entrances and exits into your home’s roof.
- Proper Attic Insulation– Your roofer can determine if your attic has proper ventilation and insulation. West Construction Group can add fiberglass foam to winterize your attic space. Properly insulating your attic can effectively lower energy bills while retaining warmth during the winter months. Accurate insulation of the attic can give the one of the biggest ROI to homeowners according to Remodeling Magazine. Having the correct ventilation can also prevent ice dams from forming. Ice dams form when there is a lack of uniform temperature on the roof and consists of ice and snow buildup on the eaves and slopes of your home that prevent effective water run off causing leaks within the interior of the house. Taking the time to prevent ice dams is an easier and cheaper solution that mitigation of the ice dam and repair of interior.
At West Construction Group we are happy to assist our customers in the weatherproofing of windows. Double pane or triple paned windows that are fogged are no longer properly insulating the home and has lost between 60%-70% of its insulation. Replacing the glass can improve the energy efficacy of the home and decrease the amount of cold drafts.
“I winterize my roof and felt it was a cheap and effective way of greatly reducing my energy bill and allowed me to remove the dangerous space heaters within my home”
-Don, West Construction Group Customer
Schedule a professional roof inspection if you haven’t had one this year. Remember, preventive maintenance in the key to your home’s longevity.