How Climate Change Effects Your Roof

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How Climate Change Effects Your Roof

There is no doubt that the climate here in New Jersey has changed. We are experiencing more “super storms”, hotter summers and rising water levels. And this is not some anecdotal observation on my part.

Scientists agree that there are five key signs that exemplify this change in our state;

1. Migrating Fish – schools of fish have been migrating north seeking cooler and deeper water, according to the Jersey Coast Anglers Association

2. Heat-related Hospitalizations and emergency department visits in the summer have been rising over the past decade in New Jersey, according to research presented by Jeanne Herb and Marjorie Kaplan of the New Jersey Climate Adaptation Alliance.

3. “On average, almost every year for the past two decades, New Jersey has experienced a presidentially declared disaster on some part of its coast,” said David Kutner, planning manager for New Jersey Future.

4. The ocean is encroaching on New Jersey at a quicker rate than the global average. Practically the entire East Coast is very slowly caving in due to geological changes, according to a report published last year by geoscientists in Florida and Rhode Island.

5. The state’s average temperature has actually increased faster than the global average. Summers have been unusually warm, with the seven warmest summers on record taking place since 1998. Read more about it here.


So how does this affect your roof? In short, it ages it faster.  In roofing we see certain patterns of these effects.

Super Storms – like Hurricane Sandy and Irene, wreak havoc because of the combination of pounding rain and high winds – two big challenges for any residential roof. Even a new roof can experience major damage in these situations. The side effects include trees and and tree limbs falling and rain seeping in less than perfectly sealed areas.

Increased Temperatures – means the sun is pounding down on the roof more consistently and over time it has an adverse effect.

Suggested Ways to Maintain Your Roof

  • Homeowners need to stay on top of the health of their roof, gutters and chimney. Time and again we are called to repair a major issues when it could have been prevented with some simple maintenance.  A tiny crack in a chimney can prove to be a source of major water damage in the home.
  • If you know your roof is old (more than 15-20 years), don’t wait. Be proactive to ensure when a storm hits, your roof is in good shape. We are performing more roof inspections than ever before. You can’t possibly view all areas of your own roof. Instead, have it inspected by a professional.
  • Lastly, make sure you have trees and tree limbs kept away form the roof and the house. No one likes to cut down trees, but having them trimmed seasonally will keep them healthier and further from the house.

If you need a roof inspection, repair or new roof please call Michael J Harris Inc at (908) 553-0284.