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Making Your Roof Last Longer With A Simple Fix

Sep 13, 2008
Ask any homeowner about their home and just about the last thing they will mention is the roof. Yet, it is the roof that is foremost when it comes to keeping the elements out. For something so important, it does not get much respect.

Things you do not respect can really come back to bite you. With a roof, this means an expensive repair or even a replacement. While you might think a problem can be remedied by simply replacing a few tiles, you would be incorrect.

Think about the hull on a boat. What does it do? It creates a waterproof envelope that keeps the water out and allows the vessel to float. A roof is similar, but is a collection of systems that work together to keep water out of your home.

Logically, the leak in a roof should be just above where you see discoloration on the ceiling, right? If you have a sloped roof, it rarely will be. In fact, it is a very rare case where a direct vertical leak occurs.

The nature of water is the problem. Simply put, it migrates in random directions. As a result, the leak in question may be anywhere. This means water tests to identify it and pulling up big chunks of roof to address the problem.

All and all, you really want to make every effort to avoid roof repairs. Fortunately, your roof is a pretty solid structure. If you follow some basic maintenance steps, you can avoid problems down the line.

While maintenance is a matter of common sense, there is one additional step that can add 10 years to the life of the roof. The issue involves the air between the ceiling and outer roofing. The air in this space can destroy a roof.

Go back to our boat example. What if water gets into the hull? It is a disaster. Why? Water starts slowly destroying the steel by rusting. If this goes on long enough, the hull will weaken to the point that it simply fails outright.

A similar problem can happen in the space below your roof. The components of the roof are laid bare there. The air just sits and heats up. It can get up to 150 degrees in some areas. Water in the air gets into the wood and the roof slowly fails.

Admittedly, this process can take years to do serious damage. Still, a new roof costs a lot of money. To put off that expense, you need to install an attic fan. It will get the air moving and give hot, humid air a way to escape.

Ah, but I already have vents in my attic. Studies show those vents do not do the job. They do not create air circulation and are to low on the wall to address the air near the top of the roof. In short, the problem remains.

The cost and aggravation of having a roof replaced can be huge. In contrast, the cost and hour or so it takes to install the fan is tiny. As a homeowner, which one do you feel is the best choice?
About the Author
When it comes to roofing contractors, it is easy to separate the pretenders from the quality roofers. Just ask for a written guarantee like 866FixMyRoof.com provides to its clients.
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