Take Care of Your Roof with These 6 Maintenance Tips

Man clears leaves out of his gutter as part of roof maintenance.

Your house is likely the most expensive purchase of your life, so cover that investment—quite literally. Your roof is your house’s (and your) main line of defense against wind, rain, and sun. The best way to ensure its continued protection is to take care of it. Here are six important roof maintenance tips to help you get the most out of your roof.

1. Inspect Your Shingles after Each Season

Your shingles are like armor for your roof. Without them, your roof wouldn’t stand a chance against a garden hose. Make sure they’re in good repair and give them a thorough inspection after each season.

Why so often, you ask? Because each season brings different challenges to your shingles. Summer heat can melt the asphalt holding the shingles together, rainy spring weather (or really any season in the Pacific Northwest) can remove granules and cause rot, and the winter cold can freeze water and cause leaks.

When you’re swapping out your seasonal wardrobes, hop up onto your roof and look at your shingles. If you see any issues, you might be able to repair them before they turn into major expenses down the road. One little leak could lead to a complete reroofing if you don’t catch it!

2. Remove Any Debris

Leaves, moss, algae, and frisbees can pile up on your roof and retain moisture. That moisture will never dry out and lead to rot and mold—two things you definitely don’t want over your head. While you’re on the roof looking at your shingles, be sure to brush off any debris you find. It’ll help keep your roof healthy and dry.

Sometimes, no matter how hard you brush, you can’t remove the moss or algae. That’s a good sign that it’s time to call a professional. They’ll bring in all kinds of pressure washers and cleaning solutions and blast those pesky substances right off. Once they’re done, your roof will be good as new!

3. Maintain Roof Flashings

Your roof is not a continuous, unbroken slab of shingles. Most houses have chimneys, vents, or walls that interrupt up the shingled monotony and cause breaks in your roof. Flashings are a strip of material that fills those breaks, so you don’t have to gather pots and pans time it rains. But like most things in your house, they can deteriorate over time.

Inspect your roof flashings regularly to make sure there aren’t any gaps. If you do find some, grab a caulk gun and seal them up tight. Even the smallest gap in your flashings can allow water underneath your shingles and ruin the wood structure below.

4. Clean Your Gutters

Climbing on the roof and digging your hands into leaves, mud, and who-knows-what-else isn’t the most glamorous weekend chore, but it’ll certainly help the health of your roof.

When your gutters are clogged, it leaves nowhere for rain and moisture to go. If there’s nowhere for it to go, it’ll pool up on your roof and damage your shingles and the structure underneath. It could also cause mold to grow in your attic, which is something you definitely want to avoid.

Clean your gutters annually—preferably in the fall once the leaves drop. If you have lots of trees around your house, you might need to clean your gutters more frequently.

5. Remove Any Nearby Tree Branches

Trees might look pretty in your yard, but they cause nothing but problems for your roof. Their leaves cover your shingles and clog gutters, while the branches can fall and punch holes in your roof. If you have any trees hanging over your roof, trim them back.

It’s suggested that you trim all tree branches back at least six feet away from your house. It doesn’t sound like much, but it’ll make a difference when it comes time to clean your gutters.

6. Get a New Roof

If your roof is old or in need of extensive repairs, sometimes the best—and cheapest—option is to replace it. New roofs are built with stronger materials and will provide longer-lasting protection than that old roof you got 20 years ago. Plus, they’re more energy efficient, so they’ll save you money on electricity and heating costs!

If you simply can’t keep up with roof repairs, contact the experts at Cloise & Mike Construction. We can help you choose the right option to suit your needs and professionally install your roof to ensure that your family and home are protected from the elements. Contact us for a free estimate today!