Water damage accounts for 34% of all domestic home property claim costs according to Chubb Insurance Australia Limited and is the largest type of claim cost wise. Blocked gutters were found to be one of the leading causes of water damage.
Despite the average water damage claim nearly doubling over 2014-2018, only 19% of people believe water damage to be the most concerning threat to their home. As a homeowner, you can prepare your roof for winter and prevent major water damage from affecting your home.
Before the wet weather arrives, follow these five easy steps to winter-proof your roof.
1. Clean Your Gutters
While the autumn leaves on the ground might be a pretty sight, they’re bad news for your gutters. Leaves and other debris can accumulate in your gutters and cause blockages and overflowing water. Water running down your exterior walls can cause water damage and degrades your home’s structural integrity.
The solution? Clean your gutters!
After the majority of leaves have fallen, get out your ladder from the shed and climb on up to remove all the debris in your gutters. Keep an eye out for animal infestations such as bird and bee nests. For your safety, consider calling on a pest control specialist to remove the infestation too.
Not everyone feels safe climbing up on a ladder and doing manual work – that’s where hiring a gutter cleaner can come in handy. They have the experience and tools to ensure your gutters are clean and ready to take on the winter rain in no time.
Sick of having to clean your gutters in the first place? Install some gutter guards that prevent debris from getting in your gutters but don’t impact their performance.
2. Trim the Trees Near Your Roof
Overhanging branches around your home will also contribute to an accumulation of debris in your gutters. They run the risk of damaging your roof if they break off during intense storms too.
Your best course of action is to give your trees a trim to prevent them from falling into your gutters in the first place. A lot of animals like to take up home in the trees too. Long branches overhanging your home gives them an easy access point to your home’s roof space to make a new home there.
3. Have a Roof Inspection
Autumn is the perfect time to have a roofer come and assess the condition of your roof. A professional roofer will be able to differentiate between normal signs of roof wear and tear and what will need to be replaced to prepare your roof for winter.
A roof inspection will take a look at your whole roof and check if your:
- Flashings are bent, rusted or damaged
- Shingles or tiles are missing or damaged
- Valleys are in good condition or need cleaning
- Sealant is sufficient and isn’t cracked
- Roof has any other signs of damage
While you could get up on the roof and inspect it yourself, it’s not recommended. A professional roofer will have all the appropriate safety equipment to ensure they are safe while they inspect your roof.
4. Professional Roof Repairs and Replacements
No one likes rainwater dripping into their home and having to get emergency winter roof repairs. If during your roof inspection some problems are revealed, now is the time to repair them before the winter weather hits so this doesn’t happen to you.
Whether they need to simply replace some tiles and flashing or there are more essential roofing repairs that need to be done, it’s important you get this done now to prepare your roof for winter. A specialist roofer will also be able to help give you some winter roof maintenance tips specific to your home.
5. Check Your Roof Space Insulation
You lose 25-35% of your home’s heat through the ceiling without insulation. Damaged roofs with leaks will only increase this too. Minimising this loss helps you to save on energy for heating your home during the cold winter season.
You can prevent major heat loss from your home by inspecting the insulation in your roof before the cold weather hits.
If you’re in an older home, it might be time to update your insulation to ensure you aren’t wasting energy to heat your home, only for so much of it to escape.
Is your roof ready for winter? Jim’s Roofing has expert roofers who can help prepare your roof for winter to help protect your home from the elements. Call us for an expert roof inspection today!