How to Safely Inspect Your Roof for Damage

Our Houston Texas Roof Is Under Constant Assault from Our Weather

Living in Houston where we regularly have heavy rain wind and hail storms it’s a good idea to check your roof for damage on a regular basis. Going on the roof to check for damage after a storm isn’t as easy or safe as you might think. Walking on the roof can damage your shingles, and there’s always the risk that you might lose your balance and fall. Many times damage is hidden and is not easily seen by the average homeowner. It’s understandable that you don’t want to call the professionals out after every storm. Here are some items you can look for from the ground that would indicate you should call in a Houston roofing contractor for a free roofing inspection.

Inspecting Your Roof From The Ground

Buckled ShinglesUsing a pair of binoculars, stand back from the roof and look for shingles that are damaged, torn or missing. The next step is to move closer to the house and walk along the foundation. Look closely in the area under the eaves for pieces of broken shingles. Finally, take a trip into the attic. Look for areas that are wet or show signs of moisture. Actually it’s a good idea to do this on a regular basis. Having a roof leak that goes undetected for any period of time results in more expense that just repairing the leak. The leak will supply water and a damp humid environment allowing mold to flourish. Now, in addition to having the cost of the roof repair, you’ll have the expense of mold removal. If the mold is present inside a wall the sheet rock will have to be torn out for a complete mold remediation. All this just adds expense that could have been avoided.

Regular Free Roof Inspection and Maintenance Is Smart

If you see any of these warnings signs of damage, you should call for your Houston roofing contractor to take a closer look at your roof. The professionals know how to walk carefully on your roof to prevent damage and avoid falling off. They also know what to look for in the valleys and areas that have flashing. They can help you find areas of damage quickly and they can advise you on how to address these areas. There’s one more advantage to having your roof regularly inspected, keeping your roof properly maintained is one of the tenets of your roof warranty.

It’s Not Always A Flood

Many Times The Problem Come From Within

Water damage is a serious problem that can affect your property at any time. Most people think of water damage is caused by forces of nature like heavy rain, storms, flooding or even snow. However, there are other sources as well and these the most frequent causes of the water damage to homes.  Backed up or overflowing appliances in the kitchen or bathroom, burst pipes for fresh water or sewage, and outdated plumbing causing leaks are all causes of serious damage to homes and businesses. Never ignore any of these dangerous problems. Water inside a building will almost always spread, and as time goes by the problem gets worse, more damage and expense mount up. Call a water damage restoration specialists to clear up the water problem at its source as soon as possible.

Work Needs To Start ASAP

Their technicians will get started immediately with an evaluation of the cause of the water problem and an assessment of what has been damaged. The first step is eliminating the source of the water penetration. After that, they will treat all of your possessions that are salvageable, using our state of the art water extraction process, and store them safely while we move ahead with work on the building. Techs will move any contaminated materials out of harm’s way. They have the equipment and the skills to perform expert water extraction, thorough drying, mold removal and treatment of the air quality.

Repair And Re-Construction

Once the site is completely dry and disinfected, free of any trace of moisture, mold or germs, you can start on the structural repair work. You’ll want a company that can restore the premises to their pre-damaged condition. If roof damage or a roof leak was the cause of the water damage you’ll need a roofing contractor Houston to repair it. Any damage to the building’s plumbing and electrical systems must be completely repaired, to the highest standards of safety. Repair and remove all signs of water damage should be the goal. Once your building is completely strong and sound, You can have the crowning touch applied– a professional paint job, using mold resistant paint. Now your property is as good or better than new.

Fortunately There’s Help Available

Fire and Water Damage Contractors

A good fire and water damage contractor understands that in hurricanes, tornadoes and other natural disasters it may not be possible to delay repair until the homeowner reaches their insurance carrier for settlement but still will work with your insurance company to ensure proper processing of your claims. They may even be listed as a preferred service provider with your insurance company making the claim payment process even easier.

Storm Damage Restoration

Fire and water damage restoration services most often times are needed in the aftermath of severe weather conditions. Storms may involve severe rain, snow, ice, wind, hail, or lightning, which can cause a variety of types of damage to homes and businesses. Rain, snow and ice can lead to roof damage, flooding, water damage, mold. Wind and severe precipitation can result in structural damage to homes, garages, sheds, and other buildings. Strong wind and hail can serious damage the roof requiring a residential or commercial roofing contractor for repairs or roof replacement. Lightning strikes can cause fires resulting in fire or smoke damage even if the fire is quickly extinguished. Prompt attention from from a professional contractors can help homeowners and business owners with clean up and repairing the damage, before the damage becomes severe enough to create a total loss.

Water Damage

Several steps can help mitigate water damage, whether the damage is caused by clean water, gray water such as washing machine overflow, or black water such as raw sewage. First, all standing water including rainwater, mud, and sewage must be removed from the area to be treated by pumping or extraction. Special equipment is then used to thoroughly dry the building and its contents. Thermographic cameras as well as other moisture metering equipment is used to confirm that the area has been fully dried to prevent mold or other issues from occurring. Once the area is completely dry, the building surfaces and the contents are cleaned. In some cases painting or more extensive remodeling such as cabinet replacement must be performed. Experienced contractors can help clients determine which possessions can be cleaned and which must be replaced. Document and media recovery services can be used to help maintain or restore critical paper documents as well as film and electronic media. If mold damage does occur, Mold removal contractors can help identify and eliminate the source of the moisture and provide full mold abatement services including laboratory testing, cleaning, and removal of mold spores.

Lightning Damage

Fires from lightning strikes or other causes can result in structural damage as well as smoke damage and water damage from the water used to extinguish the fire. A fire and water damage contractor can help to assess the potential damages and take steps to minimize losses. Clothing, electronics, and other belongings can often be deodorized and restored to their original condition for much less than what it would cost to replace them. Fire damage and smoke residue can also be removed from the surfaces of the home, and structural damage can be repaired.

Wind Damage

Storms with strong wind and heavy rain can cause trees to fall on homes or other buildings, crushing the roof and causing great damage. Wind damage with lightning strikes can lead to a large amount of debris as well as potential structural damage. Your roofing contractor can help clean up the debris quickly and install tarps, boards, or other temporary measures to temporarily prevent further internal damage through the damaged. Their team can help assess any structural damage and provide or coordinate necessary repairs. They can work in partnership with your water damage restoration contractor to begin the roof repair as the water damage is being done. Getting the roof repaired as quickly as possible will eliminate further exposure to the elements and avoid in further damage inside the house..

Water Damage Restoration

Water Damage Happens

Water damage to your home or commercial building can happen in a variety of ways. From broken pipes, to a natural disaster, it’s important to understand the impact of water damage and finding a good water damage restoration company to help remediate the damage. It’s not uncommon to encounter a situation where a homeowner wakes up in the morning to find their entire basement flooded with water due to a broken pipe. Environmental issues as well as the age of the home and pipes can cause them to burst unexpectedly. While no natural disaster may be involved, a flooded basement or room can certainly lead to a disaster if not cleaned up quickly.
Flooding is a common problem that affects many low-level homes. Severe water damage will last for years if water restoration is not done at once. Seek restoration services if you have a severely damaged home or office. First, it’s important to know about the process so you make the most out of it.

Dealing With Flooding

After a flood hits, one of the first, immediate steps is to dry the area. Leftover pools of water will form mold and mildew that creates health problems. The spores are easily transmitted through the air and cling to all kinds of surfaces. As soon as possible, promote the circulation of air. Use fans, windows and dehumidifiers to control the amount of moisture in the room. Place dryers directly in front of curtains and garments. Once mold appears, the problem goes to an entirely different level.

A Job Well Done

A good water damage restoration provider does more than restore personal belongings. In addition, most cleanup providers work directly with homeowner’s insurance companies so there is little paid out of pocket from the owners. A good clean up service will help you fill out documents and file claims correctly. Many insurance providers and their adjuster work hard to give you only the minimal amount. Save the stress by asking if a restorer provides these additional services. During a severe natural disaster, a flood can form within minutes and erase many years of memories. Too much water will ruin properties and destroy ecosystems. Whether you have a flooded basement or front lawn, you are likely to need a water restoration expert. There is no comparison between a restoration professional with years of experience and an uninformed homeowner.

Health Risk With Black Mold

High Humidity Environments

Humans are susceptible to health risks from black mold making them a major concern to most homeowners. Black mold thrives well in many areas in the home where the local environment is suitable for growth. It will multiply quickly in such a damp basement or any humid place it finds. It is a very common type of fungus and will produce several health risks for humans. Black mold can grow and thrive well in areas where humidity rises greater than 55 percent. In such an environment, black mold will attach itself to rugs, carpets, wallpaper, thermal insulation, fiber-board and drywall. This will require professionals experienced with mold removal and correcting the environment that allowed it’s growth

Black Mold Health Risks Caused by Toxins Emitted

Molds are not the dangerous substance in and of themselves. However, they emit a substance known as mycotoxin, which is dangerous to all living beings, including household pets. It appears in the form of incredibly small and light spores considered to be mold secondary growth. Where black mold health risks come into play is when the toxic substance is either inhaled or enters the body through the skin. Anyone with open sores and cuts is also highly susceptible to the mold’s toxic poison. Once the black mold emits spores, these travel throughout the structure in the home’s ventilation system exposing all inhabitants to its deadly harm. Any fans – exhaust or otherwise – will also propel harmful mold spores throughout the house. The degree of severity of black mold health risks will depend largely on the amount of infestation experienced as well as any individual’s specific ability to fight off the poison through the body’s immune system.

Taking Special Care Concerning Black Mold Health Risks

Although all people can be exposed to black mold health risks, specific people may be more susceptible than others. The very young, such as infants and children, who have yet to develop strong immune systems, are prone to harm from black mold spores. Also, pregnant women who have their immune systems doing double duty are at great risk. Additionally, the elderly, who typically have weaker immune systems, are prone to black mold health risks. Furthermore, people who are already suffering from respiratory ailments or possess an allergic reaction to different substances are also suspect to black mold health risks. Since each person will have a different reaction when exposed to black mold, the symptoms will vary in severity. Reaction to the mycotoxins produced by black mold will differ not only based on a person’s physiology, but will appear different based on the species of mold to which an individual is exposed.

Various Black Mold Health Risks

The potential black mold health risks vary from one species to another. However, each does possess common reactions such as mucous membrane irritation. Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) are released into the environment where they are easily inhaled. These VOCs infest the lungs and then, after filling up, transmit throughout the body. The VOCs are also the substance producing that all-too familiar smell associated with black mold. Once infecting the mucous membrane, the VOCs cause several symptoms such as headaches, dizziness and difficulties trying to concentrate and focus attention.

Let’s Go Green

Green Roofing

There are a number of green roofing options. One of the things you want to consider is that the roof is architecturally appropriate to your area. If you are in Southern California, for example, clay roofing tiles are common place. Here in Texas we prefer the standing seam metal roof. It has few penetrations and no exposed fasteners so there is a less chance of leakage, and it’s very easy to mount solar panels on. Metal roofing (steel, copper and aluminum) is lightweight, extremely durable, and available in lighter colors. Though energy-intensive to produce, its reflectance factor is high. Metal is easily recycled in its post use, and is recommended for rainwater harvesting systems.

Tile and Slate

Tile and slate roofing materials are beautiful and offer excellent durability. They are heavy, so proper roof support needs to be considered. Glazed clay tiles are a good choice for rainwater collection and lighter glazing reflects more heat. This lighter glazing is also known as a cool roof. Slate, however, is dark in color and will hold the heat. There are certain asphalt and composition shingles that contain recycled material but they are replaced more often over the life of the building. It is possible to find places that are beginning to recycle these shingles, but most of them still end up in landfills. Recycled rubber roofing does not have a long track record but it should be quite durable. Recycling is possible, but the process requires a lot of energy and may result in a lower grade recycled product. At this time, rubber roofing would not be considered for rainwater systems.

Salvaged Roofing

Reuse of salvaged roofing material is a niche market, and yet it is growing. If it makes sense to repair your existing roof tiles or trim, there are companies that specialize in this area. They will help match your current roof. If they don’t have it themselves, they will find it for you, and then install it. Now that’s green roofing!

Cool Roofs

Did you know that a minimum energy savings of 10 to 20% is expected from an energy-efficient roof that incorporates some type of radiant barrier and a white or light color roofing material? The cool roof option of lighter colored metal roofing, may or may not increase the overall cost of the roof materials. Do your research! White clay tile is beautiful, but it can cost up to one third more than the other colored tiles. However, the energy savings could be worth it. A radiant barrier consists of a reflective surface such as aluminum foil. This aluminum foil layer helps to prevent heat that is absorbed by the roof from radiating into the attic and the rest of the house. Choosing a roofing material with highest reflectance that is within your budget is an important consideration. One study found that air conditioning energy use was reduced by an average of 23% in houses with increased roof reflectance. The Energy Star website has good information on reflective roof products, as well as, a Roofing Comparison Calculator. This calculator helps estimate the savings a reflective roof can offer.