The roof over our head gives us that feeling of security, but it’s something we rarely ever give a second thought to. It protects you and your home from all sorts of dangers including bad weather, which is something we get plenty of during the winter.
Your roof can be relied upon to look after you and the contents of your home, but it tends to be more effective if you in turn look after it. That is why it’s important to uphold proper roof maintenance, so that if you do notice something wrong you can deal with it earlier and avoid the large costs associated with major roof issues. The best way to do this is to perform regular roof inspections.
You should perform an inspection twice a year, in Spring and in Autumn. The good news is that you don’t have to clamber up a ladder to get a good look at your roof. Instead, all you need is a good pair of binoculars to see any potential problems. In fact, the less you walk around up there, the better for your roofing and the safer for you. Work your way around your house, noting any potential problems. Regular inspections will help you get to know your roof, so you’ll be able to recognise problems before they get too serious.
Make it a priority by setting it in your calendar, although only carry it out on a clear day. To make sure you’re addressing all problems, create a checklist for your roof inspection. Here are the most important things to look out for:
Moss on your roof can be a serious problem, as it soaks up rainwater like a sponge. The moisture can cause the wooden structure underneath your roof to mould and decay, which can compromise the structural integrity of your roof. Any patches of moss, leaves or lichen on your roof should be removed immediately. You can spray a roof moss remover and cleaner on affected areas. Follow the instructions and wait for the solution to do its work before gently brushing away the moss and mould with a soft bristled brush.
When a roof leaks, the problem is often due to leaks in and around the metal roof flashing that protects roof edges, valleys, and the junctions between roofing and other objects such as chimneys or skylights. Check lead flashings for holes, corrosion, cracks, or other signs of damage or deterioration. Small holes or corroded spots can be easily repaired with roofing cement. However, if there is more significant damage it is worth calling in the professionals.
Check for broken, cracked, curled, or missing tiles, and any signs of a loose roof tile. Loose or damaged tiles are very common problems. Over time, high winds, hail, tree branches and other debris can cause light damage to all types of roofs. Sometimes just a little roofing cement may be all that’s needed to repair a loose tile. If the tile is severely damaged though, you should replace it.
They may not be the roof exactly, but they need to be cleared to keep the roof in top condition. Three times a year is the recommended amount, otherwise water can back up and rot the fascia. Check for cracks, and tears around the edges of the roof to make sure no water penetration is occurring. If you have asphalt shingles, be aware that they contain gravel-like granules. As the shingles age, these granules will fall away and find their way into your gutters. If you notice a lot of asphalt granules in your gutters, check the roof carefully for damaged shingles.
If your home has an attic, check it for signs that water has leaked through your roof. It can help you spot damage that may not have been visible from outside, it’s best done during heavy rain, as it will be easier to identify any active leaks. Inspect your rafters and the wooden interior of your roof for signs of moisture, mould and rot and ensure your attic is well ventilated. A properly ventilated attic will help stop a build-up of heat and moisture which can lead to roof rot and excessive moss forming on the roof.
Looking after your roof will not only save you costs down the line, but it will also be one less thing to worry about if you’re getting your home ready to sell. In short, if you look after your roof, it will look after you and your home. And if you want added security from your roof to the ground and everything in between, an AIG home insurance policy will provide you with protection you can rely on. Get a home insurance quote today and find out how you could save 25% by signing up online, or have a look at our home insurance FAQs for more information.