The roof is the critical part of your home, protecting your family. It keeps you dry when wet, warm when cold and safe from the sun. Regular care and attention to your roof are necessary to ensure it protects you effectively, extends the roof’s lifespan, and prevents exuberant costs if something goes wrong. Most roofing professionals suggest it should be done at least twice a year, at the end of summer and again at the end of winter – as extreme weather conditions can significantly impact the roof.
You should follow this checklist to maintain your roof and ensure its efficiency and longevity.
Inspect the Interior – House Walls and Ceilings
Be vigilant about any signs of damage inside the house, showing that the roof needs immediate repairs or maintenance. The ceiling and attic should be checked regularly for water damage. The most common signs of water damage could include:
- water stains on walls
- peeling paint
- drips and leaks
If any of these signs are visible, you would know that it is necessary to inspect the roof or get an experienced roofing contractor to assess the roof and damage.
Check attic ventilation, as proper attic ventilation is essential for maintaining the roof’s health. Insufficient ventilation can lead to moisture build-up, resulting in rot and damage.
Inspect the Exterior – Roof Surface and Cleanliness
Dirt and debris can cause water to dam, drains to clog, and rot. These negative factors will cause decay of roof surfaces and shingles or corrosion of metal roofs. Remove organic debris and residue regularly – depending on the wind and trees around your property close to the roof, with a leaf blower or broom.
Limit foot traffic on the roof that can scuff granules of shingles or cause cracks or lifting of the shingles. That goes for overhanging tree branches getting into contact with the shingles. It must be cut back to protect the roof surface and prevent leaves and branches from collecting on the roof. When cleaning shingles, be sure not to damage or crack the shingles.
Shingles can tell a lot about the condition of a roof and is easy to inspect yourself. Look for shingles that are curled, missing, or cracked. A professional should replace or check these as soon as possible to make the necessary repairs. Deteriorating shingles can be ineffective to prevent further UV degradation because of damaged granules. Curled shingles can cause water to gather underneath the shingles and then overflow onto your sidings, or bricks or moss can grow and further damage the roof’s surface.
Flashing in valleys on the roof or near chimneys, skylights, and vent pipes ensures watertight seals on the roof. Check flashings to see if they are not dented, rusted, missing fasteners, cracked, or rotting away. Sealants in these places must be replaced if they show any deterioration. Damaged or decaying flashings are another sign of severe damage to the roof’s surface.
Chimneys, vent pipes, skylights, and other equipment on the roof must be checked for cleanliness signs of rust, rot, fungus, and peeling paint. Chimneys and skylights are common sources of roof leaks. Bent elements, loose or missing brackets and fasteners, and animal nests in the bends should be checked and taken care of. Support must be fastened to prevent causing damage to the roof.
Clean the Gutters
Cleaning the gutters is an essential part of maintaining your roof. Clogged drains allow water to seep under the roof’s structure, leaking down external walls into the foundations and causing structural damage. This job must be done twice yearly – in late spring and late fall.
Gutters must always be kept clean and free-flowing to keep water from seeping under the shingles into the house and down the wall into the foundations. Make sure the gutters are securely attached.
Trim Overhanging Branches
Besides damage to the roof’s shingles, branches create a breeding ground for moisture and mold with falling leaves and twigs. With heavy storms, bigger branches can cause more damage and should be prevented before additional expenses.
A detailed record of your roof’s maintenance and repairs is essential. You can track the history of previous repairs and what significant repairs could be due soon. Following this checklist by first checking inside, moving to the roof’s exterior, cleaning the gutters, and trimming overhanging branches can significantly extend the roof’s life and prevent costly repairs.
Make roof maintenance your priority to enjoy a comfortable, well-protected home.
Whenever you suspect a problem, do not hesitate to call the professionals at Phoenix Roofing & Solar. Our professionals will inspect your roof and provide a free estimate for the required repair work.