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It’s unsightly. It’s unhealthy. It’s costly. But more importantly, it harms the structural integrity of your roof and home. The it we are referring to is roof rot. And it’s something all homeowners want to avoid at all costs.

Causes of Roof Rot

Numerous conditions can cause a roof to rot, but the three main culprits are:

  1. High humidity caused by the temperature in the attic.
  2. Excessive moisture resulting from the high humidity.
  3. Poor ventilation in the attic and on the roof.

Roof rot, also known as dry rot, breaks down roofing materials, compromising the roof deck and sheathing. Dry rot begins eating away at the wooden components of your roof, making them weak and crumbly. When even a small portion of the roof is compromised, water leaks begin showing up inside your home. If not treated immediately, your entire roof can collapse.

5 Ways to Prevent Roof Rot

By following these five preventative measures, you can avoid serious roof rot damage that leads to costly roof repairs.

1. Make sure your attic remains at a moderate temperature all year round to prevent moisture buildup, particularly in summer and winter months. Humidity and moisture levels should remain between 40 percent and 60 percent. A higher moisture level can cause roof rot to occur.

2. Have your roof inspected at least once a year, although twice a year is recommended. This important preventative roof inspection will identify problems that could cause a roof to rot before it happens.

3. Install an effective roof ventilation system, such as ridge vents, soffit vents, or attic fans. Proper ventilation is essential for avoiding a rotting roof.

4. Remove roof debris immediately. Roof debris can block proper water flow off your roof and cause it to backup and accumulate under the shingles, creating roof rot. We recommend removing roof debris at least once a year, although twice a year is best if your home is surrounded by trees or your roof design includes valleys or corners.

5. Get any cracked or loose roofing shingles repaired immediately and have any missing shingles replaced right away. Also have any damaged sealants around the chimney, vents and other roof fixtures repaired or replaced immediately.

What to Do If You Spot Roof Rot

If you notice your roof sagging, or see water streaks down interior walls or water stains on the ceiling, contact the Roofing Annex immediately. The longer roof rot goes untreated, the more extensive the damage and the repair. In fact, wood dry rot grows as much as 10 feet in one year and won’t stop growing until problems with humidity, moisture and ventilation are resolved.

Before fixing the damage, we’ll assess the situation to determine its cause so the same problem does not occur again. In some roof rot situations, once the cause is resolved, we can replace the rotted parts. However, extensive roof rot generally requires a full roof replacement.

At the Roofing Annex, our service doesn’t end with the roof install. We provide biannual roof inspections and roof maintenance services to ensure your roof is in the best condition at all times and remains free of roof rot.

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