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Safe Winter Roofing Practices

Originally published on medium.com

The winter season is a time of stress for many homeowners. Watching ice and snow build up on the driveway is bad enough but seeing all that snow piled up on the roof is even worse. The weight of all that winter weather can take a toll on the roof over your head, so it is essential to make sure the structure is sound before the first snowflakes begin to fall.

Assessing the structural integrity of your roof is best done by a professional, but there are some things you can do to check things out. Here are five smart steps you can take to make sure your roof is winter safe before the winter season arrives.

  1. Do a visual inspection. Start by walking the perimeter of your house, looking for obvious problems like loose and missing shingles as you go. Take note of any potential issues and file them away for the professional roof inspection.
  2. Check the attic. Some roof problems are visible from the outside, but others require an inside inspection. Head up to the attic to look for wet spots, drips, leaks and other signs of roof damage.
  3. Climb on the roof — if you can do it safely. Not everyone is comfortable climbing a ladder, so do not put yourself at risk to check the roof. But if you are comfortable on the ladder, taking a close-up look can tell you a lot.
  4. Clean out your gutters. While you are up on that ladder, take a look at your gutters. Are they clean and clear, or are they filled with fallen leaves and other debris? Cleaning your gutters now is the best way to prevent ice dams from forming, protecting your roof and giving you extra peace of mind.
  5. Schedule a professional inspection. The last, and most important, step in protecting your roof is to schedule an annual inspection. Having your roof inspected by a professional is essential, and you will be glad you took this step when the ice and snow start to accumulate.

Your roof has an important job to do, and sometimes you need to help it along. If you cannot remember the last time you took a close look at your roof, the chances are that inspection is long overdue. Taking a few simple steps now can give you peace of mind and protect your home even when winter does its worst.

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