Extend the Life of Your Home’s Roof
There are few things about your home maintenance that will strike fear in your heart quite like having to replace your roof. Proper insulation, ventilation and regular cleaning will add years to the lifespan of your home’s roof.
When you purchased your home, you probably had an inspection. Your inspector would have given you information about the condition of your roof. The longevity of your roof directly depends on the quality of workmanship and materials used. There are steps you can take to extend the life of your roof and save money by delaying replacement costs.
Primary roof maintenance responsibilities:
Keep the gutters clean to prevent unnecessary water damage to the lower deck board and fascia and soffit boards along the gutter line.
Debris, Mold, Moss and Ice
Remove debris from the roof after storms. Clean away tree branches and other debris that can build up on your roof to avoid roof rot and other damage. Cleaning your roof protects the shingles, extending the life of your roof. It’s also believed to improve energy efficiency because a darker roof will generate more heat.
Mold on your roof is unattractive, but won’t affect its integrity or longevity. Kill mold with a diluted bleach solution.
Moss on your roof merits immediate attention. It can trap moisture and rot to your roof.
Watch for ice dams in the winter, caused by partial melting of snow and refreezing.
Professional Inspection of Your Home’s Roof
Have the roof professionally inspected every two or three years and have small repairs done as needed. Reseal weak spots that can develop along the flashing. Unknown rot or weak spots can make it very dangerous for homeowners to inspect their own roof.
Poor attic ventilation causes premature aging of your home’s roof
Without proper airflow, the temperature in an attic can hit 160 degrees in the summer. Superheated air can penetrate attic insulation. This makes it harder to keep the home cool and can even damage wallpaper and paint on the floor below.
Roof shingles can “fry” in the heat. The extreme heat can decay shingles more quickly and the rafters holding up the roof can be weakened by warping and cracking.
In the winter, various household appliances, bathtubs, showers and cooking vapors can create excess moisture build up. Without proper ventilation, moisture will cling to the underside of the roof.
Air circulation in the attic is based on a balance between air intake vents in the soffits and air exhaust at or near the roof’s peak.
Insulation protects your roof and the structural integrity of your building. Insulating a roof not only helps reduce energy bills, it also protects your home’s longevity while extending the life of your roof.
The temperature on your roof can be 90 degrees higher than the regular exterior air temperature. When exposed to sunlight in warm climates, roofs transfer radiant heat to the surfaces of objects below in attics and buildings.
Attic insulation helps regulate the temperatures in your home, protecting your rafters from cracking. It also controls humidity to prevent mold and rot.
Insulating attic spaces with radiant barriers and reflective insulation reduces transfer of radiant heat, reflecting it back to the roof. This decreases the temperature within the structure.
Roof insulation can be applied to existing roof systems. Particular materials are most suited for different types and slopes of roofs, including steep-sloped, low-sloped and flat. Attic insulation is cost-effective to install but requires specialized equipment. Talk to a professional about the right amount of insulation for your roof.
Maintaining your roof is easy if you use a proactive approach. With proper attention, you can make your roof last for many years.