How is your roof holding up after winter? Do you know? You may be shocked when you discover that your home’s first line of defense has seen some damage. Hopefully winter is now behind us and warming temperatures provide the perfect opportunity to conduct a roof inspection. In fact, routine roof inspections and maintenance save time and money when it comes to preventing leaks and extending the roof’s lifespan.
A roof is a complex structure composed of several parts: structural deck, surfacing, flashing, membrane, metal termination, insulation, and others. When one or two of these components are damaged, it’s possible that other parts will be affected over time. Remember that a well-maintained roof can also guarantee the full warranty for the roof itself, so don’t hesitate to call a professional to check the “roof check” off the list. As a first step, doing a thorough visual inspection for loose or water-damaged materials would be a good idea. Be sure to check all of the following:
Examine Gutters And Downspouts
While cleaning your gutters, examine their condition. Look for any signs of damage. Make sure your downspouts have not expanded and split from ice formation, and that they are properly directing water away from your home. Ensure your gutters are not leaking and are pitched properly to direct water to the respective downspout outlet. Damaged gutters should be replaced or repaired right away, so water can flow unimpeded through them.
Inspect the Roof’s Exterior
Check the exterior of your roof. You may need to get a ladder and get on your roof to see everything. This can be completed by a professional who takes the proper safety precautions. While inspecting the roof, you should look for the following signs:
Check for Water Damage or Ice Dam Damage – Do you see any signs of a leak inside your home or on the roof? Snow melting from the winter or destruction caused by ice dams can result in water damage on your roof, your ceilings, your insulation, and so on. If you spot a roof leak, it needs immediate attention before it can cause any more damage – like rotting your roof’s underlayment and destroying your insulation. If you’re not sure how to fix the leak yourself, it’s best to call an expert who will know which materials and techniques are right for your specific problem.
Shingles – Are any shingles curling, loose, or damaged? You should replace these right away! Are any nails popping out? Hammer those down! Are the shingles looking old and worn out? You may need a roof replacement, depending on the roof’s age and condition.
Look for Flashing Damage – Flashing connects different elements of your roof – like skylights, walls of dormers, windows, or where two slopes of the roof come together. Is the caulking cracked around the flashing? If you’re comfortable doing it, you can re-caulk the flashing yourself. Do you see rust spots on the flashing? You’ll need replacement flashing right away to prevent water damage.
Examine Your Soffit and Fascia – Soffits are metal or wood panels along the underside of the roof between the wall of the house and the roofline, while fascia are the metal or wood boards along the roofline or behind the eavestrough. Both of these components are crucial for a healthy roof. Check to see if the soffits or fascia have any soft spots, holes, or damaged parts. Depending on how far gone they are, they might need to be repaired or replaced.
Check Your Roof’s Interior
Once you’ve checked the roof from the outside, it’s time to head indoors and check out the condition of it from the inside, typically by peering around your attic. Some of the things that you should look for include cracked roof sheathing, ventilation issues, sagging, light coming through cracks, or leaks. Any of these things signal that you need repairs right away.
As you inspect your roofing components, it’s important to make note of any area that is damaged and in need of repairs. These repairs should be made as soon as possible. Otherwise, your roof will not be able to properly protect your home from the conditions. It could also open up your home to pests, and water damage.
If you’re not confident doing the inspection yourself, have your roof checked out by a professional contractor. Don’t hesitate to have damages repaired as soon as possible. If not, it won’t be long before the next severe weather event makes it worse. Make sure you hire a trusted contractor. You can turn to Xtreme Home Improvement for quality, reliable work. We fix a wide range of property damage, from the most minor to the most complex. We will evaluate your roofing needs before recommending a long-term solution. And we’ll get everything back into great condition.