You already may know that semi-annual roof checkups can prevent costly damage down the road. In addition to regular exterior inspections, there are several other ways to safeguard against leaks this winter season.
Roof leaks can cause severe damage to your home, inside and out, causing warping and breakdown of your roof’s underlayment. And if your leak becomes an interior problem, you may need to repair or replace insulation, drywall, floor coverings or furniture. This is serious stuff you want to pay attention to.
Here are 3 tips for a leak-free winter:
- Attic Inspection – Besides inspecting your roof’s exterior, it’s a good idea to inspect your attic yearly—and especially before winter sets in. If you inspect it on a rainy fall day, you’ll be able to see leaky areas firsthand. A fall attic ventilation inspection will help prevent bigger problems over the winter and it should be an important part of your fall roofing maintenance. If it’s dry outside when you inspect, look for other telltale signs of leaks such as:
- Mold or mildew around the vents, joints and seams
- Warped wood
- Stained insulation
- Ice Dam Prevention – Shingle roofs are meant to be basically water resistant, however they’re no match for water trapped behind ice dams for lengthy periods. This water begins to slowly saturate your shingles and roof structure, eventually leading to leaks. To avoid ice dams before they happen, make sure your attic is adequately ventilated. Attic temperatures should be the same as the exterior temperature, and gable, soffit and roof ridge vents help to maintain this temperature consistency. In addition, properly insulating between the rafters can help to prevent ice damming.
- Limit Roof Traffic – When the holidays approach, you may be climbing on or around your roof to hang lighting or install holiday décor. Keep in mind that regular foot traffic can lead to a leak, since shingles may split and flashing may crack under pressure. If you must be on the roof for inspections or holiday light hanging, it’s best to avoid stepping on shingles that appear to be compromised—whether warped, curling or cracked. Also, try not to step on roof tiles or tile cement—since these materials are also easily damaged under weight.
As we move closer to winter, remember that a well-maintained roof is less likely to leak, and less likely to require costly repairs. Remove debris—like pine needles and leaves—to encourage proper draining. In addition, maintain your gutters properly and conduct or schedule regular inspections to ensure that water is draining properly, year-round.
Call Centennial Roofing if you need assistance. Whether your roof needs an inspection, a little patchwork or an overhaul, our roofing professionals are trained to get the job done right—and our work is always guaranteed!