Did you know that, on average, putting a new roof on your home or business will cost you more than $7,000? It could also force you to move out of your home or shut down your business for a few days while roof installation is being done. That’s why it’s so important to make sure the proper roof maintenance is completed throughout the course of a given year.
Unfortunately, there are many home and business owners who don’t have the slightest clue where to start when it comes to roof maintenance. As a result, they end up having to do roof repairs that wouldn’t be necessary if they had simply taken the time to maintain their roof. They also end up needing a roof replacement long before they should really have to do it.
Follow these 10 roof maintenance tips to keep your roof strong for years to come.
1. Inspect Your Roof on Your Own at Least Twice Every Year
This is probably the easiest roof maintenance step you can take, and yet, it’s also likely the most important. According to the National Roofing Contractors Association, you should be getting up on a ladder at least twice during the year, preferably in the early spring and late fall, to visually inspect the condition of your roof.
You don’t need to walk your entire roof to carry out a successful roof inspection. You just need to get up there and scan it to see if you can find anything that might need to be investigated further.
For example, you can look to see if any roofing shingles were blown off during a recent storm. You can also look for any evidence of damage done to your gutter system during the wintertime. In general, you just want to see if there is anything that looks concerning so that you can call a professional in to help, if necessary.
2. Seek a Professional Roof Inspection at Least Once Every Year
While you can conduct a visual inspection of your roof on your own a couple times a year as part of regular roof maintenance, you won’t know exactly what to check for if you don’t have experience dealing with roofs. You also won’t have the wherewithal to fix problems, even if you do spot them.
Therefore, you should consider having a professional roof inspection done at least once annually, especially if you run a commercial business. The roof of your business is obviously of the utmost importance to you, so you should take the time to ensure it won’t leak during the next heavy downpour.
During a professional inspection, roofing contractors will get up on your roof and test every single aspect of it. From doing a basic visual inspection in areas you might not be able to see from a ladder to pinpointing tiny leaks that might go unnoticed otherwise, professionals will be able to do a thorough inspection for you before leaving your roof.
3. Clean Your Gutters Regularly During the Summer and Fall
You might not realize this, but your gutter system plays a big role in the overall well-being of your roof. Your gutters are used to take water from your roof and transport it down to the ground safely, so if they’re sagging, pitched in the wrong direction, or just old, they might not be able to do their job effectively. It can eventually lead to a leaky roof.
You can make sure your gutters are free and clear by cleaning them out throughout the summer and fall seasons when debris can end up in them and make it difficult for water to get by. You can also keep an eye on them throughout the remainder of the year and make sure water is passing through them during and after storms.
If you ever notice water pooling around the outside of your home or business or sitting in your gutters for extended periods of time, you will need to have a professional come and repair or replace them. Otherwise, they could very well harm your roof and wear it out quickly.
4. Check Out Your Flashing for Signs of Leaks
Flashing is the metal material installed around chimneys, exhaust stacks, and other vents in order to prevent water from leaking around the edges of them. This material is known to cause leaks when flashing is broken, punctured, or missing altogether. The sealant placed around flashing can also fail and cause you serious issues.
If you are able to access your flashing, you can inspect it on your own during roof maintenance to see if it looks like it’s allowing any water to get past it. If you see anything that looks off, you will likely need to have your flashing replaced. This will require a small investment on your part, but installing new flashing could prevent you from having to install a whole new roof anytime soon.
5. Trim Your Tree Limbs as Necessary
Do you have a large tree hanging over the top of your home or business? That tree is likely sending tree limbs crashing down on your roof on a regular basis.
This is problematic because tree limbs falling on your roof can knock off shingles, tear off gutters, and even put holes in your roof if they’re big enough. They can also sit on top of your roof and do damage to them over time.
You will want to remove tree limbs from your roof as soon as you notice them for roof maintenance purposes. You will also want to take a look at the tree that is dropping the limbs and see if it needs to be trimmed occasionally. Again, this aspect of roof maintenance will come at a small cost, but it will be well worth it when your roof is protected from falling branches.
6. Look Out for Animals Invading Your Roof
There are quite a few animals that are known for making their way into roofs in order to find shelter. Squirrels, raccoons, chipmunks, and other small animals have no problem weaseling their way into tiny gaps in your roofline. They will even create holes in your roof themselves to gain access.
If you suspect you have animals living up in your attic, you will want to call an exterminator to get rid of them. You will also want to have an exterminator find the entry points for the animals so you can have a roofing professional come and make the necessary repairs to your roof.
This will get rid of animals and extend the lifespan of your roof when you take this roof maintenance step.
7. Watch Out for Mildew and Moss Growing on Your Roof
When you look at your roof from ground level, does it look like there is something growing on it? This could very well be the case, especially if your roof is located in the shade. Mildew and moss love to grow on shady roofs that are protected from the sun.
When you have these things growing on your roof, it can be a problem for a couple different reasons. For starters, mildew and moss can obviously make your roof look unsightly. It will look like it needs to be replaced, and you will hate how it drags your curb appeal down.
But that isn’t the only reason to do roof maintenance and have mildew and moss removed right away. These things can also cause moisture to form on your roof. When that happens, your roof can start to rot away slowly, and in all likelihood, the mildew and moss will continue to spread and damage more and more areas of your roof before it’s all said and done.
There are ways to prevent this from happening, but you’ll need to react quickly by having roofing professionals come out to treat your roof. The last thing you want to do is ignore this problem and allow it to spiral completely out of control.
8. Walk Around the Perimeter of Your Home to Check for Roofing Problems
While most people think they need to get up on a ladder to inspect the integrity of a roof, there are some ways to do roof maintenance on the ground. You can do it by walking around the outside of your home, especially after a bad storm, to look for any signs of problems.
Here are a few things that might indicate an issue with your roof:
- Shingles on the ground: While these shingles could very well have come from someone else’s roof, there’s at least a decent chance they belong to you.
- Pieces of your gutter system on the ground: It’s pretty hard to miss a huge gutter on the ground. But keep an eye out for more than just gutter pieces. You might also come across nails that are used to hold your gutters up, pieces of your downspout, and more during a visual inspection.
- Water pooling around your foundation: If your roof isn’t draining water properly, it can spill water over the sides of your home where it will often gather near your foundation. You do not want this to be the case, as it could present some real problems for the structural integrity of your entire home.
9. Get Up in Your Attic to See If You Should Be Concerned About Anything
There are some home and businesses owners who go up in their attics all the time. If you are one of those people, then you’re already conducting roof maintenance without even recognizing it. You’re making sure there aren’t any problems in your attic that could represent an issue with your roof.
But if you don’t make it up into your attic regularly, you should get into the habit of doing it once a month or so, just to see if you can find any issues related to your roof. You should keep your eyes peeled for tiny holes in the roof (if you see sunlight coming into your attic, that’s obviously not good!), water spots, mold, and more.
If your roof is leaking, you will often see signs of it in your attic first. So don’t be afraid to get up into the attic from time to time to do roof maintenance from that angle.
10. Call a Roof Company at the First Sign of Roofing Issues
We have tried to stress this over and over again within almost all of the other tips here, but the best roof maintenance you can do is getting in touch with a roofing company if you see any early signs of trouble.
- If your roof appears to be leaking, call a roofing company.
- If your roof has flashing that is suddenly missing, call a roofing company.
- If your roof has animals congregating on it at all times of the day and night, call a roofing company.
- If you have a green substance growing on your roof, call a roofing company.
- If your roof is old and could simply benefit from an inspection, call a roofing company.
The roof on your home or business is, without a doubt, one of the most important parts of it, and there is going to come a time when you will need to replace it. But for now, you should do everything you can to make your roof last for as long as it possibly can.
By having regular roof maintenance done, you can get the peace of mind that comes along with knowing you have a solid roof over your head. You can also save quite a bit of money over the years and prevent the need for any costly repairs, either now or in the future.
So, what are you waiting for? Start making roof maintenance more of a priority now, and you will reap the benefits for many years to come.
Learn More About Roof Maintenance Now
Hire a roofing company today for all of your roof maintenance, roof repairs, and roof replacement.
Read our blog for more information on why it’s essential for you to have commercial roof work done at the first sign of damage.
Or give us a call at (972) 929-9944 to talk about how we can help with your roof maintenance needs.