Four Ways To Increase The Lifespan Of Your Shingle Roof

Posted on: 5 April 2016

Standard asphalt shingles typically last between 15 and 18 years, and architectural shingles last about 24 to 30 years. Keep in mind that these are averages. There are homeowners whose roofs last even longer than this. There's no way to ensure your roof will be the longest-lived on the block, but there are a few ways you can increase your chances of your roof lasting a good, long time.

Make sure your attic is well insulated.

A poorly insulated attic can cause a lot of problems for your roof, particularly if you live in a cold climate. If heat escapes from your attic on a snowy day, it causes the snow to melt, trickle down the roof, and re-freeze on the edge. This frozen water forms ice dams, which can separate the shingles from the roof sheath and lead to leaks and premature roof decay.

Use a reliable insulation calculator to determine how much insulation should be in your attic, based on location. If your current insulation levels fall short, add another layer of insulation or hire a contractor to do so.

Have zinc strips installed to prevent algae and moss growth.

Algae and moss growth on a roof can quickly cause it to decay. Luckily, there's an easy way to prevent these pests from growing. Strips of zinc (and sometimes copper) can be placed across the length of your roof. When it rains, traces of the metal wash down the roof. The metal is unappealing to moss and algae, so they don't grow. You can buy zinc strips at a local home improvement store and install them yourself with just a few roofing nails.

Trim any trees that overhang the roof.

Tree branches that overhang the roof also promote algae and moss growth, as well as premature rotting due to moisture exposure. This is because trees overhanging the roof provide shade and prevent evaporation of water. Any trees that overhang your roof should be trimmed or removed completely.

Keep your gutters clean.

Your gutters are there for a reason. They shuttle water off of your roof so it can't cause leaks and damage. If they are clogged with leaves and other debris, they cannot do their job. Have your gutters cleaned twice per year – once in the spring and once in the fall. If you're confident climbing on a ladder, you can do this yourself. Just scoop out the majority of the debris, and then rinse the gutters out with a hose.

For assistance, talk to a professional like Hamilton Tops Roofing & Siding.