How to Prepare Your Roof for Winter

If you don’t take the proper measures to winterize your roof, you could be in trouble once the temperatures drop and the snow starts to fall.  Damage from ice dams, wind, and water can lead to costly repairs and potentially costlier business interruption.

To prevent downtime and potential roofing expenses, be sure to follow these five winterization steps this fall.

1. Remove Debris & Clean Gutters

The easiest preventative maintenance you can do not just in the fall, but in the spring and summer too, is to make sure that it’s free of leaves, twigs and other debris. If enough accumulates, it could prevent water from properly draining away from your building. If you forget to clean your gutters throughout the year, be sure to do it before winter, as heavily accumulated debris will cause pooling water, and eventually, ice dams. 

2. Take Care of Your Trees

Overhanging limbs can easily scratch your roof’s surface, which will lead to premature wear of the roof’s top surface layer.  Additionally, trees will drop leaves and twigs on your roof and cause clogs in your gutter system. 

Noting this, any good commercial roof winterization plan should include trimming back trees and removing any dying or dead trees from around the property. Dead or decaying trees have a weakened root system and increase the likelihood that they’ll fall during a storm, potentially leading to property damage.

3. Schedule a Roof Inspection

While there are some roof winterization tasks that you or your landscaping company can handle, it’s always best to leave roof inspections to roofing professionals.

Fall is an ideal time to schedule roof inspections, as it helps properly address issues before the freezing weather sets in. Think of a roof inspection similar to you would preventative maintenance for your car in that it can help catch small problems before they become large, costly ones. In many cases, regular professional roof inspections are even required to maintain the roof’s warranty.

4. Don’t Put Off Repairs

Following a roof inspection, you’ll likely be presented with a thorough report that assesses the overall condition of the roof as well as anything that needs immediate attention. If, after your inspection, repairs are needed, do not put them off.  Doing so could lead to damage during the winter months that isn’t easy to fix. Many times, it can be difficult to schedule repairs in the winter because of the harsh weather conditions. 

Additionally, similar to not scheduling inspections, putting off required repairs as suggested by your roofing company could also potentially void your roof’s warranty. 

5. Check Your Insulation

Insulation helps keep your property warm and comfortable while reducing heat escape and energy costs. When you hire a professional to conduct a roof inspection, it’s worth it to also have your property’s insulation checked out. Aging or inadequate insulation can lead to major inefficiencies within a property.

Poor insulation can also help increase the chances of ice dam formation during the winter months. Ice dams form when snow or water runoff from the roof re-freezes before it can adequately drain. These dams can continue to build up and grow, obstructing snow melt from properly draining. The water eventually has to go somewhere, and if ice dams get too big, the water will often seep through the roof and into the property. 

It’s also important to note that many people assume that ice dams are only common on residential roofs that have steeper slopes. However, keep in mind that even commercial flat roofs have a moderate slope to them as well. Hence, ice dams on flat roofs are a real possibility.

Winterize Your Roof With Help From Our Team

Knowing how to prepare your roof for the winter will only help you save money down the road. While some maintenance tasks are easy to perform on your own, you should always schedule roofing inspections and repairs with an experienced roofing company. 

If you have a commercial flat roof, turn to Summit Commercial Roofing for inspections, repairs, and replacements. We’ve specialized in commercial flat roofing since our founding over 50 years ago, and proudly help business owners throughout the Southeast Michigan area. Contact us today to learn more about commercial roof winterization or to request a free inspection.

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Summit Commercial Roofing is proud to be an industry leader in commercial flat roofing replacement, repairs, maintenance and installations. Courtesy, integrity, and transparency are a big part of everything that we do. Are you ready to see why we’re one of the best commercial roofing companies in Southeast Michigan? Call (734) 564-0371 or fill out our online form today to request a quote on our commercial roofing services.

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