After installing a new roof, you expect a long lifespan with no worries. This is possible, but you need to do the proper roof maintenance to keep this significant investment in top shape. You can enjoy many years of service from a correctly installed new roof. Here are the keys to keep your roof looking good and protect your home during all weather conditions.
First, do a quick inspection to ensure there are no problems that need to be repaired by a professional roofing contractor. If no damage is found, begin the routine maintenance.
- Clear off Debris – Objects sitting on your roof from storms or high winds can cause mold or moisture to build up and eventually work its way under the shingles. Rot can take hold in extreme cases. Be sure to remove debris from your roof as soon as you spot it.
- Clean the Gutters – Scoop out dirt and debris from the gutters and downspouts. This is important to keep the water flowing away from your home. If you are doing this job yourself, be sure not to brace your ladder against the gutter. This can cause damage to the gutters and is not a stable place for the ladder.
- Trim nearby tree branches -This may not seem like part of roof maintenance, but it is a crucial step to keep your roof free of debris. Branches should not be touching or hanging over the rooftop. One strong storm can bring down enough tree branches to significantly damage your roof.
- Wash your Roof – A moist climate and nearby trees can contribute to algae and moss formation. Algae can cause dark streaks starting from the peak. Use a 50 percent mixture of bleach and water to remove the algae. Certain roof shingles are manufactured with special copper-infused granules to offer added protection from algae. Ordinary dirt and small debris will build up over time, giving a dirty appearance to your roof. This can be hosed off with a garden hose.
- Inspect and Clear Vents – This task is done from inside the attic or crawlspace. Look for blocked vents that are restricting airflow. Insulation may become loose and cover vents. Be sure to clear the vents and attach the insulation in the proper location. Soffit screens can also become blocked with small paint chips or dirt. These should also be cleaned. A wire brush does an excellent job of cleaning off a screen. Don’t use too much pressure on the screen. Proper ventilation in the attic helps to control mold and mildew.
It is not recommended to crawl around on the roof while cleaning. This can cause the granules to be scraped off the shingles. If you are not comfortable using an extension ladder, please contact a professional to do an inspection and cleaning.
Warning Signs of Trouble
- Damaged or missing Shingles – This includes shingles with the edges curling up or pulling away from the roof. This could be a sign of trouble underneath. Moisture or mold may be pushing up the shingles.
- Missing Granules – If the granules are missing, the shingles are compromised and have reduced protection during storms.
- Dented or loose Flashing – You may find flashing on the ground or see openings near the area on the roof.
- Loose nails and fasteners – Hardware scattered on the roof indicates a problem under the shingles.
If any of these conditions are present, repairs should be done as soon as possible to prevent more costly repairs later.
Regular maintenance will keep your roof in good shape throughout its lifespan. Some warranties require regular maintenance. Besides these benefits, there are additional advantages:
- Your utility bill is kept under control with proper ventilation and minimal heat loss.
- Mold growth is prevented, which benefits the health of family members with allergy-related conditions.
- Any repairs necessary are caught before becoming a costly restoration.
- A leak-proof roof keeps your attic insulation dry and doing its job of guarding your home. Moist insulation due to a leaky roof can be the start of multiple problems. Mold, damage to interior construction, and other issues.
Getting a clean bill of health from a professional will give you peace of mind during those bad weather days. You will have the protection of a secure roof covering your home and keeping your family safe. An annual inspection ensures there will be no hidden damage requiring immediate repairs at the worst time.
Please contact VanWeeden Co. for a roof inspection or repair. We have been proudly serving customers in Des Moines, Iowa, and the surrounding area for over 20 years. We have certified technicians with experience in all types of roofing. Our friendly staff will be happy to answer any questions concerning roofing or any of our services. Let’s get your roof in tip-top shape!