Shake shingle roofs are known for their natural beauty and have been used in roofing for centuries. Like all other outdoor materials and products, shake shingle roofs need regular maintenance in order for them to properly do their jobs for the life of the shingle. If you just recently installed shake shingle roofing or you’re looking into switching over to the material, then the experts at The Roof Authority have a few tips on how to maintain your wood shingle roof so it can protect your house for years to come. Keep reading to learn about proper upkeep for your wood shingles.
Clear Off Debris
Leaves, pine needles, trash, and even the occasional pizza, at least if you’re Walter White, can all find their way onto your roof. Most of this litter may seem harmless, especially when most of the time it can be cleared away by a slight breeze, but for owners of shake shingle roofs, this debris can seriously reduce the life of your natural roofing materials. Shake shingles will naturally absorb water when precipitation occurs, making the shingles expand in the process. As the shingles dry, and the water evaporates, the shingles shrink back down to their regular size. Over time, shake shingles can develop fungi that naturally breaks down the wood. This can often be seen when your wooden shingles develop a blackish hue in contrast to their normal red, grey, or brown color.
Debris such as leaves and pine needles also absorb water, which adds more moisture to your shake shingles as they try to dry off. This debris makes it easier for the harmful fungi to grow, and often reduces the life of your roof significantly when not properly addressed. Clearing off debris that accumulates on your roof is one of the best ways to help prevent fungi from growing on your shake shingles. Clean off any and all debris from your roof, being sure to get in between each and every individual shingle as well as the spaces between the chimney and naturally occuring valleys of your roof, before your region’s wet season occurs. This will help it to dry naturally and can prevent fungi from growing.
Whether you live in the woods or the suburbs, chances are you’ll be close to some kind of tree. Though trees can provide much-needed shade, when placed over your roof, trees can cause big problems for your shake shingles. An abundance of shade will make it harder for your wooden shingles to dry off, making them retain water longer and increasing the chances of harmful fungi or molds to grow. During storms and times of high wind, branches that touch your home can eventually cause gouges in the individual shingles. These cuts help fungi to not only form on your home, but penetrate deep into the wood, causing significant rot in a short amount of time. Trees that have branches that are directly over your home will also add more debris than usual, which will only add more problems to your roof.
In order to combat this, clear away any branches that are just above or are touching your roof. Be careful when pruning these trees though, as excessive pruning and branch removal can hurt the tree, causing abnormal growth, possible wood rot, or even death of the tree in some cases. If you have questions on how to prune trees or aren’t sure what you’re doing, be sure to consult a professional before cutting any branches to help preserve the life of the tree and get the results you desire.
When used properly, chemicals can help add protection to your shake shingle roof. Be sure to clear away all outside debris before applying any chemical to your roof. A simple garden hose is a sound method that won’t damage your roof. If you want to remove basic stains, a cleaning solution of soap and water can be used. When clearing away set-in stains along with mold and fungi, bleaching solutions can be used. If you use any kind of bleach solution, always be sure to wear proper protection, such as safety goggles, gloves, and an apron. You can also use store bought solutions that will clean, prevent fungi growth, or help preserve the natural coloring of your wooden roof.
If you need help maintaining your shake shingle roof, be sure to call the professional roofers at The Roof Authority. Voted one of the best roofing companies in Vero Beach, we can help clean, maintain, and preserve your roof. We offer residential roofing as well as commercial roofing in Vero Beach and the surrounding areas. Contact The Roof Authority today to get a free estimate!