Just like cutting grass and changing air filters, roof maintenance is an important part of owning a home. If not maintained well, damage piles up and causes the roof to need extensive repairs or a total roof replacement. The good news is that whether you just bought your house, or have owned it for decades, it’s never too late to learn roof maintenance. And who better to learn from than central Virginia’s top roofing company? While we always suggest calling a professional for safety and expertise reasons, there is a great deal you can do to extend your roof’s life if you’re comfortable getting on the roof. Check out our list of DIY roof maintenance tips and why they matter.
1. Regularly Inspect Your Shingles
One of the easiest tasks you can do as a homeowner is to regularly inspect your shingles. Shingle inspection can start from the ground. Get in the habit of regularly looking at the shingles that are visible from the ground, and pay attention to how it looks. Are there any areas that look streaky, or any shingles that look like they have been cracked or been damaged? Once you’ve assessed from the ground, the next step would be to inspect from on the roof since not all damages are visible from the ground.
2. Don’t Forget About Chimneys, Skylights, and Vent Openings
Areas surrounding any chimneys, skylights, or vent openings are particularly susceptible to water intrusion because they present openings into the roof. During the installation process these openings are sealed, but over time they can begin to leak. Pay extra attention to these areas as you inspect your roof so that if there is any sign of damage or leaking, it can be caught early before extensive repairs become necessary.
3. Clean Off Debris
The next DIY task important to roof maintenance is to clean off the leaves, twigs, and other debris that accumulates on the roof. Pay special attention to valleys and areas behind chimneys and skylights as debris tends to build up there. Cleaning it off is a simple task that can make a huge difference in allowing water to drain freely off your roof. A leaf blower works well for this task. If you don’t have a leaf blower, another option is to use a broom to sweep the debris off of the roof. It is best to use a soft household broom, and gently sweep debris in the direction of the shingles to avoid breakage. Don’t use a power washer, however, because power washing introduces an immense force to your shingles that has the power to severely damage them, or even remove them altogether.
4. Check Gutters For Shingle Debris
While on the topic of debris, it’s also important to check your gutters for excess shingle debris. If there are large amounts of shingle granules in the gutters, this can indicate that the shingles are nearing the end of their useful life. If shingles have lost the majority of their granules, it means that they are susceptible to damaging UV rays. These will cause them to crack, allowing for water intrusion and potential damages to the interior of your home.
5. While You’re At It, Clean Out Those Gutters
Whether or not there is shingle debris in the gutters, cleaning them out is an important part of your roof maintenance. Gutters that are full of debris will become clogged. During a rainstorm, the water won’t be able to flow through the system correctly, and can result in water damage to the roof, fascia, soffit and foundation of your home.
6. Check For Moss And Remove It
As you’re inspecting your roof, be sure to check for the presence of moss or other green growth on your roof. Moss is particularly dangerous for roofs because once it takes root, it spreads very quickly, and causes the shingles to lift. If moss is left untreated, it can quickly cause damage so extensive that a total roof replacement is in order. When caught early, you can remove moss using water and a gentle scrub brush. Take care to scrub at a downward angle, to protect the shingles from damage.
7. Trim Low Hanging Branches Near The Roof
An often overlooked DIY roof maintenance task is trimming low-hanging branches near the roof. Branches that hang too closely to the roof can cause damage in several ways, from scraping the shingles repeatedly, to large branches actually falling on top of your roof in a storm.
8. Check The Ventilation In The Attic
The ventilation in your attic and home is a crucial part of your roofing system. Many roofs don’t have adequate or appropriate ventilation, which can lead to heat damage, among other things. Signs of inadequate ventilation include deteriorating insulation, signs of heat damage on your roof, the formation of ice dams in the winter months, and mold or mildew in your attic.
9. Routinely Check Your Attic For Leaks
The last item on the roofing maintenance checklist is to check your attic for leaks regularly. Sometimes the water damage is not very visible from the roof, or the ground, but can be found by looking for discoloration, moisture, or puddles inside the attic. If any of these signs are present, it’s time for a professional roof inspection and repair work.
Cenvar Roofing Is Here To Help
While performing routine maintenance tasks goes a long way in keeping your roof in great condition, even the best maintained roof will still have issues eventually. If you notice any signs of shingle wear-and-tear, gutter damage, attic leaks, or other types of water damage, it is time to get a professional involved. A professional roofing contractor has years of experience diagnosing and solving roof problems, and has probably seen it all. Professionals know how to identify the root cause of the issue, and can give you a solution that will take care of not just the symptom, but also the cause.
If you’re looking for a professional roofing company to handle repairs on your roof, Cenvar Roofing would love to help you. We are located throughout central Virginia, and specialize in roof repairs and replacements of all types. If you have questions and would like to schedule a further conversation with a member of our sales team, we would be happy to discuss your options with you. Fill out our free estimate form to get started!
Hannah Brown is the main author of the company blog. Her primary focus is to create and produce content for all mediums that explains the complexities of the roofing industry in simple, straightforward language. Hannah has degrees in Strategic Communication and English from Liberty University, and her work has been featured in multiple print and online publications. You can find her on LinkedIn.