Your home’s roof is one of its most important and expensive assets, and the item the average homeowner dreads replacing more than anything else associated with their home. The nationwide average cost of a new roof is around $10,000, and while most roof replacements can be completed in 3-4 days, the expense, noise and mess associated with this project can be quite a headache. While the average lifespan of a roof is about 15 years, it is possible to extend the life of your roof with a few regular maintenance tasks.
Keep Your Gutters Clear
Leaves, pine straw and other debris that accumulates in your gutters can cause clogs, adding extra weight to your roof, especially where debris overflows. Overflowing gutters themselves can exert a downward pull on your roof. You can check for signs of this stress by looking down the length of your roof for any signs of sagging or bending. Downspouts are also possible problem points. Even if water appears to be flowing freely during and after a rain, debris clogs could still be present, pulling on your roof and compromising its integrity. Make sure all debris is cleared from gutters and downspouts regularly, and be sure to use a reputable gutter cleaning company if you aren’t secure in your ladder climbing skills.
Take Care of Your Attic
Proper insulation in your attic doesn’t just help to keep your home cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Maintaining a consistent internal temperature in your home with proper insulation also works to prevent moisture buildup on the underside of your roof. Another major component in avoiding moisture damage to your roof’s rafters is ensuring proper ventilation. Adding a fan or dehumidifier to your attic to control moisture is another way to extend the life of your roof.
An Ounce of Prevention is Worth Several Grand of Cure
Check on your roof regularly, especially after major temperature changes, when seasons change, and after any significant storm. If small issues arise, the earlier you catch them, the smaller and cheaper the repair will be. If you suspect that an errant tree limb or a gale force breeze has caused an issue, contact a licensed professional roofer to inspect the situation, and you may even consider scheduling a yearly checkup for your roof, especially as it reaches the limits of its expected lifetime.