A tree in your backyard is a potential hazard. Strong winds from a hurricane, tornado or thunderstorm can send a broken branch or even the whole tree falling onto the roof of your home or car.
Fallen trees are a huge risk to you and your family’s safety, and they can cause damage running into thousands of dollars. Most home insurance policies cover damage to your home caused by trees. Still, you’re better off avoiding the damage from happening in the first place.
The good news is that there are usually warning signs that the tree is a hazard. The following are signs that a tree might be in danger of falling.
Look out for these signs
Deep cracks or missing bark –Canker is a term used to refer to an area where the bark of a tree is missing. According to experts at the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors (InterNACHI), a tree is likely to break at the canker point even though the wood seems fine. The same applies for areas with deep cracks.
A trunk cavity –When a tree drops a branch during pruning, a hole can form in the trunk, resulting in decay. According to the United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service, that is only a sign of danger if the wood around the hole is not strong enough to support the tree.
Leaning trunk –InterNACHI recommends tree removal in cases where a tree is leaning at an angle of more than 15 degrees as a result of root damage or the force of wind. However, trees that have a natural tilt because of the direction in which they grew are not considered to be hazardous.
Falling/dead branches – It’s a bad sign when a tree begins to drop its branches or bits of branches. The reason the tree does this is to reduce its size because there is not enough in the soil to feed on. Dead branches pose a huge risk. Even on a calm day, they may come crashing down, seemingly spontaneously.
Rotten roots – This is a difficult, if not impossible, sign to spot. According to tree removal Dallas experts, mushrooms growing at the base can be a sign of rotting roots. Another good clue is the growth of fungus on the trunk.
Shedding leaves from the outside coming in –When a tree start to lose its leaves from the outside coming in, it is an indication that the root zone of the tree has a problem. The tree accesses water and nutrients through the root zone. Furthermore, the root zone supports the tree. An unhealthy root system could cause the tree to fall.
Tight branch growth –It is not a good sign when the tree’s branches grow too close together, forming a V-shape. According to experts, U-shaped unions are the strongest. Willow, yellow poplar, oak, maple and elm trees are prone to breaking at weak points of V-shaped forks. Strong winds can cause the trees to come apart. It is easiest to spot these weak point during winter.