You might have heard winter is the harshest season on your roof, but summer isn’t exactly gentle. Roofs on homes in Charlotte, NC and surrounding regions get exposed to their fair share of threats, such as summer storms, heat, and high humidity. Because your roof is one of your home’s biggest investments, you probably want to protect it and keep it from failing when temperatures heat up.

Below, you’ll learn more about how heat and other summer threats affect your roof, along with some of the best ways to protect it.

The Effects of Heat on Residential Roofs

An unshaded roof constantly gets exposed to the sun’s rays, resulting in significant heat exposure in the summer. Unshaded roof temperatures can reach as high as 194 degrees Fahrenheit. At this temperature, the asphalt shingles can begin to soften and degrade. Damaged roofs or inadequate ventilation in the attic cause the heat to build up, resulting in higher inside temperatures, increased energy bills, and carbon emissions.

The roof also becomes more susceptible to UV rays. Whether it’s a bright day or a cloudy day, the sun’s rays constantly expose your roof to UV rays. This exposure increases throughout the summer because daylight hours increase. UV rays damage roofing materials because they dry out the oils in the shingles. Too much UV ray exposure can crack, bleach, and weaken wood shingles and cause asphalt shingles to buckle and crack. As the roof heats, it speeds up the damaging effects UV rays have on it.

Your roof doesn’t stay hot 24/7. While it can reach temperatures nearing 200 degrees Fahrenheit during the day, it often cools off quickly after the sun goes down. This rapid cool-down results in thermal shock and can affect the roof’s structural integrity. Metal roofs, in particular, get hit hard by thermal shock, causing them to lose their shape and, potentially, gaps form between the roof’s metal parts.

In Charlotte, it’s not only hot in the summer; it’s also humid. Many people don’t realize how damaging humidity, along with the heat, is to their roofs. Humidity causes condensation that gets beneath the roof’s shingles. Failure to protect the roof well can result in condensation causing materials to rot, mold to grow, and leaks to form.

Protecting Your Roof from Heat Exposure

Protecting your roof from summer’s heat isn’t a losing battle, and damage doesn’t happen overnight. Damage from heat exposure happens over time, and the younger the roof, the less you have to worry, especially if you’ve kept up with maintenance. Roofs older than 10 years seem to have the most heat-related problems.

Here’s some good news. If you’re proactive, know how to spot the signs of developing issues, and get them repaired right away, you can keep your roof from succumbing to the worst effects of summer heat.

Roofers recommend homeowners do the following to keep their roofs in great condition for years.

Maintain the Roof

Roof maintenance preserves energy efficiency, protects against UV rays, and ensures the roof’s structural integrity. Roofers recommend routine maintenance to prepare the roof for summer’s extreme heat. Some preparative maintenance you can have a professional perform includes:

  • Apply a reflective heat coating to minimize heat absorption
  • Replace missing flashing to protect against leaks
  • Clear clogged gutters to prevent rainwater-related problems
  • Make timely repairs to ensure the roof withstands the heat

Many people believe the best time to schedule a roof inspection is post-winter and after a severe storm. However, a mid-summer check-up does a lot of good, too. Intense heat and UV rays can reveal potential issues with the roof that may have gone unnoticed during the winter. A mid-summer check-up can spot potential issues that could affect the overall health and performance of your roof.

Ventilate the Attic

Roofers call an unventilated attic a “hot roof.” Attic ventilation releases trapped heat. It keeps your roof from overheating, the adhesives in the roof decking from deteriorating, and shingles from cracking or curling. An unventilated attic can also contribute to the loss of a roof’s load-bearing capacity. making it harder for nails to stay put in decking materials. If you’re not sure your attic has proper ventilation, schedule an inspection with a roofer to learn more.

Install an Attic Fan

An attic fan can assist with attic ventilation and keep your roof from getting heat damage. Attic fans remove heat from the attic, which also stops the heat from spreading throughout the home. A roof contractor can help you decide which attic fan works best for your home and budget.

Plant a Roof Garden

This isn’t something every homeowner can do, but if you have a flat roof, it’s an option. Rooftop gardens block the roof’s surface from the sun’s rays. Rooftop gardens not only protect the roof from the summer’s heat, but they can lower your energy bills. If you think a rooftop garden might work for you, contact a roofer to find out if the roof is structurally sound to support the weight of the garden.

Schedule a Summer Roof Inspection

If you haven’t had your roof inspected this summer, do it now. Prioritizing roof maintenance safeguards your home from heat and ensures its long-term structural integrity. At Blue Fox Roofing & Renovations, we believe prevention is always better. It saves money and prevents headaches from dealing with emergency roof repairs. Our team of exceptionally skilled roofers looks for weak spots that have the potential to turn into bigger issues.

As an A+ BBB-accredited company, we do it right the first time. You don’t have to worry about shady contractors and fly-by-night operations. Our family-owned company has been helping homeowners throughout the Charlotte region since 1994, providing quality roof repair, roof replacement, roof installation, and storm damage repair. When you need responsive and safe roofing services, count on us.

To learn more about protecting your roof from heat this summer, call Blue Fox Roofing & Renovations today!

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