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Basic Roof Maintenance You Can Do Yourself

Basic Roof Maintenance You Can Do Yourself

These roof maintenance tips can help you save money now and in the long run.

Your home’s roofing protects you from different harsh environment conditions like heavy rains, strong winds, and extreme heat of the sun. Regardless of the season, your roof is exposed to extreme hazards that may cause damage if it’s not given the proper maintenance it needs. Neglecting these roof hazards may result in:

  • Corrosion
  • Denting
  • Scratching
  • Leaking

If not mitigated, you will be left with no other option but to replace your roof.

Fortunately, there are things you can do to maintain your roof without the cost and hazards. After all, hiring a roofer can result in exorbitant fees, and it might not be the safest right now given the COVID-19 pandemic. If you can take care of these issues yourself, you can avoid putting your roof and yourself in a dicey situation.

Here are some basic roof maintenance tips to keep in mind. Just a caution: always take appropriate safety measures in whatever you do! If in doubt, have a licensed roofing specialist do it for you.

Regular Roof Inspection

A regular roof inspection can be quite helpful in knowing the status of your roof and the potential problems that might eventuate. The roof’s surface can be damaged by several factors, such as exposure to the extreme heat of the sun, presence of water, and accumulation of debris falling from nearby trees.

It is imperative to check the gutters for shingle granules as these are an indication that your roof is starting to wear and needs extra care. You also need to check the roof for the presence of algae or fungi, which could cause damage to the roof if they remain overlooked.

A study on roof weathering revealed that algae commonly grows on the surfaces of roof materials, which include asphalt shingles, concrete and clay roof tiles, and even slate. Moss, lichens, and algae can all build up on a roof.

Metal roofs, on the other hand, are prone to rusting due to harsh weather conditions and the presence of elements like iron oxide. Rust may result in corrosion and can cause leaks that are detrimental to your home.

Washing Off the Damage-Causing Elements

Clearing off hazardous elements from your roof will surely extend its life. Common elements that find their way on to your roof include dirt, leaves and twigs, water, acid rain, and mould. These elements should be eliminated as soon as possible before they cause damage to your roof.

· Using water

You can use plain water to get rid of the accumulated dirt on your roof. You may use a bucket to splash water and wash off the dirt, or you can take advantage of your hose to make it easier for you. Using a hose can be awkward, but it is much more effective because the water pressure is stronger and controllable.

· Using detergents

Most people prefer using detergents on their roof because these materials are readily available in their homes. You can use mild laundry detergents and dish soap or other commercial detergents like those for cars. Just make sure they are mild as there are detergent types that can damage to your metal roof.

· Using solvents

Sometimes, water may not be enough to eliminate the hazards that accumulate on your roof. For tougher elements like oil, grease, tar, and rust, you can use solvents. But bear in mind that solvents should only be used to clean a portion of the roof. Avoid applying them to the whole roof as their strong chemical content could be dangerous to living things. Also, to protect yourself from harmful chemicals that come with these solvents, you must wear eye protection such as safety glasses.

Brushing the Gutters

Gutters are usually where debris like leaves, twigs, and algae accumulate. You have to regularly check the gutters to prevent them from clogging. Cleaning the gutters is something you can do yourself if you have the right tools.

Necessary tools like a brush and a ladder should be available at the hardware. Just place the ladder on one spot at a time, so you can start clearing the gutters of any debris.

Debris like twigs and leaves that collect in the gutter can block the waterway and prevent the water from going to the downspout. A high volume of water build-up could overflow on the gutter or come back up the shingles and down your house. It’s something you want to avoid.

Monitoring the Pipe Jacks

You have to pay close attention to your pipe jacks. A pipe jack is simply a flashing that sits at the base of any pipe that comes out of the roof. The flashing may start degrading over time due to harsh conditions. When broken, this can cause water leaks to enter through your roof.

Moreover, the rubber on the base of the pipe may start to contract and pull away from the pipe, which will cause leakage inside your house. It’s best to keep an eye on your pipe jacks to prevent further damage.

Check for Exposed Nail Heads

Nailheads are usually visible on your roof, especially on the flashings, at the bottom of the pipe jacks, or the ridges. Your roof is going to have exposed nails, especially on the flashings. These nail heads should not be exposed and should be sealed to prevent water from entering the shingles to the wood decking and your attic.

Use silicon coverage products to seal off these nail heads. You can find these products in hardware stores.

Keep Valleys Clean

A valley is where two downward-sloping roof pitches intersect. Although most modern houses do not have exposed valleys, some still do. Open valleys can accumulate twigs and debris that may cause clogging and rusting, so it is important that you clear out the valleys from time to time.

Check the Flashing and Seals on Skylights

Some houses have skylights that give natural light to a room. This part of the roof, however, is not immune to the accumulation of dirt and debris and also needs special attention. A skylight will have a flashing at the top and the bottom.

For the bottom part, you should check out the exposed nails and make sure that they are properly sealed off. The flashing along the side and the top of the skylight should be maintained well because this is where dirt and debris collects.

The seal between the frame of the skylight and the glass can degrade over time, which may cause water to enter through the roof. Check your skylight from time to time as you might need to have it resealed if the initial seal has degraded.

Get the best roofing materials from Sydney Roof and Building Supplies.

Your roofing serves as your protection from the effects of global warming — the extreme weather conditions and high temperatures, among others. That is why it’s important to keep it well-maintained. A lot of hardware stores offer roofing materials, but for some of the best for maintaining your roof, Sydney Roof and Building Supplies is your one-stop-shop!

SRBS has a wide array of roofing supplies for all your roofing needs. We stock high-quality roof materials that have been tested and proven to be quite effective by Sydneysiders. From cowls, fixings and fasteners, flashing, paints, gutter to hand tools and workwear, we have them all for you! Call us on 02-8090-3483 or email us at mark@srbs.com.au or at marie@srbs.com.au to enquire about our products and services.

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Most Common Types of Roof Damage

Most Common Types of Roof Damage

From water damage to cracks, tears and punctures, we explain briefly the common types of roof damage.

Many homeowners take their roof for granted. They spend for a kitchen renovation, a living room revamp, and even a garage overhaul. Almost always, however, they overlook the maintenance of their roof.

The roof is one of the most vital parts of your home. It provides you, your family, and your belongings protection from harsh weather conditions, and it keeps you safe and comfortable amidst extreme Australian weather elements. However, your roof is also the most exposed part of your home. If not taken care of, it can fall prey to significant damage, and before you know it, it could be too late and costly to repair.

Common Roof Damage to Look Out For

Being observant definitely pays. Here are the most common types of roof damage that you should look out for and address.

1.  Water Damage

Water damage is probably one of the most common roof problems, and one of the first symptoms of moisture damage is a leaky roof.

A leaky roof will leave discoloured spots on your ceiling which are actually mould rings. Worse, water damage can already be present even without these unsightly water spots and rings, and that is why roof maintenance is vital.

There are many reasons for a leaky roof, and that is why merely closing a hole in your roof may not be the right fix. It can inadvertently lead the water to another spot in your roof, thereby spreading the damage.

Any of the following can cause the leak in your roof:

  • Damaged shingles
  • Roof features such as chimneys or skylights
  • Valley damage
  • Failed sealants
  • Loose roof tile
  • Warped flashing

2.  Mould and Algae Damage

Allowing mould and algae to develop and grow can reduce the lifespan of your roof. Most residential roofs can last 20 to 50 years if maintained properly. Ignoring mould in your roof and taking no action can significantly damage the integrity of your roof.

Mould often has a distinctive smell and slimy appearance, but be aware that dry rot can be difficult to detect, and will usually look like black or dark green patches. Mould results from the presence of moisture or water.

Algae, which are usually greenish-black in colour, can eat away at your roof shingles. It is most common in your gutters where water is present. Humid and damp areas are common algae breeding grounds.

When left untreated, mould and algae growth can lead to more serious roof damage and leaks.

3.  Broken and Loose Shingles

Strong Australian winds can easily loosen your roof shingles, especially those that are have not been properly installed by a roof professional. Strong winds, in addition to damaging weak flashing, can blow off your shingles, leaving some sections of your roof bare and naked. It can tear off your shingles, warp them, lift them, or curl them up.

Debris from trees can also tear away your roof shingles. A major storm, hail, and extreme weather can wreak havoc on your roof. Damaged shingles can increase your chances of having a leaky roof, damaging the interior of your home, and making the repairs more complicated. It can also result in moulds and rot, which can affect the integrity of your roof.

4.  Cracks, Tears, and Punctures

The poor design of your roof can lead to cracks and splits. Careless roofing contractors or painters visiting your roof can cause tears and punctures. Debris from trees or those brought on by storms can also leave tears and punctures in your roof. Punctures caused by debris during a storm are all the more hazardous because heavy rainfall can bring serious leaks into your home.

Roof punctures are caused by sharp pressure that leaves a hole through your roof. What makes punctures and tears dangerous is that they are easy to miss. When left unchecked and unrepaired, they can let moisture seep in and cause further damage to the roof membrane.

Symptoms of Roof Damage

You may not think that your roof has a problem until you find the floor pooled with rainwater. It’s impractical and a little irresponsible to wait for the damage to be too much that a simple repair won’t be able to fix it. Be on the lookout for these early symptoms of roof damage. The sooner you can identify the damage, the sooner you can find and implement the right solution.

·    The roof leaks when it rains.

A leaking roof is probably the biggest giveaway that your roof is damaged and needs some tender loving care. Take even the smallest of leaks seriously as they can still get unwanted moisture in between your roof’s membranes. The deterioration of your roof can spread quickly if you ignore these tell-tale signs of roof damage.

·    Light comes through the roof.

Only holes of significant size can let the sun shine noticeably through your ceiling, but light will come in through even the smallest holes and even thin patches. This is one of the most obvious signs of roof damage, but also one that is most overlooked.

To check if your roof has holes, you need to get into the crawl space. Turn off all the lights, close all windows and blinds. If you still see some light in your ceiling space, your roof definitely has holes.

·    There are stains and discolouration in your ceiling.

Continuous leaking can result in some visible signs on your ceiling and walls. These drips of water take with them dust and dirt which can discolour the paint of your home’s interior. The stains can come in brown, grey, or yellow colour. They appear as unsightly circular rings on the ceiling and ugly streaks on your walls.

·    Your ceilings are sagging.

Water damage left unchecked can result in a sagging ceiling, which means a significant amount of water has pooled in the same area.

·    Your electricity bill is increasing.

Just as water can get in through the holes in your roof, air and heat can also escape through them. Your heating and cooling systems have to work overtime when there are temperature leaks. If your electricity bill keeps increasing, you might want to check your roof for holes.

Contact Sydney Roof and Building Supplies for High-Quality Roofing Supplies

If you’re looking for high-quality roofing materials to replace damaged sections of your roof, Sydney Roof and Building Supplies is your one-stop-shop. We offer only the best roofing supplies at wholesale prices. From roof tiles to scaffolding to roof paint, we have the roofing product that you need. Call us today on 02-8090-3483 for enquiries.

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Choosing the Right Paint for Your Australian Roof

Choosing the Right Paint for Your Australian Roof

What factors to consider when choosing your roof paint and how to make sure you have covered all your bases

The weather in Australia can be quite harsh on rooftops at times. A great example would be the extreme weather patterns that Sydney experiences fairly regularly including conditions such as acidic breeze, hailstorms, torrential rains and heatwaves. For that reason, it makes sense that choosing the right materials is essential to maintain your house’s structure and appearance, and that definitely includes roof paint!

Roof painting involves many more considerations than just choosing a new look or style for your home and If you’re at a loss on where to start, here are some tips to guide you through the process of selecting the right roof paint for your home

Check the material of your roof

Roofs are made from different materials, and the most common materials are concrete, colourbond and corrugated iron or metal. It’s important that you know what the type of roof you have is because it may not be compatible with the paint you choose.

·   Concrete Tile Roofs

Concrete tiles on roofs do not necessarily need painting for structural reasons, however it’s certainly done now and then - especially during remodelling or for styling reasons. It requires a clear alkyd primer to form an acceptable bond between the surface of the tile and the new coating. We recommend using a high-quality 100% acrylic paint afterwards to finish the job.

·   Colorbond roof

Painting a colorbond roof is not as easy as painting concrete tile roofs. The process is entirely different, and a multi-layer coating system is needed to produce a sleek and long-lasting finish.

Some colorbond roof paints are self-priming, but you can still use a primer to make sure that the application of paint is even just to be extra sure. Using an airless spray gun can help for better adhesion and smooth application of the primer.

Colorbond roof paints are made out of a specialised water-based acrylic membrane, which can only be applied using an airless spray gun for an even finish. It needs at least two coats before allowing it to sit properly.

·   Corrugated iron and metal roof

Don’t just choose any paint for a corrugated iron and metal roof. Instead, look for an acrylic-based paint for “exterior use”. In addition, acrylic latex paint functions well, especially if the roof is relatively brand new and not suffering from wear and tear.

You can also use oil-based alkyd paint and pair it with a suitable galvanised metal primer. However, a topcoat does not remove the need for a primer. The topcoat will secure the paint, but the primer will make the paint adhere effectively.

Stay away from lead

No matter the case, always stay away from paints that contain lead as their main component. Lead-based paints are not allowed in many areas and they also pose health hazards for you and your family.

Exposure to high amounts of lead may result in weakness, anaemia, and brain and kidney damage. Lead can also cross the placental barrier, so if a pregnant woman in your family is exposed, her unborn child becomes at risk. Safer choices include titanium dioxide and acrylic paint.

Consider the type of protection you want for your roof

There are now many innovative roof paints available on the market that address the various concerns of homeowners. Try to narrow down what kind of protection you want for your roof to help in the process of choosing the type of paint you want.

  • Climate change caused an increase in temperature in many parts of the world. Added to this fact is that Australia is one of the countries that receive the most sunlight every year.
  • If you want to control the heat and the costs for air-conditioning, a heat-reflective roof paint might be a good idea. The paint has the ability to eliminate solar heat even before it enters your home. It will also protect your roof from corrosion and thermal shock. A heat reflective roof also increases the value of your house.
  • If you’re in the part of Sydney that experiences hailstorms and heavy rains, a waterproofing paint might work for you. There are different types of waterproofing paints, the most common of which is Masonry paint and acrylic paint.

Masonry paint can be used for almost all types of roof. It also quickly absorbs liquid solutions such as chemicals and water, and does not allow rainwater to penetrate your roof which makes it durable and dirt-resistant as well.

On the other hand, using acrylic paint with a primer increases your roof’s resistance to water. It is non-toxic, odour-free and quick drying.

  • If corrosion is a concern, look for a paint that works well with a primer that has anti-corrosive properties.
  • Some paints also offer other benefits like fire resistance or ability to repel pests and insects. With so many options available, choose the paint which makes sense for your needs.

Take time in selecting the colour of your roof paint

It’s easy to get too excited about choosing the colours for your chosen roof paint and overlook the functional factors that need to be thought about! There are other things you need to take into consideration when it comes to roof colour such as:

  • The colour of your roof can change the temperature of your attic by 20-40 degrees. It will have a massive impact on the cooling or heating costs of your home.

Light colours deflect sunlight and help keep the temperature low in a hot climate. On the other hand, dark colours absorb heat and help you to stay warm in cold a climate.

  • You might also want to check how your roof colour will affect the overall look of your home. For instance, a black or dark grey would likely match well with a blue or grey house. A brown roof goes well with a tan, cream or brown-coloured house. Dark colours can also make your house look smaller, while light colours do the opposite.

Choose the best roof paint with Sydney Roof and Building Supplies

Choosing the correct type of paint will enable you to save a lot of money in the long run. You’ll save yourself from costly maintenance and repair expenses and although it’s tempting to do everything by yourself, it’s best to seek the help of a professional roofer for this type of task. Why go it alone when you can get free expert advice?

If you need a one-stop-shop for roofing supplies in Sydney, our friendly and professional team is ready to assist. Call us today for enquiries!

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