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Holiday Decorations and Your Roof

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You may be one of many people who like to decorate their roofs for the holidays. Proper installation and planning are critical to reduce the risk of damage, especially during harsh winters. Here are some tips for keeping your roof in good shape while decorating for the holidays.

Be prepared:

Before starting, check your roof's overall condition. You may want to call a roofing company for an inspection. Soft spots and loose shingles should be addressed before decorating. Lay out your lighting and get rid of knots and tangles. Make sure the lights are outdoor-rated and that they are all working. Check other ornaments for flammability and other hazards. Have a plan as to how and where your will place your decorations before getting on the roof.

Placing the decorations:

Use roof-friendly hangers and clips when securing your lights and other objects to the roof. Lights should not be hung on shingles. Don't secure decorations by driving new nails into any component of the roof, as this can allow moisture to come in and cause damage. Limit walking on the roof and do not lift or move shingles while you are up there. Secure roof-top decorations with sand in burlap bags or tie them to stationary objects such as the chimney.

During the holiday season:

Check your decorations and lights periodically for any damage to them or to your roof.  Cords should be checked to make sure they aren't frayed and bulbs should be checked and replaced if they are burned out. If you are expecting a severe storm, you may want to consider removing or turning off the power to vulnerable decorations before the storm arrives.

After the holidays:

When the holiday season is over, be sure to remove all decorations promptly to reduce the risk of damage. Be careful removing clips and wires and be sure to fill any holes that might have been made during installation. Replace any shingles that may have been pushed out of place or have a residential roofing company replace them for you.

With proper precautions and planning, your roof can be damage free after the holiday decorating season. If you don't feel that you are able to decorate your roof by yourself, then you can hire a professional to do it for you. Be sure your roof is in good shape before and after the lights are installed and removed. Happy Holidays!


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