Despite its importance to the protection of the home and its contents, the roof is sometimes ignored. A good one can last for years, so it can be easy to lose track of the last inspection, or to forget just how old it is. You don’t have to be a roofing expert to know that something is wrong, as some problems will be obvious. Professionals always advise homeowners to carry out minor assessments by walking around the house and checking the roof. Here are some of the most common issues that affect this section of a house.
The Flashing. This is a sealant material used around vents, pipes and chimneys to keep water out. This is a common source of leaks in the home. Poor installation could be a factor, but age is usually the reason.
Critter damage. Small animals and birds can do damage to a roof over time. One small opening can lead to extensive damage, so get rid of these creatures as soon as you notice them.
Roof punctures. Roofs are generally sturdy, but sometimes Mother Nature can be tough to resist. Hail and falling branches can puncture or weaken these structures. Get an inspection after a storm to make sure it is holding up well.
Overhanging trees. A swaying tree can be a roof’s worst enemy. The movement of the branches against the roof tiles or shingles can eventually cause them to lift. Keep an eye on tree growth, and cut away any branches that get too close.
Membrane shrinkage. The membrane that supports the roofing shingles can start to shrink and crack. This will lead to an erosion of the upper layers, and if left unchecked the repairs could be expensive.
Poor ventilation. Proper ventilation in the attic keeps the heat and moisture levels in check. Vents should allow the heat to escape, or this could undermine the roof from underneath. The excessive heat coupled with the presence of moisture could also create a hospitable environment for mold growth.
Settling water. Debris on the roof can cause water to settle in some areas. This can also be caused by poor drainage.
Poor installation. This is more common with older roofs, but it is still a cause for concern. Faulty installation will shorten the life of the roof, and it can lead to leaks inside the home.
Your roof requires maintenance and care like other parts of the house. If you know how to spot problems early, you can keep your maintenance costs down. Roofing is part of the job here at Michael F. Whalen Contracting. We’re located in New Kensington and provide roofing services to many homeowners in the greater Pittsburgh area.
Call us to schedule a post-winter roof inspection so we can help you make sure your roof didn’t take damage this winter. We will let you know if we see any damage and give you a fair estimate on repairs if they’re needed.