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Holiday Decorating & the Perfect Time for a Roof Inspection 

Decorating for the Holidays? Stay Safe and Keep Your Roof Healthy!

The holiday season is fast approaching. And while now is the perfect time to deck the halls and spend time with loved ones, it’s also a season that can be full of roofing mishaps if you aren’t careful. Decking the halls should always be done with care—both for your own safety and the health of your roof.

At Skyline Contracting, we see an unfortunate number of cases where homeowners full of holiday spirit wound up with roofing problems during the rain storms of spring. So to keep yourself safe and maintain the integrity of your roof, here are our top holiday roof maintenance and decorating tips for the upcoming months.

Decorating Safely Starts with Ladder Safety

The holidays are a time full of cheer, but it’s also a time full of injuries and accidents. Every year, more than 500,000 people are treated for ladder-related injuries, and for many homeowners decorating for the holidays is the most time they’ll spend on a ladder in the course of the year. 

That means one of the best ways to stay safe while decorating is to practice good ladder safety. Some of the most important safety tips include:

  • Always have a spotter
  • Use the right ladder for the job (in terms of load capacity and height)
  • Follow the 4-1 rule when setting up 
  • Move your ladder frequently rather than leaning over
  • Maintain three points of contact at all times

Plan Ahead

The best place to plan where all of your lights will go is on the ground—not while you’re standing on a ladder with an armful of decorations. Always plan ahead before you go up the ladder to start hanging holiday lights or other items.

This includes testing that every item works beforehand. Plug in string lights and ensure everything is working. If you need to replace any bulbs, this is much easier to do with your feet firmly on the ground. Make sure you have the appropriate length of lights for the area you’re planning to decorate, with a bit of excess to ensure you can still plug things in.

Know Where and How to Fasten

Your personal safety is paramount while decorating for the holidays—but so is maintaining the integrity of your roofing system. Far too often, we encounter roofs where homeowners have pulled a Clark Griswold and stapled their lights to the roof. This is never a good idea, as the additional punctures through the surface of your roof provide an opportunity for moisture to enter and cause all kinds of problems. It’s also important to be careful of your gutters, as they have a very crucial role to play in protecting your home.

Instead of using nails or staples, we highly recommend plastic clips designed specifically for the purpose of hanging lights. These are widely available at most large hardware stores, especially during the holidays. 

Many homeowners will also choose to hire a company to decorate their home. We think this is a great idea, just make sure they’re also being careful of your roof and gutter system.

Schedule a Roof Inspection After Takedown

Even with proper care and precautions, it’s still very easy to damage your roof during the holiday season. Everything from installing decorations to taking them down—and the increased foot traffic on your roof—can cause minor damage that may leave your roof vulnerable in the coming months.

This means the time immediately following the holidays is an excellent time to schedule a roof inspection. A professional roofer will be able to thoroughly examine your roof to ensure it’s in good shape for the year ahead. If they identify any problems, you’ll be able to address them quickly with a simple roof repair.

Stay Safe and Healthy for the Holidays!

The holiday season is a time for joy and celebration with loved ones, not for injuries and roof damage. At Skyline Contracting, the best thing we can recommend is using care and common sense as you decorate. Don’t damage your roof, keep yourself safe on ladders, and schedule a roof inspection promptly after the holidays to ensure your roof is still in excellent condition.

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