Have you recently installed beautiful new roofing that you want to properly maintain? Or is your home relatively new, and you want to make sure to maximize the life of your roof? That’s a great goal, because your roof is designed to last for many years if you take good care of it.
There are a number of factors that can reduce the life of a roof, but you can lessen their impact with the right approach to upkeep, including seasonal care. Now that cold weather is on its way out, and spring storms and summer heat are approaching, you can make use of this handy checklist of ways to keep your roof lasting as long as possible.
Your Roof Maintenance Checklist
1. Clean Your Gutters
Leaves, branches, twigs and other debris can clog gutters throughout the winter months. So, as you check your roof, all gutters, downspouts, and drain boxes should be cleaned every spring to keep water flowing away from your home. This not only protects your roofing, but also safeguards your siding as well as the house’s foundation.
Check the walls around your gutters, as well as under roof eaves, for telltale water stains and spots that indicate you may have leaks and wood rot. These signs are an indication that water is not able to properly drain away from the house.
2. Check the Roof Shingles
Spring storms take a toll on a roof’s shingles, which can be damaged by hail, high winds, fallen tree limbs and other debris. To keep your roof in great shape, first remove any buildup of dirt and debris. Then, check every area for buckling, cracked, missing, or broken roof shingles—and make repairs promptly to avoid continuing damage.
3. Trim Tree Limbs
Early spring is a perfect time to look at the trees near your roof. Before powerful spring and summer storms cause expensive damage, branches that are weak, breaking, or hanging low enough to make contact with your roof need to be removed or trimmed away from your home. Any tree limbs that could potentially fall onto a roof should be cut back to prevent debris that can break roofing and lead to water damage.
4. Inspect Your Attic
If it’s been a while since you’ve inspected your attic, the warmer days of spring are the ideal weather to check it out. Take a look at the rafters and the other parts of the roof’s underside for any black marks, water stains, or other signs of excess moisture. Make sure insulation in your attic is free from mildew. Finding mold or mildew could indicate a leak.
If you see such moisture damage, hire a roofing specialist to locate the source of the leak and provide the proper roof repair, as well as a reliable recommendation for mold remediation.
5. Maintain Metal Roofs
Metal roofs are built so that rain, snow, and branches slide off easily. This means you won’t have to deal as much with leaves, twigs, or other debris. However, metal can corrode over time, so a good cleaning with a gentle cleansing solution, garden hose, and a soft-bristled brush can keep your roof in great shape. Avoid metal and wool brushes when cleaning your roof to avoid scratches that can lead to rust.
If your roof is corroded or rusted, it’s likely in need of replacement. Siding & Windows Group specializes in a variety of high-performing options including GAF roofing, Owens Corning roofing, and McElroy metal roofing to make that easy.
6. Attend to Stone-Coated Roofs
Stone-coated roofs are unique and stylish, offering attractive curb appeal and impressive durability. But they still require some low-maintenance care. Fortunately, it’s simple to clean a stone-coated roof. Using soft-bristled brushes and gentle cleaning solutions will be all you need to remove build-up including mildew, moss, algae, and dirt. Avoid power washers, as well as copper or iron-based cleaning tools to prevent too harsh a touch that could create damage.
7. Spot Moss, Mildew and Algae
Summer humidity can promote the growth of moss, mildew, and algae, especially in shady roof areas. This can cause excess moisture to build up underneath shingles, eventually leading to curling or cracks. To clear away such growths, use a 1-to-1 mix of laundry-strength liquid chlorine bleach and water. Apply the solution with a gentle sprayer, and let it set for about 20 minutes. Rinse thoroughly with gentle, low-pressure water.
8. Check Other Roof Parts
Other than roof shingles and ice dams, there are other important parts of a home’s roof that can be affected during winter months. Before spring storms hit, inspect chimneys, flashings, ridge caps, skylights, and vents for any signs of wear and tear. Apply roofing mastic (a bonding sealant) to any cracks or loose roofing to prevent leaks and water damage from happening in the future.
9. Get a Roof Inspection
For anyone not quite ready to risk going into an attic or on top of their house, hiring a roof professional to check all these things is well worth the expense. If you want your home’s roof to last as long as possible, a professional roof inspection makes a lot of sense.
Roof Installation and Care for Chicago Area Homes
Caring for your roof can be simple, especially when you combine seasonal checks with prompt repairs and maintenance. And Siding & Windows Group is here to help—with superb craftsmanship that you can rely on.
Check out our roofing services to learn more about how we can assist you in getting the longest life out of your roof.