Where Should Roof Water Flow?
In short, it should drain from the roof to your eavestrough, eavestrough to your downspout, and downspout to the ground – away from your home.
Eavestroughs (also knows as gutters) need to be clear of debris and installed at an angle that allows water to drain toward the downspouts. Leaf guards are available for new or existing eavestrough systems which prevent debris from entering your eavestroughs as leaves, debris, snow and ice remain on top of the product.
Downspouts also need to be clear of debris and pointed away from your home so that the water will not be directed toward your basement. Downspouts should also be used on the roof if it has multiple levels to direct the water from the higher eaves to the lower eaves. This will help extend the lifetime of your shingles as a steady flow of water (in addition to the rain that is falling) will break them down overtime.
Should I have my Attic Inspected?
Your attic can tell you a lot about your home but is often overlooked. If you are having your roof inspected, it can be equally as important to also have your attic inspected as inspecting only the exterior of your home may not provide a complete picture.
An attic inspection can tell you if your home if properly insulated, if there is water damage, and if the ventilation is balanced. The best time to address any issues found in the attic is during a roof replacement as vents can be added or removed, insulation issues can be addressed, and leaks can be sealed.
Your roof is part of a much larger system and in order for it to function properly it should work in conjunction with the attic of your home.
What is Ice Damming?
When a cold snap decides to stick around, many homeowners experience a build-up of ice in their eavestroughs and on the edge/overhang of the roof. Commonly referred to as an ice dam, this is caused by the weather and/or the attic of a home if it is not properly insulated and ventilated.
Ice build up on the overhang of the roof or icicles hanging off the eaves are a common sign of ice damming and should be investigated. Ice dams are a concern because the melting snow cannot access the blocked eavestrough and will start to accumulate and cause water to push back up under the shingles, causing a leak.
If you are experiencing ice damming it is important to check that your home is properly insulated and ventilated. A watertight membrane under the shingles is also a great option, especially on low slope roofs.
Can I Replace my Roof in the Winter?
The short answer – Yes!
Your roof can be replaced year-round. Most important is safety and experience, and we have been installing roofing during the winter months for over 30 years.
Special care needs to be taken with the roofing material to ensure proper application. The sunny winter days and chinooks we experience throughout the winter work in our favour for installation, and a sunny, mild day is all it takes to seal the shingle adhesive.
Additionally, your roof is never torn off all at once leaving you exposed to the elements. We will start and complete individual sections of the roof before moving on to the next one.
Is my Roof System Ready for Winter?
We recommend an exterior inspection* of your home each fall before the snow is set to arrive. Here are the steps we recommend:
1. Inspect – Check for missing, loose, curling, lifting, or damaged shingles
2. Repair & Replace – Missing or damaged shingles
3. Re-Seal – Caulk around flashings, vents & chimney stacks
4. Remove – Trim tree branches at least 2 feet from roof & gutters
5. Clean – The gutters & downspouts of any debris
6. Target – Ensure downpipe extensions are directed 5 feet from the foundation
7. Ventilate – Check the attic for balanced ventilation to avoid condensation this winter
For a more detailed exterior checklist or a free roof tune up evaluation, contact us today. Highland Exteriors offers professional services and free inspections.
*Always take extra precaution when climbing a ladder and contact a professional if you are not comfortable with heights.
What Should I do Following a Hail Storm?
Hail is one of the costliest types of adverse weather and most Albertans are (unfortunately) aware of its damage potential. If your home was in the path of a hail storm, your first step should be to have it inspected by a professional who can create a (free) detailed loss report for you. This report provides you with a great starting point if you plan to make an insurance claim as you will be equipped with the knowledge of the damage your home sustained prior to the insurance adjusters visit. Once your claim is established you can choose your preferred contractor to complete the work.
Not all damage is easily visible and if left untreated, it could cost you money down the road when your exterior starts to age faster than expected or you are selling your home and your home inspector finds hail damage.