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The Dangers Ice Dams Pose to Your Roof

With an uncommonly warm October upon us, it may be easy to forget that winter weather isn’t far off. 2021’s winter storms took many unaware, and the outlook for this upcoming winter predicts similar freezing temperatures and increased snowfall. The wintery mix that’s expected to arrive can present dangers to your roof in the form of ice dams. You may have heard the term in passing, and found yourself wondering, what are the actual dangers ice dams pose to your roof? And how do you avoid letting ice dams create a scenario where they require a roof replacement in Maryland?  Let’s break it down.

What Are Ice Dams and How Do They Form?

Ice dams are a meteorological phenomenon that occurs most often on roofing systems. This blockade of ice forms when the upper portions of your roof remain at a temperature above freezing while the lower edges remain at freezing or below. Because heat rises within your home, your attic space can accelerate this process, especially if it doesn’t contain a proper layer of insulation between the attic and the home’s interior. These uneven temperatures produce a scenario where water from the upper roof melts down the surface of the roof. However, it becomes trapped by the frozen liquid barrier at the roof’s edge, creating an ice dam. This problem is exacerbated when fresh snow packs the liquid and ice together. Ice dams can because by particularly nasty winter weather mixes, but most often are the result of an attic with an insufficient ventilation system, trapping hot and creating a temperature discrepancy between the upper and lower parts of your roof.

What Are the Dangers Ice Dams Pose to Your Roof?

Ice dams a grave concern for your roofing system, as they can cause dramatic, and costly, damage. Firstly, the accumulated weight of the ice dam can result in your roof’s gutter system breaking off. The gutter system is an integral part of your roofing system, allowing excess water to drain off, and if it’s damage, it can compound the problem of ice dams. Secondly, there’s the risk of the ice tearing shingles from your roofs. Shingles are a protective layer that keeps your roof durable and dry. Torn-off shingles can create additional areas for moisture entry. However, the biggest risk of ice dams is the way they collect water. When water pools on your roof with no where to properly drain, it can create permanent damage to a roof. Sitting water can seep into the interior wood of the roof, and through towards your attic. Moisture damage in a roof and attic system can be devastating, possibly necessitating a full roof replacement. These dangers ice dams pose to your roof can be catastrophic for your home and wallet, creating a scenario where an MD roof replacement isn’t out of the question. As such, it’s important to be proactive and take preventative measures.

How to Prevent Ice Dams from Forming

There are several steps you can take, that with the help of an expert, will prevent damage from ice dams and save you from significant damage to your roof. The first step is to address ventillation in your attic. A roofing professional can inspect your attic and give you an action plan to address heat that becomes trapped. Ventilating the attic properly can help prevent excess moisture from melting on the upper roof. Next, it’s time to address proper gutter maintenance. If you wait too long after a winter storm without cleaning your gutters, they’re susceptible to be built up with ice and break off from your home. A thorough post-storm cleaning by professionals is a great way to ensure the integrity of your gutter system. Lastly, talk with a qualified roofing company about whether ice guards would be the right option for your home. Ice guards help prevent excess snow and ice from building at the base of your roof, stopping ice dams from ever forming.

The dangers ice dams pose to your roof should not be underestimated. But if you work with a quality roofing company like Four Twelve, you have the opportunity to take proactive steps to stop ice dams from forming and causing catastrophic damage to your roofing system. Contact us today to get started on your ice dam prevention before the winter weather arrives.

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The Dangers of a Leaking Roof, and What to Do About It

Many of us are familiar with the discomfort a leaking roof can cause. When water drains down and creates a drip in your home, it can be a frustrating experience. However, leaking roofs have issues beyond simple discomfort. A leak may be a sign of real damage to your roofing system, and when left unchecked, can become an expensive and hazardous problem for your home. Let’s look at the dangers of a leaking roof, and what you can do about it.

Attic and Ceiling Damage

 

When you discover a leak, the most likely damage that has resulted is that to your attic and ceiling. If your attic is used for storage, there’s an immediate risk to the items stored there suffering from water damage. Additionally, the water could cause the structural integrity of your attic to become rotted and weakened, which can be dangerous for your entire home. If a leak caused by your roof is visible, it’s also likely that water has worked its way through a ceiling or two. Proactively addressing these concerns by employing a Maryland roofing company is important to stop structural damage from happening to your ceiling and roof.

Mold and Mildew

A big concern when you discover a leak is the risk of mold and mildew. Mold and mildew spread fast and can enter HVAC systems, creating health risks to those in your home. Mold and mildew are most hazardous to those with allergies, respiratory issues, and the immunocompromised. It’s crucial to stop mold from spreading further once you discover its presence.

Lost Energy Efficiency

One of the unexpected dangers of a leaking roof can be a rapid loss in your home’s energy efficiency. Water can damage the insulation in your ceiling, limiting your home’s ability to retain heat or cool air. Ineffective insulation can quickly run up your energy bill, and you likely won’t even realize it until the damage is done. Finding a company that provides roofing services in Maryland, and also is able to check for losses of inefficiency, is a great step.

Fire Hazards

Your wallet isn’t the only concern when it comes to a leaking roof, of course. Water that makes its way into walls has the chance to damage electrical wiring throughout your home. This creates a dangerous fire hazard within the electrical system. When you discover a leak, it’s crucial to have roofing experts inspect your home and determine whether or not the water has caused electrical damage. Roofing inspection costs in Maryland can seem like a lesser issue when stacked against the safety of your entire home.

Damage to Drywall

Drywall is one of the building materials most susceptible to water damage. An excess of water can cause drywall to sag, and eventually, fall apart. Drywall is typically used throughout your home as an integral structural element, so it’s important to ensure that the water damage doesn’t reach that point.

Compromising Structural Integrity

When the dangers of a leaking roof are left unchecked, they can lead to catastrophic issues. Water is the enemy of the structural integrity of your roofing system. Without proactive action, you can be looking at the entire system being compromised and at risk of collapse. When this happens, you may be facing a costly roof replacement in Maryland.

What to Do About a Leaking Roof?

Instead of letting the issue spread, you can contact the team at Four Twelve Roofing to protect your home from significant damage. Time matters when it comes to a leaking roof, so it’s crucial to recruit experienced roofers who can inspect the state of your roof, and make the right assessment the first time. Our expert team builds an action plan to address issues before they become more serious. If you’re ready to protect your roof, contact the Four Twelve team today. 

 

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How to Keep Your Roof Replacement on a Budget

Roof replacements can be a costly endeavor. A lot goes into each replacement, including materials, skilled labor, and clean up. When your roof has suffered damage, it can pose a risk to your safety. But what options do you have if you’re on a tight budget? Let’s explore ways you can keep your roof replacement on a budget, and options you can explore with roofing contractors in Anne Arundel County.

Proper Maintenance

Four Twelve roofers conducting repairs

One of the most common reasons a roof needs to be replaced is that is has not properly been maintained throughout its lifespan. When you leave a roofing issue to fester, it can lead to huge problems down the road. Proper maintenance is an essential task that can save you from needing a full roof replacement in the immediate future. Hire on a professional Maryland roofing team to ensure your roof is as healthy as it can be.

Explore Insurance Options

Depending on your homeowner’s insurance policy, you may be able to get some of the costs of a roof replacement covered. We recommend reviewing your policy and speaking with your insurance company to determine whether or not they provide assistance for roof replacements in Maryland.

Explore Financing Options

If paying for a replacement outright is a barrier to you, speak with your roofing company about financing options. Four Twelve, for instance, partners with some great companies to help provide financing choices to our clients. Financing can be a great way of achieving a roof replacement on a budget without putting off the necessary work your roof needs.

Keep a Clear Line of Communication

When selecting the right roofing contractor, it’s important to make clear that you value communication. A reputable company should be able to openly discuss pricing, product selection, and payment options to help you make the most of your budget. For budget concerns, it’s not only important to save money up front but also save money over time. A trustworthy Maryland roofing company can help guide you to make the right decisions for your wallet and for your roof.

Find A Reputable Roofing Contractor

Finally, it’s important to choose the right roofing contractor themself. When you rush to utilize the cheapest option, you may be in for a headache and more trouble down the line. A company that isn’t properly insured could result in an injury on the property, and a subsequent lawsuit. Incompetent roofers can cause damage that can break the bank down the line. Dishonest pricing models can result in you paying more at the job’s end than you initially thought.

Skip the hassle and select a roofing company with clear, positive feedback from past clients and a direct connection to the local community. At Four Twelve, we pride ourselves on transparent, honest roofing services that can help you obtain a roof replacement on a budget. We take our feedback seriously, with over 250+ five-star reviews on Google. If you need roofers that you can trust, reach out to the Four Twelve team today.

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Is Your Roof Ready for the Winter Weather?

It may not feel like it, but winter weather is rapidly approaching. Each year, we speak with homeowners who hadn’t properly prepared their homes for the season, and subsequently faced damage to their roof. Winter can bring snow, sleet, freezing rain, and harsh winds that can cause damage or compound existing damage to your roof. Here are some steps you can take to get your roof ready for the winter weather.

1. Observe and Trim Surrounding Trees

Powerful winds and heavy snows can turn the trees surrounding your home into a hazard. When snow and ice compound on branches, the additional weight can cause them to snap, especially if the branches are already weakened. This creates the risk of branches collapsing onto your roof. Recruit a Maryland roofing professional to trim problem branches and ensure that your home is protected from potential hazards.

2. Check and Thoroughly Clean Your Gutter System

Gutters serve an integral role in protecting your roofing system from damage. Throughout fall, fallen leaves and debris get caught in gutters, which can lead to clogging. Clogged gutters can cause water to pool at the base of your roofing, increasing the likelihood of leaks. It can also increase the risk for the formation of ice dams, a winter storm phenomenon that can trap melting snow and cause even more damage. Ensure you regularly clean your gutters during the fall season to prevent any issues. It’s also advisable to have a professional inspect your gutter system. Old or damaged gutters can have issues draining properly, which works to compound any clogs they may experience. Qualified roofing services in Maryland are a great option for problem gutters.

3. Inspect Your Roof Flashing

Roof flashing is pieces of metal present on certain areas of your roof meant to prevent leaking and help direct water off your roof. It’s typically used in areas such as around your chimney, along walls, and in valleys. If your flashing is damaged or old, it may not be able to properly funnel water away. Heavy snow or freezing rain can damage flashing further.

4. Check Your Attic for Signs of Trouble

insulation installation

When roofing problems strike, you’ll most likely find evidence of them in the attic. When getting your roof ready for winter weather, check your attic for signs of possible roof damage. If water or sagging insulation is present, you likely already have a leak. It’s important to determine your attic also has proper insulation and ventilation. If too much heat builds up in an unventilated attic, it can help contribute to the formation of ice dams by causing the snow at the roof’s top to drain down to the frozen ice at the roof’s bottom. Addressing problem areas in your attic can help prevent substantial roof damage from affecting the rest of your home.

5. Schedule a Roof Inspection Ahead of Time

Roofing systems are complicated, with several areas that can present potential problem spots. If you want to get your roof ready for winter weather, it’s important to schedule a roofing inspection with an expert roofing team. They can provide a complete look at the health of your roof, identify areas at risk, and diagnose any problems the roofing system is currently experiencing or is likely to experience soon. If you want to avoid a roof replacement in Maryland, regular maintenance is necessary.

Having a roofing team you can trust is key. At Four Twelve Roofing, we’ve worked hard to ensure we deliver on the needs of our clients with transparent, dedicated roofing services. If you’d like to schedule your free roofing inspection today, reach out to the Four Twelve team.