You keep on top of preventative maintenance for your car, your health, and your home – but what about the roof over your head? A roof is one of the most vulnerable parts of a home’s exterior because it’s constantly exposed to all kinds of weather conditions and other elements.
A roof’s performance is based on quality materials, good design, proper installation, and a maintenance program. Regular roof maintenance is critical to avoiding roof damage and keeping it watertight. It allows you to detect problems early, minimize repairs, and ensure your roof lasts for its expected lifespan.
Here are 3 steps for maintaining your roof:
1. Keep Comprehensive Records Regarding the Roof
You should keep and maintain accurate, comprehensive, and up to date records of your roof system. The records should contain information such as the:
• roofing type and manufacturer
• approximation of the roofing area
• installer or contractor information
• inspection reports
The findings of all roofing inspections should be properly documented to allow you and your contractor to track the condition of your roof and prevent future damage to your roofing system. This information can give you insight into whether the inspection, maintenance techniques, and repairs done have had any impact in extending your roof’s lifespan. This can also help determine if enough repairs have been performed and when you’ll need a roofing replacement so you can prepare yourself and budget for it.
If you’re not the one who installed your current roof, chances are the roof has been handled, repaired, and serviced by different contractors. If available, maintain a record of the roofing contractor, the materials used, and the date of the roofing work.
As for your insurance, it’s important to do yearly checks on your policy to be sure it hasn’t been converted to an ACV (actual cash value) policy. ACV policies aren’t equal to how much a roof replacement would cost; instead, they’re calculated by the depreciation of your roof subtracted from the replacement cost. This means if you need a replacement from a natural disaster or “act of God,” your insurance won’t cover it.
2. Have Your Roof Maintained Regularly
It’s recommended to have your roof checked at least twice a year. As for when roof inspection should be done, spring and fall are the best times to help spot any problems because the weather tends to be milder and humidity relatively low.
During winter, your roof takes the brunt of inclement weather conditions, such as hail, snow, wind, and rain. This is why it’s important to ensure there was no damage incurred from the winter weather and also prepare your roof for the intense summer heat. The optimal weather conditions of spring make it easier for roofing crews to move around the home and work on the roof.
Waiting until winter to have your roof inspected or repaired may be too late. It’s more dangerous for roofers to get up on the roof due to frost, snow, ice, and freezing temperatures. It’s also difficult to repair shingles in winter because they become brittle and hard to work with. The clear skies and mild temperatures of fall make for the perfect conditions for roof inspection and repair.
It’s also a good idea to have a contractor inspect the roof after a big storm. Even a new roof should be inspected after weather events with high winds or hail because no roof is impervious to storm damage no matter age. Even if there isn’t any visible damage, your roof could have suffered hidden damage which will slowly extend and show up at a later time. If damage is detected, repairs should be done as soon as possible before they become serious.
3. Never Get on the Roof
Working on the roof is not the same as fixing a leak in the bathroom. You’ll be on a steep, slanting surface high off the ground. What’s more, you may not have the tools or skills necessary to identify problems and fix them.
Even if you consider yourself a handyman who wants to make significant savings, walking on the roof without a full understanding of how the roofing system works may end up damaging the materials, creating gaps, or causing structural damage to the integrity of the roof when you walk on a weak spot.
If you want to inspect the roof yourself, do it from the ground and look for things like:
• Tree branches of debris on your roof
• Moss or algae growth
• Loose, rusted, or cracked gutters
• Broken, missing, blistering, buckling, or broken shingles
• Granules in your gutters or downspouts
• Signs of moisture interior of the home, such as mold, wet walls, leaks, or stained ceiling
• Areas of previous repair to see how they’re holding up
Get a Professional Contractor for Roof Maintenance
When you hire a local, reliable contractor for roof maintenance, you can actually count on them to provide you with inspections and make recommendations on any repairs needed. Roofers have the training and experience necessary to uncover problems which may not be visible to the untrained eye.
While no roof will last forever, the detection and repair of hidden leaks, swift replacement of missing or damaged shingles, and proper ventilation can help your roof last for its expected lifetime.
If you’re looking for a reliable contractor to inspect and repair your roof in the Akron and Cleveland areas, turn to Exteriors Plus. We’re committed to providing top-quality service, workmanship, and professionalism. We do every roofing job with durability and integrity in mind to provide lasting performance and weather protection. Contact us today for all your roofing replacement needs.