Now that spring is here, it is a great time to start thinking about Oklahoma's weather. As many Oklahomans know, tornadoes and damaging stores can happen just about anytime, but the most favorable storm conditions occur from late March through August. Between high winds, hail and torrential rain, storm season can wreak havoc on any home.
Storm Season: Everything You Need to Know
At Yates Roofing and Construction, LLC, we want our customers to be prepared for the Oklahoma storms and know what steps to take after a storm has hit. Below, we have compiled a short list of checkpoints that you can complete in order to prepare your roof for storm season as well as some actionable steps to take in order to assess a storm damaged roof and what to do moving forward.
Before the Storm
While there is no way to avoid the annual onslaught of spring storms in Oklahoma, there are some easy steps you can take to prepare your home and roof. In order to best prepare for storm season, it is imperative that you take good care of your roof and determine if there is anything you can do to better defend your home against severe weather.
Confirm that your roof is in good condition so that when a storm does come through, you will have some peace of mind knowing that your roof is functioning at the highest level. A proper inspection before the storm season peak, will yield any roof issues up front that are more susceptible to weather-related damage. Your roof should be properly inspected for missing or loosened shingles that could lead to leaks as well as any damaged flashing. Flashing is a flat material used to prevent water from entering the seams and cracks of your roof. Flashing should be installed around gutters, doors, windows, and chimneys. If a professional roof inspector finds areas that need to be repaired, it is best to replace even minor damage as soon as possible to avoid further damage down the line.
It is important to make sure that your gutters and downspouts are clear of any debris and are properly fastened to your home. To get the most out of your drainage system, it is best to clean and repair your gutters before and after storm season. Leaves, small branches and shingle granules can accumulate in your gutters over time. Be sure to check and remove any debris to decrease the chance of water overflow and clogging. It is also important to check for leaks. An easy way to check for leaks within your drainage system is to hose your gutters and look for any signs of leaks. If there are leaks, sealing the seams is a great and easy fix. While you are checking your leaks, be sure to check that your downspout is also clear of debris and functioning correctly. You can do this by hosing the top of the downspout and checking that the water is flowing correctly at the bottom.
Be sure to examine the perimeter of your property to spot any vulnerable trees and branches and cut them back. Some of the most common roof damage occurs because of falling tree limbs so it is best to trim branches back to lessen potential storm damage. On windy days, low-hanging branches can scrape against roof shingles removing layers of asphalt. Cutting back broken and dead branches can prevent those limbs from ending atop of your roof during a storm. Do not forget to trim trees back from the sides of your home as well. With heavy winds, branches can rub against the siding of your home.
Check With Your Insurance
Check with your insurance before a storm to see if you have Replacement Cost Coverage. If you do not have this, it is possible that you will only get paid for part of the roof to be replaced and not the whole roof, leaving your out of pocket to be more than you expected. It is also important to check how much your deductible is so you can better plan financially. A good rule of thumb is to review your homeowners insurance each year to explore your coverage needs and consider any policy changes.
After The Storm
Sometimes roof damage is not obvious to spot. The signs of roof damage could be so small that it is easy to overlook. A roof is the most important factor in protecting you and your family from outside elements, so it is important to check for any damage after a storm.
Signs of a Storm Damaged Roof
After a storm has come through, we recommend conducting a visual inspection of your roof safely from ground level. You can check for missing shingles, missing metal fascia, and assess the condition of valleys and outer edges of the roof. Spot damaged shingles by looking for tearing, curling, or cracking. Be sure to check the perimeter of your home as shingles may have completely blown off. For your own safety, we suggest leaving the roof inspection to the experts.
Call Your Roofing Contractor First
After a storm has hit, your first call should be to a certified roofing contractor. They will be able to conduct a full scope roof inspection that will outline any damage (along with detailed photos) and the estimated cost to repair the damaged property. If you file an insurance claim and the adjuster deems that there is no damage, it is a black mark on the individual's record, and it could result in higher premiums. At Yates Roofing and Construction LLC, we conduct free roof inspections and our estimates are complimentary.
Oklahoma storm season can be a stressful time for homeowners so we hope these tips will help you and your family better prepare for storm season. If you would like a professional roof inspection to identify any potential issues, call Yates Roofing and Construction LLC today at (405) 607-0966 or fill out a Contact Us form. If you do experience any storm related roof damage, we are here to help. We offer storm restoration services, roof repair, and new roof install.