The roof is an essential part of your home. It provides defense against rain, snow, wind, heat, and hazardous weather elements. The roof is exposed to dangerous weather elements which, over time, contribute to its deterioration and finally damage if proper maintenance is not done.
A healthy roof protects your house and occupants from dangerous weather elements. Many house owners pay little or no attention to little things ranging from small leaks that require immediate maintenance, to significant cracking and damage of roof. Here are common problems that can lead to quality damage in your roof. Meanwhile, repairing of roof is very dangerous, and it can only best be done by a professional roof repairer only.
Roof leak is the most common roof problem, and over 90% of damage roofs result from roof leak. Roof leaks are primarily caused by lack of maintenance, cracked flashings, and broken shingles or slates. Water comes in through ragged and broken shingles, through poorly sealed or corroded roof flashings and loosed nails in the roof. The problem with roof leak is that, once water passes through the roof, it flows along the rafter or sheathings till it finds a place to drip down, making it extremely difficult to locate its origin.
Leaks in the roof are caused by poor roof material and poor roof installation, damage by weather, ice dam build-up, improperly sealed valleys, broken vents, and shingles, or cracked flash.
Roof leaks cause reduced thermal insulation of roof and allow the build-up of molds in the roof, causing structural and functional damages to the roof
Roof puncture is also a pervasive roof problem and is more complicated and perturbing on single-ply roofing membranes. Roof punctures are hole(s) created in roofing materials by weight or sharp objects that punches through roof or roofing material, creating a small hole.
Punctures are also dangerous roof problems because they are difficult to locate and are very easy to miss than any other type of roof problem. It is one of the main causes of Roof leak, allowing water and moisture to easily pass through the roof membrane. A flat roof is more at risk than a slanted roof because a slanted roof can dislocate weight easily.
Roof puncture is mostly caused by contractor damage. Careless behavior and incompetency from the roofing contractor caused by their tools cause roof punctures. Holes and cuts can also be generated from removing or installing HVAC systems. Roof punctures are also caused by foot traffic. Roof punctures also occur when debris falls on the roof and punctures it, leaving a large hole or puncture leading to leaks and cracks.
During severe weather conditions, as wind or rain develop strength, they exert pressure on overgrown trees, crashing into the roof and causing severe damages. If a tree is close to the home, it can inflict severe damages to the roof during severe weather conditions. Even it's branches can rip off the top layer of the roof tiles, exposing the roof and causing severe leaks.
Tree damage also can be caused by weak tree limbs and improper maintenance. Trees closely situated to homes should be trimmed regularly or cut down completely to prevent potential damages.
Roof shrinks when the atmospheric temperature drops, and the weather gets too cold. It occurs mostly on Extreme Durable Synthetic Rubber (EPDM) roofs, modified bitumen roof. It can also occur in all other roof coverings. Roof shrinkage is caused by poor installation, exposure to excess and hazardous weather conditions, aging of material leading to deterioration, cracking and breaking of sheaths and shingles, causing roof leak, and finally leading to complete roof damage.
It is essential to properly inspect the roof to remove leaves dirt and pine needles off the roof. When these leaves trap moisture and dirt, giving opportunity for weed and algae growth on the roof, leading to potential leaks and rotting of the root. The growth of unwanted vegetation and debris is caused by poor maintenance. Growth and development of algae make surfaces of roof slippery, causing safety hazards to rooftop workers.
When slight damage or problem in a roof is repaired improperly, it worsens the. Condition of the roof, severing the damage. Improper repairs are also common roof problems that can be caused by incompetency, inadequate knowledge about the severity or state of the roof, inability to comprehend the roof problem, incompatible material, and lack of experience, which is why you must look for a reputable and experienced roofer. Improper repair causes more significant damages arising from leaks, standing water, or cracks caused by improper repair.
All roofing systems are susceptible to ponding water. The absence of roof slope is the primary cause of this roof damage. The absence of slope allows water to pool, forming ponds on rooftops.
When water ponds, they allow microbial growth and proliferation, causing accelerated deterioration and premature aging in roofing materials. Experts state that water should not stand on the roof for more than 48 hours. Water reacts with roof membranes, changing the chemical composition of roofing materials. Ponding of water also attracts environmental debris. Ponding water is also caused by clogged or inadequate drainage and gutters and obstruction in the drainage path.
Quality metal flashing and adequate drainage systems prevent ponding water and subsequent deterioration and complete damage to the roof.
The biggest threat to the durability of a roof is poor maintenance. Poor maintenance ranging from lack of inspection, due to busy schedule to ignoring potential threats leads to flashing's failure, degradation of the membrane, blocked or inadequate drainage, leaks, and punctures, and finally total damage.
Proper maintenance is a very effective way to neutralize the daily and periodic abuse it takes from extreme weather conditions. Prompt maintenance minimize roof problem and extend the durability of roofing.
In summary, it is essential for every house owner to properly inspect their roof promptly and periodically to ensure no damage has been done to the roof, and to detect potential damages. Also, only a competent contractor or roofer should be employed for roof installation or repair.