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What Homeowners Should Know About Their Roof


Buying a home is probably the biggest investment you will make during your lifetime and the roof is one of the most important aspects of that investment because it keeps you and your home protected from the elements.  On average, the roof of your home makes up 40% of your home’s exterior.  However, unless it’s leaking – most people do not think too much about maintaining their roof.  As a proactive and smart homeowner, it’s time to educate yourself on the importance of a quality roof and how to maintain it.

new roof lancaster pa

You need a well-made and properly installed roof to keep you and your family safe (and dry). 

Here’s a quick rundown of basic roofing components and terms you should be familiar with:

  • Shingles can be made of a variety of materials, including slate, metal, wood and asphalt.  Their main purpose is to protect underlying sheathing from the weather.
  • Sheathing are the boards or sheet material that are attached to the rafters that cover the top of your home. This is also referred to as the roof deck. 
  • Trim is installed to protect the seams in the roof along the tall peak and where two sections of roof meet.   
  • Rafters are the wood or metal slats inside your home that support the sheathing and shingles.  Think of them like the skeleton for your roof.
  • Underlayment is a water-resistant, paper-like material that is laid on top of plywood sheathing to seal it from damaging elements, such as rain and snow.  Underlayment is used with a sheet of plastic, which helps to block air and water from permeating through. 
  • Flashing is sheet metal that is installed on top of the joints of a roof system to seal them and prevent water damage.  
  • Drainage is an important design feature of a roof that allows it to shed water.  

Did you know that most roofs last between 20-25 years?  The longevity of your roof depends on the types of materials that were used to build it and how well you maintain it. 

Now that you know the proper roofing lingo, what exactly should you know about maintaining and protecting your home’s roof?

  • Avoid Roof Rot – Collections of fallen leaves, moss and algae can lead to your roof retaining water.  This causes your roof shingles to rot, which in turn can cause leaky ceilings.  Be sure to check your roof for debris and clear it off regularly. 
  • Clean Your Gutters – Just as debris can collect on your rooftop and be unsightly and lead to issues, so can clogged gutters.  Overflowing gutters can become weighed down and actually rip from the side of your home, causing more destruction. 
  • Roof Inspection – As a homeowner, it’s important to keep an eye on your roof and notice if anything seems off.  Check the flashing around the chimney and for cracked or bald shingles.  A professional roofing contractor can also be called to give you a clear picture of your roof’s condition and spot any potential issues.
  • Leave it to the Professionals – Even if you’re an all-star Do-It-Yourselfer when it comes to fixing up your home, you should think twice about attempting to repair or replace your own roof.  Roofing repair is challenging and dangerous work.  Leave it to the professional roofing contractors at Best Contracting to use their skills and expertise to provide quality workmanship at a fair price.
  • Roof Maintenance & Repairs – If your roof fails, there’s potential for a lot of (expensive) damage.  A leaky roof can cause mold growth in your home and even structural damage.  By properly maintaining your roof (clearing any large debris from the rooftop or gutters, calling in the professionals if you notice loose or damaged shingles, etc.), you could hold off on an entire roof replacement, which can be costly. 
  • Roof Replacement is Inevitable – To help determine what you should budget for a new roof, take the number of years old your roof currently is minus 20 (the typical number of years a roof will last).  You’ll want to schedule an appointment to get a quote for what your new roof will cost.  Now divide that estimate by the number of months you have left in your current roof, so that you can put away money each month leading up to your new roof. 

Best Contracting – Your Residential Roofing Contractor in Lancaster, PA

Best Contracting is the best residential roofing contractor in the Lancaster, PA region.  Our workers are highly-qualified, certified and dependable.  We specialize in a variety of types of commercial and residential roofing, siding and gutters and offer plenty of workmanship warranties.

We hope these tips were helpful and that you feel more educated when it comes to taking care of your home’s roof.  If you find that your roof is in need of repair or replacement, contact us today at (717) 283-4524 to discuss all of your roofing options.  Here’s to your roof keeping your home safe, sound and dry!


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