3 Steps To Keep Your Home's Roof Well-Maintained

Spring is a good time to check on the condition of your roof to make any necessary repairs after winter's harsh weather has passed. Here are three steps you can do to clean and maintain your home's roof.

Remove Roof Moss and Mold

If your roof is growing moss or mold, you will need to clean it from your shingles to prevent water damage and rot from occurring to your roof. As moss and mold grows around the edges of your shingles, the shingles will lift and allow in moisture and more moss growth to occur under the shingles. With a long-handled scrub brush, you can clean moss and mold from your roof. Be sure to do the job on a cloudy day without any direct sunlight heating your shingles to cause your cleaning water or solutions to evaporate from the shingles too soon.

Be sure to wear rubber-soled shoes that will grip the roof to prevent you from falling off the roof. Use your garden hose to spray down any moss or mold, beginning at the top of your roof, working your way down. Then, remove the growth with a scrub brush. Don't scrub too roughly on your shingles so you don't damage them. 

If this process does not remove the mold and moss, you can combine a cleaning solution of three and a half cups of chlorine bleach with two gallons of water. Add this mixture into a sprayer hose attachment, spray it onto your roof and let it sit for 20 to 45 minutes. Brush the moss and mold off with your scrub brush. Be sure to rinse your roof thoroughly after cleaning, along with any shrubbery below your roof to prevent bleach damage to the vegetation. 

Using roofing nails, you can apply a two-inch strip of zinc or copper-covered metal just below the top ridge on both sides of your roof to prevent further moss and mold growth. 

Repair Damaged Shingles

After you have cleaned your roof and shingles, inspect your shingles for any broken, curling, or damaged shingles. If you find any shingles showing these types of wear signs, it is most likely time to replace your roof. But, you can do a few easy repairs to give yourself some extra time before you invest in a new roof. You will need a putty knife, a tube of roofing cement, a hammer and roofing nails, a pry bar, and a caulk gun to apply the roofing cement. 

If you find any shingles containing a hole or crack, lift up the damaged shingle and apply roofing cement onto the back of the hole or crack. Press down on the shingle and apply more roofing cement onto the top of the hole or crack, smoothing it over with a putty knife. If you have a torn shingle, apply roofing cement onto the back of the torn portion. Press the torn shingle back in place, and hammer it onto your roof using roofing nails. For any curled shingles, apply roofing cement to the underside of the shingle and press it back down onto the roof.

If you notice any shingles that have become damaged, and part of the shingle is missing, it is best to replace them with new shingles. Pry up the damaged shingle and shingle nails, using the pry bar, being careful not to damage any nearby shingles. Slip a new shingle in place and hammer it onto the roof, using at least four roofing nails to attach the shingle.

Check and Repair Downspouts

Last, check your roof's drainage gutters and downspouts to make sure any rain on your roof is diverted away from your home's foundation. Water that splashes from your roof, or from a downspout directly onto the soil next to your home, is likely to collect and puddle there and seep into your home. For this reason, make sure to check your roof gutters for clogs and remove any debris so the rainwater can flow from you roof properly. 

Make sure your downspouts are flowing freely by spraying a hose into each one. If you find a blockage, use the end of the hose to spray the debris free from inside the downspout. Then, make sure all downspouts are directing and draining water at least five feet from your home's foundation. Water draining within five feet of your home can allow water to leak into your foundation, causing water damage.

Use these instructions to clean and make repairs to your roof. For more information on roof repair, check out a website like http://www.palmerroofing.net.