How to Stay “Roof Smart®” and Worry Free
Your roof is your home’s most vital exterior component. It’s the first and last line of defense for protecting your investment in your property and its furnishings. Being Roof Smart® will save you money and extend the life of your roof.
3 Steps to Being “Roof Smart”
Don’t take it for granted that because your roof looks fine that it is free of leaks. Every roof, no matter its appearance, age, or composition is subject to deterioration. Roofs require ongoing, scheduled inspections. In fact, you should have your first inspection six to twelve months after installation.
To protect against Southern California’s weather, Cert-A-Roof recommends pre-season inspections annually or after any roof top modifications. Les Watrous, CEO of Cert-A-Roof, says that “the summer sun can raise the roof’s surface temperature immensely, drying the roofing material so that it is brittle and then can crack. Wood shakes and composition shingles are the most susceptible to this type of damage. Once roofing material breaks, cracks or shrinks, the felt underlayment is exposed to the weather. Most people don’t realize that this underlayment is the actual waterproofing membrane for all roofing materials. Heat can bake the oil out of the felt, destroying its waterproofing properties, which then exposes the home to water damage.”
It is best to have a certified roofing professional inspect your roof. Professionals can spot and intercept minor problems before they develop into drips or leaks. Using a qualified inspector each time is a good practice. Some property insurance claims regarding the roof may even be disallowed if the homeowner fails to conduct regular inspections and proper maintenance of their roof. “A good insurance policy, a professional inspection and any necessary repairs along with proper documentation is the best roof protection a homeowner can have,” Watrous adds.
Once an inspection has been performed and documented, problem areas need to be immediately addressed, especially any missing wood shakes, shingles or tiles. The top layer of your roof needs to be kept intact and is essential for protecting the felt layer underneath. Even with a new roof, moderate winds can lift shingles or cause tiles to slip out of place, exposing the felt to sun or weather damage. Any damaged hip and ridge caps need to be replaced, and all pipes and flashings need to be secured and sealed. If your roof is in need of repair, you can hire a Cert-A-Roof professional, who can also provide you with their 2 year LeakFREE® Roof Certification for your peace of mind. Whether you need a simple repair or a complete roof replacement, Cert-A-Roof has products and services that fit any home and budget.
An often over-looked part of roof maintenance is keeping your roof free of debris. Accumulated debris retains moisture and contributes to the deterioration of any roof surface. It is best to keep your roof free of leaves, branches, pine needles and other objects. Always make sure your downspouts and gutters are clear. Clogged gutters and downspouts create a build-up of water forcing the overflow back onto your roof. Standing water will eventually rot your starter boards and trim. Be “Roof-Smart” and keep these simple steps in mind throughout the year.
The Risks of “Doing It Yourself”
It’s always safest to use the services of a professional roofer because inspecting, repairing or cleaning a roof yourself can cause damage to the roof surface or injury to you. Professional roofers are accustomed to and comfortable with working on high ledges and sloped roofs.
Watrous warns homeowners that unless you are extremely careful and knowledgeable, walking on a roof can actually create problems or worsen its condition. Most roofing problems are inexpensive if repaired immediately. The smartest thing you can do is to call a professional to have your roof inspected so that you are not caught off guard when the next wind or rainstorm hits.
For a roof inspection by a qualified Cert-A-Roof professional, call toll-free, 1-888-ROOF 800 (1-888-766-3800) today. For more information about Cert-A-Roof and additional “Roof Smart” tips visit www.certaroof.com.
Les Watrous is the founder and CEO of Cert-A-Roof, a one-stop source for every residential or commercial roofing need. Cert-A-Roof meets the needs of homeowners, the real estate community, mortgage lenders and insurance companies with standardized, professional services including inspection, certification, repair, restoration and replacement. Our network of experienced professionals maintains service areas throughout the nation.