How to Prevent Trees from Damaging a Roof
For home owners and commercial premises owners alike, one of the most important parts of a building is the roof. This is true whether the roof is pitched or flat as both are difficult and expensive to replace, so keeping a roof in good repair is an essential part of home or building maintenance. When it comes to premises with trees nearby, whether commercial or domestic, the trees represent more ways that a roof can be damaged, so today we’re going to take a look at the types of problems caused by trees so that you know what to look out for.
- Leaves and Other Debris – when trees are growing close to the roof, this means that there’s likely to be a build-up of fallen leaves and debris which may cause problems. Whilst the debris may look unsightly, layers of debris may result in serious damage to the roof by trapping moisture close to the roof, which may rot or warp the wood in the roof which can lead to a leak. IN order to prevent such leaks, make sure that debris is cleared from the roof on a regular basis.
- Fallen Trees – crashing into the roof is the most obvious way that a tree can cause damage, so check all the trees growing near the premises to make sure they are healthy. Very windy weather and storms often lead to dead or dying trees being blown over so any tree that is not alive and healthy should be removed to eliminate the risk.
- Blocked Gutters – this usually results from the build-up of leaves and debris in the gutters. Because the gutters are designed to drain rainwater away from the roof, clogged gutters will prevent drainage, resulting in leaks and other permanent damage to the roof. To prevent excessive build-up of debris which blocks gutters, make sure they are cleared on a regular basis.
- Algae and Moss – trees growing close to a building may encourage the growth of moss and algae which thrive in a shady, damp environment. Not only does this look unsightly, the roots of these plants may damage the shingles if left unchecked. Remove any moss and algae from the roof using a proprietary remover designed specifically for this. Overhanging branches will not only scratch the roof, but they can also provide too much shade which may prevent sufficient airflow across the roof and keep it damp at all times, so making sure that low-hanging branches are removed may prolong the life of the roof.
- Animal Damage – branches close to or above the roof may allow creatures like squirrels and rats to gain access to the roof space. Remove any branches that would allow animals to get close to the roof to prevent this.
Remember that most of these preventative measures will involve work at height of some sort, so it’s best left to the professionals who have the right sort of access equipment to carry out the work at hand. When it comes to commercial premises that feature a flat roof, providing safe access can be slightly easier as you can install a demarcation barrier that prevents access to the edge and other dangerous parts of the roof, leaving you free to inspect the roof and carry out the debris removal in a safe manner.