Once spring starts, and the weather turns comfortably warmer, most homeowners start preparing their garden beds for planting, washing the grimy covers on the patio furniture and cutting down trees that broke in half during a snowstorm. Hardly anyone thinks about checking in on their roof after the snow melts and runs off.
All throughout the frost season, your roof has protected you from the cold and wet. Now, it is time to give your roof some TLC. By following these spring maintenance tips, you can keep the condition of your roof in great shape while actively preventing a number of serious issues in the future.
Get a Roof Inspection
The National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA) recommends that homeowners have their roofing systems inspected at least twice a year: once in the fall to check for any damage the summer heat and storms may have inflicted, and once in the spring to see if the winter season took its toll on your roof.
Assessing the state of your shingles or tiles, flashing, gutters and protrusions is necessary for preserving the good health of your roof, and, therefore, its performance and efficiency. Once these components start to wear down and deteriorate, the cost of needed repairs starts to snowball. If you notice cracks or loose materials on your roof during an inspection, make sure to call a certified roofer so you can put a halt to the damage before spring rains or, worse, summer storms begin to fall.
Keep the Gutters Clean
When spring rolls in, showers are not the only thing that will fall on your roof and get into your gutters. Buds, pods, seeds and petals will flourish and make appearances along with the wind. Clearing away anything that clogs your gutters, such as fallen leaves, twigs, bird droppings and muck, is crucial to proper roof health. A buildup of debris in your gutters can prevent rainwater from properly draining off. Instead, the water will spill over the side of your gutters, resulting in water-related problems like foundation damage, basement flooding and mold and mildew growth. It can even back up on the roof, seep under the shingles and leak into your home.
As the days get warmer, prune any overgrown trees and weeds that are crowding the drainage area in your lot. This will help keep rainwater away from the foundation of your home. Clearing out gutters on your own is a feasible option, however, if you spot mold or algae during your roof inspection, opt to call a professional to handle the issue. Roofing contractors have the proper equipment that can clean your shingles and gutters without damaging them as well as have access to cleaning solutions that can help prevent the growth of mold or algae on your roof.
Mind the Attic Ventilation
Your home produces more moisture than you think. Laundry, showers and cooking all churn out warm, damp air inside the living spaces of your home. This moisture, along with heat, naturally rises toward the ceilings, and if a vapor barrier is not in place, it eventually gets into the attic. Properly ventilating your attic space keeps the insulation dry and prevents condensation, mold, ice damming and rot.
According to the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), at least 1 square foot of ventilation is needed for every 300 square feet of attic space to properly ventilate your home. Aim to install equal numbers of intake and exhaust vents to create a continuous flow of air throughout the attic. The cool air from the outdoors will be pulled into the intake vents while the warm, moisture-filled air in the attic will escape through the exhaust vents. Make sure your vents are free of leaves, twigs and seeds.
Make Sure You Are Covered
As much as regular checkups can help ward off trouble, they can only do so much against a severe storm. To make you feel at ease about events you cannot control, make sure your homeowners insurance covers roof damage. Your policy may cover a leak if it is caused by a covered peril. Flood, however, is not covered by a standard policy, although a large percentage of homeowners assumes it is. Also, keep in mind that homeowners insurance generally does not cover roof damage resulting from wear and tear or lack of maintenance. So, if its age or neglected maintenance issues are to blame for the leaks in your roof, your homeowners insurance likely will not pay for its repair.
Being misinformed about your homeowners insurance can be an expensive mistake, so double-check the conditions of your policy to help prepare for the future.
Acquire a Strong Warranty
Mull over what is and what is not covered – and for how long – when it comes to your roof. While some lifetime roof warranties only last for 20 to 30 years, the GAF Golden Pledge® Limited Warranty offers a 50-year manufacturing defect coverage and 15-year wind warranty coverage. It is one of the best warranties that can be offered by a roof replacement company, guaranteeing you peace of mind season after season.
Why Is Roof Maintenance so Important?
One of the main reasons why annual or biannual roof maintenance is a significant investment is that it prevents future problems. A seemingly minor issue that occurred during a snowstorm, for example, and left untreated can develop into a major problem in just a few months. A crack in the pipe boot is a simple and inexpensive fix. But failing to catch it because you skip regular maintenance, it can cause $300 or even up to $500 worth of damage to your ceiling.
Roof maintenance also maximizes the service life of your roof and avoids the need for early roof replacement. When you first get your asphalt shingle roof installed, depending on the quality of materials, you can expect at least 25 years out of it. Regularly maintaining your roof ensures you get that or more. Your trusted contractor will hand you a report and inform you about the condition of your roof and how much life it has left.
Most importantly, a well-maintained roofing system gives you peace of mind. A roofer will detect and address any problems, and give your roof a clean bill of health. A roofing problem needs to attended to before it has the chance to spiral out of control. After the routine roof inspection, you will know everything is checked out and all the problems of your roof are addressed. And the next time a big storm hits, you will not have to scurry around and place buckets under your leaky roof.
Contact Us for All Your Roofing Needs
When it comes to roofing and remodeling solutions in California, Bay Valley Contractors is the name to trust. From roof maintenance and solar roofing to open-concept living and bathroom remodeling, you can count on our team to deliver the great results you expect on time and within budget. We have the extensive knowledge, proper set of skills and years of experience to bring the home of your dreams to reality. Call (925) 718-0780, or fill out our contact form to schedule an appointment or request a free quote.