What You Need to Know Before Cleaning Your Roof and Gutters This Spring

Although you might overlook your roof and gutters most of the year, spring is a perfect occasion to concentrate on these areas. After autumn and winter, both areas might be covered in tree debris. Gutters, in particular, can clog with just a few inches of twigs and leaves. Before you venture up to the rooftop, take a look at what you should consider before cleaning those areas this spring.

Wear the Proper Shoes

Always choose a sturdy pair of shoes to access your roof and gutters. Pick shoes that have ample tread on the soles and sturdy ankle areas. Your shoe choice directly influences your safety on the ladder and roof. If you don’t have the right footwear, you can purchase industrial shoes and save them for this particular chore. In subsequent years, you’ll have shoes ready for the job as spring arrives.

Stabilize Your Ladder

You might have a strong, extendable ladder, but consider some additional accessories for it. Add ladder hooks or stabilizers to the top section. These accessories grab onto the structure in order to reduce ladder movements. Ideally, ask a loved one to hold the ladder’s base as you move up and down its length. Safety should always be your number-one concern.

Tread Carefully

As you walk on the rooftop, watch your step with every weight shift. Every roof has a different slope to its design. There might be tripping hazards as well, such as lifted flashing. Keep your legs spread apart to maintain the best balance on the angled surface as you sweep debris off of the shingles. Avoid any sudden movements or heavy footfalls. You don’t want to damage the shingles with your movements.

Scoop, Dump and Wash the Gutters

When you focus on the gutters, use a gutter scoop to remove all of the debris within the channels. Drop this debris down to the ground. Preferably, lay a tarp or other material on the ground that can capture this debris for discarding purposes. When you’ve scooped as much debris as possible without damaging the gutters, lay a garden hose in the channel and turn on the water. Any residual debris will flow down the gutters and into the drains.

Add Gutter Covers

With all of the debris flushed from the gutters, consider an optional accessory. Gutter covers come in various styles, but the most common is a basic-mesh design. You can add these covers to your gutters, and no debris can filter into the channels anymore. Only rainfall can slide between the mesh connections. Springtime is the best time for this installation choice.

Consider a Professional

You may want to consider a professional’s help with the roof and gutters in some cases. The roof might have a steep angle, or you don’t feel comfortable with heights. Listen to your gut instinct when it comes to DIY projects. Professionals can quickly service your home, and you’ll have less stress as a result.

Any professional who you hire should be licensed, bonded and insured. If any accidents occur up on the rooftop, those workers will be covered by their own policies. Selecting a company without proper coverage leaves you vulnerable to possible damages, including medical bills. Be selective about the professionals that you work with, and you can have a clean rooftop and gutters in no time.

10 Coolest Roof Designs

1) Pool Roof

If we are being honest, I think that we can all agree that we want a pool for a roof. However, this concrete home may boast a bit too much of a good thing. This astounding home is carved into a cliff that overlooks the Aegean Sea. The massive underground structure also features a roof-mounted pool that also doubles as a translucent ceiling. That is a view that you will not soon forget!



2) Landscape Roof

This home is so well-integrated into its surroundings that the landscape is literally a part of the home. These 700-year-old hobbit-like structures in Iran look are cool in more ways than one. The underground homes are able to maintain a year-round cool temperature thanks to their concrete and earthen interiors and natural green roofs. Additionally, the home’s earthen blanket protects the structures from rain, wind, and other inclement weather.



3) A Living Roof

Green roofs are popping up more and more. However, that does not make them any less amazing! Green roofs are able to offset runoff by soaking up water and are great for the environment. The best part is, they are feasible for many homeowners!




4) Rolled Steam Wooden Shingles

A cottage with this much style is sure to turn a few heads.

Steam bent wooden shingles can be laid in a wave pattern and rolled to achieve some amazing effects.



5) Ribbon Roof

Located in the outskirts of Perth, Australia this amazing ribbon roof overlooks a circular body of water. The stunning roof was created as a way to add more light to a small space. Although, this modern roof may not be for everyone, it is a wonderful example of how architects are able to push the limits of imagination and design.



6) Freeform Metal Roof

Located in Alva Spain, the freeform metal roof of the Hotel Marqués de Riscal challenges the image of what a Spanish winery region may look like. Designed by famed architect Frank O. Gehry, the structure is one of the most amazing free-form roofs in existence.



7) Traditional Tongkonan Homes

Tongkonan homes are the traditional ancestral houses of the Torajan people. Located in in Sulawesi, Indonesia, these Tongkonan houses boast an amazing boat-shaped roof. These impressive structures are fashioned from bamboo and other natural materials, and are created with family living in mind.



8) Seascape Roof

This is by far, one of the most interesting roofs in the world. The top of structure seems to be telling the story of an underground sea battle or is perhaps an elaborate ode to the octopus. Either way, this roof is amazing!



9) Upside Down Home

This upside down home was designed Daniel Czapiewski, a Polish businessman. Czapiewski envisioned a home that would make a statement. The home was built in just 114 days and is located in the small Polish village of Szymbark.



10) Fibonacci Inspired Roof

The Fibonacci sequence is seen in many of the most amazingly beautiful natural structures. With this in mind, the Roof of the Core at the Eden Project in Cornwall was designed to reflect this universal pattern. The spiralling cone of granite created into an inspirational hub and is at the center of this curious design.


Five Oddball Roofing Materials That Actually Work

A new roof is one of the best investments a homeowner can make. It increases the value and curb appeal of any business. Asphalt shingles are among the cheapest and most common of roofing choices. Selecting another roofing material will go a long way toward making a building unique.

Welcoming Clay Tile

The perfect look for a building with the soul of a Mediterranean villa, clay tiles evoke warm sea breezes and tropical beaches. Clay tiles are available in many glaze colors to suit personal tastes and any home decor. Clay tiles can cost up to $500 per square foot, making them one of the more expensive options, but they are extremely energy efficient. They are incombustible. This makes them a great choice in areas prone to wildfires. Unfortunately, a building must be able to support their heavy weight. They can weigh up to 1,000 pounds per square foot.

The tiles are made of hard fired clay mixed with water. Individual tiles can occasionally crack or chip under intense stress and should be checked every two years. Overall, they offer a very durable roof surface that can last a century.

Traditional Slate Tile

The hallmark of an English estate, a slate tile roof is class embodied. Slate tiles are an all natural product, being made of quarried stone. They come in a range of pleasant earth tones. Because they are heavy, the roof  will often need reinforced framing.

A slate stone roof is very long-lasting. A stone roof can easily last well over a century with only the replacement of the occasional stone. They are fire-proof, moisture-proof and unfriendly to insects. The long life comes with a high cost. They can cost upwards of $600 per square foot.

Classy Rubber Roofing

Durable and personable, rubber roofing looks like slate without the weight. Rubber roofing is made from carefully blended rubber and plastic that tightly bonds to form a long-lasting substance. Fire resistant tiles are available.

Rubber roofing tile has other traits in common with stone. While it will not last for a century, it will last at least fifty years. It is also insect resistant. It is lightweight, which means that it can be installed on nearly any building and is also more affordable than slate stone. Cost per square foot runs from $295 to $400.

Avant Garde Metal Sheeting

Metal roofing has a refreshing modern appeal. It comes in a number of metals, nearly any color and many styles. Generally it uses flat sections of metal that are joined together to form a very durable roof. Metal roofing can be quite warm. It must be insulated underneath. Reflective coatings are often added to the top of the roof to control heat.

Metal roofs can also be quite light. Some weigh as little as forty-five pounds per square. It can be installed on flat-topped buildings. It can also be installed over existing composition shingles. It is fire and insect resistant. It is also recyclable.

Metal roofing can last up to fifty years. Color coating may last for twenty-five years. Aluminum will not rust, but lower grades may dent in a hard storm. Aluminum and steel cost up to $260 per square foot. Copper can run up to $500 per square foot.

The Greenest Option

The green roof is one of the most environmentally friendly options available today. They use a waterproof membrane, soil and carefully cultivated living plants. These living roofs offer many benefits to those who choose to use them.

Using soil and living plants on the roof helps to regulate the temperature of a building. The soil keeps the heat of the day out while slowing the nightly cooling. The soil extends the lifetime of the building membrane up to three times its typical life time. Costs can vary widely, but start at $15 per square foot.

A simple green roof can be just a thin layer of soil with hardy mosses and lichens. More complex roofs can grow small bushes, grass or even host a vegetable garden. No matter the plant types, a living green roof is long lasting and ecologically friendly.



Your Roof’s Winter Rant List

Winter always seems to have a love/hate relationship with people in the Kentuckiana area. The excitement of the first snow and the beauty of fresh fallen snow in general, seems to get over powered a few days later with complaining about how dirty and ugly snow looks after it has stuck around for a few days. Then you get to February where spring seems to be right around the corner, but of course when your in Kentuckiana it could feel like spring one day, and the next a snow storm hits the area! Your roof, on the other hand, does not have a love/hate relationship with winter at all. In fact it down right hates the winter because of the terrible things that could happen to it. Here are a few things on your roof’s rant list about winter, and how you can make a long winter a bit better for your roof.

Water Leaks from Ice and Snow

Water leaks from ice and snow can be caused by the heating system that is within your house. Water from melted ice gets trapped on the roof and creates a ice dam on the roof, gutters, and down spouts. When this happens water takes the easiest path under the roof system and through flashings. These types of materials are not designed to hold that much water resulting in possible damage. Although, in the Kentuckiana area we don’t have to deal with heavy snow as other regions in the country. This is still something that you need to keep in the back of your mind, especially if you have an older roof. If your house has an older roof it is smart to make sure that the shingles on your roof are firmly fastened. An older home is more likely to be at risk of water getting under the shingles, and causing damage.

Ice in The Gutters

Ice in your gutters and downspout is a ticking time bomb for a repair, so it is very important that you keep these parts of your roofing system clear. The best advice we have is to make sure that your gutters are completely cleaned out from the fall season. After this is done check your gutters every so often to make sure your gutters are clean; ensuring that leaves, ice, and snow do not clog up your gutter and cause damage.

Common Sense is the Best Practice

We are not advising that you look after your roof like an overbearing parent. What we are saying is that it is a good idea to use common sense. After a big storm, make sure that you take a quick look to see if something suspicious like heavy snow or ice build took place. This quick check will prevent further damage later on. If you think that something could potentially cause an issue to your home, removing the problem could save you a lot of headache later on down the road. There are plenty of other tips to help get your roof through the winter, but we thought these were the best ones for our customers. Please considering taking this advice so that you don’t have another reason to dread the winter season. We promise your roof will thank you by having a longer life!