17th April 2013
Nearly every roof will leak sometime, so if you've lived in your home for many years or you plan to live there for a long time, you're likely to experience a leak at some point. Leaks occur when there is damage done to the roof, and the older a house becomes, the more likely it is to develop cracks and holes in the roofing.
While there's no way that you can prevent leaks entirely, you can help to decrease the likelihood of leaks by following some simple advice. Here are seven things that you can do to help protect your roof from leaks and your home from leak-related damage.
1. Don't walk on your roof. Roofs are meant to withstand wind, rain, hail and even the impact of falling branches and debris, but a roof is not built to support the weight of a full grown adult. Walking on your roof can cause damage, particularly if you have tile or metal roofing. Stay off your roof as much as possible, and if there is a task that requires you to go up on the roof for an extended period of time, get professional advice on where you should step to minimize the risk of damage.
2. Keep the roof clear. Don't allow any type of debris or any objects like balls or toys to remain on top of your roof. Clean your roof regularly with a garden hose, broom or pressure washer.
3. Fight ice. Ice dams are one of the most common causes of roof leaks. If your home is prone to becoming icy in the winter, consider investing in a heater for the eaves. Although you do want to fight ice as much as possible, never try to remove ice by placing salt on your roof, as this can cause corrosion and actually trigger leaks.
4. Clean your gutters. If your gutters become backed up, puddles can form on your roof and make leaks more likely. Aim to clean your gutters twice per year or have them professionally cleaned semiannually.
5. Ventilate your attic. One cause of natural roof wear and tear is heat. As hot air rises from your attic, it can cause changes in the strength of roofing materials, increasing the potential for leaks. Properly ventilating your attic allows heat to be released to the exterior, so it won't build up beneath your roof.
6. Inspect your roof. After any major storm, be sure to go up and have a look at your roof. If you see any visible signs of damage, contact a professional for repair services.
7. Don't let problems go. In an attempt to put off paying for repairs, many homeowners make the mistake of trying to wait out leaks, particularly if they're minor. Unfortunately, letting a damaged roof go without repair can make damage worsen and lead to more severe leakage. At the first signs of a leak, you should contact an experienced roof plumber like Sydney Emergency Plumbing to assess and repair the damage.
What do you do to keep your roof in excellent condition? Share your own tips by filling out the form below.