The roof is the first layer of defense for your home. When the weather picks up, not only having a high-quality roof, but a well-maintained, high-quality roof will allow any homeowner rest easy. Though to the naked eye most roofs look like they’re doing the job they were designed for, if a roof isn’t properly maintained, the small micro problems, when left undetected over time, will erode the superior protection a roof provides. There are important, necessary steps to maintaining your roof. Keep in mind, maintaining your roof can be done by you if you feel confident and are able. However, there are obvious dangers that come with being on a ladder at great heights when it is leaning against your home. If roof maintenance isn’t a task you are up for, there are many great home maintenance companies that will do all the work for you. Contact Orca Homes for our best recommendations on home maintenance companies.
Get It Clean
The first step in roof maintenance is to get the roof regularly cleaned off. When leaves and debris sits on a roof for an extended period of time it encourages decomposition and slow breakdown of the roofing material. Ideally, your roof should be cleaned off twice a year, and more often if your home is situated in an area with a lot of trees, leaves, or debris. A high-powered gas air blower will rid your roof of all the leaves that will collect and sit on your roof. Other ways to remove debris from your roof if an air blower isn’t available is by hand or with hand tools such as a rake. If you are removing leaves by hand be sure nothing hits the roof too hard or scrapes too deep. Though a roof is solid and strong, keeping the material as in tact as possible will ensure longevity of the integrity of your roof longer. Though logically using a pressure washer to spray off moss and algae, high-powered pressure washers are not recommended to clean your roof with. Though they are great for solid surfaces like decks and sidewalks, a pressure washer can force small amounts of water into and underneath the shingles. Water is designed to run down and away from the home, but with a pressure washer it can not only take off the top layer of the shingles it can also push water back up under shingles putting water where it shouldn’t go.
Get Out of The Gutter
Another very important step in roof maintenance is an extra dirty one, but left undone can mean disaster for your roof. Regular clearing and cleaning of the gutters is vital to the health and longevity of your roof. Gutter cleaning is another potentially dangerous job because of the height of the ladder and leaning to the side to scoop out debris. Many homeowners use home maintenance companies to do their important dirty work cleaning the gutters. House gutters are a vital part in getting water off the roof and away from the home’s foundation. Without gutters water would land mere feet from the home’s foundation and soak into the ground and slowly compromise the home’s foundation. With gutters and proper drainage, water—the roof’s greatest enemy—will be carried away from the house and potentially damaging situations. In addition to catching water, gutters also catch debris. This “muck” collects and builds over time, and if not cleared in a timely manner will overflow, causing worse problems eventually. Gutters must be cleaned out regularly. The leaves, mud, and muck needs to be scooped out and composted or thrown down in order to let the water flow fast and free. Gutters need to especially be cleaned out in the fall leading into the winter. If a gutter is clogged from the fall and freezes in the winter with ice, a roof can develop an ice dam which backs water back up under the shingles. Like using a pressure washer to clean the roof, water backing up the opposite direction water is supposed to flow will allow water to create mold and leaks underneath the roof’s top layer.
Roof treatments are particularly important in Seattle’s wet and soggy climate. Algae, moss, mildew and lichen thrive in this environment, and your roof is a nice, wide open place for it to grow. Though a green roof is all the rage these days, a moss and mildew isn’t the green that benefits the environment, or the roof. These types of green need to be treated and removed regularly. With all the trees in Seattle, a damp, shady section of a roof becomes an ideal growth environment for moss. In the summer, when it dries out a bit, moss dies away, but thrives in the damp and dark. If trees cast shade over your roof pay close attention to these sections first. There could be moss, and a simple powder treatment will keep it at bay. Home maintenance companies tend to offer roof treatments for the varieties of small plants that grow on a roof. Generally, the powders they use are commercial strength, and will do more and last longer than the can of powder purchased from the home improvement store. Again, if getting up on the roof isn’t safe or doable, a home maintenance company can be relied upon to maintain all aspects of the roof. If you begin to see the green stuff growing, don’t let it spread. Nip it in the bud by powdering it yourself or hiring someone to do it for you.
If your roof is on its last legs, either an old roof came with your new home or your roof has lived its best life, and needs to retire, Orca Roofing should be your first call when it comes to roof replacement. We are a small roofing company specializing in high-quality materials and superior customer service. We can give our best recommendations on maintaining your roof once the job is complete, and we can recommend our favorite home maintenance companies as well.