Is Spring A Good Time for Roofline Repairs?
Carrying out your roofline repairs in spring may seem to be the right time to do it. But, before you get your ladder and paintbrush out, there are a few things you need to think about first.
How Much Work is Needed for Your Roofline Repairs?
Take a close look at your roofline. Is it just a case of sanding down, priming and painting or have the winter months caused more damage than you expected?
Check the state of the woodwork – is it firm? Or is it crumbling (a sure sign of wood-rot)?
Look at the fascia boards, the soffits and barge boards, as well as the guttering and downpipes. (If you are not sure what these are take a look at What Is The Roofline?).
Use this mini-checklist to see what state your roofline is in. Look for:
Obvious signs of rot – you can usually see if your roofline timbers are rotting, even from ground level. Look for paint ‘bubbling’ or a slight ripple where the paint is lifting off the wood underneath. If you have an extreme case, the paint / stain comes away completely and all that is left is black decayed wood.
Gutter movement – your gutter sections are normally connected with a joining union at least every 4 metres. Check the seal has not been dislodged – thermal movement (the same movement we hear when warm radiator pipes clunk when we turn the heating off) may have dislodged the seal in your gutters. Ignoring this sign will create problems later.
Gutter blockage – your gutters may be blocked by fallen leaves if you have trees near or surrounding your property, or moss that has dislodged from your roof tiles. Leaves break down over winter and often leave a slight sludge in the gutters. A good way to check the gutters without using a ladder would be to see obvious water stains on the gutters themselves. A good comparison for this is to compare them to the streaks on a car after a car wash.
Missing bits – when wood has perished around fixings it is very common to find bits of wood literally fall off! These gaps can expose your roofline and allow birds, bees and, in some cases, rats and squirrels to gain access into your property. When spring comes around nature comes to life… and they start looking for a home or something to chew.
Roofline Repair Tools
Do you have the right tools for the job? Before you start on your roofline repairs (or re-decorating) you must be sure of the tools you are using and your ability to work at heights.
The type of ladder you can buy from a DIY store is most likely a Class III ladder. These are only suitable for reaching a higher platform (such as scaffolding) or for very light duties. If you are planning to carry out your roofline repairs yourself you need an industrial type ladder, such as Class II or I. They can be very expensive but the price is worth it to feel, and know, you are safe when working at heights.
There are a wide range of tools you need for working on your roofline, including tools such as sandpaper, paintbrushes and screwdrivers. Be careful, when you are balanced on a ladder, using tools like these can be a problem. If your soffits are deep, and your ladder is leaning against the property wall, you may have to bend back to reach the full area. That is dangerous, which is why Health & Safety insist on scaffolding being used for roofline repairs like these.
I’ve put together a list of roofline repair tools my fitters recommend for anyone who plans to carry out remedial work on their roofline.
Will you have enough time to complete the job whilst the weather stays dry? You don’t want to start your roofline repairs and then, half-way through, find the weather turns bad and prevents you finishing them.
A potential break in the weather is not the only thing that may stop your attempt at roofline repairs. Did you know…
Before you attempt to do the work yourself consider what needs to be done, the time it will take and the skills you need and then decide if it is easier to opt for a replacement roofline that won’t need attention for at least 20 years!
You Can’t Disturb The Birds
Spring is when birds start nesting and will take up residence if they can find a way into your eaves.
If birds have started to set up home in your roofline then, legally, you cannot disturb the nests if they contain eggs or young. This may mean your roofline maintenance will have to be delayed until they have left. If you find old nesting material, like in this photo, that can be removed.
Fitting a bird comb can prevent problems with bird nests in future years.
Of course, it is not just birds that can find a way into your roofline. Other vermin, such as mice, rats and wasps can be a problem too.
Our post, Roofline Nests, describes the creatures you may find have taken up residence in your roofline and what you can, or can’t, do about it.
Of course, all of these problems can be avoided if you have a uPVC roofline fitted. It is the easiest way to keep your house looking smart with no roofline repairs needed for at least 20 years. Take a look at our roofline replacement service and see if you can save up to £825 with our special ‘stand-by’ offer.