One of the single greatest investments you’ll make on a home is the roof. The roof is literally what will keep you and your family covered during harsh weather and storms, not to mention a good roof also keeps the rest of the actual house protected. Essentially a strong, resilient roof is the key to a safe, structurally sound house that you can really call a home.
Like any investment, especially one that costs thousands, homeowners should strive to get the longest lifespan possible from their roof. Ask any homeowner if they would want their roof to last 5 or even 10 years longer and all will answer with a resounding “yes!”. Despite knowing the importance of a roof many homeowners still fail when it comes to properly maintaining and caring for their roof as a whole. It isn’t at all uncommon that once a new roof is installed that annual inspections and cleaning eventually stop.
Maintaining your roof isn’t difficult, and in some cases requires nothing on your part if you hire a professional service. If you are the type of homeowner that does enjoy being involved with their home’s care and maintenance there are a few different things you can do to ensure you get the longest lifespan out of your new roof as possible.
Here are just 5 ways you can get the most protection from your roof.
1. Keep Debris of Any Kind Free From Your Roof
One of the easiest ways of increasing the lifespan of your roof is simply keeping it free from debris. Leaves, twigs, small branches, and pine needles should be brushed off as soon as possible, especially after rain. This type of debris should also be cleaned from gutters on a regular basis.Also, keep an eye on nearby trees. Overhanging tree branches are an easy way for moss, algae or mold to start growing due to moisture. Tree branches should never touch the roof and it isn’t a bad idea to trim branches back far enough that leaves or small twigs won’t fall onto the roof. Having trees by your home is great for keeping things cool, just as long as you ensure you keep your roof cleared off on a regular basis.
2. Don’t Ignore Your Roof in the Winter
As beautiful as a snowy roof and icicles look, winter is not the time to ignore roof care. In fact a lot of damage could potentially occur in winter when a roof is ignored. It is the ideal time for leaks to occur. Going through this every season, year after year, will negatively impact the lifespan of your roof.Icicle and snow build up needs to be removed as soon as possible. Icicles look quite lovely but are dangerous to people and pets. The weight of them also pulls on the roof and can damage gutters, flashing, or even pull and loosen shingles. Heavy snow, especially wet snow, sitting on the roof can also loosen shingles, as well as cause water damage. The use of roof rakes, roof salt and gutter screens are good ideas.
3. Inspect Your Roof on an Annual Basis
If you have some experience with what problems to look for when it comes to your roof then you can perform your own annual inspection. This should involve you going up on a ladder and physically looking over the roof to spot any potential issues. This can also be done from the ground with binoculars but this won’t be as accurate, especially on a very large roof with many valleys. Even if you perform your own inspections it’s never a bad idea to have it professionally done every other year or every 2 years.
4. Clean Your Roof Based on Material Specs
Different roofs require different types of care. Even roof materials that seem more “fragile”, like cedar, will last quite a long time when cared for properly. For example, cedar roofs will last upwards of 35 years, but only if they are professionally cleaned and maintained every 2 to 5 years.Your roofer will have plenty of advice when it comes to caring for your roof. They may recommended annual power-washings or the use of special cleaner for keeping algae at bay. Your roofer is also the ideal person to explain what type of maintenance or basic repairs are safe for qualified homeowners and when they need to be called out. Karbella Roofing not only offers repair services, but also offers roofing maintenance in the event you want the reassurance that maintenance needs are 100% covered by a professional.
5. Take Care of Your Roof After a Storm
Caring for your roof after a storm is more involved than simply noticing if a tree branch caved in your roof. All too often homeowners forget to inspect their roof after a storm, assuming everything is fine as long as they don’t see any damage from down below. Cleaning up your roof after a storm is one of the most important times to also inspect it for any damage. Remove any leaves or debris, just as mentioned above in normal roof care, but also ensure that any tree branches haven’t damaged the shingles. Even a fairly small branch could crack a shingle. Also keep an eye out for standing water and remove this water immediately. Standing water can cause water damage fairly quickly, especially if you happen to have a weak spot in your roof. Inspect the roof overall to make sure no shingles are missing, out of place, or have curled edges. Taking care of your roof is the only way of ensuring your roof reaches or even exceeds the manufacturer’s expected lifespan. Not only will maintaining your roof prevent common problems from forming, or delaying aging in general, but it will also keep the overall exterior of your home looking more appealing. This is something to consider if you have plans of eventually selling your home.