Roof Maintenance Tips
Every homeowner can help extend the life of their roofing with regular roof maintenance. Whether your roof is new or has seen a few years, here are some roof maintenance tips. Do them, and you won’t have to spend the money on a new roof as soon.
1. Remove branches & leaves
Branches, leaves, and other tree droppings can build up on your roof during autumn and winter. Pick a sunny, dry day to do the task, so you don’t slip. Then, have someone else hold the ladder while you get up on the roof.
2. Inspect & repair
You’ll need to check for these trouble spots when doing roof maintenance:
- Water stains in attic or on ceilings
- Missing, sticking up, or loose shingles
- Moss, mold, or worn/cracked spots on the shingles
- Missing or loose flashing or nails
Fix any shingle damage right away or just replace the whole shingle. Tighten any roof hardware that’s loose, and make sure your flashing is in place.
Note: if your roof has peeling, curled, or lifted shingles in multiple places, your roof may need replacing. Ask a professional roofer to examine your roof so you know how to plan.
3. Remove moss & mold
Hand-spray moss remover and a cleaning solution on mossy or moldy areas on your shingles. Follow the instructions for your cleaner of choice, especially the directions for how long you should wait for the cleaner to finish the job. Then, use a soft-bristled broom or brush to remove the unwanted growth.
Remember: don’t use a power washer or a brush with hard bristles for roof maintenance. They strip away the UV-protective granules.
4. Clean soffits, fascia, gutters, & downspouts
Clean gutters are an important part of good roof maintenance. Scoop out all leaves and tree droppings from the gutters and downspouts. Then, use a soft-bristled brush to remove dirt and grime. When the gutters are clear, use a hose to wash away any debris that remains.
Now, inspect the gutters for missing caulk, peeling paint, rotting soffits or fascia, holes, cracks or other damage. You’ll want to secure loose gutter sections and replace any hardware that’s missing. Gutter leaks cause rot fast – don’t put off repairs.
Use protective gloves. The roof granules can be abrasive and chemical build up in the gutters can be harsh. And be careful on that ladder! Don’t lean to one side, and have someone hold the bottom of the ladder for you.
5. Repair chimneys, skylights, & vent openings
Now that you’ve covered the rest of the roof maintenance, it’s time to work on the chimney(s), vents, and (if you have any), skylights.
- Close the chimney flue
- Scrub creosote off the inside of the chimney
- Check the chimney for damage
- Repair any cracked bricks or mortar
- Seal the outside of the chimney with water repellant
After dealing with the chimney, clean the vents and skylights and make any necessary repairs. Be safe! Use a harness to keep you from falling.
Roof maintenance can be hard work. But roof repair and replacement can cost a lot. Plan for the future now by doing regular roof maintenance. That way, your roof will last as long as it’s meant to.