The roofing system is a vital component of your home’s exterior. It is largely responsible for keeping the occupants and essential interior belongings away from harsh weather conditions — such as extreme heat from the sun, sharp-hitting hailstones and strong, high winds — and safe from the damaging effects these elements usually cause. Moreover, the roof is a crucial element in curb appeal, potentially making or breaking the overall architectural appearance of your property.
However, in order for your roofing system to successfully perform all of its functions, it needs to be properly installed by a reputable roofing contractor and regularly maintained throughout its lifecycle. Unfortunately, plenty of homeowners forget about their roofs after the installation process has been completed. This prevents them from seeing the value right over their heads and reaping the optimal benefits their roofs provide.
To help you extend the life of your roofing system, we will debunk some common roof maintenance myths and misconceptions and lay out the hampered truths behind them.
MYTH 1: Modern Roofs Are Virtually Maintenance-Free
This case is ideal for a lot of residential and commercial building owners. To a certain extent, this misconception is stimulated by impressive technological advancements and modern application techniques that were developed by roofing manufacturers in recent years. These innovations certainly made roofing systems more energy-efficient, hardwearing, long-lasting and easier to install as a result.
As an example, TPO roofing has a flexible rubber membrane that is incredibly resistant to bacteria, algae and debris. A roof repair expert would tell you that the remarkable growth and use of thermoplastic polyolefin roofs can be traced back to the late 1980s. Since then, this type of roofing material has been considered a standard in high-performance and impact damage resistance qualities of modern roofing systems. But, despite these well-known roof innovations, no manufacturing company has been able to create a completely 20-year, maintenance-free system as of yet.
That fact is, more than 80 percent of commercial roofs installed across the nation are replaced prematurely or before their due time. The toll of failure to diligently follow a regular maintenance schedule plays a huge part in this problem. Your roof may have the potential to outlast its warranty if you observe preventive maintenance and do necessary repairs ahead of time. For an instance, patching up a seemingly trivial water damage after a rainstorm, such as granule loss of shingles, will help you retain the functionality of your roof for a longer duration.
MYTH 2: All Of Your Roof Problems Are Covered By Material Warranties
The truth is, material warranties specifically cover material defects from manufacturing, which only represent less than one percent of reported roof failure. The most common causes of roofing system breakdown include poor installation, damage from severe weather events and lack of seasonal maintenance. All of these are not covered under manufacturer limited material warranties. Furthermore, extended warranties do not cover emergency roof repair or maintenance costs and other problems that can arise from overlooking regular maintenance.
Annual or semi-annual visits from a roofing contractor will help identify deficiencies or damage so they can be repaired or replaced before they present bigger and more costly issues. These include mold growth in the attic and rotted wood decking due to excessive moisture as well as increased energy bills due to damaged roof insulation. For a homeowner, determining a problem when it is still less expensive to address can significantly help save money and labor down the line.
MYTH 3: Power Washing Is Necessary to Keep Your Roof Clean
Power washing is a common cleaning method that many homeowners use around their houses. It utilizes high pressure water spray to get rid of loose paint, grime, mold, dirt and other debris from exterior surfaces. However, power washing can actually be more damaging than it is beneficial. Too much pressure forces a considerable amount of water under your shingles, resulting in the growth of mold and mildew over time. In addition, this pressure washing technique strips the protective coating and granules off the asphalt shingles on your roof. Without these granules, your asphalt shingles cannot protect your home from harsh ultraviolet rays and provide your structure with adequate fire resistance. The damage due to power washing may not be easily noticeable, but it will definitely shorten the expected lifespan of your roofing system.
If you want to remove algae from your roof, spray washing affected areas with a mix of water and bleach will do the trick. However, keep in mind that cleaning solutions need to be approved by the shingle manufacturer before you can use them. The best thing to do is call a professional roofing contractor and schedule a maintenance service to ensure accurate results.
MYTH 4: The Sun Will Not Hurt Your Roof
A lot of people expect roofs to be impervious to damaging effects of the sun. The truth is, the ultraviolet radiation that is emitted by the scorching sun plays a critical role in the aging of asphalt shingles. These UV rays gradually disintegrate the strong molecular structure of your roof over time.
The use of roof coatings can lessen the impact of weather elements on your roofing system. The application of a light-colored paint or finish on your roofing membrane also helps reflect more solar heat, allowing your attic and the rest of your home to remain cooler throughout the day. Other methods to slow the deterioration of your roof are performing regular inspections, keeping drains open and making sure that your rooftop equipment is functioning properly. It is also important to minimize the foot traffic on your roof at all times to avoid unexpected roof repair needs.
MYTH 5: If You Cannot See Damage, There Is No Damage
One of the crucial reasons why your roof needs to be professionally inspected at least twice a year is because signs of damage are not always immediately visible to the eye. This means that just because there are no leaks in the attic or missing shingles on your roof, does not necessarily mean everything is in order. For example, a soft or spongy roof deck cannot be exposed and addressed until your roofing shingles are removed first. Members of your household can also start to experience skin problems or stuffiness within nasal passages. This health hazard may indicate that your roof has developed mold, which can trigger allergic reactions in many people. Make sure that your living space is safe from these risks by treating small issues before they become rampant. This precautionary measure helps save not only on maintenance costs but also physical health expenses.
Contact Villwell Builders, LLC For Your Exterior Remodeling Needs
Maintaining your roof on a regular basis will help transform the beauty and functionality of your home in more ways imaginable. If you think you are ready to take on the task, do not hesitate to find Villwell Builders, LLC for a guaranteed smooth and stress-free experience. Our team of specialists will help guide you through the entire process, whether it is an emergency roof repair or a roof replacement.
We also offer other high-quality exterior remodeling services, such as siding installation, deck addition and window replacement. Call us at (203) 879-2118 today for more information or fill out our convenient contact form to schedule an appointment.