Winter Roofing: Here’s What You Need to Do to Protect Your Home

The last thing you want is a problem with your roof during the winter. It's cold, windy, and raining a lot of the time. During the winter, the most common roof problems are usually damaged flashings, cracked roof tiles, missing slates, and blocked gutters.

The best time to prepare your roof for the winter would be the summer or the autumn. However, if you have a problem with your roof right now, don't despair. A roof repair needs to be addressed as quickly as possible, even during the winter.

If your roof has developed a leak or you haven't carried out any roof maintenance for a long while, I have written a few tips below to help you get through the winter.

1. Winter roof maintenance

Every homeowner should inspect their roof and gutters for any signs of damage. If you can see icicles forming or ice dams, you need to pay careful attention. Gutters will fill up with water and turn to ice. The weight of the ice in the gutters can cause the gutters to fall away from your home. The last thing you need is an expensive gutter repair bill.

If your gutters and downspouts are clogged with moss and twigs, then they can't do their job of channelling waterway from your home. You must make sure your gutters and downspouts are clear of debris, ice, or snow. If your gutters are full of ice, you could use a hammer and chisel to break up the ice and remove it. If you have a lot of snow on your roof, you could use a roof rake to clear the snow off your roof.

2. Flashing & Chimney Repairs

A high percentage of roof leaks are found to be around the chimney or roof windows. Have a look at the flashing around the base of the chimney stack. Keep a lookout for cracks or small holes in the flashing. If you can't see any flashing at all around the base of the chimney, then there's a good chance the wind has ripped it off. If you see any damage to the flashing or you have missing flashing, it will allow rainwater into your home.

A professional roofer would notice damaged flashing and have it repaired in no time.

3. Tile & Slate Repair

If your roof has missing slates or damaged tiles, it's of the utmost importance that you get it repaired right away. It's only a matter of time before a roof with damaged or missing roof tiles begins to leak. You would be amazed at how much damage a cracked or missing roof tile can cause. Rainwater will find its way into your attic and cause damp, wood rot and structural damage to your roof. If you are not confident enough to repair your roof, you must hire a professional roofer.

4. Gutter repairs

The winter is the most important time of year to make sure your gutters are in good working order. The guttering around your home is essential in keeping your roof dry during the winter. If your gutters are full of debris, have leaking joints, or the downspouts are blocked, it can cause water damage to your property.

As long as it's not raining, gutters can be installed or replaced during the winter. It's common to see ageing gutters leaking at the joints. Gutter joints have a rubber seal between them to keep them watertight. But, over time, the rubber seal begins to disintegrate, causing the joint to leak.

The easiest way to repair a leaking gutter joint is to use a silicone sealant. If the gutter has a small hole in it, it may be possible to patch the hole with roofing cement. If the hole is too big to repair, then the only other option is to replace that section of guttering.

5. Roof replacement

It's safe to say that the majority of roofs can be replaced during the winter. Whether you have a tiled, slate, metal, or wood roof, the winter months shouldn't be an obstacle for a roof replacement. We inevitably get more rain, hail, and snow during the winter months. Professional roofing companies have devised ways to continue to work in bad weather.

Flat roofs and rubber roofs are not suitable for replacement during the winter. The adhesives that are used in flat roofs have to be applied in warmer temperatures. A flat roof installed during the winter would not be compliant with the adhesive manufacturer's guidelines. A flat roof laid in the winter is likely to have problems with leaks in the future.

Don't Wait Until Spring!

Whether you need a quote for a roof repair, gutter repair, or a roof replacement, I recommend you click here and enter your details into my contact form.

Once you have entered your details into my contact form, you will get access to some of the best roofers in your area.

(Not to mention the best prices)

Good Luck!

Jim Ardale – Roof Advisor

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