Whether you live alone, with your partner or as a family unit, keeping you and your loved ones safe will naturally be your number one priority. No matter how long you’ve lived in your property, keeping your home safe and secure is important.

With winter in full swing, this means that storms, heavy winds, rain, and snow will all have an impact on your roof, meaning it’s important that you do your best to keep up with maintenance all year round to reduce the risk of damage caused to the exterior of your property. With that in mind, here are 10 tips on how to maintain and protect your roof from all kinds of weather conditions.

Regular Inspections

Throughout the year, it’s important that you conduct regular inspections of your roof. To begin with, you should examine the inside of your home and be on the lookout for dark or brown spots, as well as bubbling or blistering paint on your ceilings. If you notice any changes, these are clear indicators of water damage. You should also check your fireplace for any damp spots that may have begun to form.

Inspect Your Loft

If you are satisfied with the inspection and found no problems, the next step to take is to move onto the loft. If you can, it’s best to do this on a sunny day, as you will notice sunlight piercing through broken or missing tiles or slates. If there has been heavy rain recently, any signs of water damage should be immediately obvious, but it’s also crucial that you check for signs of previous damp or leaks.

Check the Exterior

Once you have inspected the interior of your property, it’s time to head outside and check the outside of your roof. First and foremost, you need to make sure that your health and safety isn’t compromised, so do not walk on your roof. For those who are comfortable with heights, it may be best to view your roof from a ladder, however, make sure that there is somebody on the ground who can take notes for you. If you have a fear of heights, you can use a pair of binoculars to view your roof.

Inspect Shingles or Tiles

Once you begin examining the exterior of your roof, it’s important that you’re on the lookout for missing tiles or slates. Also, any lines or dark patches could signal damage to your roof. If you have noticed that your roof ridge is sagging or visibly uneven, this could be an indication that your roof is getting old, so it may be time to replace it.

Examine Your Chimney

After inspecting your roof tiles or slates, the next part to focus on is your chimney. It’s important to keep an eye on the flashing to make sure that it hasn’t peeled away, dislodged or become damaged in any way. Structures such as vents and skylights that penetrate through your roof should also be examined to make sure that the sealant isn’t peeling away or cracking.

Clean Your Gutters

Gutter maintenance and roof health are closely linked together, meaning it’s impossible not to talk about one without the other. Most homeowners tend to clean their gutters once per year, and while this is better than nothing, you may notice that your gutters get full very quickly. When the gutter fills up, this stops water flowing cleanly through them, causing your gutter to pool up and result in rot and fungus. To help keep on top of things, it’s advisable to clean your gutters 2-4 times per year.

Understand the Difference Between Black Algae, Moss and Spots

Next, you will need to understand the differences between black algae, moss and spots. Black algae is not nice to look at, however, it only affects the aesthetics of your roof, whereas moss is a serious problem because it holds water, meaning it’s very important that you get it removed. If you catch moss early enough, you may only need to sweep it away, however, if your moss has been there for a while, you will need to purchase products that have fatty acids or potassium salts in them kill it off.

Trim Back Tree Branches

If a storm is on the horizon, trim back any nearby tree branches that are close to your roof. While a big shady tree in your garden can be a good thing, the last thing you want is for an enormous branch to blow loose in a storm, as this could hit your roof and cause serious damage. No one wants to shell out for an entirely new roof installation, so make sure that there are no branches hanging directly over your roof.

Seek Professional Help

If you have any concerns about your roof, it’s best to seek professional help. For those who would rather steer clear of going down the DIY route, there are companies like Belfast Roofing Services who specialize in storm damage repair services, gutter cleaning, roof lead work, and roof maintenance.

Keep a Close Eye

If a storm has hit your area, while the worst will be over with, there are issues that could creep up over the next couple of weeks. Even if you have hired a professional to come in and your ceilings and roof appear to be fine, there could still be unseen damage that may appear later, meaning it’s important that you continue to keep a close eye on your roof, loft, gutters, and ceiling fixtures.

Don’t Panic

If you have noticed a leak, crack, or any other damage to your roof, it’s important not to panic. Understandably, your number one priority is to ensure you and your loved ones are safe, so if you have any concerns or worries, hiring a professional can help reduce stress levels and ensure any problems are nipped in the bud.

Whether you’ve recently moved into a new home or you’ve lived there for many years, keeping your property in tip-top condition is a must. If you have noticed any changes in your roof, rather than ignoring the problem and hoping it will go away, it’s best to take action immediately. The last thing you want is for further damage to occur or the possibility of your roof caving in, therefore, performing DIY maintenance on your roof or hiring a professional can help keep your roof and home protected.