Hurricane Matthew Alert and Roof Preparation
October 06, 2016 at 12:16 PM
Hurricane Matthew is on its way to hit Charlotte this weekend. Heavy rain, at a minimum, is predicted for our area. We recommend preparing now by ensuring you have your emergency kit ready. We also recommend that you examine your exterior and make preparations that could protect your home's interior. Here's what to do now:
- Be sure that your gutters and roof are clear of debris. Clogged gutters, roof valleys, crickets, and corners cause roof leaks during heavy rain.
- If any broken shingles or missing materials are observed, seal or cover the area with a waterproof material. If you are unable to use a professional roofing company, or do not have access to proper roofing materials, you can get creative. Plastic garbage bags, a tube of any kind of caulking, anything to fill the void, can help slow the intrusion of water and serve as a temporary stop gap.
- If during high winds and rain you experience a leak, and if your attic is accessible, carefully go into the attic and see if the leak can be observed. If so, and if possible, put a container under the leak in the attic and try to catch the leak before it enters the living area of your home. Be extremely careful navigating your attic area. A second container of a similar size should be placed nearby. Do not let your containers get over one half full so that you can manage to empty them without spilling them. If you are able to do so, mark the entry location of the water with a waterproof pen. Once the spot dries, it may be difficult to pin point the location for more accurate repair evaluation.
- If you cannot access or do not have an attic, do NOT punch a hole in your ceiling material unless it has begun to sag. If your ceiling is sagging, in an effort to avoid ceiling collapse, it is generally better to carefully punch a small, pencil size hole (using a wooden pencil) allowing the water to run, then drip into containers.
- An old rag can be used to tie around a pipe and then run into a container to catch the water. It can be jammed into a crack at the rafter and decking to make it drip into a container rather than running down the rafter into an inaccessible area. A rag can be placed in the drip containers to reduce splashing.
- If the leak is in or near a light fixture, turn the light off and try to collect the water at the floor either in the living area or attic. Leave the light off until the area is dry and do not attempt to work around the light.
- If you are physically unable to perform any of these recommended stop gaps, do not attempt them. Your health and well being is far more important than interior damage.
Finally, call a professional roofing company with a good reputation as soon as possible. Avoid panicking and allowing door to door salesmen to scare you into an ill advised repair or stop gap. An emergency, temporary repair may be needed and you may have to wait for a professional to perform leak evaluation and repair due to backlogs, but getting someone with the right amount of experience and knowledge will more likely end in a more permanent, accurate solution that can save you a lot of money (and headaches) in the long run.
If H&S Roofing and Gutter Company can help you, call us at 704-334-9934 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be happy to help.