How to Extend the Life of Your Roof
When your roof system lasts longer, it costs less (i.e. better ROI) and performs better. There’s no point shelling out money for a new roof before you need to. The best way to ensure the optimum performance of your roof for longer is a routine of general preventive maintenance. Insufficient or infrequent maintenance can reduce the life of your roof by as much as half.
Regular Roof Inspections
Routine inspections extend the life of the roof through the early detection of problems. The second way inspections increase longevity is by limiting deterioration. When caught at an early stage, the greater the likelihood wear and damage can be remedied.
A professional roof inspection assesses the condition of more than 20 components of the roof and should be scheduled before and after the seasons with the most extreme weather (e.g. in spring and fall). Remember, you’ll want to ensure the roof is in good condition before hurricane, tornado, or monsoon season hits. “Inspect roofs twice a year, first in spring after the tree seeds fall and again in late fall after leaves have fallen. At these times the roof can be cleaned during the inspection and you get more bang for your buck,” advises Rick Primmer, Service Project Supervisor, D. C. Taylor Co., Cedar Rapids, IA.
Inspections don’t just tell you the condition of the roof and its elements; the roofing professional can also help you determine the priority of repairs, provide an estimated cost, and help you map out long-term maintenance planning.
Proactive Roof Maintenance
Simply cleaning the membrane helps keep the roof system performing better for longer. Removing dirt and debris on the roof once or twice a year will limit conditions that could otherwise be ideal for the growth of unwanted vegetation. A dirty roof can become the ideal environment for algae, mildew, and mold to grow too. Don’t neglect routine roof maintenance.
Not only can environmental debris and growing plants impede proper drainage (leading to ponding water and leaks), but saturated leaves and dust can quickly become rooftop compost and allow wind-borne seeds to take root. The root system of plants, shrubs, and trees will quickly destroy a roof membrane and the insulation beneath.
Timely Commercial Roof Repairs
Even new roofs need to be inspected. They often suffer the same damage from subcontractors dropping tools, storm debris, foot traffic, etc. The sooner small deficiencies are identified and repaired, the greater the chance that the existing roofing system will perform as intended for its maximum life expectancy. Identifying problems at the onset means that small deficiencies can be fixed before they are widespread and so expensive that roof replacement is the only option.