Spring of 2010 brought record rainfall to Portland in a very short amount of time, which can be devastating to a roof. Persistent bad weather is one of the main causes of roof damage and decay in the Pacific Northwest. Luckily, there are a number of simple steps you can take to protect it from nasty Northwest winters.
Regular Roof Inspections
Roofing professionals suggest that you have it inspected at least once a year to make sure it isn’t damaged or rotting. You may want to increase the inspection schedule to once every four or five months if you live in an area that experiences heavy rain or snow, or is surrounded by trees.
If you plan on doing the inspection yourself, make sure to look for torn shingles, holes, decay or any other signs of damage. Be sure to check the gutters as well. If you constantly see granules in your gutters, you should probably have a professional give your roof a thorough inspection.
Treating Your Roof
It’s important to treat it every three to five years. This can be done either by a professional, or by using a high-quality roof cleanser. A roofing maintenance company should treat your roof as part of the regular maintenance routine. If they are doing their job, it shouldn’t be necessary to clean it yourself.
Proper roof ventilation is another key to keeping your roof in good condition during the rainy season. Ninety percent of premature roof degradation in the United States is due to poor roof ventilation. One simple test to tell if it is adequately ventilated is to keep track of the temperatures inside your house during the winter and summer months. If your house in unusually cold during winter and unusually hot during summer, the roof ventilation is probably not quite right. Check with a professional to correct any roof ventilation problems.
Trees are one of the biggest hazards for Portland roofs during the fall and winter seasons. During particularly bad rain, snow or wind storms, overhanging limbs can crack and break and cause a lot of damage to your roof. Even leaves, pinecones, twigs and nuts can cause problems. If left unattended, tree debris can rot, causing your roof to decay faster than it would if kept clean.
The rainy season is the biggest threat to Portland roofing. A well-maintained roof can stand a few months of steady rainfall, but if it isn’t regularly cleaned, properly ventilated, or blown, rain and snow can speed up the decay process. Standing water in your gutters can also do damage to your roof. Make sure you keep gutters clean of debris and mud; this will allow rain water to more easily flow off your roof and down to the ground.