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Know How to Prevent Roofing Problems Due To Natural Hazards

Today's tip is about knowing how natural hazards like wind, hail, rain and snow can wreak havoc on your roof. Understanding how each of these elements work to destroy a roof can give facility managers insight into what potential problems to look for after a storm.

Wind tends to peel back a roof at its corners. Once a corner starts peeling back, it’s very tough to stop it, so make sure to carefully inspect all edges, laps and near flashings after a high-wind event. But the more common roof problem resulting from wind storms is damage caused by flying debris. Many roofs can stay attached, even in hurricane force winds, but HVAC equipment, parts of trees or other wind-blown hazards can puncture the roof. So, even if the roof looks okay at the corners, check the whole roof for other possible damage.

Hail can leave tiny indentations all over the roof that may not seem like a big deal at the time, but can severely weaken the membrane, leading to cracks and potential leaks down the road. Even if the roof looks okay, have a trained roof inspector take a close look at the roof after any particularly bad hail storm.

Water - in any of its forms, including snow, ice and rain - is a roof's worst enemy. Especially in instances with a freeze/thaw cycle in the same day, water has an uncanny ability to get beneath a membrane's surface and find its way into a facility. Keep an eye on snow accumulation, as well - especially on flat roofs after big storms, where wind-blown snow can accumulate in higher densities against walls. This can put undue strain on the roof structure in general and the membrane specifically.


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