Most homeowners don’t think about their roof until something drastic has happened. Whether a storm has pulled off some shingles, or you notice a leak, the chance to prevent a big problem has already passed. It does not have to be this way if you take preventative measures to keep roofing problems at bay.
Take Action to Avoid Roof Issues
Roofing problems can cause extensive damage that affects the interior space of your property. What seemed like a slight issue can quickly turn out to be a huge problem that requires a lot of time and money to resolve.
The best way to save time and money is to take steps to prevent common roofing problems. There are a few things you should do before your roof starts showing signs of trouble and eventually fail.
1. Installation by a Licensed Roofing Contractor
A good place to start is to initially have your roof properly installed by a certified and licensed contractor. A professional roofing contractor will know how to correctly install flashing and ice and water shields to protect those areas most vulnerable to leaks.
2. Regular Roof Inspections
Each year, before and after the winter season, it’s important to thoroughly examine your roof. If you aren’t comfortable with getting onto your roof, call a professional who has the experience and equipment to inspect your roof meticulously and safely. A roof inspection will check for red flags for issues that may need immediate attention, such as:
- Damaged or missing shingles
- Algae growth
- Insect and animal activity
- Leaking liquid in the attic
- Light showing through the attic
3. Clean Your Gutters
Most homeowners dread cleaning their gutters. It’s time consuming, messy and involves being on a ladder. But it’s a necessary step to allow your roof to properly dispel water. It prevents greater issues like water saturation and leaks that lead to rotting wood and the development of mold.
You should also check the fascia, which is attached to the gutter, and make sure it hasn’t been damaged by water, wind, insects or animals. Non-functional fascia can cause water to creep into your home.
4. Unwanted Vegetation
Moss and algae can wreak havoc on an improperly protected roof. Not only can these plant pests be unsightly and hard to get rid of, but they can also create major problems for your roof. Your shingles can start to buckle and deteriorate.
To minimize moss and algae growth on your roof, your roofing contractor can install zinc strips at the peak of your roof during roof installation. Zinc is a natural enemy of moss and algae.
5. Trim Your Trees
If part of a tree is almost touching or resting on your roof, that’s cause for major concern. During storms, limbs can swing several feet or break due to high winds. If you don’t end up with a hole in your roof, you’ll probably lose a few shingles. Trimming your trees also discourages animals from getting into chimneys, walls, and vents.
6. Clear Snow Immediately
A light to medium layer of snow can make your house look like a winter wonderland. A foot or more of heavy packed snow can cause your roof to collapse. Monitor the state of your roof after a heavy snowfall. If the amount of snow is concerning, use a roof rake to remove it before it has the chance to create any major issues.
7. Remove All Debris
Leaves, sticks, and small limbs can trap water, encourage algae growth and damage shingles. Using a roof rake or telescoping pole to remove them is a simple solution to prevent damage to your roof.
8. Inspect Seals, Joints, And Flashing
Seals, joints, and flashing are the most common places for leaks. Dried, loose or punctured sealant are signs of a vulnerable roof. Extending the life of your roof comes down to taking immediate action once you identify a problem.
9. Membrane Shrinkage
If you have a flat or low-pitch roof, chances are your roof is protected by a rubber membrane. Problems can occur if the membrane dries out and loses its elasticity. That's when it can shrink and pull away from shingles and flashing, creating weak spots in the roof where leaks and deterioration can occur.
Some steps you can take to avoid shrinkage include having your rubber membrane correctly installed and getting it inspected once or twice a year by an experienced contractor.
Protect Your Roof
Taking care of your roof can save you money and an unnecessary headache. A good roofing professional can save you time. Brian Dawson roofing can inspect and repair your roof. We also recommend regular maintenance where we can prevent problems from occurring in the first place.