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Weekly Maintenance for your Home

June – Week 24

Just like preventative maintenance on your car, if you take care of a few small items around the house every week, you can avoid many emergency breakdowns and expensive repairs.

Roofs

Whether you like climbing ladders or not, this is the time of the year to give your roof a good inspection. So if you don't like those ladders, at least make that inspection by using a pair of binoculars. You will be amazed at the detail you can see through binoculars by backing up just enough to see the roof itself.  With the advent of good digital cameras you could also do this with the zoom function of your camera, and then zoom further while looking at the photo on the computer.

You need to look at the general lay of the roof. See if the top, the ridge, is straight, or does it look like a sway-back horse? See if you can notice any sections of the roof that appear to bow in, or ridges that seem to stand up. All of these are signs of structural problems and you should have a contractor come in a check inside the attic for rot or other problems. A weak roof can be a serious danger when snow starts piling up or you experience high winds.

Look for any missing or curled shingles. Curled corners should be glued down and missing shingles replaced as soon as possible. Both of these will allow the wind to get under the shingles and cause more damage quickly. The warmth of early summer is a good time to work on such things, while the shingles are warm enough to be pliable but not so hot as to damage them by walking on them. If the spacing between asphalt shingle tabs is getting very large (look at a neighbours fairly new roof to see the proper spacing) this is a definite sign of an ageing roof.

Almost all roof leaks are through the flashings. These are what you want to look at most closely. Are the flashings pulling away from the Chimney? In the database you can see the really proper way to install a flashing system, complete with Cap Flashings, to keep chimneys water tight. Do you see any rust, or even holes in any other flashings? Anytime you change roof shingles or membranes, always change all the flashings.

For many more details, check the SEARCH tab above for "Roofs".