As spring tries desperately to show its face this year, I am reminded how I physically let myself go. As the temperatures rise (slowly and sporadically) my layers of clothing shed. Underneath I quickly find what the past year has done to me. Not being as active as usual, little exercise, and having a taste for cookies has left me out of shape and feeling lazy. I need maintenance. Maintenance to make sure I am performing and living at a good level. Sure I could hide this body in baggy clothes, but just because you can't see all of it does not make it less important. Just like our roofs...
Sure we're not always able to see our roof and because of that we sometimes tend to forget it. Just like our bodies though, when something goes wrong with it we sure know it's there. This past year your roof has seen large amounts of sun, all sorts of moistures from the sky, and possibly human/animal traffic. All of these can damage your roof and shorten the life of your roof system.
Here in Colorado we get around two hundred and fifty plus days of sunshine a year. That is a good amount of sun! Our UV content is also higher at our elevation and these UV rays weaken many types of roof systems. Damage from UV rays mixed with other elements are, many times, the cause of roof leaks. This combination can break down the roof system material over time. Cracks and tears in the roof system membrane are often caused by these intense UV rays and should be inspected and repaired to increase the life of your roof.
Your roof has also seen different types of moisture falling from the sky this year. Snow and ice this past winter has now become sleet, hail, and rain in spring. While this moisture is a good thing and our state desperately needs it, this moisture will also exploit weak spots in your roof. Snow and ice can cause all kinds of damage to roofs. This can include burst seams on modified, PVC, rubber, and metal roofs. Can cause damaged pipes or vents, loose or damaged gutters and downspouts, damaged fascia and siding, or holes in any membrane from falling ice. The list goes on. It is important to inspect your roof for moisture damage so that proper repairs can be made.
Over the past year work may have been done on your roof from yourself or other contractors. It may have been to install a satellite dish, A/C unit, or to win your neighborhood Christmas light contest. This foot traffic can be tough on the roof too. Materials such as screws can be left on the roof membrane that can easily puncture it. Installation of certain products (lights, electric conduits) are not always installed with the roofs best interest in mind. If there has been work done on the roof then it is always a good idea to have an inspection done to make sure the system is intact.
Even if you know no human has been on your roof, it does not mean no 'body' has been up there. Local wildlife are always in search of a good home. Your roof can provide an excellent shelter from the elements. Once inside the roof they find a warm place to stay and that's where a whole new set of problems arise. During routine roof maintenance, these unwanted guests' damage can be addressed so that no future problems arise.
In the last year, or more, your roof has seen a lot. Unfortunately nature and the elements are against it. Sun, moisture, and traffic on the roof are some of the main culprits that can damage your roof. With routine maintenance your roof's life can be extended. Repairing small issues with your roof early on can save money on bigger repairs in the future. With that money saved I could hire a personal trainer and nutritionist to perform some maintenance of my own.