Welcome to the latest edition of Ask the Expert! Continuing with our home maintenance tips, when it comes to home repairs, your roof doesn’t usually make the top of the list. Unless there’s some sort of pressing emergency — like a leak or damaged shingles — it’s mostly “out of sight, out of mind.”
In reality, your roof is a pretty crucial part of your home — after all, it’s your main defense from the outside. Plus, recently updated roofs can go a long way in upping your home value and appeal. Don’t wait until the last minute to get your roof in tip-top shape. Check out some of these tips from an expert on easy home improvements.
Once you do a little investigating, you might find that there are only a few spot repairs that need to be done. If this is the case, then shingle replacement is a super easy DIY that goes a long way. But be sure to find new shingles that match your old ones, so your house doesn’t look mismatched. Once you’ve got the right shingles, it’s as easy as tearing the old one off and using roof sealant to secure the new one.
You might need to replace the shingles around the loose shingle as well, just to ensure that everything is secure. Also, some curled shingles might look like they need to be replaced, but they can usually be easily flattened. Just use some roofing cement or caulk to lay the shingle down, then apply pressure so it sticks.
The first and easiest way to spot roof leaks is water stains on the inside of your home. If you can’t pinpoint the exact location, try using a garden hose to run water down the roof until you can isolate the origin of the leak. Oftentimes, it comes from gaps in your pipes, vents, or chimneys. For a quick fix, you can use a large, heavy-duty plastic sheet or a small piece of sheet metal until you can give it more attention.
Depending on the cause of your roof leak, the method of repair will change. In most cases, you’ll need to clear out any debris on your roof, use flexible roof sealant to fill any holes or gaps, and replace shingles around the hole in order to make up for the extra wear that they may have endured. While you might think you need to call a professional to fix a leak, it can actually be done quite easily on your own!
Partial or Complete Reroof
If the damage on your roof is expansive enough, you might have to surrender to a partial or complete reroofing. This process is a little intensive, since you should probably strip all of your old shingles off and replace them with new ones. While it is possible to layer shingles, it’ll be easier to make future repairs if you start with a blank slate.
Are you not sure how to pick the right shingles for your roof? First, you should consider your price range. Asphalt shingles are the typical choice, but more expensive options include wood, metal, plastic polymer, slate, or solar glass. Each has their own benefits — solar glass lasts for a long time, is super durable and saves you money in the long run. Slate is almost indestructible against weather and disasters. What wood lacks in durability it makes up for in increased insulation.
If your budget allows for it, then choosing a more expensive shingle might save you money in the long run.
When to Call a Professional
For smaller issues, like leaks and contained replacements, it’s easy to just do it yourself. But if you’re staring down a partial or complete reroofing project, it might be best to get some professional help.
A contractor can help you remove of and dispose of your old roofing, then install the new one so you won’t have any leak or repair problems any time soon. For that peace of mind, the extra cost is worth it. Make sure you do online research and ask around for recommendations to ensure that your hire a reliable expert for the job.
Trust in Your Local Experts
When it comes to improving your home, you can trust in the skills of your local expert, Michael White. I’m dedicated to using my years of local experience and professional expertise to help you in all things home-owning.