7 Ways Excess Rain Can Damage Your Roof
Owning a home means owning the seemingly endless list of to-dos and checkups that come along with annual maintenance. Maybe a few of those items you can push off for another day, but admittedly, during the rainy season is not the best time to find out that your roof is not up to snuff for those more persistent storms.
Damage to your roof can start as a lost shingle here or a water stain there, and can seem like a small issue with a big project attached. No matter how you spin it, a weekend job is way less painful in the long run than a total rehaul of your house’s roofing system. It’s important to stay on top of what keeps you warm, dry, and cozy and with a rainy day just around the corner, it’s equally important to stay informed on what to look for if you think your roof may be damaged.
Heavy rain and snow are among the most common ways a roof can take damage, aside of course from natural disasters. Having an annual checklist to take a tally of possible roof damage can save you time and money in repairs.
1. Rain Causes Shingle Damage
Heavy rains in the spring and fall are among the biggest concerns when it comes to shingle damage. Damage to your shingles in this way can be kind of sporadic, so be sure to get a ladder and check the stability of your shingle rows and ensure there’s no cracks or leaks in the shingles. Wind-aided water washing over your shingles for hours at a time can damage your roof like no other, and while there’s not a lot you can do to shield the shingles, there is a lot you can do about the aftermath.
2. Mold and Decay
With moisture comes mold. This is something that many of us are acutely aware of. Inside the home we struggle with mold in our kitchens, bathrooms, piping and more but the outside or tops of our homes can be severely overlooked. Mold can begin to grow between the cracks and crevices of your roof, causing even more expansion of materials, mildew, and the deterioration of woods used for building. Not to mention, mold has the opportunity of bringing bugs and other debris, so this is a big red flag during a routine roof inspection.
3. Rainwater in Clogged Gutters
Rain gutters and downspouts are a helpful addition to the roofing team when it comes to water management. The problem here comes with less-than-maintained gutters and downspouts. A clogged gutter can cause an excess of water not only pummeling your roof from the sky, but also push a rush of water back over the top because it has nowhere else to go. Sure, a bit may flow over the sides naturally, but that also has a potential of running through the groundwater and negatively affecting the foundation of your home. Cleaning and regularly repairing your gutters when needed can save a lot of hassle later!
4. Leaks and Cracks
Leaks and cracking in roofing material can mean much bigger problems than just a drizzle inside. Since there are so many layers that make up a roof, leaks can lead to a discovery in decay of building material, cracks or holes in the top, or a path for bugs and other vermin to get in. Leaking and cracking generally results from water pushing the material one way or another, and then freezing to expand the material and leave a space in its wake. It’s important to batten down the hatches in cold weather to avoid this issue.
5. Frozen Water Damage
Briefly touched on in the last point, frozen water damage is among the most silent and devastating ways that rain can ruin your roof. Water left to sit and freeze in the cracks and crannies of your roof can lead to expanding building material enough that the roof is no longer able to catch additional water. This also makes it difficult to repair, as a patch might help for smaller cracks, but damage too large may mean the need for a totally new roof.
6. Internal Stains
Internal water stains caused from heavy rainfall can be an indicator that there’s a leak somewhere. Normally, if the damage is severe enough to make it inside the home, the possibility is a good one that there may be mold and mildew growing in and around where that spot is. Depending on the kind and size of the stain, you can usually trace it back to the origin of the water flow and patch it up, but the damage caused by the rain is one that can’t be ignored.
7. Gutter and Downspout Damage
Last but certainly not least, heavy rainfall takes a toll on your gutter and downspout setups. While these management tools are meant to help tame the flow of water, sometimes clogs and cracks in the gutters can lead to some pretty unsavory side effects. Its important to stay on top of seasonal gutter cleaning and repair, and there are some really amazing professionals in your area to contact for the job!
All in all, dealing with heavy rainfall can feel like a battle with the elements, and while that can sometimes be the case, the best way to handle it is to stay as prepared as possible. Not many look forward to spending their weekends doing house chores, but sometimes it’s as necessary as putting gas in your car. Someone has got to do it! If home maintenance is not your thing, professional services and gutter experts can make quick and easy work of the task.
Consistency in maintenance is key, especially when the rain can be counted on yearly. Having a solid gutter setup and a stable and well-kept roof can save you potentially thousands of dollars in roof and other miscellaneous home repairs in the years to come.