Handyman's Corner

by Jason Mueller

ROOF MAINTENANCE TIPS

One of the worst things a homeowner may ever face is having to admit defeat and call a roofing company to repair a leaky roof. Besides buying the building itself, replacing a roof can be one of the most expensive material items a person will ever have to buy. In most situations, a home owner does not have the experience needed to hop up on the roof and check it out to look for signs of damage or issues that may need a quick fix to ensure the roof is in good condition. A little maintenance during the year can help extend the life of your roof and help prevent costly repairs, or even replacement from being necessary.

If you can’t stand the thought of climbing a ladder and stepping high in the air onto your roof, the best thing to do is schedule a roof maintenance inspection with a licensed, professional roofing contractor so they can check things out for you. The contractor may want to know if you have a satellite dish or if your area has experienced severe weather such a hail or major storm weather before they come out to inspect.

Here are some important maintenance tips to help keep your roof in the best shape possible for years to come.

Inspection

This is the first step to roof maintenance and should be done at least twice every year. You don’t want to go up and walk on the roof because that alone can cause damage, but if you have a good pair of binoculars or can see the whole roof clearly from climbing a ladder and looking across, then check for loose or missing shingles, tree limbs, animals or debris that can cause damage. If you prefer, a roofing professional can always be scheduled to come out for a visual inspection.

 

Attic

The attic needs to be inspected just as the exterior of the roof is inspected. To the naked eye, a roof can look great, but once you climb into the attic or attic crawlspace, you might find signs of water leaking or even mold or mildew from where a roof has leaked without your knowledge. Sometimes, mildew or mold may be caused from poor circulation in the attic or even from a bathroom exhaust fan that hasn’t been properly vented outside. If ventilation is a problem, it should be repaired to prevent moisture inside from damaging the roof.

 

Gutters

Some people don’t take time to consider their gutters when they inspect a roof. If the gutter is filled with leaves and other gunk, it can spread onto the roof and it can also prevent water from draining from the roof to ground effectively. This means water and other debris may pile onto the roof and things like that can damage shingles and eventually, damage deep inside the roof itself. Gutters also need to be checked to make sure they are installed properly to help with water drainage. Some people find their gutters are not sloped right, and this can lead to water puddling on the roof.

Trees

If you have trees close enough to the house, they need to be trimmed to avoid branches falling onto the roof or even to prevent animals like squirrels from climbing up to nest in the chimney or near roof vents for plumbing or stoves. All it takes is one bad storm to have a tree topple over and destroy a roof.

Chimneys and Skylights

Any roof that has a chimney, skylight, plumbing vent or other vent or pipe poking through the roof needs to be checked to make sure everything is sealed well around the protrusion. These areas are typically one of the main sources of a leak when a roof has a leak. If you have a satellite dish on the roof, it’s important to check behind the installer to make sure they have used the right tar or rubber to seal around the base of the dish so there are no holes in the roof where there should not be any at all.

A good inspection from a professional roofing company can help keep an eye on a good roof as well as monitor a roof that may soon need repairs. Unless you are a roofer by profession, it’s never a good idea to climb on the roof to check things on your own. All too often, roofs that have no damage will have some once an inexperienced homeowner starts climbing around to check it. Regular roof maintenance needs to be performed by a roofing contractor with experience who knows what to look for.

Content Copyright 2017 Beyond The Mountain Design, Inc. All Rights Reserved.