How To Inspect And Maintain A Roof For Homeowners

Replacing a roof on a home can cost thousands of dollars and for that reason it’s a great idea to inspect and maintain the roof on your room. Inspecting and maintaining the roof on a home can save a homeowner a lot of money by extending the life of the roof and postponing the date you have to replace the roof. Below are some simple tips the average homeowner can take to extend the life of their roof.

One of the most overlooked aspects of home maintenance is the roof and the maintenance that should be routinely done on it. The average asphalt shingle roof lasts about 15-20 years but that’s only if it’s properly maintained and if leaks are kept to a minimum and repaired in a timely manner. Inspecting and maintaining your roof is simple enough but you first want to make sure that you’re in good enough physical condition to do so and that your roof isn’t dangerous to walk on. Every year the roofing industry is in the top ten for work place injuries and accidents so please don’t take working on your roof lightly.

One of the best things you can do for your roof is climb on top it every few months and basically give it a good cleaning. Leaves from trees and other debris can collect in certain areas of your roof like valleys and around flashing and create an environment where it’s easy for water to collect and pool and that can begin to deteriorate your roof. Debris collecting in valleys can also prevent the proper flow of water away from your roof and into your gutters which can also cause problems. The bottom line is every few months you want to get on your roof and remove any debris you find. The debris can lead to moisture and moisture can break down the asphalt in your roof shingles which will lead to leaks.

While on your roof you’ll also to clean and clear out your gutters. While cleaning out your gutters you’ll want to take a close look at what you find in your gutters. When the asphalt shingles on a roof begin to deteriorate, the tiny, rock-like granules on top of the shingles begin to fall off and one of the first places you’ll be able to notice this is your gutters. If you see a lot of granules in your gutters it may be a sign that your roof shingles are beginning to wear. It’s more important than ever that you keep your roof maintained to keep water from penetrating your home.

The last thing you’ll want to do on your roof is take a look at the condition of your roof shingles. The next time you’re at a home improvement store make sure to take a look at the brand new roof shingles and make note of what they look like. When the granules begin to fall off of your shingles, it’s a sign they they’re getting old. If you’re at all concerned that you may need to replace them you should call in a professional roofer.

If your roof shingles look like they’re in good condition, you’ll want to continue to look for loose or missing shingles. Missing shingles are a problem because they leave only a thin layer of tar paper between rain and your wood roof (sheathing) which will begin to rot if water is allowed to penetrate it. Replacing roof shingles isn’t rocket science but it’s also not the easiest thing in the world. If you don’t know what you’re doing it’s probably best to hire a roofer to replace the shingles for you. It may cost a bit but properly repairing your roof is a big part of getting it to last longer.

Fixing loose shingles is a lot easier and well within the realm of the average home owner. To fasten loose shingles you’ll just need some roofing cement which you can pick up at most home improvement stores. Simply apply some roofing cement to the underside of the loose shingles and hold them down until they are firmly fastened to the tar paper underneath.

The last thing you want to check out on your roof is the flashing. Flashing is made of sheet metal or thick plastic and is used to protect your roof where there are openings (chimneys and vents) and joints between two pieces of plywood. Bad flashing is one of the most common culprits of a leaking roof so make sure you inspect the flashing on your roof and ensure there are no cracks and that roofing cement has been properly applied.

To finish the inspection of your roof you’ll want to check for any existing leaks and you can do that by crawling into your attic. In your attic you’ll want to inspect the ceiling with a flashlight. You’re looking for dark water stains which are an indication of a leak. You can also ask someone to pour water on your roof with a hose while you sit in your attic and look for a leak.

Regularly inspecting and maintaining your roof is a key component to getting the most out of your roof. As you can see most of the inspecting and maintenance is doable by the average homeowner and it goes a long way in extending the life of a roof.

For more roofing repair tips and to find a good roofer in your area, please visit: Handy American Roofing Contractors

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