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What You Need to Know about Roofs and Hurricanes

What You Need to Know about Roofs and Hurricanes

What You Need to Know about Roofs and Hurricanes


Florida’s Suncoast is a beautiful place to live, but life here comes with the yearly threat of tropical storms that can deliver hurricane-force winds in excess of 155 mph. Now that another hurricane season has arrived, it’s vital to understand the effect that high winds, lashing rain and airborne debris can have on your home’s roof and learn effective ways to protect it from damage.

How a Hurricane Can Impact Your Roof

As the highest structural component of your home, the roof takes the brunt of Mother Nature’s fury during a hurricane of any strength:

  • A Category 1 or 2 storm may tear off some shingles, tiles or portions of flashing, damage the gutters and leave you with a leaking roof.


  • Category 3 or 4 storms can cause extensive damage to the roof covering, decking and gable ends from both wind and airborne debris, like broken tree limbs.


  • A Category 5 hurricane can result in devastating roof damage, where the decking and gable ends are torn off.


Proactive Steps to Help Prevent Hurricane-Related Roof Damage

Any amount of damage can leave your home vulnerable to water intrusions ranging from a minor leak to a catastrophic flood. Fortunately, there are steps you can take now to improve the wind resistance and structural integrity of your roof so it’s better able to withstand a storm.

  • Get the roof inspected and have any needed repairs taken care of promptly. This might include getting damaged or missing shingles or tiles replaced, having missing metal panel anchors replaced, getting any flashing defects dealt with, and making sure that loose soffits, ventilation turbines and gable end/eave vents are properly secured.


  • Have hurricane straps or “truss tie-downs” added in the attic to bolster the roof/wall connections and bracing installed if your roof has gable ends taller than 48 inches.


  • Have tree limbs and heavy branches that overhang the roof trimmed back so they’re less likely to come crashing down into the attic in a storm.


  • Clean out the gutters and fix any deficiencies like sagging or poorly-attached sections, or loose or poorly-placed downspouts.


  • If you’re planning to replace your roof, consider installing wind-resistant shingles or metal roofing, and adding a secondary water barrier underneath the material to reduce the risk of leaks.


For expert advice about preventative measures that can help you avoid a severely damaged or leaking roof this hurricane season, contact us at Mark Kaufman Roofing.

Read: What You Need To Know About Roof Leak Repair

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