You do not need a roofing contractor to tell you that your roof is leaking. The steady dripping sound or the ever-expanding water stains on your ceiling will be enough.
However, what if we told you there is no need to let things get that bad before taking action? You can conduct your own roof inspections to make sure that your entire roof system is kept in a state of high maintenance.
If you need help in identifying roof problems, this article will give you all the information you require. We will cover everything from simple things, such as sweeping the roof surface, to doing proper maintenance checks.
When you feel it’s now time to call experts for a professional roof maintenance inspection, Austin Roofing & Water Damage | WDR is here to help. Give us a call today for all your roof inspection and maintenance needs.
When Should I Inspect My Roof?
The correct answer is as often as possible. However, if you happen to have a busy schedule, dedicating some time to a routine roofing inspection is hardly practical.
In most cases, the general rule is to inspect your roof at least once, annually. However, we recommend new homeowners do it more often than that. Therefore, make sure you inspect your roof at least twice a year. Check once, after the rainy season, and again as soon as winter ends.
If Austin, Texas happens to experience a freak severe weather phenomenon sometime in between, such as a hail storm or high winds, do a quick roof maintenance checklist soon after the skies clear.
Another thing you have to consider is the type of roof you have, because some roofs are high maintenance whereas others require very little maintenance at all.
Related Article: Time to Inspect Your Roof
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Develop a Roof Maintenance Checklist
Peeking over the roof overhangs to see if the hail storm didn’t poke any holes in your roof’s surface is not enough to be considered a proper maintenance inspection.
There are many things that you need to check before you can safely conclude that your roof surfaces are still in great shape. However, if you happen to have a large roofing system, it is quite easy to miss a few important items.
This is why it is essential to have a detailed roof maintenance checklist to refer to as you go through your visual inspection.
A roof maintenance checklist will not only give you peace of mind knowing that your roof is in order, but it will also provide you with a way to check how fast your roof is aging over time.
The Benefits of a Detailed Roof Inspection
We understand that if you are very busy, checking for peeling paint and blocked roof vents is probably very low on your to-do list. However, there are many benefits of conducting a routine roof inspection, such as:
- You can catch roof problems, such as missing or damaged shingles, and moisture infiltration early before it requires an expensive repair job
- It gives you a chance to clean up clogged gutters and remove any standing water
- Regular inspections are a good safety habit because they allow you to catch dangerous situations, such as structural stress early
- If you are planning to put your house up for sale, a detailed roof inspection will help with the valuation of the property
- A history of regular maintenance and inspections will also help in terms of insurance coverage
Do an Initial Roof Inspection To Create a Baseline
One of the reasons for having a roof maintenance checklist is to keep track of the repairs of your roof as well as determine how much the previous year’s weather has damaged your shingle roofs, gutter guards, or other features of your home’s roof.
To do this accurately, you need to have a baseline with which to compare any new findings.
The exact things you will include on your roof maintenance checklist will depend on the type of roof system you have, such as a commercial roof or other types of residential roofs, such as flat roofs and metal roofs
12 Features of Your Roof Maintenance Checklist
Once your baseline is set and you have determined the number of times per year you intend on conducting your roof walk-through, you can now refer to the following roof maintenance checklist:
1. Old Repairs
If your residential or commercial roof recently underwent some repairs, these are usually the first things to fall apart, especially if the job was done in a rush during periods of severe weather.
Your roof maintenance checklist needs to have a section for listing any repairs or home maintenance activities that will need to be looked at the next time you check your roof.
2. Safety Signage
Make sure none of the important safety signs were damaged and that the information is still clearly visible. This is less important for most homeowners than it is for professionals dealing with a commercial roof, where accidents due to poor signage can result in a lawsuit.
3. Stairs and Railings
Is your roof accessed by stairs? Are there crossovers linking one part of the roof to another? If so, you need to make sure these stairs and railings are kept in good shape because they, too, are exposed to the weather.
4. Pipe and Equipment Supports
After a storm has wreaked havoc on your house, one of the main things to suffer damage is the pipe and equipment supports, such as those holding up the gutters. Make sure all of these are still secure and there is no evidence of sagging.
5. Exterior Structural Damage
This covers anything on the outside of your roof, such as peeling paint, cracked skylights, or blocked pipes, vents, and chimneys. Closely inspect the surfaces of these areas, looking for rust spots, moss growing on the surface, or rot developing on wooden structures.
If you see any signs of molds, water stains, moss, or backed-up water, these could all mean that your drains are blocked. Free-flowing drains are especially important when you have a flat roof, where stagnant water can freeze overnight in cold weather to form ice dams that can severely damage your roof.
During high temperatures, heat transfer from your roof to your building may cause the flashing to separate from the inside of your roof. You, unfortunately, will not notice this until it rains and you realize that your roof has developed a few new leaks.
8. Expansion Joints
High daytime temperatures followed by very cold night temperatures are responsible for causing any joints in your roof to expand and contract until eventually they separate and cause leaks to develop.
9. Roof Leak
This is one of the most obvious things to include on your roof maintenance checklist. It is usually simple to fix, but if you leave it to get worse you can end up dealing with expensive repairs.
There are many causes of leaks to look out for, such as missing shingles or separation of expansion joints.
10. Clean Debris
Debris, such as falling leaves or sand accumulation needs to be cleaned regularly before it clogs up your pipes and causes further damage. If this is a common occurrence, you need to remove any overhanging branches from nearby trees.
11. Interior Signs of Roof Damage
Peeling paint, mold, mildew, leaks, and water damage stains are all signs of internal roof damage which can be caused by external issues, such as missing mortar, damaged shingles, or clogged-up gutters.
If you can see the damage from the inside, it usually means it has become extensive and you need to act fast to avoid irreparable damage to your roof.
12. Missing or Damaged Shingles
Damaged and missing shingles are easy to spot, even from the ground. If you see any of these, act quickly because the hole left by a missing or damaged shingle can let in a large amount of water.
A Professional Roofing Company Can Help!
The best solution to proper roof maintenance is to have a detailed and up-to-date roof maintenance checklist that you can use to make sure all the important aspects are covered.
If you come across any issues that need professional roofing services, do not hesitate to call Austin Roofing & Water Damage | WDR. Thanks to our professionalism, dedication, affordability, and reputation for providing excellent services, we are one of the Premier roofing contractors in Austin, Texas.
Call us today at +1 512-820-6505 and talk to one of our experienced roofing experts. Alternatively, visit our website and book a free appointment.