If you recently purchased a home and need to remove some tree branches that are overhanging its roof, then following these tips will help you do so safely.

Tip: Comply with the Standard Roofing Safety Guidelines

To safely prune your overhanging tree branches, it is vital you follow all of the standard roofing safety guidelines, such as:

  • only working on a dry roof

  • wearing black rubber-soled shoes

  • utilizing a safety harness

Additionally, if you will be pruning branches over your head, then you should also wear a helmet. If you do not have a construction helmet, a bike helmet will work.

Tip: Walk Around Your Home and Determine Which Branches Require Removal

Before you climb up on your roof and start whacking away at your trees, first walk around your home and make a plan. Which branches will you remove and how can you do so in a safe manner. Just this small bit of pre-planning can make your project a lot safer and more successful.

Tip: Never Prune Trees from a Ladder Placed on the Ground or Your Roof

Whether you prune your trees with a pole saw or a chainsaw, it is important to avoid doing so while standing on a ladder. Trimming limbs from a ladder is a hazard because it requires you to balance in place while working. While this is fine for someone with a lot of tree pruning experience, it isn't advised otherwise. Not only could you fall off of the ladder; a heavy branch could come down and hit you in the head. And, you should never stand on a ladder on your roof because it adds an unreasonable amount of risk.

Tip: Trim Larger Branches into Manageable Pieces

If the branches hanging over your roof are very long or very thick, then you should prune them off in smaller, more manageable pieces. Removing smaller pieces will require more cuts and take you more time, but it is a lot safer for you and for your roof if the branch parts land on it.

Tip: Call a Professional Arborist if Necessary

It is important to note that you should consider hiring a professional tree pruner, known as an arborist if your tree branches are near power lines, are too high for you to reach from the ground or the roof comfortably, or if you are not 100% comfortable pruning the tree yourself.

Contact your local tree service for more information and assistance.