Considering how rarely many homeowners pay attention to it on a daily basis, it’s easy to forget to maintain your home’s roofing. However, the roof is one of the most important aspects of the home’s exterior, keeping the home protected and insulated. If you want to keep the roof in good condition year-round, follow these maintenance tips.
1. Regularly Check Your Roofing’s Condition
The first step to keep your roof consistently maintained is to check the condition of your shingles on a regular basis, particularly after experiencing a storm or strong winds. However, you don’t need to climb up to inspect the roof. If you have a pair of binoculars with you, you can use these to examine the roof from the safety of your yard. When checking the roof, look for any peeling, missing, curling, or cracked shingles, along with any missing granules. If you see any signs of damage, it may be time to contact roof repair professionals.
2. Check for Any Leaks
Another clear sign of roof damage is the presence of any water stains in your ceilings or leaking through the ceilings or attic. In addition to water stains on the ceiling, you may be able to identify a leak if you smell any musty odors in the home, see water spots on the home’s exterior walls, or see any bulging patches on the interior walls.
Any signs of a leak indicate that it’s time to get repairs or, in some cases, replace the entire roof.
3. Get a Professional Inspection
Even if you see clear signs of damage, a professional inspection of your roof can identify anything you might have missed and give you some specific steps to take to keep the roof in good shape. A reliable inspector will be able to tell you how many more years your roof will last and let you know when you need repairs or a complete replacement. Ideally, you should get an inspection once every year to every two years if you want to identify any problems before they become roofing nightmares.
4. Winterizing Your Roof
If you live in an area with a particularly cold winter climate, it’s important to make sure your roof is prepared to handle winter conditions. This can entail reinforcing the roof to prevent any ice dams from building up, insulating the attic, checking for any damage from pests that could worsen in winter, and checking for damage to caulk and flashings. Taking these steps in addition to contacting professionals for help can help you successfully prepare the roof for a harsh winter.
5. Wash the Roof
Over time, your roof will begin to appear dirty, especially if you have a shingle roof. Dark streaks may develop and give the roof an ugly appearance, which is the result of algae growth. Although algae won’t cause any direct damage to the roof, it could lead to rotting shingles if ignored.
To keep the roof clear of algae, you can spray a half-water, half-bleach solution that effectively kills algae. To add more protection against algae, consider installing copper strips under the peak of the roof, which will quickly kill any algae as the copper molecules travel down the room when it rains.
6. Keep the Gutters Clean
Cleaning the gutters can be a time-consuming pain for many homeowners, but it’s necessary if you want your roof to remain in good condition. If your gutters have the chance to clog, water will be able to seep into the roof to cause staining and damage. While you can clean your gutters twice a year in the fall and the spring, you can more effectively keep your gutters in good condition with the help of gutter-guarding installations made of mesh screens that keep leaves and other debris out.
7. Maintain the Chimney
The chimney is an integral part of the roof, so it’s important to check for any structural damage or wear that could cause bricks or the entire chimney to collapse and fall on the roof and cause severe damage. Professionals can repair chimneys by sealing any cracks present in the mortar.
8. Keep Trees Trimmed
Overhanging branches can also fall on your roof and cause damage, which is more likely in high winds that break tree limbs off and fling them in the direction of the roof. Branches can also drop leaves accumulate over time on the roof and gather moisture or clog the gutters. You can avoid these issues by ensuring that trees are trimmed regularly.
Taking all of these steps can help you maintain your roof on a regular basis and prevent potentially devastating and costly damage to not only the roof but to the rest of the home.
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