Roof Restoration and Maintenance

Posted on 25th February, 2016

The roofing maintenance guide

Roof maintenance is a vital part of looking after your investment in a home. If you have a program of regular maintenance for your roof you have the potential to add years to the life of your roof. This is because you will be able to spot minor problems before they spiral on to become major ones, and you will be able to better protect this huge asset. After all, your roof is always exposed to the elements, and is subject to huge amount of stress from the sun, wind and rain, and while these kinds of stressors cause what’s called normal aging, the biggest risks for damage to your home come from other, more acute issues like stress concentration and damage from storms.

When it comes to looking after your roof you need to know a few things, and we’re going to take a look at a quick maintenance checklist for your home roof, some of the key issues to keep an eye out for with your roof (as well as some common causes and solutions), and some basic dos and don’ts with your roof.

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Roof maintenance checklist

Your roofing maintenance program should be part of the greater home maintenance program that you already have in place, with the point being to maximise the life of your roof and to minimise your losses from damage. Your basic points to follow are:

  • 1. Perform a regular visual inspection of the roof and guttering
  • 2. Repair any damage immediately before water can get into the roof or walls
  • 3. Check moisture in your insulation with a non-destructive moisture detection system to ensure that water hasn’t infiltrated your roof

After all, the main function of your roof is to ensure that water doesn’t get in and that the insulation stays dry. While your roof may appear to be in great condition, the insulation may have become wet which severely affects the thermal efficiency of your roof. You can get an inspection of the roof insulation with nuclear meter or infrared thermography, both of which need to be carried out by trained operators.

You need to ensure that you thoroughly inspect your roof twice a year, as well as after any major storms or construction. If you find anything that requires attention you must call a qualified roofing professional to carry out the work.

  • A. Look at the underside of the roof and also at the outside of the house
  • B. Check for cracks, stains, rust, watermarks, wet spots and other signs of water
  • C. Check the roof for signs of damage or problems
  • D. Inspect your guttering for water flow, blockages, holes, rust and damage
  • E. If there are any problems, call a qualified professional to repair the damage

So what are some of the common issues with a roof? Let’s take a look here.

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Common issues

Broken shingles

No matter how minor the damage may appear, it is important that you attend to any broken, damaged or worn shingles as quickly as possible to prevent the problem escalating your need to do a complete re-roof. Look out for the following shingle problems.

  • Curled shingles
  • Broken shingles
  • Cracked shingles
  • Bruised or dented shingles

Sagging roof

A sagging roof looks unattractive and is a structural hazard that could lead to your roof collapsing. Damaged or loose shingles and gaps in the flashing where the roofing and siding meet and flues can contribute to the roof sagging. In addition to this, sections of your roof might start to weaken from rotting or decay. Water damage is a major contributor to weakened roofing materials. This is because it can allow mould and mildew to develop, which will contribute to the deterioration of your roofing materials.

The roof material is faulty.

The quality of the materials and the installation will minimise the risk of faults in your roof. People will often be tempted to go for the cheaper options like asphalt shingles, which won’t last as long as slate shingles. The same approach should be used for other materials like roofing beams and nails. Also, qualified professionals should always do roofing work.

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The roof is holding too much weight.

If the roof comes under too much weight, it will collapse and sag. Typically, this occurs from heavy snow, ice and rain settling on the roof for a long time. Fortunately, the Australian climate doesn't usually allow for these types of weight problems to occur. However, property owners should be aware of any other ‘weight hazards’ that could affect your roof structure. For example, falling heavy debris from trees.

Sagging gutters.

Gutters are one of the most important components for protecting your roof and your home. If your gutter fails to function correctly, it could cause extensive damage to your home. Sagging gutters are a common problem because the drains get clogged with debris, which then weighs down the gutter and makes it more ineffective. Check your property to see if your gutters are tilting away from the roofline.

The damage caused from sagging gutters include:

  • Exposing your roof to damage caused from water or moisture.
  • Damage the landscaping around your home.
  • Flood lower level flooring.
  • Damage the property’s foundation.

What are the kind of hazards you should be aware of?

Hazards from the weather.

The Australian climate can be harsh with torrential rain, fast winds and large hailstones during the storm season. Check with your local roofer to install a solution that will minimise the risk of damage caused from climate conditions in your area.

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Hazards from flora or fauna.

Be aware of the environmental hazards around you. Falling debris from trees could damage shingles, add weight to your roof or potentially damage your gutter. Additionally, any fauna or pests should be removed from your roof to minimise the risk of any damage.doesn't allow for these types of weight problems to occur. However, property owners should be aware of any other ‘weight hazards’ that could affect your roof structure. For example, falling heavy debris from trees.

During the summertime, it isn’t uncommon for large hailstones to pelt down or strong winds to wreak havoc on your property. The tin sheets of your roof can blow off or damage can occur to your roof tiles. The extent of the damage may cause flooding and leaks in your home.

Aging roofs

An old roof will cause problems such as granular discharge from the shingles that protects the home from UV protection and makes up the colour. For tin roofs, it can lead to rust, which may create holes that could cause water damage within the roof.

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Dos and don’ts

What are some of the common dos and don’ts with regards to your roof? After all you want to know what to avoid and how to get the most out of your roof.

Do:

  • Follow a regular maintenance checklist as this will help to prolong the life of your roof
  • Perform a regular inspection - preferably twice a year to ensure that the roof is in great condition
  • Make sure you check the roof out after storms or high winds
  • Check your building for movement or no settlement. A crack in a wall is a warning sign
  • Check your guttering and clear it out regularly, particularly if you have a lot of trees overhanging
  • Keep the roof clean and free of debris (get a trained serviceperson out if necessary)
  • Know what to look for in terms of roof maintenance

Don’t:

  • Let an unqualified person perform roofing maintenance on your roof
  • Let traffic on your roof - unless accompanied by a qualified person
  • Ignore the potential signs for concern with your roof

Reasons to re-roof

Sometimes, despite your best efforts at maintenance and upkeep, it will be necessary to re-roof your house, due to a range of potential issues. Let’s take a look at what some of these issues are.

IMPROVING THE VISUAL AESTHETIC OF YOUR PROPERTY

The visual appeal of your property will be enhanced if your roof looks new and the shingles or tin looks consistent. The visual appeal can improve the perceived equity for your property for resale.

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INSURANCE CLAIMS

Insurance claims You will need to check with your insurance policy provider to make sure that they cover roof damage on your property. Find out how much the policy will cover and partner with a roofing expert that can successfully guide you through the process for installing your new roof.

Expired warranty

Many property owners are finding that the warranty on their existing roof is expiring and that problems such as rusting, holes and other shingle damage starts to occur. Check the manufacturer's warranty of your roof to see if you may face a similar situation.

How much should property owners expect to pay for roofing repairs?

Costs can vary greatly when it comes to doing roofing work. According to Melbourne based roofing businesses, roofers can charge anywhere from $40 to $90 per hour for labour. Roofing materials will also vary based on the quality of the materials being used. Replacement and restoration costs will also vary based on the amount of square metres that need attention. Costs can range from $17-$110 per square metre.

Good roofing can be taken for granted since people tend to see it as a commodity. A good roof can do more wonders for your home’s safety, aesthetic appeal and value over the long-term. Don’t let your roof become a burden on your property. Keep an eye on roof’s maintenance to best protect your property.

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