Spring is here, and it is the perfect time to check your roof for damage that may have occurred during the winter. It is also the ideal season to do roof maintenance. The weather is milder than winter and cooler than summer; you can move around your home and roof more comfortably. The humidity is also relatively low during spring, which is important as high humidity can cause moisture damage to your roof while you complete your project. But before you get onto your roof, here’s a six-point roof inspection checklist for you.
1) Check the Field
The roof’s field is one of the areas that are likely to be damaged after a long winter. Look for loose or missing shingles or tiles. If you experienced winter storms last season, see if any of your shingles were blown off your roof. Watch out for spots of degradation or wear that may need repairs or replacement. Remember, one missing or worn out shingle could put your home at risk of leaks.
Also, inspect your roof’s field for fungus and algae buildup. Both fungus and algae are unsightly and can spread beneath shingles, causing damage to your roof’s underlayment over time. You can use a power washer to remove the buildup, and then follow it up with a cleaning treatment to eliminate what remains.
2) Watch out for Membrane Splits
If you have rubber roofing instead of one with asphalt shingles, watch out for splits and cracks in roof membranes. Freeze-thawing, pressure, and water ponding can cause roof membranes to blister and split, leading to cracks in which water can pass through and cause leaks in your home. While you can patch these cracks on your own, it is best to ask a professional roofer to get the job done right.
3) Inspect the Flashings
Experts Flashings are materials installed to over joints in the roof to prevent water from seeping in and causing damage. You usually see flashings around the skylight and vent pipe, as well as where two slopes of the roof come together. Since they are a line of defense against water penetration, flashings are vulnerable to corrosion, especially after a long cold season. If you see rust spots on your roof flashings, replace them immediately to prevent leaks and water damage.
4) Examine the Soffit and Fascia
Soffits are wood or metal panels along the roof’s base, between the roofline and the exterior wall of the house. They function as an air circulator to draw heat and moisture away from the house. Soffit panels help ventilate your attic, too.
Fascias, on the other hand, are wood or metal boards behind the gutter or along the roofline. These boards act as a layer along the edge of your roof to protect it against weathering and water damage.
Since both fascias and soffits have crucial functions, it is fitting to include them in your roof inspection checklist this spring. See if the soffit panels or fascia boards have any damaged parts, soft spots, or holes. Replace the entire panel or board if the damage is extensive. If you discover mold growth on your soffit or fascia, use a soft brush or broom and a cleaning solution to make it mold-free.
5) Clean and Check the Gutters
Gutters keep gallons of rainwater away from the walls and foundation of your home. As such, these help prevent rot and mold buildup as well as trapped moisture that could cause costly structural damage to your walls and foundation. During the season of storm and snow, your gutters had probably collected a lot of debris. To ensure your gutters are efficient at preventing leaks, make sure to clean and unclog them this spring.
After clearing out the junk on your gutters, inspect them closely, too. Make sure they are damage-free and securely fastened. If it looks like they need work, the spring’s a good time to replace them with a new, more efficient gutter system, as always advised by the experts from Superior Roofing.
6) Look at the Vents
Check the vents, pipes, or chimney on your roof. Make sure that the caulking or seal that connects the vents to your roof is tight. Over time — and especially after the harsh weather in winter —, it is common for the sealant to wear away and create a space where rainwater gets in and causes damage. If you do find cracked seals around the vents, you can re-caulk them on your own or ask for a professional to do it.
Always be thinking Safety
Just a bit of a reminder: anytime you inspect your roof, take necessary precautions. Even though spring is the ideal time for roof repairs and maintenance, be cautious as walking on a roof can be dangerous — no matter the season. Follow these basic rules for your safety:
- Use safety equipment such as gloves and harnesses.
- Take extra precautions when working around a skylight. The skylight is designed to meet structural weight loading requirements and withstand normal elements of weather. It is, however, not intended to be used as a walking or working surface.
- When cleaning the gutters, make sure to place the ladder on solid, level ground. Also, extend the ladder at least three feet from the gutter to ensure it is at a proper climbing angle.
- If you’re not comfortable to get onto your roof or unsure what to do with the roof damages you found, contact a professional roofer right away. Spring is the best time to work with roofing contractors. The optimal weather conditions make it easy for roofers to finish maintenance tasks faster. Plus, spring is a relatively slow season for roofing projects. Many homeowners scramble to get their roofing maintenance done during summer before fall arrives. This means roofing companies can easily fit you into their schedule this season, especially if you get in touch with them early enough.
While some of the roof damages occurred during winter may seem trivial, these can lead to more extensive roof problems that may cost a lot. It is best to catch these issues in your spring inspection not only to prevent expensive repairs but also to keep your roof in optimal condition for the rest of the year.
We hope you found this post useful. There is a lot more on the way so stay tuned.
If you have questions about any of the six checkpoints we gave you today feel free to reach out and schedule a FREE strategy session.
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Bakersfield, CA 93308