View Full Version : How to secure inflatables on the roof?

12-03-2017, 11:08 PM
Hi all - any help that you can offer me in how to secure the inflatable on the roof is greatly appreciated. I have an 6ft tall Santa inflatable that I like to put on my roof. The contractor told me that there are several ways to do so but they all will damage my roof in the long term so he does not recommend of doing it. He stated that any screws or anchors that are used to secure the Santa onto the roof will be rusty due to the weather, and it will create a leakage on my roof. I told him that I saw people putting inflatables on their root, but he still insists that it will damage their roof in a couple of years. I appreciate all the help that you can offer. Thank you in advance.

12-04-2017, 05:07 AM
Depends on your roofing material, and local wind conditions. Your contractor is king he is obviously aware of your precise situation and piercing your roof is never wise even for a hobby as great as this. , is your roof snow rated for extra weight you could use sandbags, guying off to the ground or to walls using webbing straps (gutters are a problem) is not uncommon.
tv saddle style bags can bridge a ridge and provide an anchor point of sorts.
stay safe.

12-04-2017, 07:34 AM
You might ask your contractor about installing safety tiedown brackets on your roof. They are special stainless steel brackets for a fall arresting harness that are made to be installed on roofs and left there.
Obviously the type of roofing, along with design on roof, pitch. obstacles (vent pipes, skylights, etc) will be a factor in using them as well.

Most any roofing contractor will try to change your mind about installing things on roofs as it does "tend" to promote problems in the long run with not only the roofing material but with the underlying materials as well. The arresting system tie downs are about the only thing that is really approved for roof installation on a permanent basis.

Also, you should be aware that going up on a roof causes damage every time you go there even though you may not see it!
Shingles get the granules rubbed off them and worse if it is hot, they can get stretched and/or ripped which can make leaks.
Metal roofing gets a lot of strain when people go up on it. The sheets tend to want to slide from the weight of people or additional items placed on it which can (and does) cause stress on the screws that hold the metal on and can over time cause the holes for the screws to become elongated and possibly leak.
Tying things off to vent pipes or other "roof projections" can stress them and cause the roofing sealant around them to loosen or crack and again a possible leak.
Stepping too close to the flashing around chimneys, skylights, vents, etc, can break the seal on those and promote leaking as well.
I have seen cases of people throwing ropes over the peak of a roof to hold themselves or items and cause damage to the roof cap which resulted in water penetration and severe damage to the roof and home years later (damage to the tune of 10,000 of dollars easily).
Roofs are also one of the most dangerous areas of falls and deaths!

I have repaired and replaced a lot of roofs and roofing material over the last 20+ years as a contractor and home builder just for information on why I state these things.

Not trying to scare anyone out of anything but this time of year there are way too many deaths and falls from roofs just because of a time of the year that should be fun, festive, and happy for all. Not a time for mourning because of a dumb accident.
Take your time, think twice, and be safe and careful when working on a roof and make sure your roof can handle whatever you are going to add up there.

12-04-2017, 10:13 AM
thanks so much BDECOSSE and BEEIILL for your responses. These are good advises.. Have a great holiday season

12-04-2017, 11:47 AM
The way I have done it in the past was to first put a tarp down to prevent the inflatable from tearing on the shingles when deflated. Shingles can really damage them when deflated and windy. Each corner of the tarp I put several thin concrete blocks. Sometimes I added more blocks in between the corners if the tarp tried to pull up. I used the blocks to both hold down the tarp and attach the inflatable. My roof doesn't have much of a pitch so it is easy to install items. That usually works for me, but there are times when it is really windy that I had to go up and readjust. Just wasn't worth it, so I didn't put my normal Santa helicopter on the roof this year. For Halloween I put up the Home Depot 9' spider with the same concept but without the tarp. Worked really well and it will be going back out again next year.

12-04-2017, 12:03 PM
I have done inflatables on my roof in the past. Remember, they are made of parachute material. And yes, they fly like that. I have had my Halloween inflatable get taken off the roof. I have had both the roof damaged and destroyed inflatables in high winds. The best idea I finally came up with was a wood platform frame that the inflatable mounted to. It sat on the ridge and was supports on both side of the roof. I then used ratchet straps to secure the frame from the ridge down to the gutters. It was solid as a rock. Painted black it was also hard to see. Just make sure it's not going anywhere. I now have too much stuff on the ground that would be destroyed if an inflatable came sailing through.

12-04-2017, 12:33 PM
thanks so much, jwamsley07. Those are great tips and great pictures for illustration purpose. Have a great holiday season

12-04-2017, 12:40 PM
thanks so much for the detailed information, mikeh65. Have a great holiday season