Although it may be hard to believe at times, winter is here! We are very fortunate to be on the west coast in Vancouver B.C. compared to most of Central and Eastern Canada this year. The power outages and destruction caused by ugly winter weather are some things none of us deserve to go through. The good news for us on the west coast is we still have time to get our roofs ready for winter. The problem with winter is that once it comes with freezing temperatures and snowy white outs, roof repairs can be very hard to undergo, if at all, until the ice and snow melts. For this reason, winter roof maintenance and gutter cleaning is so important to address prior to any nasty winter weather. We at Canuck Roofing want to advise home owners of some inexpensive ways to ensure their homes stay warm and dry this winter.
It is very important to ensure your gutters are properly cleaned so that the excess water coming off your roof proceeds away from your home instead of coming inside. If your gutters happen to get clogged with leafs, pine needles, branches, little Timmy’s hockey ball etc., there is the potential for water to ingress into your home. You should have your gutters cleaned a minimum once a year depending on the amount of trees surrounding your home. Along with cleaning your gutters, your roof should be cleaned of all debris including leafs, pine needles, branches etc. A build-up of debris on your roof can cause leaks by forcing water in directions it shouldn’t travel. Common leaks caused by debris build-up such as moss occur around skylights, chimneys and valleys. When it comes to cleaning your gutters you have two choices, hire a professional or the “do it yourself” method (DIY). Hiring a professional will cost you an average between $89.00 – $289.00 depending on the size of your home, number of storeys and accessibility. The DIY method may save you some money if you have the required equipment but you must exercise extreme caution when dealing with heights and ladders. Paying for a professional might save you a trip to the hospital. The two most common styles of gutters are exposed continuous aluminum and hidden or built-in gutters.
Along with cleaning off your roof and cleaning out your gutters, it is important to have your roof inspected every year to not allow materials to prematurely degrade or to fix a potential leak before it causes damage which may come with a large repair bill. Detecting a potential leak and remediating the situation ahead of time will save you money and stress. A roof leak can take months before you notice the effects coming into your home. A slow leak over time has the potential to rot the roof decking and trusses, cause mold and damage insulation or electrical and eventually drywall, floors etc. A minor repair ahead of time can save you a lot of money in the long run. When hiring a roofing company for a roof inspection ask for a written report upon completion. This way you will have a copy for your records with any recommendations for future repairs or possible upgrades. The report should explain in detail the condition of the roof, its components, skylights, flashings, ventilation, gutters, chimneys and any repairs done or materials used. A roof inspection with written report will cost you an average of $189.00 depending on the size of your home and the architectural design. Included in the cost of the inspection should be any minor resealing of broken down caulking of roof protrusions such as B-vents and any small onsite repairs such as a missing shingle or cap. If your roof requires a larger repair, the roofer should explain the repair in detail and cost to you verbally and in the written report.