In a place like Australia, which is subject to climate change and extreme weather conditions, including storms, droughts, cyclones, heat waves, rainfalls, frosts, and so on, preparing your home for any adversity is quite essential, especially when you know that bad weather is just around the corner.
As such, the roof is one place you cannot overlook when you’re running the repair and improvement of your home.
Being the most crucial part of the whole property, a broken or damaged roof can create a lot of problems for you and your family. Even normal wear and tear can prove to be highly risky in a storm or any other major event.
To make sure that your roof is ready for any type of weather, you need to follow certain precautionary measures. Read on to know what they are.
Here’s what you need to do to get your roof ready for any weather:
1. Carry out an inspection
A timely inspection is pretty important if you want to keep your roof intact for long. In fact, you must check your roof at least once a year and also before and after any major events such as hurricanes and hailstorms.
A routine check will highlight most, if not all, of the issues that may turn severe.
Here’s what to look for during the process:
- missing or damaged tiles.
- broken, cracked, or loose tiles.
- the condition of the roof sheeting.
- roof space.
- flat roof for water leaks.
- water-proofing insulation membrane.
- any wear and tear.
- unwanted junk.
You might also take help from a roofing professional for a thorough inspection and repair should you not have the right tools and skills.
Just make sure to address and fix any signs of damage and wear and tear well before the stormy season appears.
2. Remove the dirt and debris.
Dirt and debris accumulate on the roof over time and can block and clog the gutters and drainage channels. If left to rot for too long, it can catch moisture, fungus, and mould, all the while inviting a number of diseases into your home.
The same goes for unwanted junk and waste items lying around on the roof. Apart from becoming a host to dirt, diseases, and insects like termites, they can fly here and there during a storm or heavy winds, causing a lot of damage and mishaps.
In order to avoid any tragedy, it is important to get rid of unwanted materials from your roof or at least tie them down in a safe spot or corner.
3. Clean gutters, drains, and downpipes.
Look for any blockages or clogging in the gutters and drain pipes, as it can prevent the water from draining off your roof and eventually force it down to the tiles and leak into your home.
Double-check them for any gaps, breaks, dents, and uneven sections, as it can also prevent the water from flowing down the downspouts. And don’t forget to ensure that the brackets holding the gutters and drainpipes are properly attached while you are at it.
You might also want to fix any flat areas on the roof that can result in standing water.
Remember, the idea is to keep the water flowing away from your roof and property without any hindrance.
4. Trim trees and branches that could fall on the roof.
Another factor that can compromise or damage the roof is dead trees and overhanging branches that have the potential to fall over time.
Any branch that is touching or close enough to touch the roof or walls, even if it does not fall, can severely damage the roof or even displace the tiles by just swaying around in the air.
So make sure to trim the trees from time to time.
But before you do that, it is recommended to check with your local council if any approval is needed to
You might also call a qualified arborist to inspect your trees every 2-3 years to determine if any preventive measures are needed.
Waterproofing is an essential element of weatherproof roofing. Even the smallest of leaks and defects can jeopardise the entire roof.
In order to keep your roof free from any water leaks, it is important that all the cracks, crevices, and holes on the roof are properly filled and sealed.
Check for any cracks on the ridges and tiles as well to prevent any leakage at a later time.
Also, make sure that the flashing does not have any cracks or holes in it and is not catching any rust.
If there’s any light shining through the roof, it may be a sign of a damaged waterproofing insulation membrane. So, have that sorted out in advance?
6. Ensure roof tile maintenance
Another thing you don’t want to miss when repairing your roof is the roof tiles. Although quite durable, i.e. meant to last for 30-60 years, they still require regular maintenance for optimum performance.
This includes replacing chipped, cracked, or broken tiles, as they can compromise the roof’s ability to protect your home from water and sun.
If algae, mildew, or moss is growing around the tiles, make sure to have it removed or treated as well.
Flashing details such as vents, plumbing stacks, skylights, solar panels, and headwalls should also be checked for damage during the initial inspection. If the quality of flashing details is hampered, then make sure to replace it as soon as possible.
Remember, replacing broken tiles, removing algae and the like, and fixing damaged flashing details are all crucial steps in maintaining the aesthetic and protective qualities of roof tiles for years to come.
7. Consult a professional roofing contractor.
Considering the risk of falling and damaging the tiles while walking and working on the roof, it is recommended that only trained and insured professionals roofing contractor walk on your tile roof with proper fall protection in place.
So check with multiple contractors before you hire one. You may also check with your neighbours and colleagues to see if they know any good contractors around.
Just ensure that the contractor has substantial experience with roof maintenance and a valid licence and insurance coverage.
In addition, you might also want to compare the quotations and prices of multiple contractors to get the best offer.
While there are no guarantees about when the weather’s going to deteriorate, you can always be on the safer side by taking certain roofing measures.
Apart from following these tips for roof maintenance, you should always stay informed about the weather predictions in your area. If the warnings are dire, consider making an emergency plan, including an emergency kit with all the essential items you may need in the absence of power and regular transportation.
Remember, the only way to protect your house and loved ones during harsh weather is by being proactive. So, don’t skip or neglect any of the factors mentioned above, as one small mistake can cost you fortunes at the end of the day.