4 Common Roof Problems

While it’s true that roofs, when correctly installed and maintained, can last a long time, they surely don’t last forever – especially when you live in a climate with severe weather conditions. Your roof shields the largest and most profitable asset you own, so you should be cognizant of the first signs of roof trouble. Luckily, many of the symptoms are easily visible – even from the ground, so you can do the necessary roof repair procedures you need.

However, a minor leak can go undiscovered for years, until it makes its presence known in the form of a huge damage. Thus, it’s the right call to have your roof regularly inspected. Many local roof companies provide free inspections; but even if you have to pay for this service, it’s far better than discovering leaks after the damage has already been done.

Here are the common signs to look for when it comes to roof problems, and what you can do to make your roof look as good as new.

Check the Chimney

A big, wide chimney creates a dam on the roof. Debris and water can gather behind the dam, which causes moisture. This moisture and wetness can result in wood rot and rusted flashing. If you have a chimney wider than 30 inches, you need to have a “saddle” or a “cricket” installed. A chimney cricket is a small roof built right behind the chimney. It will direct debris and water around the chimney to go off the roof. If you don’t have a chimney cricket or saddle, check for holes getting rusty through the flashing. If you are shopping for a new roof, make sure to tell the contractor to include a chimney cricket in the quote or bid.

Roof Cement

Metal flashing works to prevent leaks where the shingles connect to the other surfaces of the structure, like the chimneys and walls. Installing roof flashing correctly takes time and expertise; so inexperienced roofing specialists would sometimes put heaps of roof cement instead. The cement seals out water long enough for them to receive your payment. However, after several weeks or months, the cement cracks, which results in leaks. In the end, all it did was turn a proper roof repair even more difficult to tackle. If you see a big patchwork of tar on your roof, have an experienced roofing contractor fix it right – before it leads to even more severe damage.

Kick-Out Flashing

Kick-out flashing is where the edge of your roof connects to a sidewall. Without kick-out flashing, the roof runoff will flow down the wall and more likely even into it. This is the worst case scenario when there is a window or a door below it where water can trickle down behind the trim. This may go unnoticed for years; however, it will inevitably rot and wreck the framing and sheathing. In even more extreme cases, it’s only the stucco desperately holding up the wall. Don’t wait to let this happen. Consult with a roof specialist and make sure he knows how to add kick-out flashing.

Gutter Apron

Some of the water that flows off the edge off your roof will hang onto the bottom of the shingles and trickle down the fascia, which is the band under the side of the roof. If you don’t have a gutter apron to stop the water, it will wick in the rear of the gutter. This will cause the fascia, soffits, and roof sheathing to rot. Water stains may appear visible beneath the gutter on the soffit and on the fascia. This is a sign that you need a gutter apron.

The ideal time to put gutter apron is when you’re having new shingles installed. However, adding a gutter apron is doable under shingles that are already there. A little roof cement every few feet will hold the gutter apron to the shingles in place. You will have to take off the gutter straps and reattach them after the gutter apron is placed. You can purchase gutter apron from home centers, and they come in 10 feet lengths.

Professional Consultation

Your roof provides you shelter and protection. Also, a damaged roof can also lead to other severe damages inside your house. Thus, it’s critical to make sure you have a good, solid roof From installation to maintenance to roof repair, make sure to always check with experienced roofing contractors.

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