Christmas is the best time of year to go all out on decorations. From hanging lights on the gutters to putting inflatable figures near the chimney, the last thing you’ll want is for your roof to get damaged by decorations upon Santa’s arrival. Repairing damages on your roof can be costly and hard to fix during the winter season. So how can you safely deck your roof for the holidays? Here are five tips from Saint Nick himself to help you decorate your roof for Christmas:

 

1) Clip-on your lights, don’t staple/nail them

 

We don’t want Santa stepping on staples and nails—ouch! Using staples or nails to secure Christmas decorations on your roof will also create little holes in the roof that allow moisture to creep in and cause mold to grow. Instead, try using Christmas light clips such as Command Hooks or a lightweight wire that can be easily removed after the season is over.

 

2) Put heavy decorations on the lawn, not on the roof

 

Santa has a lot of presents to deliver, so don’t make your roof an obstacle course for him. Weight can damage shingles by tugging on them from a steep slope. Not to mention if the weather gets crazy, your heavy decorations could be a safety hazard not just to you, but to other homes, too! If you have Christmas statues, figurines, cutouts, or other decorations, consider putting them on the lawn instead. You can attach them to nearby trees or concrete structures to secure them to the ground.

 

3) Fix loose shingles and tiles

 

Santa and his reindeer don’t want to trip and fall while delivering your presents! You can start decorating your roof for Christmas by making sure all your shingles are in place. If you notice any insecure or missing shingles, get them fixed immediately to avoid any further damage. More signs that you need to fix your shingles include curled shingle edges, cracked shingles, flapping or loose shingles, exposed nails, moss growth, and more.

 

4) Clean the chimney and gutters

 

Just like how you clean your house before having guests over, you should also consider cleaning your chimney and gutters before Santa drops by. This also prevents a house fire from happening. Try to clean your chimney and get it examined annually. And while you’re at it, you may want to check your chimney flashing to see if it needs to be replaced with a better flashing system. You should also avoid putting inflatables and other Christmas decorations by the chimney out of danger of burning. On the other hand, clogged gutters can cause a leaky roof and water damage, so be sure to clean those out as well. 

 

5) Remove ice dams

 

Santa can slip and fall if there’s too much snow or ice on the roof. Ice dams occur when melted snow continues to build up and freeze around the edges of your roof, which leads to molding, rotting, and damaged shingles. Prevent ice dams from happening by installing heating cables or using a chemical de-icer product.

 

This Christmas, you can sit back and enjoy your hot cocoa instead of worrying about Santa caving in from the ceiling. We all want him to notice our brightly decorated homes, but it shouldn’t be at the expense of our roofs. After all, he knows if you’ve been bad or good, so be good to your roof this year (for goodness sake)!

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