Giving Your Asphalt Roof An Exterior Inspection

Construction & Contractors Blog

If you have an asphalt roof, it's important that you periodically inspect it to make sure that it's in good shape. A roof that is kept in good condition will last longer; catching and repairing damage quickly is an important part of that.

For this reason, it's recommended that you have your roof professionally inspected annually. But if you've recently been through a storm (or you just think you've noticed something wrong with your roof), you'll want to get outside and give it a look yourself.

How To Inspect

When you're examining an asphalt shingle roof, there are some definite signs of damage to look out for. The best way to look for these signs is not, however, by climbing on the roof yourself – it's much safer to get a pair of binoculars and check out the roof from a distance. In fact, walking across the roof can worsen shingle damage if you aren't careful to step in the right spots, so it's best left to the professionals.

Dark or Green Streaks

Stains or streaks on your roof that are dark or green are sometimes called roof mold, but in fact, they are caused by either moss or algae. Luckily, roof algae is not a very serious problem and is unlikely to cause any damage. However, it should still be cleaned off as it can compromise the roof's ability to reflect heat (and it's also not very pretty). Moss appears as raised green areas, much like moss on rocks or trees. It's a more serious problem because it can damage the surface of shingles if not removed.

The method for removing them is almost the same. The roof should be sprayed – not pressure washed – with an equal mixture of water and bleach, and then rinsed with plain water after fifteen minutes. For moss, stubborn areas can also be scrubbed with a brush; for large amounts of moss, it may be necessary to alternate this more than once with bleach.

Disturbed or Deformed Shingles

This is probably the easiest type of damage to spot – checking over your roof, look for any shingles that stand out and don't look like the shingles around them. These shingles may be bent upwards at the corners or lifting away from the roof; in extreme cases, they may be cracked, broken, or missing entirely. If you spot this type of damage, the shingles will need to be replaced, so you should call a contractor as soon as possible.

Granule Damage

Asphalt shingles have a rough surface – they are covered by a layer of granules that protect the asphalt from UV light and weathering. Over time, these granules are worn away; storms can accelerate this, and impacts from hail or debris can cause shingles to lose sections of granules.

From the ground, look for smooth, dark areas on shingles. The layer of asphalt under the granules is black, and if you can see patches of it through the granules, those areas are unprotected. You may also discover this problem if you discover granules within your gutters when you clean them; they will look like sandy grit the same color as your shingles.

Granule damage will lead to a roof aging and failing more quickly than it should, so shingles that have lost granules should also be replaced. For further assistance, contact local professional roofing contractors.

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12 June 2015

Construction Needs in Times of Disaster

I live in the middle of the desert, so I never thought that flooding would be a problem. However, a few months ago my town was hit with a huge storm. These freak storms are called "Hundred Year Storm" because the chances of them happening are once in a hundred years. Needless to say, no one was prepared for the aftermath--especially not the city sewage system. All this extra water had no where to go, and suddenly, I found my basement flooded. It wasn't a fun experience, but we dealt with it the best we could. Since then, I have spent a lot of time looking into different options for sewage, water lines, and other related things. We're now even looking into building a new house. This blog is the result of my ongoing research.