With fall quickly approaching, it means the season is changing and before you know it, winter will be here! While your roof may not be the highest item on your to-do list, or top of your mind, it certainly is important to care for before winter hits. While Memphis winters tend to be more mild, and without the heavy snowfall of the Midwest or north Atlantic, we certainly see our share of cold temperatures and inclement weather in winter.
Finding a Memphis roofer may not be your highest priority right now, but keep some of these things in mind. By doing just some of the items on this list, you can save yourself stress and money down the road before something major happens to your roof.
These are 6 Ways to Keep Your Memphis Roof in Great Condition
Keep Debris Clear From Your Roof
Debris isn’t always visible from the ground, but it can be a quiet killer of your roof. Debris can start to mound and pile on your roof, which can hold moisture. This is the opposite of what your roof is designed for, as it should be able to easily shed water away from your home. Not hold moisture.
The best thing that you can do is clear any twigs, tree branches or leaves that are piling on top of your roof. You may notice vegetation or algae forming, or even mold. If this is not quickly taken care of, this debris can lead to roof leaks, or worse, roof rot. Your underlayment and shingles can begin to break down from the water damage, causing expensive repairs or full replacement.
To clear this debris, use a broom or an object with soft brushes. Do NOT use a pressure washer, as this could cause more severe damage.
Inspect Your Roof
Before fall begins, walk the perimeter of your home, notating any thing you see on your home’s exterior. This includes your home’s roof, siding, windows, gutter and doors. As fall turns into winter, you will have an idea if anything looks different.
One thing to look for is missing or blown off shingles. This can be a sign of storm damage to your roof, and could cause leaks to form. Look for curling or broken shingles. This is an indicator that your roof’s life may be nearing the end. Examine your roof for rusted flashings and caulking around roof pipes. With winter approaching, animals and pests may try to enter your home for warmth, so ensure there are no holes that they can get into (or if they have already made their way into your attic or home). This can surely lead to leaks.
Empty Your Gutters
Since Memphis can experience very cold winters & snow storms, you may have seen ice dams form before. One way to help prevent this is keeping your gutters and downspouts clear of debris. Water that pools onto your roof, and sits there can build up as ice if it is not properly draining into your gutters.
Remove all sticks, leaves and pine needles on your roof. Be sure not to use a hose for your gutters as debris can get clogged into your downspouts, simply causing another problem. However, you can use a hose in your downspout to flush all the debris out.
Properly functioning downspouts should divert water at least five or six feet away from your home as you do not want water to seep into the soil under your home’s foundation. If you need a leaf guard or gutter guard, now is the time to make sure your gutters and downspouts are working at max capacity. With leaves falling in the fall, they could clog up your gutters.
Waterproof your roof
Your roof should be a sealed and waterproofed area of your exterior to keep water from entering your home. This is particularly true on flat roofs as water can pond on a flat roof. One way to seal your roof is by using an elastomeric rubber coating to seal and protect your roof.
Inspect your attic
If you aren’t comfortable climbing onto your roof, which is understandable as most homeowners aren’t and prefer leaving that to a roofing contractor, go into your attic instead! Your attic can actually tell you a lot about the condition and health of your roof. First, you can look for any stains or streaks in the attic that may be caused by leaks or water damage. Brown or dark spots could be an indicator of mold, which is worth a professional inspection.
If you notice your insulation is damp, this could be a sign of a leak in your roof. It is important to fix any problematic spots on your roof before your attic because the problems will simply return otherwise. You can replace the damaged drywall with new pieces, or simply repair the stains if you are not interested in replacement.
You also want to ensure your roof is properly insulated for winter. Ice dams form if heat is escaping from your roof. You want your attic and roof cold, otherwise ice dams form from melting snow. The warm air from your attic will melt the snow, and as the water runs down it will refreeze on your roof at the eaves, causing potential ice dams.
Give Your Trees a ‘Shape-Up”
Overgrown trees are one of the most common external problem sources for roofs. We see many insurance claims that are filed because of storm damage to a roof from a tree limb or branch that has crashed into a Memphis home. These trees can snap when under major duress from high winds in a thunderstorm or tornado! A branch hanging over your roof is a problem waiting to happen! Even if a branch does not break clean through your roof, the branches can still rub against the asphalt on your roof’s shingles.
This is also how your gutters can clog up from the leaves falling off of those trees, and twigs collecting in your gutters. The moisture from that vegetation is how mold and mildew can start to form. What you will want to do is trim your tree’s limbs and branches to protect your roof from any damage in the future.
Call The Most Trusted Memphis Roofers Today!
If you’re worried that your roof may have been damaged from a recent storm, or want a thorough storm damage inspection from a reputable, local roofing contractor, then give us a call today! We’ve been serving the Memphis metropolitan area for years, and are highly reviewed and referred because of our commitment to excellence and customer satisfaction. We perform one of the most thorough roofing inspections in the industry, and take pride in being one of the best roofing contractors in Memphis!