The end of summer is near, and if you have yet to add a thorough roof inspection to your summer to-do list, now is the time. Though roofs are quite durable, summer’s scorching heat, intense light, and battering winds—on top of spring’s pouring rain—can take a toll on your roof. This means it’s important to take extra precautions to protect your roof from the elements and proactively address any problems before they become big problems.
If you’re in the Denver area and need your roof professionally inspected or maintained before summer’s end, Planet Roofing is here for you—inspecting, repairing, and replacing residential roofs is our forte. And if you think your roof is in good condition and you are confident in your abilities and comfortable enough to inspect your own roof, here are a few tips on what to look out for.
Check Inside for Leaks
Though we hope you never have to deal with this, unfixed roof problems often lead to leaks that are visible from inside the house. You’ll typically notice these on your ceiling in the form of a discolored, often brown, water spot or a slight sag. It’s always good to make a habit of walking through your home and scanning your ceilings for any sign of a potential leak. Remember, the quicker you notice the issue, the less of a problem it’ll become.
Inspect Your Gutters
Along with autumn, summer is prime time for dirt and debris to pile up in your gutters, resulting in clogged and weighed down gutters. It’s important to safely remove anything you find. If you discover that there is a particularly large amount of dirt, leaves, and sticks in your gutters, consider installing gutter guards. These can keep out most of the debris, allowing your gutters to function properly.
Check Roof Coverings
The ice and snow of winter, followed by spring’s downpours, can cause tiles or shingles to come loose or fall off. Naturally, this can expose your roof deck and evoke a litany of problems. If not caught quickly these gaps can lead to leaks, mold, and mildew. It’s essential to fix roof problems as quickly as possible.
Inspect your vents thoroughly. With plastic vents check for cracks, and with metal vents check for broken seems. If you spot a fault, remember that sealing it up with caulking is merely a temporary solution, and to truly solve the problem, you should replace the damaged vent.
Also, pay particularly close attention to the areas around skylights and chimneys—especially brick chimneys, which are susceptible to a whole host of problems. And remember, anytime you spot old flashing, you can slip new flashing under the old rusted stuff. If you need help with this, contact Planet Roofing. We’d be glad to help.
Be sure to inspect all flashing types, including along the wall, around protrusions, in valleys, etc. If you notice that any of the flashing is rusted, it needs to be replaced. If it rusts through, water will run behind it and then likely into your home. Replacing flashing can be as simple as removing shingles, prying siding loose, and then replacing the flashing and covering it back up.
Remove Moss, Algae, and Other Vegetation
Not only does moss and algae look bad, but it is also a hotbed for moisture and problems. It can cause the edges of shingles to lift or curl, making them more likely to blow off or be damaged when the next big windstorm passes through. Moss can even cause water to move laterally, thereby causing leaks or even water damage to the roof deck.
To remove moss or algae, the simplest, and perhaps most effective, solution is to clean the roof with a 50/50 mix of water and chlorine bleach. Spray the mixture on, let it dwell for 15 to 20 minutes, and then spray it off using a low-pressure hose. Be cautious of using moss-removing sprays not designed for roofs. They can be damaging.
Since moss tends to grow in moist, north-facing planes, finding ways to add sunlight to that area of your roof can prevent moss and algae from growing in the future. Potential solutions might include trimming or removing any trees or branches that are giving the moss the shade and nutrients it needs to thrive.
Don’t Take Risks
If you feel shaky or uncomfortable climbing up on your roof, then don’t do it. Call a professional, someone who does it day in and day out. Also, remember summer roofs can be hot, dangerously hot, in some cases. Pick a nice morning or cool day to do your roofing maintenance.
Need help giving your roof the summer care it needs? Or want to reaffirm your self-performed inspection? Contact Denver’s go-to roofing contractors. At Planet Roofing, we pride ourselves on being professional roofers with unrivaled experience and expertise. Call us today to set up your free inspection!