With the summer season right around the corner, you may find it helpful if we would address the most common problems that homeowners encounter. In Delaware, the temperatures can exceed 90 degrees Fahrenheit. If you installed dark shingles on the roof, this can make the temperatures over 150 degrees on the roof. Your roof absorbs the sunshine and heat from it, and on the hottest days, that can mean temperatures of over 170 degrees if unshaded. No wonder issues pop up! Let’s look at how to deal with the most common roofing problems in the summer months.
Believe it or not, the sun can dry out the roof’s special coating with UV radiation. Over time, excess UV radiation will lead to cracks and ruptures on the roof. This slow decay of cracking and peeling on your roof happens over several summers, but it ultimately leads to your roof’s underlying layers being exposed to the elements.
This exposure accelerates the damage and will eventually cause leaks that can turn into mold. To prevent this damage, you might hire a roofing company to renew the coating. You want to renew the coating on average every 10 years, depending on the amount of exposure to the sun. The coating reflects some of the UV radiation to prevent it from receiving the full dose. Think of it like you would sunscreen. You put on sunscreen to protect yourself from UV rays. You do the same for your roof. Everything is vulnerable to UV rays from the sun.
In some cases, excessive heat on the roof can melt the adhesion holding the roofing material together. Once this takes full effect, the shingles will age faster.
Delaware experiences the direct effects of the North Atlantic tropical cyclones. In other words, you face strong winds and heavy rainfall in the summer season. Delaware experiences 45 inches of rainfall annually, and most of it happens in the summer months. The rain can start to impact the well-being of your roof.
After every serious storm, we recommend that homeowners go out and inspect the roof to ensure that it didn’t damage the roof. You may want to check the attic. Signs of water penetrating in the attic give you a sign that you need to hire a roofing company for a roof inspection.
We wouldn’t recommend that you grab a ladder and check it yourself for two reasons. First, going up on the roof poses a danger even to experienced roofers. About 50 roofers die every year and many others suffer life-changing injuries. Second, you don’t know as well about what to look for since it requires expertise to know the subtle things about roof repair. Professionals even know about signs that aren’t visible to the naked eye. If your roof has water damage, you want to respond to it as soon as possible. This issue quickly becomes worse if you don’t catch it in time.
The summer season is rife with violent storms in Delaware that can leave your roof damaged. Some of the most common things that can damage your roof during a storm include:
- Fallen tree branches
- Lifted shingles
In some cases, the roof can blow the shingles off the roof altogether leaving the underlying structure exposed to the elements. After damage occurs, you want to report it to your insurance company. Do this immediately because you don’t want them to say that something else caused the damage. Many times, the roofing company will work with your insurance company to make the repairs. At RGB Construction, our company has worked with plenty of insurance companies to get started making the repairs.
Damage from Moss
In low volumes, moss won’t pose a threat, but once it grows into mass quantities, your roof will decay at about double or even triple its original pace. This decay happens faster because the moss will start to set down roots into the shingles in search of water. The shingles will lift and let the water in causing rot and water damage.
Moss especially likes humid weather in the shade. When your roof has a great deal of shade around it and high levels of humidity like in the summer, this is a breeding ground for moss. This explains why many roofing companies recommend that you keep the trees to a minimum near your roof. Too much shade and moss can form more easily. It doesn’t do as well in the sun.
As a plant, moss likes to act as a sponge and store water. On a roof, that water storage becomes a death sentence. It causes devastating damage to your plywood from the wetness causing rot. This moisture penetration, in turn, damages the insulation in the attic and will make its way toward the drywall.
You want the water removed from the roof as quickly as possible after a storm to prevent leaks and moss that will hold the water on the roof. You could hire one of the roofing companies in Delaware to help you remove the moss. Some misguided homeowners tried to pressure wash the moss from the shingles. Never do this. The high pressure will do more damage to the roof. The presence of moss doesn’t always mean that you need a new roof, but you must act fast and take the right action. Speak with a roofing professional to avoid a misstep here.
Failure to Respond to Damage Immediately
Sometimes, we see homeowners who fail to take action to protect their roofs. Unfortunately, this leads to more costly damage when you don’t respond. Roof damage will only cost you more with time. Especially if the damage happened from a storm, you should speak with your insurance company because they often cover storm damage. Don’t delay even minor damage because once the damage starts, it worsens with time.
When you keep the roof well maintained, you do more than you think. Good maintenance protects the outside components like the shingles and the special coating, but it protects everything underneath the roof. It protects the beams, the rafters, the walls, and the foundation to extend the life of everything involved. When you have a bad roof, it will impact everything.
To respond to damage immediately, you should check the home’s roof after every major thunderstorm. You want to catch a problem before it worsens.
You need good ventilation on your roof whether in the winter months or the summer months. Without good ventilation in the summer, it poses a slightly different problem than that in the winter. Poor ventilation in the summer season will cause a buildup of moisture from the humidity. Once moisture gets into your roof without an escape hatch, it will weaken the underlying structure.
While it may not happen right away, you will start to experience problems like dry rot and mold growth. Many roofing issues will revolve around things like the shingles and the flashing. Whenever you experience issues with either of those things, you will experience leaks and structural integrity issues.
Pay attention to the following signs of poor ventilation and address them as soon as possible:
- Deteriorating insulation
- Damaged shingles
- Rusting attic fasteners
- Excessive moisture in the attic
Never put anything up against the attic vents. Many homeowners don’t think about what they put in the attic, but they should always exercise caution not to put anything that could block the vents. The vents must allow airflow out of the attic to keep the roof in good condition. One of the most common reasons that a roof fails is when the attic doesn’t have good ventilation. You might speak with roofing contractors in Delaware who can check your roof to see that it has the proper ventilation.
In the cases where your roof has cracked shingles, you don’t need to replace the shingles altogether. Many times, you just need to repair them. You can hire a roofing professional who will apply a thick bead of sealant underneath the crack to prevent the water from getting through. He presses the shingle down, and he applies a second bead of sealant over the top of the crack. Once he does this, he will use a putty knife to spread the sealant.
Cracked shingles are a minor repair as long as you respond to them quickly. The water will otherwise seep through the crack to damage the underlayment, the deck, and the attic. You can spot cracked shingles because they will lift, buckle or curl. Respond fast and it doesn’t have to cost much. A minor repair to a cracked shingle will cost you about $140 for a few hours of work.
If you let the issue continue, the water can cause structural damage that will cost up to $4,380. This higher cost happens because of further damage to the fascia, soffit, underlayment, and roof trusses. That extra damage will cost more to fix. How much it costs depends on many factors.
You can wind up with a huge variety of pests who choose to take up residence on the roof of your home. Whenever this happens, it becomes costly to fix. Pests are most active in the summer months and if you don’t take enough precautions, they will damage the roof. The most common pests to cause issues with the roof include:
Yes, you read that last one right—mosquitoes. Outside of the most obvious reason, you don’t want them up there. Flat roofs in particular face the most problem with this. They like to breed in the pooling water on the roof. Even flat roofs should never be completely flat. The water itself poses a danger to your roof, but the mosquito larvae pose another risk. Algae and vegetation can start to grow in the pooling water. They can also start to form in your gutters if blocked.
Each of the pests can cause issues with the roof. Termites, for example, can eat into the timbers of your roof and cause a sagging roof. Other pests like rats might gnaw at electrical wires and the wood material. To deter the pests depends on the type of pest, but check to see that no pooling water exists on the roof since this can attract them. If you want to get rid of rats or bats, bring out the mothballs since it is toxic to them. Peppermint oil can help you to get rid of mosquito larvae and insects. Hot pepper flakes will remove pests like squirrels and hornets.
Don’t Leave the Gutters Blocked
The rain gutters on the roof serve as your first line of defense against water. When the rain gutters get clogged with debris, the water gets trapped on the roof, which will degrade your roof over time. You want to remove the water from the roof as quickly as possible and the gutters help to do this. You can buy protected gutters to eliminate the need for you to clean them as much but they do cost a bit more. Gutter guards will cost you anywhere from $100 on the lower end to $2,000 for the best ones. However, the extra cost keeps you from having to pay more for gutter cleanings over time.
At RGB Construction in Delaware, we have roofers who can help you with your roofing problems. The summer season brings its own share of problems for the roof. While the winter months are the hardest on the roof, the summer can also pose a problem. The high temperatures are one of the biggest dangers during this season. Whatever roofing problem you might have, you can give us a call at 856-264-9093.