Everyone needs a good roof over their head.
And keeping a good roof over your head relies on regular inspection and maintenance. Indeed, regularly inspecting your roof is important for a whole laundry list of reasons, chief among them (1) safety and (2) protecting your investment in your home. Because when it comes to roofs, they’re a lot like windshields — if left untreated, a tiny crack or damaged spot can easily extend into something more dangerous and more difficult and expensive to repair.
Can I inspect my roof myself?
Preventative maintenance is key to staying on top of any damaged or broken tiles/shingles as well as to finding debris, water damage or storm damage. Some minor aspects of roof maintenance could possibly be done by “regular Joe/Jane” homeowners, assuming they’re physically able to climb a ladder and walk on a roof. But that’s a huge assumption and safety risk, especially here in Arizona where we have so many glazed-tile roofs that can be somewhat slick.
Navigating across a shingle roof can be equally iffy for the DIY-er since you’re almost always walking either up or down on an angle — it’s much trickier than it looks. Plus, most weekend-DIY-ers don’t have the non-slip safety shoes that professional roofers wear and the potential pitfalls of slipping, snagging a foot or losing your balance — well, we don’t want to go there.
But all is not lost for the capable and resourceful DIY-er, and there are certainly some things homeowners can do to make sure their roof stays in tip-top shape. Here is a small list of what you can do at home, followed by examples of when it’s time to call in the professionals.
• DIY-er: Conduct a walkaround inspection of the perimeter looking for loose or broken tiles or shingles.
• Pro roofer: Fix loose or damaged tiles/shingles if found.
• DIY-er: Visually inspect the entire roof via the family drone (once considered a novelty, drones can be very helpful to homeowners in myriad ways, including in roof inspections). While “droning,” scrutinize your roof for debris as well as missing, cracked or just-plain worn-out tiles or shingles.
• Pro roofer: Remove debris and/or repair any damage the drone discovers.
• DIY-er: Check to see if the gutters need to be cleaned. A gutter is a trough along the eaves to catch and carry off rainwater; they are susceptible to getting clogged with leaves and other debris.
• Pro roofer: If you have a two-story home or your gutters are difficult to reach from a ladder, you might prefer to leave this one to the professionals, as well.
• DIY-er: Investigate all the nooks and crannies in your home for water damage, especially the ceilings and walls. If water is leaking into your home, there’s a decent possibility that it could be a roof-related problem.
• Pro roofer: Water damage should be turned over to the pros — it can become a prolonged homeowner nightmare leading to mold issues, dry rot and more. If water damage is determined to be caused by roof issues, a professional roofer is your go-to expert. However, if water damage has been caused by, for example, the water heater, A/C unit or some part of the plumbing/piping, we suggest you call a reputable plumbing contractor.
Working in concert with your roof
A well-built home is a complex network of systems that work in concert to create a safe and comfortable living space. In addition to the actual roof and roofing materials, a roof’s complementary systems also require regular maintenance and inspection. Along with gutters, some critical roof-adjacent items include:
• Flashing: Flashing is sheet metal used in waterproofing, e.g., at the angle between a chimney and a roof.
• Downspout: A downspout is a vertical pipe used to drain rainwater from a roof.
Plan ahead and save your receipts
For many folks, the thought of selling their home might exist in a distant and far-off future. But when a home-sale process gets underway, the roof is something that is most often always inspected by a potential buyer. If you’ve kept up with roof maintenance and have had your roof professionally inspected and repaired when needed, it will be immensely helpful to you to be able to prove it via receipts and documented details.
The bottom line is that regular roof inspection and maintenance and repair is not only a safety and appearance issue, but keeping your roof in tip-top shape can also add value to your home when it comes time to sell.
American Roofing & Waterproofing is here to meet all of your roofing needs. From residential, to commercial or multi-family, our dedicated and qualified team of professionals can handle jobs large and small. For more information, visit https://americanroofingnow.com/about.