It can happen to anyone. Even brand new roofs aren’t 100% immune to the unbridled wrath of mother nature and sometimes even the best roofs can fail during particularly bad storms. While major storm damage among homeowners is generally rare, it does happen all the time and, like many things related to homeownership, it’s better to be prepared just in case.
Statistically, especially if you keep up with roof maintenance & clear the areas around your home that could damage the roof in a storm or other event, you will be among the fortunate that will experience little damage over the life of your roof, but if does happen to you, there are those that deal with this stuff all the time, so don’t panic (or if you do, pull yourself together as soon as you can, you have work to do!), and keep yourself safe.
Treat A Leak Like The Emergency It Is (Don’t Panic, But Don’t Assume It’s “Just A Little Leak”)
Even a small leak could be hiding a much larger issue and be extremely dangerous, especially if you can see dripping water, assume the area around it could collapse at anytime (because it can!).
TV shows and movies may show people putting down buckets and just living with leaks for a while, but roofs aren’t built like shacks or medieval dwellings that were expected to leak periodically. Your modern ceiling is typically mostly comprised of drywall and insulation, neither of with can withstand a lot of water for any length of time. The whole thing could come down at any time.
What Exactly Is An Emergency Roof Repair?
When your roof is compromised, water damage can be immediate and progressively destructive not just to the roof, but the structure itself. To minimize further damage an costs, the problem must be addressed immediately.
Typically, emergency roof repairs involve using tarp or other methods to cover the compromised area and divert water away from the damage, safely away from the home. This gives the roof contractor time to a) allow the weather event to pass, b) Give the contractor time to properly assess and repair the damage (especially during busy times) and/or c) allow the homeowner time to consider their options.
What Can I Do While I Wait For The Emergency Roof Repair Crew?
The first thing to do is don’t overreact to the situation. A roof failure can be a devastating thing. You may be tempted to attempt to contain the damage yourself or worse, attempt repairs youself, DON’T!
A compromised roof can mean damage extending all the way to the foundation, including the structure itself. Without knowing the extent of the damage, even approaching a damaged area can result in collapse of the roof and surrounding structure resulting in injury or even death!
After contacting a roof contractor, stay away from the damaged area. The damage has been done, there is nothing more you can do. Don’t panic and get your insurance agent on the phone. Being proactive can take your mind off the damage and give you a sense of accomplishment that this too shall pass.
Patience Is A Virtue & Can Save You Money
Be patient. Especially during storms, these things take time. Roofing scams are at their peak after storms and prey on impatient homeowners. Do your homework on EVERY roof contractor (even the ones recommended by your insurance company) to ensure you don’t make the problem worse.
So, if you’re faced with a roof emergency, take a breath, call a roof contractor and your insurance agent and let the professionals handle it. It’s what they do.