Top Tips for Maintaining your Commercial Roof

Commercial Najars Roofing

Commercial Roofing Contractors

The worst of the winter weather may be over, but unfortunately, we can expect a lot more rain and harsh winds all year round! Strong winds, sleet, ice, and rain can all take their toll on your roof; not surprising when it’s continuously exposed to the elements every day of the year. An entirely new roof cost can be expensive, but luckily there are plenty of ways you can maintain your roof, with either a bit of DIY or the help of a professional roofing company.

Whether you have a commercial or residential property that needs some help, read on for some maintenance tips that will have your roof looking its best again.

Keep an eye on shingles

Roof shingles are flat, overlapping tiles placed on top of an underlayment layer to help stop leaks and damage to your roof or attic. Shingles can be made from slate, ceramic tiles, metal, plastic, or a composite material such as fiber cement or asphalt. It’s a good idea to regularly clean your roof shingles if you have safe, easy access to your roof; keeping them free of dirt and debris can reduce the chances of lichen, moss or algae growing and weakening your roof’s structure.

You should also regularly check for missing, damaged, or worn down shingles, especially after a storm or a run of, particularly bad weather. It’s always best to act as quickly as possible, in some cases you may be able to repair the roof yourself as shingles are affordable and easy to replace, but for extensive damage, you should always contact a professional roofing company.

Replace sealant

Also known as roof coating, a roof sealant helps protect against damaging weather, excess water, and UV rays. It’s applied as a fluid membrane and has elastic qualities that allow it to expand and contract without causing damage to the roof. It’s worth replacing your roof coating every five to ten years, and closer to five if the roof is flat.

Some roof sealants are not suitable for use on shingles, as they can inhibit the shingle’s natural drying process; however for flat or commercial roofs they can extend the roof life and help regulate temperature. The roof should be cleaned before the sealant is applied to help it adhere properly, and you can also apply a primer to help this even more.

Even if you can’t see any external damage to your roof, it’s always wise to coat it as a precaution against leaks and structural damage, especially as flat roofs are prone to drainage issues.

Prune trees

It might not be something you’ve considered to affect your roof, but trimming overhanging branches that extend over your roof can help keep it in good condition. Trees hanging over your roof will drop leaves, which can then collect and rot, causing potential damage to tiles. A build-up of wet leaves encourages mold and moss growth too, which can weaken your tiles over time and cause them to rot.

Check for rust

If your roof is made from any sort of metal like corrugated iron, or if it contains any metal parts, you’ll need to have regular inspections to make sure there isn’t rust or corrosion. Rust is a relatively common problem for metal roofs, but once it appears it begins to trap additional moisture, which weakens your roof and escalates the damage being done.

The majority of new metal roofs will be sealed with a rust-resistant coating, but you should still keep your roof clean by hosing it down and removing any dirt, leaves, and debris on a regular basis. A build-up of dirt can cause corrosion, but you can easily clean, repair, and seal any buildup of rust on the roof if it does occur.

Rust can be scrubbed off with a wire brush, and remove any rusty nails before sealing the roof. As mentioned above, a sealant can extend the longevity of your roof and help prevent rust from returning. A small job could be done as a DIY project if you’re able to do so safely or call the professionals if you have a big rust problem or additional cracks and leaks on your hands.

Clean the gutters

Clogged gutters are one of the leading causes of roof damage, but in most cases, this can be easily prevented. Gutters control and collect the flow of rainwater, diverting it away from your roof and down the drain, so if they become clogged then this water can buildup on your roof instead.

Full or cracked gutters can lead to water infiltrating your roof’s structure, and it’s easy for them to become full of dead leaves, moss, or other debris. The quickest and easiest way to sort your guttering is to call your local guttering specialists; they’ll be able to clear away debris and fix any broken gutter seams. Cracks can be filled with sealant, or if there are gaps between gutter joints they can often be repaired by simply cleaning away the build-up of grime in between.

If the blockage has entered the drainpipe, a professional will be able to use a piece of stiff wire to force a hole in the middle of the block, then run water through to force it through the pipes. You should then spray some hose water onto the roof if possible to check that your gutters are now functioning efficiently.

Remove moss

Moss thrives in wet or humid climates, as well as areas of shade – unfortunately, that makes your roof the perfect place for it to grow. It might not seem as much of an issue as cracked shingles or broken gutters, but moss growth can actually cause a lot of damage if left untreated.

Moss can start growing beneath your roof shingles and then expand, causing them to become loose, crack or fall off. Gaps in your roof can allow rainwater to get in, and leaks can cause enormous damage to the house below. If your roof is made of asphalt then moss growth can also wear down the material itself.

Moss can be treated using a variety of products; some break down the moss with chemicals which can then be naturally washed away, or the roof can be cleaned first before applying a chemical that allows the moss to be easily brushed off. It’s usually best to get a professional company to do this for you, scraping the moss off yourself or blasting it with a pressure hose can cause extra damage to the shingles and wear them down unnecessarily.

Maintain your chimney

While it is technically separate from your roof, maintaining your chimney is an essential part of roof maintenance overall. A roof inspection should include regular checks for any cracks or missing mortar in your chimney, and if you do notice any then it’s vital to seek chimney repairs as soon as possible.

Any cracks can cause chimney bricks to become loose, and if they fall they can easily damage the shingles on your roof.

Don’t forget the attic

If you have access to your loft or attic, this can be an easier way to regularly check for roof damage if it isn’t safe or practical to check the outside roof itself. Dark spots on the attic ceiling or walls can indicate that a leak has already sprung, but catching it early can prevent structural damage and mold growth.

It’s also helpful to update your attic insulation if you haven’t for a while; a well-insulated attic can extend the longevity of your roof, especially during the colder months when ice and snow can cause roof damage. Proper insulation prevents heat from escaping and stops snow melting and refreezing on your roof, which can harm gutter drainage and lead to leaks.

Get a professional inspection

The easiest way to look after your roof is simply to hire professionals to do it for you! A professional roof inspection with a repair contractor will be able to spot any problems early and prevent further damage – particularly essential if you have any commercial roofing problems that could affect your business.

Inspecting a roof yourself can be dangerous, so call the experts and they can inspect the fascias and gutters, check for leaks, assess the condition of your roof shingles, apply sealant, and much more.

If you need a professional roof inspection get in touch with us.