If you keep up with small repairs on your roof, you'll be able to prevent leaks and ward off more costly repairs caused by a rotting deck. It's a good idea to inspect your roof at least once a year, but you may need to do it more often if you have trees that hang over your roof, or after a big storm with high winds rolls through. Here are some of the routine roof maintenance tasks you'll want to do.
Clean The Roof
If your roof has a low pitch, leaves and branches may pile up on top of it, especially if you have trees nearby. Leaves tend to blow into the valleys and get stuck there once they get wet from rain. Wet leaves decay and attract destructive insects such as ants, termites, and even roaches. Plus, they'll hold moisture against your roof and this can cause the shingles to decay.
As you examine the roof and lift off decaying leaf mounds, you'll also want to look for signs of algae growth. Algae turns the shingles a darker color and gives your roof a dirty, worn appearance when viewed from the ground. You can remove algae by scrubbing it with a cleaning solution you buy from a home improvement store.
Repair Damaged Shingles
Examine the shingles on your roof, so you can find ones that are loose, missing, curled, or cracked. You can seal cracks with roof tar or asphalt sealant. Loose shingles can be repaired by nailing them in place with roofing nails. Roofing nails are longer than regular nails, so they drive deeper into the deck and hold the shingles more securely. Curled or missing shingles need to be replaced. Replacing a few shingles is a fairly easy DIY project. It's a matter of prying up the old shingles, and slipping new ones into place. Hammer the nails into the original holes, so you don't leave holes behind that will leak rain.
Clean The Gutters
Gutter maintenance and roof maintenance should be done at the same time. If your gutters are clogged with leaves and not draining properly, water can be routed onto the roof and cause damage to the deck or soffit of your roof. In addition to digging out all the leaves, you'll want to run water through the gutters with a garden hose, so you can check the slope of the gutters. Water should drain towards the downspout and not stand in the gutters. If you see standing water, you'll need to adjust the slope of your gutters.
Trim Nearby Trees
Trim tree branches so they do not brush against your roof when the wind blows. You should trim them high enough that pests won't climb the trees and jump on your roof. You may want to thin the branches too, so more sun shines through and inhibits the growth of algae on your roof.
Most of these roof maintenance tasks are suitable DIY projects. However, if your roof has a steep pitch, or if you are leery about climbing up on your roof, then you should play it safe and hire a contractor like one from Durable Roofing Company. Working on your roof is dangerous due to the risk of falling. If you need to make repairs or clean off algae, you may want to wear a harness and work with a buddy, so you stay safe.