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Buffalo, Be Aware of the Effects Hot, Sunny Days Can Have on Your Roof

Aug 22, 2020

You may be concerned about the effect that summer storms have had on your New York roof, and that is a very valid concern, but have you considered the negative impact that the sun’s UV rays and the summer heat may have had on your home’s most important layer of protection? These factors, along with the fluctuations in temperature between day and night, can cause thermal shock and have a devastating effect on your roof. If you are lucky enough to have shade trees that tower over your home, they will offer some protection, but if not, you should begin to think about the ways that the summer heat can be damaging your roof.

Humidity Damage

When we’re in the throes of summer heat, and there’s moisture in the air, it can feel even more oppressive. The humidity, however, isn’t just uncomfortable for us – it is hard on our roofs. Unless you live in some of the drier states in the southwest, you likely live in an area that experiences a degree of humidity during the summer months. Summer storms often occur when the humidity in the air literally reaches its breaking point, and the skies let loose. These two factors together can lead to roof damage that eventually affects the interior of your home. If your roof isn’t waterproof, condensation can creep in under your shingles, and as water takes the easiest gravitational path downward, it will inevitably make its way through your shingles.

UV Exposure and Heat

The sun’s UV rays are constant, even when it doesn’t seem like a “sunny” day. You may have experienced this first-hand if you have gotten a sunburn before on an overcast day. Your Buffalo roof is the part of the house that is the most constantly exposed to the sun’s rays throughout the day. The damage it experiences is even greater during the hottest days of summer. The effect this has on a roof contributes to its decay and aging, by bleaching out wood, causing it to become weak and develop cracks. Asphalt shingles tend to split and buckle under constant bombardment from UV rays, and the oils in your construction and roofing material dry out. When you combine these effects with the extreme heat your roof is exposed to, chemical processes are accelerated, and the components of your roof begin to break down.

Shade from trees around your home can help to protect your roof from these effects, but one of the best lines of defense is having proper attic ventilation. If your ventilation system is working correctly, less heat builds up in the attic, and these negative effects are slowed down considerably. The most obvious indicator of severe UV damage on a roof is curled, peeled shingles. If you have an older roof, and you can see that your shingles have experienced this effect, you should have a professional roofer evaluate the damage to determine if it is time to replace the roof.

Thermal Shock

This term is a technical way of describing the damage that New York roof’s can suffer due to the expansion of roofing materials in extreme heat and contraction when it cools down. This puts a strain on any roof but is especially harmful to older roofs. As this process continues over a long period of time, it can cause the surface of the roof to split open, and allow rain and moisture to get under the shingles and begin damaging the inside of your home. This damaging effect is most prominent in areas where temperatures are prone to fluctuate from one day to the next, creating a higher rate of expansion and contraction. Homeowners who have metal roofs have to be especially wary of thermal shock, as the metal can warp and leave gaps.

Discolored Roofing Materials

One sign you should always be on the lookout for when inspecting your roof is shingles that have faded and lost their color due to the damaging effects of summer weather. You may think that the only effect this has on your home is to its aesthetic appeal, but the truth of the matter is the color of your shingles affects the way your roof performs. Shingle colors are designed with specific properties that help to reflect the sun’s rays. This element of the shingle’s design is intended to protect the roof, and the rest, of the house against the damaging rays of the sun. By reflecting the sun effectively, your brightly-colored shingles help to keep the interior of your home cool on those hot, hazy summer days.

Why It Is Important to Look for These Damages

Summertime is an easy season to get distracted with vacations and yard work and forget to look at your roof to see how it is holding up. It is vital, however, to keep an eye on your roof to make sure the harsh summer temperatures and storms aren’t wearing your roof away. If your roof is less than ten years old, it is likely to still be in good shape, but once you hit the decade mark, it is wise to perform regular visual inspections of the roof. It is always a good idea to have your roof professional inspected by a roofing contractor at least once a year. This practice helps to extend the longevity of your roofing materials and keep your family safe and dry.

Your roof helps to keep the temperature inside your Buffalo home at a comfortable level, and when it is working effectively, it should help to save you money on your energy bills. Ensuring that your roof is doing its job, in connection with your gutter system, to carry water from weather elements away from your home is crucial to protecting the interior of your house. If you think you have experienced damage from the summer heat, call a trusted, local roofing contractor today, and schedule an inspection. You will save money on more expensive repairs if you nip any problems in the bud, and you will be satisfied knowing that your roof is doing its job to protect you.

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