Spring, Best Time To Inspect The Roof
The roof is an area many people don’t often think about in the spring. You may feel that you cleaned the gutters last fall and don’t need to inspect the roof anymore until next fall. But, winter snow and wind can cause damage to the roof that you might not notice until small leaks creeps their way into the interior of your home. The roof is also one of the most important areas you’ll need to pay attention to in the spring in order to repair minor issues, extend its useful life and protect the overall value of your home.
Items to be inspected: Roof coverings, flashings, chimney, roof penetrations and roof drainage systems.
It’s very important to inspect the roof thoroughly for damaged shingles, flashing, and gutters, especially if your roof developed ice dams over the winter.
Inspect your roof from a ladder. If your roof is especially high or steep, or if you just feel it’s unsafe for you to either climb a ladder or walk the roof, you can inspect your roof with binoculars from the ground. If you’re on the roof, sweep away any debris that accumulated up there to prevent water buildup and to get a better look at the condition of your roof. Clean gutters of any leaves and debris that accumulated over the winter and check the gutter connection to roof, if loose re-secure them to roof.
Examine your shingles closely to see if any are missing, loose or have no bond to the lower shingle. You can do basic roof repair yourself, or hire a roofing contractor to do them for you.
Inspect the chimney and any other penetrations you may have on the roof for loose or damaged flashing and missing mortar. Seal small cracks where the flashing meets the chimney with masonry caulk, and repair and re-attach loose flashing with masonry nails or screws covered with roofing cement. This last part is an important step because uncovered nails can expose the interior of your home to water penetration that seeps in through the space around the nail.
If you are able to access your attic, you should check underneath your roof during or just after a heavy rain. Look for signs of damp spots or drips. Pay special attention to areas around the chimneys, venting penetrations and skylight wells where leaks are most common.
If you inspect the roof every year and maintain it right away, your home should be clear of roof leaks and the expensive damage they can cause. You can also extend the life span of your roof by keeping it clean and in good repair so that rain can’t settle there. You also avoid letting the wind pick up a small roof wound and make it larger.
Next on Inspector’s Note’s…Did you know you can build your own greenhouse from PVC piping and plastic to keep your seedlings growing safe outside just in case mother nature doesn’t want to co-operate? Check back, I’ll be posting instructions on how to do that.