Roofs are expensive. Replacing them can often cost tens of thousands of dollars. So how can you make your roof last way longer?

The good news is that you don’t have to abandon roofs to the elements entirely. In fact, there are several things you can do to start looking after them today. Here’s what you need to know:

Don’t Power Wash It

When you see various lichens and mosses growing on your roof, it’s tempting to power wash them off. After all, it just seems so easy. You go up there with a big hose and blast them all into oblivion. 

But power washing is actually damaging for many types of roofs. It can loosen surface material and cause them to fail faster than they otherwise would have. Furthermore, it can invalidate the warranty. 

The good news is that you can “soft wash” your roof. This method involves the use of chemicals, not high-velocity jets of water. 

Paint Your Roof

Cars and exterior walls are often painted to protect against the elements, but why not your roof? Roof painting can be a great way to protect it against water damage and many other types of weathering. 

Don’t worry: these days you can get a range of roof paints specifically designed for this application. They come in a host of beautiful, attractive colours that enhance the appearance of your property and make it look more desirable from the curbside. 

Fortify The Roof

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Depending on where you live, it might be a good idea to fortify the roof. 

Installers usually do this in three ways: 

  1. Sealing the decking with various types of tape and sealant
  2. Using ring-shank nails with ribbing that resist the upward tug caused by windy conditions
  3. Locking down the edges of the roof with metal flashing

Applying all of these techniques to your roof isn’t as expensive as you might think (usually less than your home insurance excess). And it can provide protection for the life of the roof so you never have to replace it. 

Insulate Attics

Insulating attics is essential for preventing ice dams in the winter, which can lead to leaks. Remember, when snow lands on your roof and melts, it drips off. However, if you don’t have good insulation, heat from the house can cause the underside of the snow to melt, and water to travel through nail holes into your interiors. Cold water then gets trapped and starts causing damage. Insulation prevents this by keeping it frozen. 

Clean Out Your Gutters

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Cleaning out your gutters is another invaluable piece of advice to help your roof last longer. If you have leaves or twigs stuck in your gutters then it can cause leaks, making it easier for water to enter from unwanted areas and angles.

To stop this, clean them out and then cut back any overhanging trees in the vicinity. This way, you can keep them cleaner for next year. 

Service Your Ventilation

Lastly, you’ll want to service your ventilation. Poorly located attic soffits and vents cause condensation on the plywood that supports your roof shingles. This can then lead to rot.