How to Check Your Home’s Roof, Siding, and Gutters for Storm Damage

How to Check Your Home's Roof, Siding, and Gutters for Storm DamageStorms are inevitable. Rain, wind, hail, snow — East Coast homes are bound to face it all. In fact, homeowners can become so used to a variety of weather conditions that they forget storms can have an effect on their home’s exterior. When a storm passes, make a mental note to evaluate your property for signs of damage. Trust us, catching issues directly after they arise will save you a headache later.

Your roof, siding, and gutters all play an integral role in the protection of your home. Therefore, careful assessment and repair helps preserve the life of your home. As a home exterior contractor for over 30 years, we at American Home Contractors know what to look for when walking your property. Here are the signs that your home could have damage and the proper steps to take if it does.

Roof

The greatest protection your home has lies over your head. Your roof provides protection from all forms of weather and harmful elements. Therefore, you should take as great of care of your roof as it takes of you. Storms hit your roof the hardest, so this area of your home will require an extremely thorough examination.

What to look for:

Some roof damage is noticeable from the ground, but for the best assessment you will want to climb directly onto the roof. First, walk your property and look for raised or displaced shingles. This is a clear sign your roof needs repaired. Once you climb onto your rooftop, look for cracks, dents, holes, and discoloring. If a shingle has been dented, the backing has likely cracked and will still allow water penetration.

If your home has a skylight or chimney, check the flashing for cracking or lifting as well. Ensure that caulking remains intact. If you notice cracks or peeling in the caulking, take immediate action, as it is a protective barrier against moisture.

What to do:

Safety should always come first. Anytime you climb onto your roof, ensure you have all of the proper safety equipment, and that you are only doing so when the weather is sunny and dry. Remove all debris from the roof’s surface. Twigs, leaves, and other fragments can create even more damage or give a place for moss or mold to grow.

After clearing your roof’s surface, give it a thorough inspection. If you notice damage, contact a professional. You might also consider temporarily covering cracks, dents, or extreme damage with a tarp until professional help arrives.

Siding

Your home would be nothing without siding. Siding protects and provides insulation and comfort for your home. When it is damaged, interior problems become inevitable. The good news is that siding damage is one of the easiest to spot because a vast majority of your siding lies at eye level. However, even two or more story homes can have noticeable damage from wind and debris.

What to look for:

As you walk around your house, look for cracks and dents in the siding. Dents are common after hail storms. Depending on your type of siding, look for buckling planks or lifting edges. Do the seams line up properly? If siding has moved around, the seams may no longer match. At the same time, look for chipped paint. Paint is a protective barrier for your siding, and is as important as the siding itself.

What to do:

Siding repairs need a professional. Most forms of sidings have a warranty. Improper care, including repairs, can void that warranty, but a well-trained professional can maintain the siding’s integrity and resolve storm damage. If you have holes or noticeable cracks, contact a professional for an assessment.

Consider investing in a more durable siding, like fiber cement, stone, brick, or stucco. Weather is less likely to severely damage these forms of siding. We personally install James Hardie® fiber cement because of its durability. As the number one siding in America, it can withstand all types of storms.

Gutters

Moisture can damage a home. But gutters provide the proper drainage your exterior needs to prevent water buildup. When gutters are damaged, moisture issues can occur. After storms, don’t forget to assess your gutters. This is easy to do in tandem with your roof.

What to look for:

As you observe the edges of your roof, look for areas of the gutters that are sagging or broken. You may notice seams that have become dislodged or screws that have come loose. Take notice of debris lodged within the gutters themselves, as this can also cause backups. Follow the same steps when checking downspouts.

What to do:

Simply clean out and put back together clogged and dislodged gutters. Run your garden hose along your gutters, watching for any leaks or pooling. If you have leaks or severely damaged gutters, contact a professional for a replacement.

A Professional Assessment and Insurance Claims

If your home sustains severe storm damage, it is important to have a professional assess your property and to then file a claim with your insurance company. A professional inspection will be more detailed, catching damage you may not have noticed. Having that keen-eyed evaluation when approaching your insurance will help you make a claim that covers all damage to your property.

The Peace After the Storm

Don’t let damage from a storm keep you from enjoying peace of mind in your home. By catching damage directly after it happens, you are preventing other issues from arising, like water problems. And when you notice severe damage, we are ready to help. Our team of experts is equipped for every one of your storm-related issues.

If your property needs a well-trained eye or repair, contact us today. Fill out our contact form, and we will get back with you promptly.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *