If I were to ask 20 people in a room, “Do you feel comfortable getting on your roof?” I think the number of affirmative responses would be low. Some homeowners gladly jump up there from time to time to check things out, but most homeowners seem to avoid physically getting on their roofs. A lot of times, homeowners aren’t thinking about their roofs—until that leak springs up. At that point, the roof demands attention. Some homeowners are in a position to replace it right away while others might need that roof to last another year or two. With this in mind—and regardless of if you want to follow these tips yourself or hire a professional—let’s talk about 5 ways to extend the life of your roof:
- Consistently Clean Your Roof of All Debris
- Stay on Top of Minor Repairs
- Clean Your Gutters
- Maintain Wood Siding
- Schedule an Annual Roof Inspection
Here’s a More In-depth Explanation:
- Consistently Clean Your Roof of All Debris —Many times during the year, trees drop leaves, limbs, and other growth. Before you know it, a big pile has accumulated in the valley. Moisture then gets trapped on the shingles beneath the pile. Shingles that are consistently wet start to rot. To avoid this mess, make sure leaves and debris are cleaned off your roof several times a year.
- Stay on Top of Minor Repairs—Don’t let minor repairs turn into major repairs. If a shingle or two is missing, get them repaired right away. Also, loose flashing can easily be repaired. Over the years, nails that hold flashing down can start to wiggle loose. Keep an eye out and re-nail the flashing. Also, caulk all nail heads that are exposed. Use a good quality tube of caulk from a roofing supply store such as ABC Building Supply.
- Clean Your Gutters —This is one of the dirtiest—and sometimes smelliest—jobs of home maintenance but an important one, nonetheless. Gutters are designed to carry water away from your house thereby protecting the foundation of your home. If the gutters become clogged, they begin to overflow and can rot the fascia board. Depending on the style of the house, a second-story gutter might overflow onto a first-story roof, creating the potential for leaks.
- Maintain Wood Siding Around Chimneys and Walls that Meet the Roof —Wood siding boards that are starting to rot or have caulk that is cracked or peeling off can be problematic. Water can get behind the wood siding and then eventually run behind shingle flashings. This can lead to leaks or damage to the roof’s decking.
- Schedule an Annual Roof Inspection —A yearly roof inspection can make a huge difference. A good roofing company knows where the problem areas are and what to look for. They can find small problems before they become big things.
We hope that these 5 tips have helped you understand how you can prolong the life of your roof. If you are a homeowner that says there’s no way you’re getting on your roof, but you have some concerns about it, don’t hesitate to contact us. We’re here to help.