As your roof is one of the most critical components of your house, any issues with it need to be addressed immediately. Depending on the age and condition of your roof, you may also need to ensure your roof is regularly serviced, maintained, and repaired throughout its lifespan.
As a homeowner, there are several basic things you should know about your roof. With that in mind, here are some of the most common roofing materials, a few types of possible damage, and what your options are to rectify them.
1. Terracotta roofs
One of Australia’s most common roofing materials, terracotta roofs are as beautiful as they are durable. This type of roof has been proven to last for many decades at least, sometimes even up to 100 years, despite being around beachfront areas with plenty of salt in the air. That being said, roofs made using terracotta still require some maintenance to ensure your home is protected from the elements. All terracotta roofs will require resealing at some point, especially when tile coatings start aging causing them to peel, flake, and become porous.
2. Concrete roofs
Concrete roofs are less common, but are generally less expensive than terracotta tiles to service and restore. As long as maintenance is carried out regularly and correctly, concrete roofs can also last for a couple of decades.
People with concrete roofs should keep an eye out for cracks or breaks, as well as built-up dirt and moisture because concrete also gets porous over time. The best defence against dirt, water, and mould is ensuring sealant is always kept in top condition.
3. Metal roofs
While terracotta roofs have been historically common throughout Australia, metal and Colourbond roofs have been becoming increasingly popular due to their overall energy efficiency and relatively simple requirements for maintenance.
Basically, metal sheets need to be secured, cleaned thoroughly, all rust or corrosion removed, and sealant reapplied for protection from the elements. Rust-proofing may also be required, as will replacement of any damaged metal sheets.
4. Leaking roofs
While leaking is a common problem with all types of roofs, you definitely do not want to ignore it if it’s happening to your roof. Even the smallest drip from your roof can very quickly become a much bigger problem.
Not only could water from your leaking roof cause irreversible physical damage to the walls, flooring, and contents inside, but it could also cause mould to start growing as well which causes further damage to your home and your health.
5. Structural damage
This kind of damage is basically anything that significantly impairs the structural safety of your roof, such as storms, cyclones, or high-speed wind blowing debris or causing trees to fall into it.
Tiles and metal sheets are also often blown off as well, which exposes more internal sections of your house to wind, rain, and other elements from the storm. While the severity of the destruction varies, structural damage will often require the complete replacement of your roof.
6. Roof replacement
Easily one of the most expensive things you can do with the top of your house, a full roof replacement is required when the surface or structure is badly damaged. Either the structure is so damaged it is unable to be repaired, or it’s cheaper to replace than repair it.
Homeowners may also decide to get a roof replacement done for a combination of reasons such as the roof age, multiple severe leaks, excessive sagging, or simply for cosmetic reasons.
7. Roof restoration
The next option for a roof with damage that’s not too severe is called a roof restoration. This process can mean anything up to the replacement of the entire roof surface while retaining the frame underneath.
While it will depend on the roofing material and level of damage, in most cases the surface is removed, the frame is repaired where needed, and new roofing is installed and sealed.
8. Roof repairs
Any time there are minor issues that happen, these are repairs that are carried out to repair the roof. This can include anything from fixing small leaks to replacing tiles, or resealing damaged areas. This type of repair is only done to small areas that need to be repaired, which means the rest of the roof isn’t touched.
Remember that fixing small issues promptly is the most effective way to prevent damage from spreading further and causing major problems.