Anybody who lives near the coast of the Atlantic Ocean or the Gulf of Mexico knows the danger that hurricanes pose. The gale-force winds that come with some of the stronger storms can lift you off the ground and if you aren’t careful, can cause serious bodily harm.
Naturally, storms don’t discriminate; they’ll inflict damage on anyone and anything in their path. That includes your house, and most directly, that includes your roof.
But how, exactly, do hurricanes and tropical storms damage your roof, and therefore, what should you be prepared for if one heads your way?
Here are three of the most common forms of damage to your roof that hurricanes can cause.
This is perhaps the most obvious form of hurricane damage (after all, a surplus of water falling from the sky could lead to water leaking into your house, right?) although it can sometimes happen in ways you may not have thought of. Strong gusts of wind can blow a tree down, which could land on your roof and become the catalyst for water to seep through. Or the wind could even rip parts of your roof right off if it’s not sturdy enough.
How to prevent it: with hurricane season officially underway, it’s recommended to have your roof inspected as soon as possible if you haven’t already done so- and in the future, try to have your roof inspected in the late winter or early spring. This will provide plenty of time to ensure that any potential “weak spots” on your roof are addressed beforehand.
Naturally, clogged gutters are something that every homeowner wants to avoid, and hurricanes are certainly one way to cause them. With all different sorts of debris flying every which way at speeds well over a mile a minute, some objects are simply bound to come to rest in your gutters and stop them up. Between tree branches, leaves, or even stray garbage in the area can find their way into your gutters and block them, which in turn could exacerbate the water damage problem the hurricane itself may already cause.
How to prevent it: well, you can’t completely. But if you simply clean out your gutters before a hurricane strikes, you drastically reduce the likelihood of them clogging during the storm.
Damaged or destroyed shingles or tiles
Hurricane-force winds can damage an old roof beyond the point of repair, or even dislodge it from its moorings completely and carry it away. More likely than the doomsday scenario of simply destroying your entire roof, though, is the possibility that the winds simply destroy a couple of individual shingles or tiles. If your roof is old and worn enough, winds don’t even have to reach hurricane strength to cause damages.
How to prevent it: as is recommended to prevent roof leaks, we advise having your roof inspected as soon as possible to ensure that any potential weak spots are taken care of before a hurricane hits.