When hurricane season rolls around, it’s a good idea to make sure that your roof can hold up to all the wind and water that these storms can throw. Many roofs aren’t ready for such abuse, and this is especially true for older homes. There are, however, things you can do to alleviate potential problems.
Have Your Roof Inspected
A comprehensive roof inspection can be done by a professional, or you can do it yourself if you know what to look for. To get a through examination, it’s best to actually go up on the roof. Curled or loose shingles are a sign that you have potential problems. You should also make sure that your roof deck is nailed to your rafters rather than stapled since stapled roofs are more likely to suffer wind damage. The nails should be roughly four inches apart on the edges.
If it’s possible, you should also inspect your roof from the inside by way of an attic or a crawl space. From this perspective, you can look for shafts of light or protruding nails, which can indicate an improperly sealed deck or gaps that can let the rain inside.
Some Simple Fixes
If you discover missing or mis-hammered nails, you can easily hammer them back into place. You should also consider sealing your shingles with roofing cement. Another solution is to apply construction adhesive to your rafters or trusses where they meet your roof deck. If you aren’t confident in your abilities or are afraid of heights, you can hire a professional to do these things for you.
Another solution that a professional can offer you is the installation of metal clips, which are usually found on newer homes. These clips can connect your roof to your walls from the inside, and they offer an extra layer of protection against high winds. They can, however, be difficult to retrofit onto older homes, but they are inexpensive.
If you have a steep gable roof, then you should take a look at installing wooden braces on the edges of your rafters. These will add stability to your roof and mitigate any wind damage, which this variety of roof is particularly susceptible to in a hurricane. If you know a hurricane is approaching your area, you should also seal the vents of the ends of your gable roof, which will prevent pressure buildup.