Roof maintenance is an important way to help prevent damage and extend the life of your roof. It can help you catch signs of early damage as well, and keep small problems from damaging the rest of your house. Here are some basic maintenance actions you should be doing to help take care of your roof!
A leaky roof will cause damage to the rest of your home, allowing water to damage your walls, insulation, and foundation, as well as allow air to get out, making your home less efficient. Overall it increases risk of rot and damage. You should check for leaks to prevent any of this from happening. Look around any items that project from the roof such as roof vents or chimneys. You can also check in an attic to look for evidence of leaks. You should look for water, mold, or black stains. You can also test for problems by using a garden hose to run over areas you may suspect a leak. Let the hose run and have someone help you look for signs that the water is coming through.
Regular roof inspections are an important part of maintaining the life of your roof and preventing damage to your home. Regular inspections can help you find any problems before they become significant. When you catch small problems, they are easy to fix, but when not taken care of can cause significant damage to your home. You should have a roof inspection after a large storm where there could have been damage. You should also schedule these regularly, even if you don’t suspect damage. The roof inspection done by a professional will find signs of aging, maintenance or storm damage, leaks, and poor drainage.
Trees around your home can do damage to your roof. Tree limbs can break off and fall on your roof during severe storms. Depending on the size of the limbs, this can cause damage to your shingles or the structure underneath. Leaves also can pile up on top of the shingles, which causes rotting due to the built up moisture. So, to help maintain your roof, you should trim your trees on a regular schedule, both for the purposes of landscaping and roof maintenance. You should trim any limbs that overhang the roof to reduce the potential for damage.
Cleaning your gutters is important to protecting your roof, your home, and paving. When gutters are clogged, they can flood and cause water damage. A clogged gutter can constantly fill with water and spill over, which can cause your roof to rot or to form leaks. Having clogged cutters can also cause them to crack. Cracks let water into your paving, weakening it and causing further damage. This water can also pool around your home which can crack the foundation during the winter when water freezes and thaws.
Having damaged shingles can lead to a damaged roof. Shingles offer significant protection for your roof, but if they are damaged or missing, your roof risks being exposed to the elements. You should check your shingles for signs of aging, damage, or for any that are missing. This way you can replace any missing or damaged shingles which will help extend the life of your roof. Missing shingles can also make your roof look unsightly, so replacing any that are missing will improve the look of your home overall.
Your roof is exposed to many elements on a constant basis. Your roof can get dirt which can easily be washed away by rain. Other stains and discoloration can be other elements that can do damage to your room. Some examples are algae, fungus, lichen, and moss. Each of these living organisms are ones that can eat away at your shingles. Algae feed off asphalt and can cause mold and spores to spread. Lichens can get deep in the shingles and use the base for nourishment which damages the shingles. Moss causes the shingles to lift and can also freeze in the winter doing further damage. Getting your roof cleaned can help prevent algae, fungus, lichen, and moss from growing on your roof, as well as wash away any dirt, keeping your roof looking clean.
Your home has flashings at joints that provide a barrier to water getting into your home. To help these structures do their job, they need to be caulked. This caulking needs to be regularly inspected to prevent any leaks. Leaks can cause water to get into your home which can cause significant damage over time. Inspecting caulk should be done on an annual basis. You should also check to make sure that the caulk is intact and is not lifting in any places. To help fix any problems, you can remove the caulk by scraping it away and apply a new caulk to fill in gaps.
Ice dams cause damage to your roof. Ice dams form when air from the attic warms the roof and melts snow. The water gathers around the edges of the roof and re-freezes. Water can get backed up and go under the shingles, causing leaks and damage to your roof and your home. Make sure that ice doesn’t build up onto your roof during the winter to prevent ice dams from happening, though don’t try to break or pry off ice that has already formed. You can use a roof rake to get rid of snow close to the gutters. Ensure that your home doesn’t have any air leaks or poor insulation to also prevent ice dams and maintain your roof.
Basic roof maintenance will help you extend the life of your roof. Maintenance can help you prevent problems and see signs of damage early. Most maintenance you can even do on your own. However, you should still regularly get your roof inspected by a professional who can help ensure the quality of your roof!
Read this next: Why You Should Consider Upgrading Your Roof