7 Roof Maintenance Tips For Your Home in 2024
A healthy roof is important for a healthy home. Of course, it takes quite a bit of maintenance on the homeowner’s part to keep the roof overhead healthy and structurally sound.
Following are seven roof maintenance tips:
1. Keep an Eye on Your Attic and Ceiling
Roof damage caused by moisture buildup can and will lead to costly repairs. You’ll want to check your attic and top-floor ceilings for roof leaks and water damage every so often to ensure you’re in the clear. You’ll also want to check after every major storm that passes through.
While you’re up there, it’s also important to take note of:
- The condition of your insulation, which helps prevent ice dams, condensation buildup, and heat loss
- Whether or not you feel a draft, which could suggest deterioration
- Sun exposure through the rafters, which also suggests deterioration
- Signs of mold, mildew, or rotting wood
2. Check Your Asphalt Shingles Regularly
After checking the inside of your home for signs of wear and leaks, you’ll need to check the outside. To do this, you can simply walk the perimeter of your property while looking up — it helps if you have binoculars or a drone handy.
If you have an asphalt shingle roof, check for:
- Damaged shingles
- Missing shingles and bare spots
- Granule loss
- Moss, algae, or lichen growth
If you have a metal roof, check for:
- Peeling paint
If you have a slate roof (and this applies to tile roofs), check for:
- Cracked shingles
- Missing shingles
- Moss or algae growth
Regardless of your roofing material, you’ll also want to look for:
- Damaged roof flashing
- Damaged vent pipes
- Damage to the chimney
- Roof penetrations
- Standing water
- Sagging at the roof’s peak
Again, you’ll also want to check for these things after a severe storm, whether you have an asphalt shingle roof or other roofing materials. (Asphalt shingles are typically most susceptible to damage caused by storms, high winds, and moisture infiltration).
3. Trim Tree Branches and Clear Debris
Whether you live in a densely wooded area or have a few large trees around your property, you’ll need to keep them well-manicured to ensure your asphalt shingles or other roofing materials aren’t damaged by them. This includes clearing any other debris that might collect on your roof over time as well.
When you allow debris to collect and neglect overhanging branches, you run the risk of:
- Damaged shingles or shingles that have been lifted or completely ripped off
- Punctures and dents
- Damaged roofing components
- Extra weight on isolated areas of your roof, which can lead to sagging or a collapse
So, every now and again, be sure to clear off any debris using a broom, non-metal rake, and keep up with your landscaping. Of course, it’s never recommended that you climb up on your roof and walk around, so if there’s a lot of unreachable debris, it’s best to contact a professional roofing contractor for this type of roof maintenance.
4. Keep the Gutters Clean, Too
Smaller debris like leaves, twigs, granules from asphalt shingles, etc. can accumulate in your gutters over time, leading to clogs. When your gutters start clogging, they won’t be able to do their job — which is carrying water away from your home’s foundation.
Keep in mind that backed-up water will lead to moisture infiltration, which will cause leaks and structural damage. To avoid this, make gutter cleaning a part of your regular maintenance routine rather than just seasonal roof care.
5. Remove Any Algae, Moss, or Lichen
Any roof maintenance checklist you come across will always include removing bacterial growth from your roof. Keeping algae, moss, and lichen at bay is important if you have asphalt shingles, as they’re not one of the roofing materials that are naturally resistant.
You’ll know these bacteria have taken up residency on your roof when you start to see:
- Ugly black streaks
- Light to dark green spots or blue spots
- Green, white, brown, and black speckles
- A “fuzzy” growth
There are several methods for removing these growths from your roof. For example, you can use a sprayer with a 50/50 mix of liquid chlorine bleach and water or you can call in a professional roofer.
6. Keep Up With Caulking and Sealants
Caulk is typically used around your roof flashing to prevent water from seeping into vulnerable areas. Sealant is also used to add another layer of protection from the elements. Of course, caulk expands and contracts as the weather shifts and sealants wear down over time.
Therefore, your roof maintenance checklist should include replacing the caulk around your flashing annually and recoating your roof with the appropriate sealing geared toward your roofing materials.
7. Repair Any Damages Immediately
One of the most common mistakes most homeowners make (usually to save money) is ignoring minor issues. Regardless of the issue, you’ll need to address it immediately, as minor damages can escalate without warning and require major repairs that are both costly and time-consuming.
Even if there’s no visible damage but you suspect something’s wrong, you’ll want to have your roof inspected by a professional as soon as possible. This will prevent any small issues from turning into nightmares, and it’ll give you a good idea of whether or not your roof is in good shape.
Use Safety Equipment and Follow Safety Guidelines
Safety should be the top priority. Use the proper safety equipment and follow safety guidelines to help protect yourself from hazards.
Before starting, inspect your ladders for any visible defects and ensure they are in good condition. Wear protective gear such as gloves, goggles, and a hard hat to safeguard against falling debris or accidents.
Get the Roof Maintenance Support You Need
While it’s necessary to keep up with your own roof maintenance checklist, it’s also important to have your roof inspected annually and after significant storms by a reliable and experienced roofer. If they’re anything like the Shake Guys, they’ll be able to spot any issues that you missed and provide the best solution to those issues.
Contact us today to schedule your free roof inspection!