For those who live in hurricane prone areas, hurricanes are not to be taken lightly. Cars can be swept up like paper plates, mobile homes can be displaced several miles, and the debris carried in the swirling wind can cause serious injury, and even death.
No home is ever really immune to a strong hurricane. Just consider hurricane Matthew. Matthew was the first Category 4 Haiti landfall since Hurricane Cleo in 1964, and only the fourth such intensity or stronger hurricane to track within 65 nautical miles of southern Haiti’s Tiburon Peninsula since the 1960s, according to NOAA’s Best Tracks Database, and yet in the Bahamas, it ripped a roof right off a home.
Videos like this leave many homeowners wondering just how they can prevent such a catastrophe from happening to their home.
Here is what FEMA recommends:
Know which type of roof you have. FEMA states that gabled roofs are the most dangerous in a hurricane because being raised off the top of your home offer additional surface area for the wind to hit them. Typically the end wall of a gabled roof home suffers the most wind damage. So if you have a gabled roof home, the first thing you should do is inspect your roof to see how many trusses you have, how your roof is attached to them, and consider installing additional staples to the roof sheathing. Next, consider installing the following three things:
- Truss Braces. Truss braces are 2 x 4s that run the length of your roof, overlapping the braces. FEMA recommends truss braces be installed at the base of your roof, 18” from the ridge, and in the center span with 8-10 feet in between each truss.
- Gable End Bracing. Gable end bracing consists of installing 2x 4s in an X pattern, with one end at the top center of the gable, and one end on the bottom center brace of the fourth truss. Then another 2 x 4 is placed with one end at the bottom center of the gable and another at the top center brace of the fourth truss.
- Hurricane Straps. Designed to hold your roof to your walls, hurricane straps come in many different styles and sizes. Most important, according to FEMA is to make sure they are installed correctly – which usually requires a professional.
Following the steps above should not only lead to a more secure and safer roof in the event of the hurricane, but might also mean the difference between your roof staying on, or flying off.
This article is brought to you by ASAP Roofing, a national leader in hail damage restoration. ASAP has offices in Denver, Colorado, Indianapolis, Indiana, Dallas, Texas, New Orleans, Louisiana, and Atlanta, Georgia.