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Madison Roofing: Article About Maintaining Wood Roofs

Hustad Companies: Professional Roofers Madison WI
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Today's homeowners have many options when it comes to roofing materials, such as asphalt, slate, tile and wood. Wood roofing shingles can offer many benefits. They can last as many as 30 to 50 years and offer plenty of durability. Many Madison roofing customers are drawn to them for their beauty and natural appearances. However, wood shingles do require some upkeep and maintenance in order for them to look their best and last longer.

Wood shingles, specifically those made from redwood or cedar, have been around for many centuries as they are one of the first materials to be used as a roof. At their inception, these shingles were placed on lathing strips so that they would stay dry. This step allowed them to last through many generations. On their own, redwood or cedar shakes will not decay. In order for them to begin to rot, they need to be infected with something like moss, mold, lichen, mildew or fungi and be exposed to moisture. Homeowners who want to make use of the full lifespan of their wood shingles need to maintain it and have it cleaned on a regular basis.

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Over the last 30 years, more and more homeowners have had issues with these infestations than in previous eras. One reason for this is that lath installation is not used anymore. In its place is roof felt, a felt type that provides excellent protection against water but causes the wood shingles to remain wet and stifles their breathing. With moisture present within the wood shingle, infestation can then move in. If wood roofs are not regularly cleaned and inspected, they will lose their integrity, leading to interior water damage and the need to replace the roof prematurely.

These facts have left many homeowners in shock as they were never told they would need to clean or maintain their wood shingles in order for the roof to reach a lifespan of 40 to 60 years. In general, if a homeowner goes a decade without having the wood roof cleaned, they will start to notice green moss, lichen or fungi that are dark brown or black. Upon seeing these growths, some homeowners mistakenly believe that it is time to have their roof replaced. However, what it really needs at this point is a thorough cleaning. A professional cleaning will remove whatever infestations are present and allow the wood to dry and breathe again. Most homeowners will need to have their wood roofs cleaned about every six to eight years.

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