If installed properly, most roofs will last for decades without having to be replaced, but to extend the life of your roof and ensure it won’t break down prematurely, it’s still a good idea to adhere to a regular maintenance schedule. To maximize the efficiency of your roof, consider the following maintenance tips (if conditions make it unsafe to perform these maintenance procedures yourself, contact a professional):

Inspect. Thoroughly scan your roof for any signs of damage, warping or discoloration. Spray the roof with a hose and identify potential trouble spots by making a note of where water collects. Also, pay immediate attention to missing or damaged shingles, spots where there’s noticeable bubbling and places where the roof material is actually lifting.

Clean moss and mold. Moss and mold can cause considerable damage to your roof, so it’s important to remove it as soon as possible. Avoid using a power washer when removing moss or mold, as the pressure may blast off the shingles’ protective layers. Instead, purchase a moss removal solution, spray it on your roof and clean the debris with a broom.

Don’t let trees grow too close. Trees can cause numerous problems for all types of roofs. Leaning branches can scratch and gouge roofing materials when they’re blown by the wind; falling branches from overhanging trees can damage or puncture shingles; and falling leaves can clog gutter systems, causing water to back up into the house’s attic or living spaces. If you have trees growing near your home, take immediate steps to trim them back from the roof.

Clean gutters and downspouts. Ideally, you should clean your gutters every six to 12 months. Also, don’t forget to clear the entrance and exit of your downspout. Flush your gutters and downspout with water to make sure they’re draining properly and away from your foundation.

Fix flashing and sealants. Flashing is the strip of metal that connects your skylights or chimney to your roof. Wind and weather can get underneath the flashing and rip it loose, causing mold and water damage. Check for loose flashing and tack it back on tight. Similarly, check for cracked or weakened caulking. Remove old caulking, scrape the area clean and apply fresh sealant.

To find a Diamond Certified roofing company in your area, click on one of the links below.

Alameda County: www.diamondcertified.org/alameda-roofing, www.diamondcertified.org/alameda-roofing-metal
Contra Costa County: www.diamondcertified.org/contra-costa-roofing, www.diamondcertified.org/contra-costa-roofing-metal
Marin County: www.diamondcertified.org/marin-roofing, www.diamondcertified.org/marin-roofing-slate
Monterey & San Benito Counties: www.diamondcertified.org/monterey-san-benito-roofing
Napa County: www.diamondcertified.org/napa-roofing
San Francisco: www.diamondcertified.org/san-francisco-roofing
San Mateo County: www.diamondcertified.org/san-mateo-roofing
Santa Clara County: www.diamondcertified.org/santa-clara-roofing, www.diamondcertified.org/santa-clara-roofing-commercial, www.diamondcertified.org/santa-clara-roofing-metal
Santa Cruz County: www.diamondcertified.org/santa-cruz-roofing
Solano County: www.diamondcertified.org/solano-roofing
Sonoma County: www.diamondcertified.org/sonoma-roofing

21 Responses

  1. Meg Lund says:

    I really liked the tip you gave to not let trees grow too close to your roof. You talk about how branches can scratch and gouge the roofing materials when they’re blown by the wind. Thus, I can see why properly maintaining your roof would ensure keeping the quality of your roof good on your house. I will definitely be sure to use this tip and make sure that my trees are trimmed and well taken care of. Thanks for the great insight!

  2. Kyle Ross says:

    These are some great tips, and I appreciate your advice to keep trees away from the house to keep the roof intact. I have a couple of big trees near the side of my home, and the branches are getting close to it. I’ll definitely look into having the trees trimmed back so there’s more room between them and the roof. Thanks for the great post!

  3. Ian Johanson says:

    Thanks for your post. I just had my roof redone and want to make sure that it lasts as long as possible. I suppose I always knew that trees could be dangerous for my roof, but I never cared much. How far from my house should I plant my trees to avoid too much damage to the roof?

  4. Eliza Cranston says:

    Thank you for the tips on maintaining your roof! I have an older home and I want to make sure that I don’t have any problems with the roof this winter. I’ll make sure that I do everything on this list. I would also recommend that people in snowy areas shovel off their roof to reduce the strain on it in the winter.

  5. Bennett Fischer says:

    With it being Winter right now, I want to make sure my roof is in tip-top shape for the snow. That being said, I really appreciate you sharing with me some insight about this, and letting me know of some ways I can best keep my roof in good condition. I’ll be sure to inspect it a lot more. I definitely think that that is going to be the best way to keep in strong. One question, how often do I need to inspect my roof?

  6. Tyler Meredith says:

    I like what this article mentions about not letting the trees grow too close. I am wanting to take better care of my new roof, and I think that trimming back the trees could really help. I’ll have to make sure I keep up with them so they don’t damage the roof over time.

  7. Justin Knox says:

    Thank you for the help. I just had a new roof installed recently and want to maintain it well. I had never thought about mold being a threat to my roof. How can I best prevent mold from growing on my roof?

  8. Judy Wilson says:

    I need to do some maintenance on my roof soon, so these tips will help me know what I should check for. Fixing the flashing and sealants seems like a great tip to make sure that they’re not damaged. I wouldn’t want mold and water damage to affect my roof because water gets underneath my flashing, so I’ll be sure to check on them to make sure that anything that’s broken is fixed. This will help to keep my roof in good condition, so I’ll be sure to go through the rest of this list to keep it well maintained.

  9. Lauren Woodley says:

    Thanks for the reminder that I need to inspect my roof. As you say, this will help you see if there is any indication of damage, warping, or discoloration, which, in turn, will help you to know if you need to hire someone to repair or replace the roof. How often, though, would you say you should inspect the roof?

  10. Nash Rich says:

    I had never thought moss (maybe mold) could be a problem. I live in the high and dry desert though. I’m pretty sure nothing could ever grow because it would get scorched to death. I don’t think we’ve ever cleaned our gutters and downspouts. They’ve done fine though, maybe because it hardly ever rains here. Thanks for the info!

  11. Derek Mcdoogle says:

    Lately, we have had a couple of storms come through and we have some leakage coming from the roof. You mentioned that you should clean your gutters every six to 12 months. I didn’t realize that cleaning and flushing the gutters could protect your roof. Do roofing companies offer this type of maintenance?

  12. Skylar Williams says:

    I’m glad that some of these companies offer maintenance. I’m not sure if my roof is due for a full on replacement, but it’s been awhile since it’s been reshingled. I’ll take your tip and keep the trees at a far enough distance away from my house.

  13. Johnny McCarron says:

    I really liked your advice to examine your roof. It seems like a lot of people don’t understand the importance of doing that regularly. However, it really makes a big difference if you are really trying to keep you house in top shape. Do you have any other tips about roofing? If I can’t do repair project on my own, what should I do to find a good contractor to help me?

  14. Scott says:

    Thanks for these useful tips on how to maintain my roof in good condition. I didn’t realize that I should be cleaning my gutters and downspouts every six to 12 months. I’ll have to start doing that. I think that it would be helpful to set a reminder in my phone to help remind me. I wouldn’t want to have my gutters get clogged and have water dripping off the side of my house.

  15. Sarah Smith says:

    I just got my first house, and I want to make sure that I take good care of my roof. I agree that you should check for moss and mold and make sure to clean it off as it can cause some serious damage. It would also be smart to get your roof professionally inspected every other year or so in order to catch problems early on.

  16. Burt Silver says:

    I would love to do a little work on my roof. I want to make it look like new, but I also want to work to maintain functionality. I never thought about making sure the trees stay far enough away from my roof. I will have to take a look at my trees and decide if any of them need to be trimmed to protect my roof.

  17. Deedee Lewis says:

    I hadn’t thought about trees being an issue for our roof. My husband and are trying to find the cause for the scratches on our roof and we never considered the huge tree in our front yard. It does make sense that the tree branches could be the reason for those scratches on our roof, but we need to do further investigating. We do like having a tree in our front yard, what would you say is the best solution to still have a tree without damaging our roof?

  18. Georgia B says:

    I’m glad you mention not letting trees grow too close to the house! This can cause a lot of damage, even if the tree itself doesn’t touch the roof directly. Debris from the tree can also hurt the roof over time.

  19. john Mahoney says:

    Thank you for talking about keeping an eye on trees that grow too close to your roof. It makes sense that this type of situation would cause trouble later in life. I can see how making sure your roof stays clear can help it have less debris and the danger of having dead branches or trees fall on it.

  20. Bernard Clyde says:

    It is always better to prevent accidents from happening than having to do repairs later on, especially with roofing. Water damage can go a long way. Plus, there is always the issue of mold damage once water soaks into the roof or walls. I agree that it’s important to check for moss or mold invasions.

  21. Maxine Wilson says:

    My husband and I moved into this house a couple years ago, and I have no idea what shape the roof is in. Reading this article, I am realizing that we need to get that checked out, and soon! We have a couple of big trees that have branches that hang over the roof. There could be damage up there, and we would have no idea. Thanks for bringing this to my attention, I don’t think I would have thought of it on my own.

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