Your roof could last half a century or more, depending on a handful of factors. For one thing, the material plays into its lifespan. But so, too, does the regular roof maintenance that you put in — or not.
As it turns out, you can keep your house’s roofing in shape with just a few maintenance steps. They’re not even jobs that’ll keep you busy every weekend — they’re just vital checks to make each year to ensure your residential roofing lasts as long as possible. Otherwise, you’ll need a roof repair or even a total replacement.
1. Inspect Your Roof Visually
You probably don’t want to climb onto your roof to check that its shingles are intact, and that’s for the best. Only trained professionals should ever sit or walk a roof, as they know how to do so without sliding and falling off.
However, from the ground, you can still inspect your roof and shingles. Do you see any shingles that appear damaged? Or, have you pinpointed a spot where there’s a shingle missing?
If so, you will want to call in the pros to repair your shoddy shingles right away. You don’t want a weakened roof to damage the exterior or interior of your home, so act quickly if you see anything.
2. Check the Sealant, Too
Your roof isn’t just its shingles. There’s likely an outline of sealant that helps your roof stand even stronger against the elements.
You should regularly check the edges of your roof to make sure the sealant is still there and working. Be on the lookout for any cracks, too, as these can develop into holes over time.
Unfortunately, you can’t just apply more sealant over the cracks. Instead, you will have to remove the entire stretch of sealant in that area and apply a new layer. Again, call in the professionals to help you if you find a roof leak.
3. Cut Back Any Overhanging Trees
Another potential problem for your roof is overhanging trees and branches. It’s not just because a storm could knock part of the tree loose and damage the roof, either.
As it turns out, it’s the tree’s leaves that are the problem. If leaves fall down onto your roofing, they will sit there and start to retain moisture. Over time, your roof shingles might start to rot if they sit in this dampness for too long.
You can keep this problem at bay by regularly pruning the trees around your home. You should be extra careful about handling this DIY job on your own, too. Call in a professional landscaper or tree surgeon to safely remove branches without hurting yourself or damaging your roof.
4. Clean the Gutters
On that note, fallen leaves, sticks, and other debris can be detrimental to your roof in more ways than one. That’s why you should be emptying out your gutters once a year, at the very least.
Now, a clogged gutter poses a different kind of threat than, say, a roof covered in fallen leaves. If your gutters are clogged, precipitation can’t flow off of your roof and onto the ground. If it starts overflowing and, in effect, sitting on your roof, it will cause damage — likely to the inside and outside of your home.
So, be sure to keep up with your yearly gutter cleanings. The start of a new year is the perfect time to clean them — and remember to do so annually, too.
5. Look For Rust
Water can be a big problem for roofs with lots of metal components. Spoiler alert: that’s the majority of roofs.
A visual inspection of all the metal hardware on your roof should be part of your roof maintenance routine, too. If you see rust, you should remove it ASAP. That way, the metal will stay strong and healthy for longer.
You’ll just need a dry brush to remove the rust. When you’re done, you can re-paint the metal so it looks fresh and completes the look of your home’s exterior.
6. Keep It Cool
A warm roof can spell disaster in winter. If snow melts on your roof before re-freezing into ice, it can get heavy and cause damage. Plus, you probably don’t want large ice blocks forming on — and potentially falling off of — your roof.
So, make sure your home is properly insulated. This will keep heat from escaping through the roof, ensuring it stays cool enough to slide off snow without melting it.
7. Have a Roof Cleaning
You don’t have to be the only one helming your roof maintenance service. There are plenty of professionals out there who can help you keep your roof in tip-top shape.
A roof cleaning will remove damaging mold, mildew, and lichen from your roof. The power wash will make your shingles look fresh and new again, restoring curb appeal to your abode.
Maintain Your Roofing With Us
Most of these tips can help you with roof maintenance on your own. But if you want to make sure your roofing is solid and will be for years to come, you should call us over for an inspection or cleaning. From there, we can decide if your home needs a repair or even a replacement to get the best roof possible over your heads.