Fixing a Roof Tile Crack
Roofing tiles are one of many different types of roofing materials you can choose from to protect the roof of your home. But just like any other material, they are subject to wear and tear and breakage from weather, falling objects, freezing or movement. Fixing a crack in roof tiles often is easier than trying to replace the piece, and there are several ways to go about it.
You do not want to walk on roofing tiles because your weight can crack and break more of them. If you are dealing with a tile that is out of reach of the eaves, you will need to use an extendable, foldable ladder with rubber supports. Fold it over the edge of the roof along the same plane of angle as the roof, and the ladder will spread your weight out via the rubber supports, across several areas rather than single tiles.
Cleaning the Crack
You must first clean the cracked area to ensure that the repair material will bond. Use a toothbrush or a fine-toothed wire brush to remove any debris from the crack. For best results, use water mixed with dish soap to remove dirt and debris and let it dry for 24 hours before you make the patch. Any residual water will impede the bond of the patching material.
Silicone caulk is one of the most durable and longest-lasting caulks in the industry and is ideal for outdoor situations. Apply it directly on top of the cracked area and push it down into the crack with your finger or a putty knife, thus capping the void and the leak. Clean the surface of the tile with a rag soaked in mineral spirits or acetone to remove any excess silicone caulking from around the visible edges of the roof tile.
Most home improvement stores sell repair cement that can be used on roofing tiles. Just like caulking, it normally comes in a tube and is squeezed on top of the crack, then pushed down into the void with a putty knife or your finger. Similarly, you will need to clean the surface of the tile off immediately, according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Follow the line of the patch so you don’t allow the repair cement to harden on the surface of the tile.
Aren’t Tile Roofs Strong and Long-Lasting?
Technically, yes. Tile roofs are one of the strongest types of roofs on the market. They have been known to withstand extreme weather, such as high winds and hail, and can even survive certain fires. If they are installed in the right climate by a professional roofing company, tile roofs can last 25 years. Some manufacturers even provide 50-year warranties on properly installed tile only roofs.
But, tile roofs will not last forever, and they definitely won’t make it to 25 years if they are not properly maintained. Even the strongest roof can succumb to freak accidents or be unnecessarily damaged by tiny leaks. Because tile roofs are one of the most expensive roof types on the market, fixing or even replacing them is a costly affair. Rather than waiting for something bad to happen before calling a professional, it is best to hire someone to maintain your tile roof.
Why Shouldn’t I Maintain My Own Roof?
Most of the time, homeowners don’t see the top of their roofs until something goes wrong. Even then, your average person most likely will not step foot on to a roof in their lifetime. There are some people out there, however, that will try to maintain their roof themselves, without the help of a professional roofing company or contractor. Cleaning, or even just inspecting a roof might seem like a relatively easy job that anyone with a ladder can do. Here’s why it isn’t:
- It’s dangerous for you
Tiled roofs are not smooth or easy to walk on, particularly if they are at an angle. In fact, grabbing a ladder and climbing up onto your roof is a dangerous activity that should not be done lightly. By hiring a roofing company, you will never have to worry about putting yourself in danger when your roof needs maintenance.
- It’s dangerous for your roof
Although tiled roofs are strong and durable, they are not indestructible. A misplaced step or accidental drop of heavy equipment can easily break or dislodge a perfectly stable tile. It’s very easy for you to cause more harm than good while trying to maintain your own roof.
- You might miss something
If you manage to make it on to your roof safely without damaging anything, you still might not notice something is wrong. Tiled roofs are complex structures that do not always show signs of damage. It is very easy for the average homeowner to completely miss a small leak that could have disastrous consequences in the future.
How Will a Roof Company Maintain My Roof?
When you hire a roofing company to maintain your roof, a contractor will come through to make an initial assessment. Then more contractors will come at set times throughout the year to maintain your roof in the following ways:
Inspections are an integral part of roof maintenance. A contractor knows exactly what to look for, and will be able to spot the smallest hairline cracks or chips in your roof tiles.
Algae can start to grow on clay and concrete tiles in particular. Florida weather encourages the growth of mold and mildew, so keeping tiles clean ensures they remain strong throughout the year.
- Debris Removal
If debris starts to build up in your gutters, it can cause blockages that redirect water onto your roof. After time, this accumulation of water can start to damage the roof. Keeping your roof and your gutters clean can be both difficult and dangerous, which is why hiring a professional is a far better solution than trying to DIY debris removal.
During routine check-ups, if your roofing contractor spots a problem he will be able to fix it before it gets out of hand. Cracked tiles, for example, can very easily be replaced before they start to become a safety hazard.
Why hire a professional roofer?
You can find a lot of sites that will tell you, in detail, how to maintain your tile roof on your own instead of contracting a professional roofer. Here are a few reasons why it’s actually a bad idea to attempt DIY roof maintenance.
Walking on a roof is very different from walking on the ground, and on top of that, it’s at a height. If you don’t have experience in this area, it is much more likely that you will misstep or lose your balance. The last thing you want is an emergency room visit all because you wanted to fix your roof on your own.
Tiles are fragile, especially along the edges. If you walk on them, it is highly likely that you will damage them. We know how to handle this problem because we have a lot of experience in walking on tile roofs.
We have years of experience repairing roofs. While there is something to be said for learning how to do things on your own, this is a job best left to the professionals.