Over the years, we’ve found that a lot of people don’t really know what their insurance policy covers when it comes to their roof. Unfortunately, that could be a financial land mine.
Before you renew your property insurance for the year, we recommend reviewing your policy to fully understand the coverage. Below, we’ve listed a few very important things that you need to know about your insurance policy.
Know your deductible for a new roof
The deductible is the out-of-pocket expense you will pay before insurance starts paying out on your roof claim. If you don’t know what your deductible is and your roof is damaged, you may be left scrambling for cash during a time when you’ll have enough anxiety as it is. When you review your policy, note your deductible and work toward having the funds to pay it.
Know what insurance pays on a roof claim
We often encounter homeowners who are surprised at how much or how little their insurance company will pay out on a roof claim. If you find out that insurance doesn’t cover nearly as much as you thought, you’ll have to come up with more money. The amount that insurance pays may vary depending on factors like the age of the roof. Many policies offer recoverable depreciation, while others do not. These aren’t things that you’ll want to come as a surprise.
Know what exclusions apply
In some cases, a policy might cover repairs to a roof from storms but not cover repairs for damage that was a result of improper maintenance. In other cases, a policy might not even cover a full roof replacement. Again, these are not caveats that you want coming to you as a surprise while you’re having a roof emergency. Be sure to check for exclusions in your insurance policy that apply to your roof.
Understanding your insurance policy will result in a lot less stress if you need to replace your roof. If you’d like more information about roof replacement or maintenance, give us a call.
Ice dams are a typical problem in states where heavy snow is commonplace. But even in Oklahoma, some winters bring favorable conditions for ice dams to form. Find out what causes ice dams, and what steps you can take to prevent them from damaging your home.
What are ice dams?
Ice dams are formed because of melting snow on your roof. The warmth of your home’s attic melts snow, which runs down to your gutters. That water freezes and forms a mound of ice at the cold edge of the roof.
That’s the ice dam. It blocks other water from running down (and off) your roof. Water backs up, seeps under your shingles, and gets into your home.
Water dripping down onto your ceiling can cause stained ceiling and walls and even rotten wood. That can create a lot of damage.
How do you prevent ice dams?
The way to prevent ice dams from damaging your home is to keep your roof cold. Keeping heat in your attic from melting the snow stops the melt that forms ice dams. There are a few steps you can take keep your roof cold.
1. Add insulation in your attic
If your attic doesn’t have enough insulation, heat from your home will more easily escape into the attic and the roof will be warm. Check your local building codes to find out how much insulation is required in your attic.
2. Close paths to the attic
Much of the heat lost in your home is lost to the attic. Heat gets to the attic through many paths, like pipe chases, access hatches, and gaps or cracks in the drywall. If you’re comfortable doing this, you can get into your attic and close these paths using foam and caulk to keep out the heat, or hire someone else to take care of it.
3. Vent your attic
Attic vents keep cold air moving through your attic, moving warmth out. Ridge and soffit vents will help prevent ice dams from forming.
4. Chimney flashing
Remember that holes for pipes and cracks in drywall allow heat into the attic? If your home has a chimney, the gaps alongside it also allow heat into the attic. You can correct this by adding flashing around your chimney in the attic.
If you find that this winter is hard on your roof, give us a call. We’d be happy to help you resolve any roofing issues the winter weather leaves behind.