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Updating Your Roof

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Updating Your Roof

by Alan Staines

Of all the renovating carried out by householders, the one element often forgotten about is the roof. Maybe it's a case of "out of sight, out of mind". In architectural terms, it is almost more important than any other feature in establishing the character of your house. Well maintained, it will enhance the value of the home besides continuing to function in one piece during the next storm.

The first thing to do is always to remove any dirt and debris that has accumulated in the gutters. Then check for rusted down pipes or guttering needing replacement or repair. If your roof is tiled and has sarking underneath, make an inspection from the top side. Be sure to wear soft-soled, non slip footwear and take utmost care particularly on steep pitches.

Cracked or loose tiles

Inspect for cracked or loose tiles paying particular attention along the ridges and gable ends, where tiles terminate down valleys and along the last row of tiles at the gutter line. In a storm these are the areas where damage commences.

If the roof has no sarking underneath, have an assistant climb into the ceiling to help locate leak holes, visible by tiny specks of light. As these are located from the inside, the person on the roof side can mark them or better still, fill the hole with a roofing sealant.

When a cracked tile cannot be replaced, seal the crack with long life sealant.

Where mortar has fallen out of ridge tiles, obtain matching mortar from a tile company and mix to a stiff consistency in a bucket. Then tool it into the gaps using a small bricklayers pointing trowel.

If you live in a high wind area, it could be a good idea to check if the tiles are properly secured to the roofing timbers. One missing roof tile in a storm can create a lot of water damage inside the house!

Clean your roof

Over the years the roof will have been subjected to atmospheric pollutants as well as fungi. To smarten up its appearance have the roof cleaned. Roof restoration companies now offer excellent treatments for faded and stained tile roofs.

Once you've done all this, you'll be surprised just how much better your house will look, and you'll feel comfortable knowing your roof is in good condition, doing what it's meant to do - keeping the elements out.

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