Winters in the Atlanta area are mostly mild, but there are occasional surprise snow storms, cold fronts and bouts of icy rain. As a home owner, it's important to protect your home during the colder months. As such, roof maintenance should be on your to-do list. If you want to extend the life of your roof, you need to make sure to winterize your roof as soon as temperatures begin to cool down. Roofing overhauls can be expensive. So, it's very important to take care of your investment. Learn how to properly winterize your roof using the following interior and exterior checklists.
Exterior roof maintenance
- Clean gutters: To prevent ice clogging up gutters, gutters should be free and clear of all debris. This will allow the ice to easily melt and flow out of the gutters as the weather warms up.
- Tree assessment: Be sure to remove any trees that are dead or weak. Also, trim back any overhanging branches that can fall and damage the roof.
- Shingle checkup: Examine the roof for loose, missing and damaged shingles. Replace missing and damaged shingles and apply roofing cement to loose ones.
- Flashing inspection: Roof flashing is used on shingled rooftops. It is the sheet metal that is installed at the roof joints. Make sure that all roof flashing is intact and in good condition.
- Caulking: Redo any caulking that has become worn or damaged.
- Warping and molding: Check the roof for warped wood and mold. Any questionable areas will need to be repaired if necessary.
Interior roof maintenance
- Insulation: Make sure that your attic has sufficient insulation. Proper insulation will help keep the hot air inside and the roof at a stable temperature.
- Venting: Check your vents for damage, and repair any damaged vents as needed. Leave the vents unobstructed and cracked open to provide your attic with adequate ventilation.
- Air leaks: Look for and address any air leaks in the attic. Air leaks leave your attic open to potential damage and unwanted pests. Leaks also flush your warm air right out the house.
- Attic stair insulator: If you have an attic hatch, purchase an attic stair insulator box to prevent hot air escaping and cold air from coming into the home.
- Warping, molding or water damage: Examine the attic for warped wood, mold and any water damage from weak spots. If you discover these issues, be sure to address them quickly to avoid any further damage or spreading.
If you want to go one step further, ask an Atlanta-area roofing specialist about roof coatings. These are special waterproofing compounds designed to add a layer of protection to your existing roof. Roof coatings last a long time. Not only do they shield roofs from weather elements, but some types of coatings also provide a degree of energy efficiency as well. It's just one more option to consider that will extend the longevity of your roof.