Of all the common hazards your home or commercial property faces, water damage is widely considered to be one of the most costly. A leaky roof can destroy your personal belongings, stain your walls and ceilings and may lead to major structural issues if left unresolved. According to research from Roost, a smart home technology company, more than 37% of U.S homeowners have suffered losses as a direct result of water damage. What’s more, close to 14,000 consumers experience a water emergency at home or work each day. While many of these incidents are a direct result of flooding or poor groundwater management, the damage caused by unhealthy roofs cannot be understated.
When it comes to protecting your home and personal items from water-related damages, a good offense is the best defense. Scheduling annual roof inspections can help you locate weaknesses in your roof’s decking, identify missing shingles, correct misaligned gutters and a whole lot more. Eliminating these flaws is not only important for combating water damage, it’s also crucial for the overall health and longevity of your roof. The more proactive you are about your roof’s condition, the longer it will last. And while it’s true every roof has a limited lifespan, neglecting their upkeep only increases the chances of emergency situations and early replacements. To help you get the most bang for your buck, let’s take a close look at how a well-maintained roof protects your home from water damage.
1. Rainwater management
Massachusetts is known for its sporadic weather – sudden thunderstorms and early snowfall are relatively common, which puts homeowners and commercial property managers at a bit of a disadvantage. Waiting too long to replace missing shingles or damaged flashing can lead to severe flooding if an intense storm rolls through, which is why you should always call in a licensed roofing contractor if you think there may be an issue. Most regions of the state experience rainfall 120 days out of the year, according to U.S. climate data, so there’s no telling when a heavy downpour could strike.
While pitched and flat roofs often have different rainwater management systems, both rely on an unbroken seal to ward off costly water-related damages. For example, residential homes typically feature shingled roofs with a steeper incline and are outfitted with gutters to help channel rainwater away from the foundation. However, a loose or missing shingle will allow water to seep in through the cracks, which can rot out your roof’s wooden frame and introduce a lot of excess moisture into your attic. Additionally, poor drainage can lead to flooding in the lower levels of your household during microbursts and tropical storms.
1. Hurricane defense
The Atlantic hurricane season (which stretches from June 1st to November 30th)
is already well underway, and while a major storm hasn’t made landfall quite yet, it’s only a matter of time. The 2019 season is shaping up to be less active than last year, but the Weather Company predicts it will be slightly above average in terms of frequency and severity, with a total of 14 named storms and seven hurricanes slated for the next few months. While only three of these hurricanes are expected to reach category 3 or stronger, even a minor storm poses a threat to your home and personal property.
Unlike a typical rainstorm, hurricanes can reach wind speeds of up to 150 mph and dump more than 20 inches of rain in a short period of time, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. These intense weather conditions can not only flood your basement or attic, they can also cause major damage to your roof’s surface and substructure. Hurricanes can send loose shingles flying, overwhelm your gutters and may even crack your roof’s decking, so it’s important to resolve any structural weaknesses as soon as possible. In the most basic sense, hurricanes turn minor flaws into major problems almost overnight. That said, a well-maintained roof can help ensure water cannot penetrate your home’s outer defenses or seep into your basement through the foundation.
3. Mold prevention
Believe it or not, mold is one of the most dangerous consequences of a leaky roof, as it can pose a serious risk to you and your family’s health. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, nearly half of all structures have damp conditions that can encourage the spread of mold and bacteria, leading to severe allergic reactions, asthma and even infectious diseases. In most cases, mold growth is caused by water leaks, flooding and high humidity, all of which can stem from prolonged issues with your roof or water management system. For example, a cracked shingle can allow water to seep into the gaps between your home’s frame and drywall, making it difficult to spot the early warning signs. Once the mold has spread, it can cost thousands to have it professionally removed and may force you to throw away many of your prized possession.
First and foremost, a healthy roof helps combat mold by keeping the inside of your home dry. Since this type of growth needs damp conditions to flourish, you can make significant headway by keeping your roof sealed and free from minor blemishes. Of course, this can be difficult considering all the natural hazards your roof must contend with, from falling tree branches to foraging critters. Even a small opening in your roof’s defenses can produce the perfect conditions for mold to incubate, so it’s crucial to stay on top of its upkeep all year round.
If you’re concerned about your roof’s condition, don’t hesitate to reach out for an expert opinion. At Flynn Roofing, we’ve helped families and commercial property owners throughout Eastern Massachusetts identify and correct their roof’s issues, many of which could have led to costly water-related damages over time. To learn how we can support your roof’s long-term health, reach out to Flynn Roofing today!
Did you find this post helpful? Feel free to contact us for an estimate or read more below:
- TOP 10 PREVENTATIVE MAINTENANCE TIPS FOR SAFEGUARDING YOUR ROOF
- A ROOFER’S GUIDE TO SEASONAL RISKS: SUMMER
- 5 REASONS FALL IS THE BEST TIME FOR ROOFING WORK