How to Keep Your Roof in Great Shape This Summer

The summer can be hard on your roof.

Every season presents new challenges for your roof, and summer is no exception. The good news, though, is that with proper maintenance, you can keep your roof in great shape all summer long.

4 Roof Maintenance Tips for Summer

#1. Maintain your gutters.

The gutters and downspouts are a critical part of your roofing system, because they move water safely off of your roof. If they’re not properly maintained or in ill-repair, it can cause all kinds of problems, including roof leaks.

Gutters put up with a lot over the summer. In addition to the typical clogs caused by leaves, twigs, and other debris, the summer subjects our gutters to harsh weather, which can loosen them and cause leaks.

Keep a close eye on your gutters, and watch out for any misaligned areas. Make sure to tighten any bolts that have become loose. Clean out your gutters and downspouts of any debris that may be building up in them.

Test your gutters and downspouts by feeding a hose into them. This is also a good way to look for any leaks. If you spot a leak, work with your local roofing contractor for gutter repair or replacement.

#2. Trim back overhanging branches.

There’s nothing better than sitting under the shade of a tree on a hot summer day, but when that tree starts growing over your roof, it could spell trouble.

Summer is notorious for thunderstorms, which is why you need working gutters and downspouts, and it’s also one of the reasons it’s necessary to trim back any overhanging branches. You never know when a bolt of lighting or strong gust of wind could cause that branch to fall on your roof, and if it does, it’s bound to do some damage.

Not only do falling tree limbs pose a threat, but overhanging limbs also make it easier for pests to get on your roof and potentially into your home, where they can cause a lot of damage of their own.

Trimming high tree limbs is incredibly dangerous and should not be attempted on your own. Not only could you do serious damage to your roof if the branch falls, but you could seriously injure yourself, as well. Always turn to a licensed tree care specialist or arborist near you for tree limb removal.

#3. Inspect your roof.

Between the thunderstorms that can bring wind and hail to the scorching heat, summer poses lots of threats to your roof. Luckily, if you catch damage early enough, you can repair it fast enough that it won’t lead to a lot of other damage. But, if you let your roof sit in disrepair, the damage will only get worse.

The only way to stay on top of any damage to your roof is to regularly inspect it. I don’t recommend getting on your roof unless you know how to do so safely. Even if you don’t injure yourself, you run the risk of damaging your roof with a single misplaced foot. That’s why you should get your roof inspected on an annual basis by a licensed roofing contractor.

Between professional inspections, though, it pays to keep an eye on your roof. Here’s what to look for when inspecting your roof from the ground:

  • Damaged Shingles – Look for curling, buckling, cracked, or missing shingles.
  • Moss or mold – If you live in a humid part of the country, watch out for dark spots on your roof, which could indicate mold or moss.
  • Flashing damage – Flashings seal the spots on your roof that are most prone to leaks, like around vents, the chimney, and a skylight.

#4. Make sure that your roof is properly ventilated.

Heat rises, which means that all of the heat in your home rises to the top-most room, which is your attic. If your attic isn’t properly ventilated and doesn’t push that heat outside, it builds up on the underside of your roof, where it can actually cause damage from the inside out.

Here are a few signs of poor roof ventilation:

  • Attic moisture – When the heat builds up in your attic, moisture often builds up with it. If there’s an excess amount of moisture in your attic, it’s a sign that it’s lacking ventilation.
  • Rusty attic fasteners – The metal fasteners in your attic, like components on your HVAC or electrical system, get rusty when the moisture starts building up too much in your attic.
  • Insulation damage – If you’ve got fiberglass insulation in your attic — as most homes do — it’s quickly damaged by the build-up of moisture.
  • Shingle damage – If the roof temperature is too high, it can cause the shingles to warp, crack, or buckle.

If you’re unsure whether or not your roof is properly ventilated, have it inspected by a professional roofer. Proper ventilation can make your roof last longer and prevent expensive damage, so it’s important not to overlook it.

Find the right roofing contractor near you with Top Rated Local®.

If your roof is in need of professional roof inspection, repair, maintenance, or replacement, contact a local roofing contractor to get the service you need. Having the right roofer on your side will give you peace of mind in knowing that your roof is in good hands, but not all roofers are made equal.

When you search for a local roofing contractor with Top Rated Local, you can read roofing reviews from across the web and quickly compare roofers side by side with the Rating Score™ system. It’s simply the best way to find local businesses you can trust.

Start your local roofer search with Top Rated Local today.

How to Find the Right Roofer

When you hire a roofer, it’s important to get it right.

Your roof isn’t a small thing. In fact, it’s probably the most important part of your home from a safety and protection standpoint. So, when you’re in need of roofing services, you need to turn to a roofing company that you can rely to get the job done right the first time.

Hiring a roofing contractor isn’t like hiring a carpet cleaner or a painter. If the job doesn’t get done correctly with one of these contractors, it’s frustrating and will probably look bad, but at the end of the day, no one is in danger or at risk. But, that’s not the case with your roof. If a roofer makes a mistake, the consequences can be much, much bigger. That’s why you should never settle when it comes to hiring a roofing contractor.

Hiring the right roofer for the job takes a little more time and know-how than hiring almost any other contractor or local business. Luckily, your friends at Top Rated Local® are here to help!

5 Tips on Finding the Right Roofer

#1. Work with a local roofing company.

There are countless horror stories out there of a homeowner who hired a roofer that offered a five-year warranty, only for that roofer to be nowhere to be found when they actually need them. Unfortunately, roofing is one of those industries where scams are common, but one of the best ways to avoid a roofing scam is to hire a company that has a long history of serving your community.

Another reason why hiring local is beneficial is that a local roofer will understand the unique issues that affect roofs in your area. Whether your roof is prone to algae growth, hail damage, or wind damage, a local roofer will understand that, and they’ll be able to better prepare your roof for those kinds of common problems.

When I say to hire a local roofing contractor, that doesn’t mean hiring someone that just operates locally. You want to hire a local contractor that has an established reputation in your community.

#2. Double-check that they are licensed and insured.

You want a roofer that has experience, knowledge, and expertise, but equally as important, you want a roofer who is both licensed and insured to do the job. And, while you may have to take a roofing company’s word when it comes to their skill and knowledge, you don’t have to (and shouldn’t) take their word when it comes to licensing and insurance.

In order to become licensed, a roofer must go through training that teaches them how to do inspections and perform services safely and effectively. Maintaining that licensing also takes work, and any repairs or installations have to meet current building codes. Licensed roofers also follow safety standards, and many of them offer warranties and contracts that help to protect homeowners like you.

Roofing isn’t exactly the safest job, and accidents happen even with the best of roofing companies. If the contractor you’ve hired doesn’t have insurance, you could be the one financially liable for any injuries that occur on the job. Always make sure that any roofer you hire is insured!

#3. Don’t look at the cost alone.

Roofing services aren’t exactly cheap, and when you’re in need of repairs or a replacement, you might be tempted to simply accept the lowest bid for the job without doing any further research. However, this could potentially be a huge mistake, and while it’s important to consider the cost, it’s certainly not the only thing you should consider.

If a roofing company offers much lower rates than what’s typical in your area, there’s probably a reason for it. Roofers that don’t have a lot of experience or don’t have a strong reputation in their community tend to low-ball when it comes to cost, but chances are, that cost-savings will result in the sacrifice of quality.

Where roofing is concerned, you get what you pay for. That’s not to say that you should automatically choose the highest bid, either, but if a bid is significantly lower than the rest, it’s a red flag.

#4. Find a roofer who shows instead of tells.

Roofing services are a lot like automotive repairs in that roofers and auto mechanics know a lot more about the subject matter at hand than your average homeowner or driver. That means that you need to be able to trust the roofer you hire to work with integrity and honesty, and to help you make the right decisions regarding your roof.

Beware of any roofer that tries to sell you a solution without fully explaining the problem or all of the potential solutions to choose from. Any roofer you hire should help to inform you so that you can make the right decision, and that often means showing instead of telling. And, they definitely shouldn’t just make the decision for you.

#5. Read reviews!

Every roofer you talk to or every website you visit is going to tell you that they are the best in the business. They’re all going to claim to offer great service and to get the job done right the first time. However, not every roofer can be the best, and not every roofing company will do what it claims on its website. The only way to know for sure what working with a roofer is really like is to learn what their past clients have said.

Reading reviews is a great rule of thumb to keep in mind when hiring any local business, but it’s especially important when there’s so much on the line. If the roofing contractor has a reputation for leaving jobs unfinished, making mistakes, or leaving their clients high and dry when they need them, reading their reviews will help you learn those things.

Find a roofer near you with Top Rated Local®!

When you look for a roofing contractor with Top Rated Local, you’ll be able to read each roofing company’s reviews from across the web and compare its overall reputation to the competition. It’s the only place where you can learn about a roofing company’s online reputation overall without having to visit tons of review sites and directories. There’s a reason why it’s become the go-to local business directory and review site. Find a local roofer near you today!