Roof MaintenanceWhen is the right time frame to perform routine maintenance on your roof? What will be covered by insurance in the instance of a storm and/or hail damage? As claims in the state of Ohio rise yearly due to increase in hail and natural disasters, some changes will be put into effect by insurance companies regarding what constitutes storm damage, and those which are a direct result of negligence on the home owners behalf.

The first thing a restoration company looks for upon arrival to a home or commercial property, is the age and maintenance of the current roof and its components. Was the roof installed correctly? Was tar paper applied to the deck before shingles were placed? These are just two examples of details home owners should be aware of when getting a new roof installed. As time progresses, a large amount of responsibility will be placed on the home owner being aware of proper installation or roofing and regular maintenance to ensure the proper life of shingles and roofing itself. Below are a few factors all home owners should always be checking with their current roof conditions, and during installment.

Does my roof have proper ventilation?
Improper use of ventilation and soffit systems can wreak havoc on even newer roofs. Without ventilation wood is caused to expand and contrast, leading to buckling/cracking of shingles in extreme weather situations. Without ventilation mold growth can be a serious risk due to excessive moisture and heat.

Were all the components of my roof properly installed?
Standard roofs should contain a deck placed over structure, weather stripping placed in high risk areas (those where two valleys meet, in front of fascia, and sides of roof). Ice damming can lead to large amounts of water entering the home. Metal flashing around chimney and in valley’s help to be a defense to water damage. Tar paper laid on top of decking is crucial to the life of wood, and proper nailing and shingle placement can be the difference in a roof lasting 5 years and one lasting 15.

Have I been checking on and performing maintenance on my gutters?
Gutters should be inspected yearly to ensure there is no damage and/or clogs from leaves, debris etc. Gutters are a crucial part of the roofing system to properly drain and redirect water from the home. As gutters back up water is re-routed behind fascia board and into sheathing, siding and can rot out windows.

Are trees above the home presenting eminent danger to my roof?
Trees next to, and hanging over the roof can present numerous possible damages. First, large branches and limbs hanging over the roof are always capable of disconnecting from the tree and causing extensive damage to the roof. These limbs should be removed so falling damage is not a concern. Second, shade provided by full trees can enable plant and moss growth due to wet/dark environment. Lastly, leaves, sticks and buds falling onto roof and into gutters can cause clogs and shingle damage as they decay.

As claims increase due to hail and natural disasters, more responsibility will be placed on home owners to maintain their roofs. These are just some of the steps home owners can regularly do to ensure their homeowners policy will be honored in the event of a storm with extensive damage.