How Roofing Maintenance Can Save You Money
A roof is one of the most important parts of your home. It should be inspected regularly to avoid costly repairs in the future.
Roofing Columbus GA maintenance should include sweeping the roof, removing debris from the gutters and downspouts, and checking for signs of moss, lichen, or algae growth. Taking these steps prevents damage to your roof and increases curb appeal.
The shingles on the roof are a homeowner’s first line of defense against the elements. They are designed to protect the roofing system from rain, snow, hail, and UV rays. However, if the shingles are not properly maintained, the entire roof can be exposed to damage. To avoid this, homeowners should regularly inspect their shingle roofs. A visual inspection from the ground can help identify problems that should be addressed.
If the shingles are old or deteriorated, they will need to be replaced. One of the easiest ways to check shingle age is to look for fiberglass showing through the shingle’s top layer. This means that the shingle has reached its end of life and needs to be replaced.
It is also important to check for shingle blisters. These are essentially bruises on the shingle that look like the impact marks from a hail storm. These blisters should be noted, and the homeowner should be contacted about repairs or replacements.
The homeowner should also check the shingle sealant for cracking and discoloration. This is another sign of aging shingles, and it is a problem that should be repaired as soon as possible to prevent leaks. It is also important to look for broken seams around vents on the roof. These are usually caused by a lack of ventilation in the attic and can be very difficult to fix.
Lastly, the homeowner should check for shingle nail heads popping out of the roof deck. This is a sign of improper installation and should be addressed immediately before it leads to more severe damage.
The homeowner should also make sure that the gutters and eaves are free from debris and are not blocked by overhanging branches or shrubs. Overhanging branches can cause rot or allow water to collect and damage the shingles. The branches should be trimmed to keep them from touching the roof.
Clean the gutters.
Gutters serve an important function: they funnel rainwater away from your roof and the foundation of your house. If they become clogged with leaves, sticks, and other debris, water will overflow the gutter and cause damage to the fascia and siding. Clogged gutters can also lead to mold growth on the underside of your roof and allow pests and critters to nest inside.
Cleaning your gutters is a messy job that requires you to perch precariously on a ladder for long periods of time. To make the task easier, you can wear work gloves and a mask to keep materials from irritating your skin and eyes. You should also wear sturdy shoes with slip-resistant soles and have a spotter standing by to ensure you don’t fall off the ladder.
Most experts recommend that you clean your gutters at least twice a year, once in the spring and again in the fall. Some homeowners with certain types of trees near their houses may want to do it even more frequently.
Working from a ladder is always dangerous, and cleaning your gutters can be especially hazardous if you aren’t careful. Before you start, it’s essential to inspect the ladder carefully and make sure it has secure, stable footing on the ground. It’s also a good idea to have a family member or friend stand by to help you in case you get off balance and fall off the ladder.
Whenever you’re cleaning your gutters, it’s important to check for electrical wires. It’s vital that you do this because if the wire insulation has been worn off by years of wear and tear or by contact with nearby tree branches, it could become exposed to the water in the gutter and create a dangerous electrical hazard for your home.
You should also check where the downspouts meet the gutters to make sure there aren’t any clogs. If there are, you should have them cleared right away because they can overflow and cause water to back up under the shingles or down the side of your home, which can damage the walls and foundation.
Remove tree branches.
The trees in your yard are a beautiful sight, and you love the way their feathery leaves dance in the wind and the changes they undergo each season. However, when they start hanging over your roofline, it becomes a major problem—a threat, even. Whether it’s because they grew too long or you inherited them when you bought your home, it’s important to have these branches trimmed regularly to prevent damage.
Any tree limb that comes within 6 feet of your roof should be removed. While you may think that a simple trim will do the trick, it is best to leave this task to a professional arborist, as they know how far away these limbs should be from your house and how to properly cut them without causing further damage. It is also a dangerous job, and one wrong move could lead to costly and extensive damage to your roof or property in general.
You should also look for diseased and dying limbs that are rubbing or crossing each other. If a tree is showing any signs of illness, it’s a good idea to call in an arborist to see what can be done about it. This may include trimming or possibly removing the entire tree altogether.
If you have any damaged limbs that need to be removed, it is crucial to do so before the next storm comes along. Leaving them there can further damage your roof, and they are likely to fall during a storm, potentially causing even more damage to your property and the surrounding area. If a tree branch does happen to fall on your house, the added liability will affect your homeowner’s insurance policy rates. This is why it’s essential to have a certified arborist and a roofer come in to assess the damage and help you get everything fixed and cleaned up before it gets any worse. Also, remember that it is usually best to take photos of any damage before starting any work on your own so that you can submit them to your insurance company for reimbursement.
Check the flashing.
If a roof is to be structurally sound and weather-resistant, it needs to have well-installed flashing. It stops water from infiltrating joints and valleys in the roof, and it directs rainwater away from penetrations (like chimneys, skylights, vent pipes, walls, and dormers) and other problem areas like rake edges and changes in slope.
Most flashing is fabricated from metal, such as aluminum, and it is usually sold in sheets with a variety of profiles. It can be bent into different shapes with a special tool, or it can be cut to the needed length on site with a saw. In either case, the end result is a piece of metal that fits tightly into the gap between roof and wall or between roof and roof.
The most important maintenance job for a roof’s flashing is to keep it caulked securely around the perimeter. This is especially important for the flashing that surrounds penetrations, such as a chimney, vent pipe, or dormer. The roof’s flashing should also be sealed around the base of a wall interruption, such as a window.
Look for caulk that is cracked, pitted, or missing beads along the flashing seams. These gaps can allow moisture to enter a home, and it’s best to replace this caulk if you see it.
A flashing leak is a common problem, but it doesn’t have to be a major headache for a homeowner. Often, it can be corrected by removing the old caulk and resealing with roofing cement.
It’s also a good idea to regularly inspect your roof’s flashing, either as part of a comprehensive roof inspection or on its own. This will help you catch problems before they become serious leaks or structural problems, and it will ensure that the flashing is properly functioning to protect your home from moisture damage.
A properly maintained roof will last longer and be more resistant to leaks. It will also be more attractive and add value to your home. A professional roofer can provide you with more information about the proper maintenance of your roof and its flashing.