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5 Maintenance Tips to Help Prolong Your Roof’s Lifespan

Bi-annual Inspections and Maintenance Save Money Over Time

© 2013 by Sarah Harris; all rights reserved; content may not be copied, rewritten, or republished without written permission.

Chimney on a Roof

This article was updated on 8/7/18.

A home without a roof is scarcely a home, and it is extremely important to make sure that your roof is in top condition if you want it to stay over your head.

As the primary shield between you and the elements, your roof can take a lot of abuse. Like any other part of the home, it requires regular maintenance in order to last a long time.

Follow these preventive maintenance tips for your roof to keep it strong over the years and prolong its lifespan.

  1. Time Your Roof Inspection Efforts.

    Checking up on your roof periodically is a great way to gauge wear and tear throughout the seasons, but only if you time your efforts properly.

    Schedule a thorough roof inspection at the beginning of fall to make sure that small problems don’t grow into larger problems over the stormy season. Check up again at the beginning of spring to measure the winter’s damage on your roof. This will help you identify any potential problems before they get serious.

  2. Keep Rain Gutters Clean.

    Clean gutters are the key to a healthy roof. When your gutters are clean and cleared of debris, they allow for easy flow of water off the roof and away from the house.

    When they get clogged, however, problems begin to arise. Rain won’t be able to run off as easily, leading to the possibility of mold, leaks, and water damage. The weight of soaking debris can cause undue strain on the gutters themselves, leading to further damage.

    In the winter, snow and ice will collect more rapidly on the roof, and these factors will all shorten your roof’s lifespan.

  3. Trim Threatening Branches.

    Don’t let the wooden arms of nearby trees get too close to your roof. Falling debris from trees can easily pile up on top of your home, making maintenance more difficult.

    In severe cases, a sudden storm could send entire branches or shards of timber hurling at your roof, causing seriously expensive damage. Minimize this risk by trimming branches away from your roof before they can pose a threat. Nature may be beautiful, but she is also powerful.

  4. Don’t Hide Problems.

    You may have a steel roof or a shingle roof. This tip applies to the later. Never paint your roof shingles. No good can ever come of it.

    If your shingled roof’s appearance is so offensive that you feel the need to cover it up with a coat of paint, then it’s time to replace those shingles altogether.

    Painting them will only hide underlying problems that can grow into serious issues. Putting your aging shingles out of sight may push them out of your mind, but it doesn’t take the risk of roof damage out of your life.

    If your shingles are not that old but you are seeing “streaking”, which sometimes looks like an inverted ice cream cone, your problem is caused by a form of algae. Copper is the solution to the problem.

    First, have your roof cleaned to get rid of the current issue. Next, install copper strips underneath the top full course of shingles at the peak of your roof. Not under the ridge vents or ridge cap.

    If it is time to install a new roof, just be sure your roofing contractor installs shingles that have copper impregnated into them. All major manufacturers can provide these.

  5. Do It Right the First Time.

    Do it right the first time and you won’t have to worry about your roof leaking or caving in under stress.

    Look into fortified roofing options and reputable contractors in your area that can do a bang-up job on your roof from the very beginning.

    High quality work lasts a long time, so don’t cut corners in your roofing budget. Set it right, and forget it tonight. Spending a little extra now will save a lot in the long run.

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