If you want your roof to last as long as possible, and minimize potential issues in the meantime, it’s important to practice regular roof maintenance. Unfortunately, many homeowners neglect this all-too-important practice – despite how easy and inexpensive it is.
But what exactly does regular roof maintenance entail? And why is it so important?
The Benefits of Roof Maintenance
These are some of the most important benefits you’ll stand to gain by inspecting and maintaining your roof regularly:
· Roof lifespan maximization. Many homeowners are motivated to practice roof maintenance because of the potential to maximize the lifespan of your roof. No matter what materials you use or how your roof was installed, your roof is going to have a finite lifespan. Sooner or later, it’s going to need major repairs or full replacement. The longer your roof lasts, the less money you’ll have to spend and the more convenient your life as a homeowner will be. Proactive maintenance extends this lifespan to the maximum.
· Early issue detection. Inspecting and maintaining a roof gives you the ability to identify issues early, so you can take action on them. If you notice a broken or loose shingle, you can replace it before it leads to any further damage. If you notice a small leak, you can take care of it before it becomes a big leak.
· Cost savings. Replacing a roof can cost $6-12,000, and may be even more expensive, depending on the options you choose. If you have a roof leak that you neglect, it can cause massive amounts of water damage that cost even more money. Though it costs some time and money to conduct regular roof maintenance, these strategies end up saving you money in the long run; it’s much cheaper to take care of small issues proactively than it is to react to large issues once they’ve already become entrenched.
· Peace of mind. Having a successful roof inspection gives you peace of mind. As a homeowner, you’ll be able to rest comfortably knowing that your roof is in good condition.
How to Practice Regular Roof Maintenance
Your best course of action for conducting roof restoration or maintenance is to hire a professional roofing contractor. While it’s possible to conduct maintenance yourself, if you have limited to no roofing experience, you may find it hard to identify potential issues or know what to do if you encounter an issue. Hiring a professional will cost additional money, but it’s typically worth the investment.
Roof inspections should include the following:
· Inspect for damage. Most roof inspections begin with a thorough review for potential points of damage. Inspectors will look for broken or missing shingles, damaged flashing, or other signs of failure or disrepair.
· Trim tree branches. If tree branches get in the way of your roof, or if your trees grow in a way that could threaten your roof eventually, it may be necessary to trim those branches. A roofing contractor can help you with this or connect you to an arborist to do the work for you.
· Remove moss, algae, lichen, and debris. Moss, algae, and lichen need to be removed to prevent any further deterioration. Various types of debris may also need removed.
· Clean the gutters. Most homeowners should regularly inspect and clean the gutters. If you don’t keep the gutters free of accumulated leaves and debris, they could stop working properly – and present a major risk of a leak.
· Check your attic. Though not technically part of the roof, roof inspections should include a visit to the attic to check for leaks and any internal damage. It’s your opportunity to notice early signs of leaks that could be problematic later.
· Replace caulk near flashing. In some cases, roof inspectors will replace caulk around the flashing to reduce the possibility of a leak.
· Replace and repair as necessary. And of course, if you hire a professional roofer, they’ll likely be able to take care of any issues they find on the spot. This may increase the total cost of the work you have done, but it can keep your roof performing optimally. If there are a number of issues to take care of, or if your roofing contractor believes the roof is near the end of its life, replacement may be the superior option.
How Often Should You Inspect and Maintain Your Roof?
How often should you inspect and maintain your roof?
That depends on a few factors, including the age of your roof, your physical location, and what types of roofing issues you’ve experienced in the past. But most homeowners can get by with a once-annual roof inspection. If your roof is beginning to show signs of age, if you live in an area with severe weather, or if you have other concerns about the functionality of your roof, you may need to conduct these inspections more often.
If you can regularly inspect and maintain your roof successfully, you may be able to keep it in good condition for years, if not decades. Even better, you’ll save time and money while making sure your roof is able to do its job well.