Follow These Maintenance Tips to Keep Your Roof From Leaking

Roofing leaks can cause substantial damage in a short period of time. One second, you have water slowly dripping in -- and a few days later, you have rotting insulation and moldy wood. It's far better to do some regular roof maintenance to prevent leaks than to wait for them to appear. Here are four maintenance tips to get you started in the right direction.

Look at the penetrations closely.

In the world of roofing, a "penetration" is anything that emerges through the roof. Your chimney and sewer vents, for example, are both penetrations. The border between the penetration and the shingles is a common place for leaks to occur. Usually, there is a piece of metal sheeting called "flashing" that wraps around the penetration. Look this flashing over every few months to ensure you spot any signs of peeling or rust formation early on. If you do notice damage, have your roofing company come replace or repair the flashing before a leak can develop.

Keep the gutters clear.

Your gutters are intended to ensure water drains off of the roof and away from your home. If they get clogged, water will pool on the edge of the roof for too long, causing your shingles to slowly rot and then, later on, leak extensively. Cleaning out your gutters is, therefore, an essential aspect of roof maintenance. Ideally, you should clear them out every spring and fall. Always pour a pitcher of water down the gutter to ensure it flows out freely after you clean them.

Check your attic insulation.

Poor attic insulation means too much heat will escape from your roof. This can cause shingles to lift up and peel away from the roof. At least once a year, climb up into your attic and look over your insulation. It is starts to look compacted or discolored, pull it out and replace it. A good layer of effective insulation will keep your roof in good shape for longer.

Sweep it clean.

Sweeping your roof may sound strange at first, but consider that this process removes any leaves and twigs that are resting on your roof. These items can absorb moisture and hold it against the shingles, leading to damage. Invest in a long-handled broom from a home improvement store, and stand on your step ladder to ensure you can reach all of the way to the peak.

To learn more about roof maintenance and repairs, check out sites like and contact a roofing company.