Roof maintenance is the key to extending the life of your roof. That’s especially crucial in Central Florida, where high heat and harsh storms can prematurely age most roofs. Adding just a few years to your roof’s service has the potential to save you thousands of dollars.
An experienced Central Florida roofing contractor uses roof inspections and roof repair to catch small problems before they become big ones. Often, these issues are lurking just under the surface. They’ll gradually get worse, presenting no symptoms until a sizeable leak breaks out.
Most Florida homes have shingle roofs. And while shingle roofing is easy to care for, it also needs regular attention. If your home is older, your shingle roof might already be compromised thanks to outdated roofing practices, such as “roofing over” damaged shingles with new ones.
Central Florida homeowners don’t have to worry about salt attacks or other sneaky environmental issues that can further degrade shingle roofs on the coast, even when they continue to look just fine. But you can still end up with “silent” water infiltration during a storm, continuing to damage your roof after the weather passes.
All of these problems and more can be handled with appropriate Florida roof maintenance.
Let’s talk about exactly what that entails:
1. Most Common Central Florida Roofs Should Be Inspected Every Year
If you have a shingle roof, you should invest in an inspection every year – no exceptions.
Depending on the age and size of your home, your shingle roof might be prone to a variety of problems. For instance, attics with insufficient ventilation can become so hot that shingles bake from below. They get weak enough that even a light rain may be able to seep right through.
This kind of issue could be worsening by the day even when the weather has been pleasant. With that in mind, an annual inspection is recommended for shingle roofs. Your Central Florida roofing contractor will get up there, check everything out, and pinpoint areas for repair.
Most of the time, an annual shingle roof inspection is followed up by the replacement of a few shingles. But there may be times when more significant damage is found. Before doing any unexpected repairs, a trustworthy roofer should share their observations and lay out your options.
2. Some Florida Specialty Roofs Can Be Inspected Every Other Year Instead
Some Central Florida residential roofing is less prone to incidental damage. In particular, metal roofing in Central Florida is highly resistant to wind, rain, and hail. Because it is so much more difficult for water to penetrate between metal sheets, it is usually safe to inspect the roof every other year.
In the rare event of hail, you might notice the same kind of telltale round indentations on your metal roof that you could expect on a shingle roof. But where a shingle is softened by a direct hail impact, a metal roof will only have cosmetic damage in the majority of cases.
Heavier roofing materials such as clay tile also tend to be more durable than shingles. That said, there may be some specific hazards to look out for depending on the kind of roof you have. Some roofs are more susceptible to wind uplift than others, to name just one consideration.
3. Roof Inspections Should Be Performed Before Hurricane Season
Atlantic hurricane season happens between June and November every year. Although it’s been off to a quiet start in 2022, there’s no predicting in advance what will happen. Over recent years, the season has careened from uneventful to record-breaking.
Floridians know how to take hurricane season seriously while getting on with life. But it’s vital to follow the right precautions. Doing your roof inspection in April or May will give you sufficient time to get any needed repairs out of the way. By the time the weather rolls in, it may be too late.
Remember, leading Central Florida roofing contractors see their schedules fill up fast once the rain starts to fall. Hundreds of homeowners might need emergency storm repair. That can cause weeks of backlog, so repairs that get put off too long might not get done at all.
It’s always best to have the same roofing company that did the inspection also do any roof repairs. With at least 30 days before hurricane season, you’ll have time to ensure your roof is ready for whatever’s in the forecast. That gives you real peace of mind when wild weather strikes!
4. Homeowners Should Keep an Eye Out (with One Important Caveat)
Between inspections, homeowners have a role to play, especially with shingle roofs. While it’s never a wise idea to get up on the roof yourself, you should check for damage after wind, rain, or hail. Once the weather passes, use binoculars to check out your roof from ground level, looking at it from all angles.
If you notice cracked or discolored shingles in one part of the roof, odds are good there are other issues elsewhere. Lots of reflective granules on the ground or in your gutter can indicate some shingles were hanging loose in the wind, even if they look secure now.
5. Keeping Your Roof Clean Can Help It Last Longer
While you definitely shouldn’t try to repair your own shingles, there are steps you can take to support your roof. One of the most essential is keeping it and the gutters clean. When gutters are full, water can accumulate unevenly on the roof and may punch through, causing leaks.
Another surefire way to strengthen your roof is to make sure your attic is properly ventilated. Your Central Florida roofing team can add vents, but you can also help – by keeping the attic as empty as possible. The more items you have stored in the attic, the hotter it gets and the more your shingles suffer.
6. Roof Replacement Can Be Better than Roof Repair in Central Florida
Last, but not least, the simple truth of the matter is that full roof replacement might be your best bet if your roof is already damaged. Not only do you have the opportunity to add 20 to 30 years of life to your roof, but you may qualify for savings on your homeowner’s insurance.
Insurers are more diligent than ever when it comes to aging roofs in Florida. Even though the weather in Central Florida is much milder than on the coast, they still have the option to pull insurance when a roof is “too old.” They are exercising that option more and more, and it can be a disaster.
The right roof not only restarts the clock but can have many other benefits. For example, the reflective qualities of residential metal roofing can deflect 50% or more of the solar radiation that strikes a home. That can save you money on both your cooling and heating bills.
Good Central Florida roof maintenance starts with a roofing company you can trust.
Contact Sheegog Contracting today to learn more or get started.