When the weather turns colder, the last thing homeowners want is to deal with a leaky, ill-maintained roof. You can preserve the integrity of your roof all winter long by following these easy roof maintenance tips during the fall months.
Inspect Your Roof
Every autumn, it’s a good idea to give your roof a general inspection for integrity. Start by checking the shingles on your roof. Shingles that are cracked, bubbling, or otherwise distorted need to be replaced. The shingles on your roof are your home’s first line of defense. Next, examine the flashing, the chimney, and other vents on your roof for damage. Scrape off any algae, dirt, leaves or debris that has accumulated on your roof, as these can slowly deteriorate roof shingles while they grow or decompose.
The gutters on your house are an important part of your roof system. The shingles on your roof direct water down toward the gutters. Here, water is directed away from the home to prevent flooding and water damage. If your gutters are dirty or clogged, problems can occur. During the winter, standing water can freeze in your gutters, preventing new moisture from being directed off the roof. An ice shelf, a large and heavy block of ice, can form on a roof and cause structural damage. After you inspect your roof for debris, don’t forget to clean out the gutters and downspouts.
Trim and Pare
The number one cause of roof damage in the fall months comes from trees and branches that are simply too close to the roof. During the fall, trees begin to shed their leaves, but what many people don’t know is that trees will also shed limbs, branches, and twigs that have ceased to be a productive part of the tree. When the weather turns colder and high winds affect your area, these limbs and branches can become dislodged and land directly on your roof. If a large tree branch falls on your roof, the damage has already been done. However, by cutting off dying or dead branches in a controlled environment, you can prevent these accidents from occurring. Inspect the trees around your house. Any limbs or branches that are hanging directly over your roof should be removed. It is important to have limb removal performed by professionals, as incorrectly chopping limbs from a tree can result in damage to a roof or even injury.
Spring may be the season when homeowners clean the inside of their homes, but fall is the season when the outside becomes the focus. Inspecting your roof for damage, cleaning gutters and rainspouts, and removing hazardous tree branches will help keep your roof intact and your home dry during the colder months.