Why Roofing Maintenance Is Important
During a roof maintenance visit, a professional will sweep the surface of your roof and clear away any debris, such as twigs, leaves, or branches. They will also inspect and clean gutters and downspouts.
In addition, they will trim any trees that hang over the roof and are susceptible to snapping during heavy storms. Cutting these trees will help prevent damage to your home and provide you and your family safety. Contact Roofing Absecon NJ for professional help.
Whether you have a shingle roof or another type of roofing, it’s important to make regular inspections. A walk-around inspection of your home’s exterior can catch a lot of issues before they become major problems. If you’re not comfortable climbing a ladder, ask a friend or neighbor to do it for you, and bring a pair of binoculars to spot any problem spots.
The first thing you should look for on your roof is any shingle damage. Loose, cracked, or missing shingles are obvious signs of storm damage and should be replaced as soon as possible. This can prevent water leaks in your home.
You should also pay attention to granules on your shingles. These little bits of gravel cover the shingle’s asphalt coating and help shield it from UV rays. While some granule loss is normal over the life of your roof, a sudden increase in granules on your gutters or yard may indicate that the shingle’s asphalt coating has been damaged.
Another common sign of a shingle problem is mold or mildew growing on your home’s walls or ceiling. These are often caused by a leaky roof, and if they’re allowed to spread throughout the home, it could lead to rot or even wood damage. If you notice any mold or mildew, call a professional to investigate and treat the problem before it gets out of hand.
Other types of shingle damage you should watch for are stains and streaking on the shingles. These are often a result of not having enough ventilation in the attic or a leak somewhere else on the roof. Staining and staining aren’t just unsightly; they can also be a signal that the roof needs replacing.
While you’re inspecting your shingles, don’t forget to look at the flashing and gutters. A broken flashing can allow water to seep in between the shingle and the house, which could cause a leak in your home. Also, a gutter that’s not properly directing water away from the house can cause a lot of damage over time.
You should also check for any areas where the flashing has been caulked to the shingle. If the caulking has deteriorated, it will need to be re-caulked. And last but not least, you should trim any tree branches that are too close to your roof. This will reduce the risk of storm damage and keep leaves from piling up on your shingles and soaking up moisture that can cause problems.
Inspect the Flashing
If your roof has any protrusions such as dormer windows or a chimney, they should be equipped with flashing to prevent moisture from entering the home. This material is a thin layer of waterproof materials, typically aluminum, that is installed at joints and around projections on the roof such as vents, skylights, and chimneys. High winds and hail can damage flashing, causing leaks and other structural issues.
The best time to inspect the flashing is in spring. This is when the weather will be milder and it will be easier to access the roof without ice and snow.
When examining the flashing, look for any areas that are discolored or rusty. This indicates that the flashing is beginning to degrade. It is also important to check the caulking around the flashing for cracks and other damage. If the caulking is cracked, pitted, or missing, it will need to be replaced.
A good tool to have for this inspection is a ladder, as well as a flashlight and a mirror. This will help you see the details of the flashing, even if there are trees above your house that block some of the light. A tape measure, caulking gun, and roofing cement will be helpful in repairing any areas that need it. You may also want to bring a moisture meter, as it will be able to detect water intrusion and other issues that may not be readily apparent.
While a leaky roof is usually the result of a problem with shingles, it can also be caused by the flashing. If you notice that the flashing is rusted, damaged, or missing altogether, this is likely an indication that other aspects of your roof are in need of repair as well.
Some homeowners may attempt to repair the flashing themselves, but this is not a job for beginners. It requires significant safety training and the right tools to work safely on a roof. If you do decide to tackle this project yourself, be sure to read any online tutorials carefully and seek the advice of a professional if you run into any problems that you are unable to resolve on your own.
Check the Gutters
Gutters are an important part of any roof because they capture excess water and effectively direct it away from the home. But like other parts of the roof, they can suffer damage over time. Regular cleanings can help them keep working properly and avoid clogs that could cause serious water damage.
Look for rust, paint flakes, holes, or other signs of damage to the gutters. If any areas of the gutter system aren’t completely sealed, this could allow water to leak into the roof or other sections of the structure.
Additionally, gutters should be free of any sagging or structural issues that could cause them to pull away from the roofline. This can interfere with the flow of water from the gutters to the downspouts, which in turn can erode the foundation of your house.
During your roofing maintenance, you should also inspect other higher-up areas, including the fascia boards, soffits, and chimneys for loose shingles or signs of damage that need to be repaired. These areas aren’t as visible as the roof, but they’re just as critical to the health of your home.
Once the shingles and flashing are inspected, it’s time to check out the gutters. Make sure they’re free of any clogs, and if you see any areas where the sealant is wearing away, this should be repaired immediately to prevent leaks in the future. Additionally, make sure the gutters have a proper slope to direct water to the downspouts. If they don’t, you may need to reposition the hangers or spikes on the gutters so that they have more of a slope toward the downspout.
Trim Tree Branches
One of the most common causes of roof damage is tree limbs that have fallen during a storm. Regularly trimming trees that hang over your house will help prevent this from happening. If a branch does fall, it can damage your roof or cause debris to collect on the roof, which can further weaken the shingles.
If you have any branches that are close to your roof or look like they might break in a storm, trim them right away. This will not only protect your roof but will also prevent the branch from falling on anything below it, such as power lines or the house itself.
When pruning a broken branch, start by cutting off the jagged remains that are still attached. This will prevent decay agents from entering the wound and slowing the tree’s healing process.
Next, make a notch cut just below the broken branch and about a quarter of the way through. The notch will keep the bark from splitting when you make your final cut. Finally, make a cut on the opposite side of the branch, about two to four inches beyond the branch collar (the small lip of bark that each branch protrudes from). The final cut removes the stub and will help prevent the branch from becoming a hazard during future storms.
You may want to smooth the ragged edges of the cuts you’ve made with a knife, but be careful not to expose more of the cambium than is necessary. This fragile layer contains the tree’s food and water lifelines between roots and leaves.
It is best to prune large branches with the help of an arborist. However, if you are comfortable doing it yourself, you should follow the proper tree pruning guidelines to ensure your work is clean and safe.
Other roof maintenance tasks include sweeping the surface of the roof to remove debris, cleaning gutters to avoid buildup and inspecting the seals around any vents or skylights. Additionally, you should keep an eye out for moss growth and weakened shingles or flashing.