Roof leaks are more than just an inconvenience; they can cause damage to the interior structure of your home that is very expensive to fix. No matter what time of year it is, if your roof leaks, you should call a professional to inspect the cause. However, if you make it through all other seasons without roof leaks and then have them during the winter, it might be a simpler fix than you expect.
Winter can cause some strange contractions of roofing materials, and certain elements of winter, like ice or snow, can make roof weaknesses worse. Fortunately, some of the causes of winter roof leaks could be minor, but others may indicate that you need to replace the roof. If you need to replace your roof this winter, consider the benefits of installing a metal roof. The great thing about metal roofs is that you can install them at any time of the year. If you have a leaky roof, look at the reasons you may be in the situation and determine if it is time for a new roof. If so, a metal roof is one of the best options you can choose.
What to Do If Your Roof Is Leaking
When you experience winter roof leaks, there are several steps you should take to determine your course of action. While you may not want to admit that it is time for a new roof, you may need it to protect your most valuable investment. A metal roof will outlast many other materials and provide great protection in the winter months. Follow these steps if your roof is leaking.
- Find the root of the problem. There are signs you can use to determine where your roof is leaking. If the inside of your exterior walls shows damage from leaks, the likely culprit is ice damming around the eaves and gutters. When your walls by the chimney show signs of leaking, it is most likely due to a damaged seal around the flashing where your roof meets the chimney. Other places you may see leaks or staining include ceilings in the interior of the house. This may indicate damage on the surface of the roof, which can be difficult to pinpoint because the water may travel along rafters after it gets through the roofing materials.
Damp ceilings may be caused by poor ventilation in the attic that causes condensation that makes its way from the attic to the ceiling below. The good thing is that this doesn’t indicate a roof leak, but you will need to have your attic ventilation improved. You also want to be aware of internal plumbing that may be leaking and mistaken for a roof leak.
- Decide how bad it is. The unfortunate thing about roof leaks is that they have often caused some interior damage by the time you notice them. The important thing, however, is to act quickly to avoid any further damage. In addition to structural damage to your house, moisture can lead to the growth of mildew and mold, which can be dangerous to you and your family. If you are unsure about the extent of damage that has occurred, it is essential to call in a reputable roofing contractor to assess the damage and help you decide how to proceed.
- Find a solution. Depending on the cause of your roof leak and the damage that has occurred, your roofing contractor can help you decide on the best course of action. Some leaks can be patched, and flashing may be able to be resealed, but if your roof is older and in need of serious repairs, it is often best to replace the entire roof. Fall and winter are ideal seasons to have a metal roof installed, as contractors tend to have a lower workload and often offer better deals during these months.
Questions Homeowners Have About Metal Roofs in the Winter
Many people wonder how well metal roofs perform in the winter. In short, they are great for winter weather. If you have specific questions, though, consider these FAQs.
- Is there a danger of snow and ice sliding off and hurting someone below?
Metal roofs are designed to allow snow and ice to slide off gradually, but there is also a possibility that large sheets of snow and ice will slide off at once. This can damage objects or people in the area below. The good news is, you can have snow guards installed on your roof to prevent this occurrence, and heating cables can be added to create a gradual melt that doesn’t pose a danger.
- Do I need to worry about ice dams and a heavy accumulation of snow on the roof?
Metal roofs are specifically designed to keep the harsh outside elements from causing damage to a house. In the winter, snow and ice slide off a metal roof and prevent the damage. This prevents ice dams from forming, so you don’t have to worry about water backing up and damaging your home as snow melts.
- If my roof is severely damaged, do I have to wait until spring for a new installation?
With most types of roofing material, the answer to this question would be yes, but with metal roofs, you won’t have to wait. Installing a metal roof in the winter creates no more risk to the durability of the roof than installing it at any other time of the year.
Get Your New Roof This Winter
If you are experiencing winter roof leaks, you may need to get a new roof. But that’s not all bad news. If you need a new roof, it’s a great time to consider metal, and metal can transform the character of your home. A stylish, energy-efficient metal roof can transform your home. Not only will this roof improve your property value, but it will save you money on your utility bills and most likely prevent you from ever having to install a roof again.