09 Dec What types of maintenance are available for my roof?
Roofs are designed to be maintenance-free – to a point. They will protect your property from the elements so long as the roofing system functions correctly. Problems arise when one element fails, such as a tile or ridge. When this happens water can get in, causing damp to form or a leak to spring.
The good news is most roof issues can be fixed relatively cost-effectively. To help you identify what you need and how to ensure nothing else springs up in the short term, below we will cover the types of maintenance available.
Periodic inspection (external)
If you want your roof to continue to perform as it should you should have it inspected periodically to ensure all is well. A periodic external inspection every twelve months will identify missing slates and cracked bridging. Roofs that were erected twenty years ago or more should be inspected after every winter to ensure older mortar used in pointing is up to scratch and all roof tiles are undamaged.
Periodic inspection (internal)
If there is a service hatch to your roof or you have an attic with exposed undersides it is also good practice to have the roof inspected from the inside. This is because some issues with roofs are not always evident on the outside. If you have a leak for instance then often the only way to identify the source is on the inside. If your attic only has a hatch, a bright torch can be used to inspect the underside of the roof.
If you have moved into a new property or you’re selling up, it’s a good idea to have the roof inspected to identify any immediate issues.
If you have a leaky roof the cause could be a wide range of things, but the most common cause is faulty tiles. Identifying the faulty tiles and replacing them is necessary to solve most roof leaks. Trouble is, it’s not always easy to identify the faulty tiles so it is sometimes a case of trial, error and wait and see. Another common cause of leaky roofs is cracked ridges which can be repointed to create a water tight seal.
Replacing individual roof tiles and slates
The most common type of maintenance required is replacing cracked, damaged or missing roof tiles and slates. Roof tiles can be pulled from a roof in extreme wind or damaged by flying debris. In rarer cases, water can get underneath a tile, freeze, and push the tile up and outward. Roof tiles and slates that are damaged will need replacing to maintain the integrity of your roof. The cost will be minimal for a direct replacement.
Replacing roof felt
Roofing felt can degrade over time and will need replacing if a hole emerges. Birds are enemies to felt because they pick at it when exposed. Holes in felt will cause a leak eventually so it’s worth getting them patched as soon as possible. Unfortunately, this can be quite a big job if the battens have to come off. We would usually replace the old felt with a modern membrane and strip the tiles to do a proper job.
While it is good practice to replace ALL old roof felt with a new membrane, it is perfectly possible to replace patches of failing felt, IF the issue is localised. This will likely fix the issue of a leak, but it isn’t a long-term solution because the older felt could fail elsewhere, which is why we recommend upgrading when possible.
Also, patch repairs are only economical if they can be carried out without stripping all the tiles. If they have to be stripped, you may as well replace it all.
Entire roof replacement
In some cases your roof may need replacing completely. This is the biggest job you could possibly need, but nothing an experienced roofer cannot handle. This involves stripping the roof, replacing the timbers where needed, laying down new membranes and battens, and then finally tiling everything up and pointing it all. A complete roof replacement may set you back thousands but will last you for many years to come.
For roof maintenance in and around Leeds, call us on 0113 2934038.