When a severe storm hits, it can leave your home in disarray—and your roof is often the first casualty. If a storm has damaged your roof, it’s essential to take action immediately to ensure the safety of your family and your home. It’s also important to know what steps to take to get your roof repaired or replaced as quickly and efficiently as possible.
What Is Considered a Roofing Emergency?
Some situations warrant immediate attention from a roofing professional. They include:
A Leak in Your Roof
If you leak in your roof, it’s essential to get it fixed as soon as possible. A leak can lead to water damage and mold growth, so it’s best to take care of it quickly.
A Sagging Roof
A sagging roof is a sign of structural damage and should be inspected by a professional immediately. Do not attempt to repair a sagging roof on your own, as this could be dangerous.
Missing or Damaged Shingles
When shingles are missing or damaged, it leaves your roof vulnerable to water damage. If you have missing or damaged shingles, contact professional roofing immediately.
Steps to Take After Your Roof Suffers Storm Damage
1. Call a Professional Roofing Contractor
A qualified roofing contractor will be able to assess the damage and give you an estimate for repairs or replacement. It’s essential to get multiple estimates to ensure that you’re getting the best possible price for the work that needs to be done.
Types of damage that a roofing contractor will look for include:
- Missing or damaged shingles
- Damaged flashing
- Leaking roofs
- Structural damage
2. File an Insurance Claim
Getting home insurance for your property is very important, especially if you live in an area prone to bad weather. Your insurance policy will outline what type of damage is covered and what you need to do to file a claim. Also, the company will be able to tell you how to file a claim. And provide you with a list of approved contractors that can help with the repairs.
In case a storm damages your roof, contact the insurance company. Some companies will require an inspection before approving the repairs. When you have your roof repaired, be sure to keep all receipts and records of the work that was done in case you need to file another claim.
3. Schedule a Roof Inspection
Once you’ve contacted your insurance company, the next step is to schedule a roof inspection. It will help assess the damage and determine what needs to be repaired or replaced. A certified roofing inspector will be able to identify any problem areas and make recommendations for repairs. Also, be sure to get an estimate from the roofing inspector for the cost of repairs. It will be helpful when filing your insurance claim.
4. Make Temporary Repairs
Once the inspection is complete, you may need to repair your roof to prevent further damage temporarily. It could involve tarping the roof or making other minor repairs. Be sure to keep all receipts for any materials you purchase to get reimbursed by your insurance company.
5. Begin Permanent Repairs
Permanent repairs could involve repairing damaged shingles or replacing the entire roof. If your roof needs to be replaced, your insurance company will likely give you a choice of replacement materials. Be sure to get an estimate for the cost of repairs before making any decisions.
It is also essential to remember that roof repairs can be disruptive and noisy. If you have small children or pets, you may want to make arrangements for them to stay elsewhere while the repairs are being done.
6. Inspect Your Home for Other Damage
There could be other damage to your home that is not immediately evident. Be sure to check for water damage in the attic or ceilings and any cracks in the foundation. If you find any damage, document it and contact your insurance company.
How to Prevent Future Damage
Once your roof has been repaired or replaced, there are some things you can do to prevent future damage. This includes:
Making Sure that Trees and Shrubs are Trimmed Away From the House
The roots of trees and shrubs can damage the foundation of your house and the shingles on your roof. Be sure to trim any trees or shrubs close to your home to prevent damage.
Regularly Inspecting Your Roof
It’s a good idea to inspect your roof regularly, especially after a storm. Be sure to look for any missing or damaged shingles and any other signs of damage. When in doubt, it’s always best to contact a certified roofing inspector.
Keeping Your Gutters Clean
Gutters full of debris can cause water to back up and damage your roof. Also, the weight of the trash can damage the gutters themselves. Be sure to clean your gutters regularly to prevent this type of damage.
Making Sure That Your Attic is Properly Ventilated
An attic that is not ventilated correctly can lead to moisture build-up, damaging the roof. Check the vents in your attic and ensure they are not blocked.
Checking for Ice Dams
Ice dams can form when heat escapes from the house and melts the snow on the roof. The melting snow can then refreeze, forming a dam that prevents water from draining correctly. It can lead to water damage and leaks.
If you live in an area where ice dams are a problem, take steps to prevent them. It could involve installing heat tape or ensuring that your attic is adequately insulated.
To Sum It Up
The aftermath of a storm can leave homeowners feeling overwhelmed. It is essential to take the necessary steps highlighted in this column to assess the damage and begin repairs as soon as possible. Just make sure you find a roofing contractor who can help you navigate the insurance claim process and ensure that your home is restored to its previous state, if not better.