As the seasons change, your roof will need to be prepared for the many showers of spring. After a long, harsh winter, snow and ice can do a great deal of damage to a roof. Carrying out a roof inspection and conducting a few repairs will help to ensure your roof is prepared for the onslaught of rain that will be coming in spring.
Inspect Your Roof After the Thaw
Many homeowners find themselves with roof problems once the ice and snow of winter start to fade as the temperatures warm. Even the sturdiest of roofs can take a beating during a harsh winter.
You should conduct a thorough inspection of your roof after each season, but it is especially vital after winter. You can perform a ground inspection first, using a pair of binoculars. If you do not have binoculars and feel safe on a ladder, you can inspect your roof up close.
Signs of Roof Damage
There are a few different signs that should alert homeowners of damage to their roof. When damage has occurred, due to the ravages of winter, seeking prompt repairs is essential for the prevention of further damages that will be costlier to repair.
- Dips in the roof signal the decking underneath has become compromised and is no longer able to support the roof materials properly. A dip in the roof should never be ignored because it could signal significant problems that need to be addressed right away. In severe cases, depressions in a roof could lead to a partial collapse.
- Shingle damage is commonly found in roof inspections after the winter months. Ice and snow can cause problems for shingles, especially if they are older. If you notice any signs of shingle damage, including curling, splitting, or missing shingles, seek repairs right away.
- You should also check the flashings as these are the most commonly damaged. Flashings surround the chimney and roof vents. If they are damaged in any way, they need to be replaced, so they do not allow water to enter your home and lead to internal damage.
- Check any caulk areas or weather strips to ensure they are in sound shape. These areas are also vulnerable to damage and should always be inspected before a new season comes in. Since spring can bring in high winds and heavy showers, making sure these areas are secure is vital.
Homeowners often do not realize their roof has suffered damage until they begin to experience internal leaks. If you notice drips inside your home, wet spots, or water stains on the ceilings, these signs point to a compromised roof.
Inspect Your Attic for Signs of Problems
The attic of a home is one of the most overlooked. When a roof inspection is carried out, the attic needs to be checked. Your attic can offer clues as to how well your roof is providing protection. Should you notice any of the following, it is likely the roof is damaged.
- Damp beams are a sure sign water is getting in from the roof.
- A musty smell means there is too much moisture in the air, and this can be caused by roof damage.
- If you see sunlight beaming in through cracks and holes in the attic, it is time to seek repairs.
- Mold growth can also be caused by a roof that is leaking into the attic. This is a situation that should not be ignored because it will only lead to increased problems that become more expensive to repair.
- You must check the peaks of the attic for signs of damage. Because water runs downhill, it may appear the leaks are stemming from lower areas in the roof, when they are occurring much higher in the peak.
Check the Gutters and Downspouts
The gutters and downspouts of a home are critical for protecting your foundation from water damage. If the gutters are not doing their job, water will be allowed to flow down the walls of your home, and it will pool along the foundation, leading to its degradation.
Multiple issues can begin to arise with a gutter system. Gutter systems can last around twenty years, but they can begin to experience damage before their lifespan is complete. Should homeowners notice any of the following signs with their gutters or downspouts, they need to consider hiring the professionals for repairs.
- If the gutters are not securely mounted to the home, they will not be able to collect rainwater effectively. Checking to ensure all components are tightly mounted is essential.
- Homeowners should also check to be sure there are no holes, cracks, or corrosion that signal the gutters have become damaged.
- Should the gutters fill up with water without it going into the downspouts, this means there is a clog somewhere that needs to be eradicated.
- Water spots on the outer walls of a home and pooling water around the foundation indicate there is a problem with the gutter system not working effectively.
Repair the Damage Right Away
If you notice any of the above damages, they must be repaired before spring comes in and places more pressure on your vulnerable roof or gutter system.
Some repairs may be best left to the professionals, depending on the severity of the damage. Tightening the anchors of your gutter system, replacing any missing or damaged shingles, and ensuring all holes are plugged can help your roof to avoid becoming damaged during spring’s sometimes erratic weather.
Taking the time to ensure your roof is prepared for spring is a vital step in keeping your home from water damage. It does not take long to perform these inspections, and you will save money repairing the damage right away instead of waiting.
Waiting too long to seek roof and gutter repair could lead to further damage that becomes even more difficult and expensive to repair. If you do not feel confident carrying out the repairs, make sure to call a roofing contractor to ensure the work is carried out to exacting specifications.