Clearing gutters and why it is important

Full or blocked gutters can go undetected by homeowners, and if not cleared correctly, can cause a lot of damage to a home.

Here at Kidderminster Roofing Supplies ltd, after over 30 years’ experience in roofing, we have identified a number of reasons why it is important to keep gutters clear in preventing irreversible damage to a home.

 

What causes a gutter to become blocked?

A gutter or downpipe can become blocked for a number of reasons, including:

  • Falling leaves – Falling leaves from nearby trees can blow into gutters, where they begin to decompose and become blocked in a gutter or downpipe.
  • Moss build up– Moss build up on tiles or slates can slip down from the rooftop into the gutter where I can continue to grow and block the gutter or downpipe.
  • Animal waste – Animal waste such as bird excrement or even deceased birds, rodents or insects can often be the cause of a blockage in a gutter or downpipe.
  • Nesting birds – A common reason a gutters can block may be the result of nesting birds, however care must be taken to ensure nests are unoccupied before attempts are made to remove the nest as all bird nest are protected by the Wildlife & Countryside Act 1981.

 

What are the risks of a blocked gutter?

A blocked gutter increases risks of leaks and water damage –  When a gutter and downpipe becomes  blocked the rainwater can no longer drain properly from the rooftop, causing water to overflow and even re-route, which may cause interior as well as exterior damage to a home.

Damage to the foundations – If water is unable to drain from the rooftop correctly and forced to re-route, it may find its way into the foundations of a home and become trapped. Overtime this trapped water can expand and freeze during cold weather causing cracks to appear in the foundations of the building which can cause a lot of structural issues to the home.

Risk of rot – Wherever there is a risk of water damage to a roof, there is a risk to the structural timbers to the roof which if they become damp, risk rotting. Timbers damaged by rot cannot be  repaired, and may result in a full replacement which will cost a homeowner a lot of money.

Unwanted guests -Blocked gutters make an ideal home for many animals such as a variety of birds, rodents or insects which can cause an unpleasant infestation on a home if not rectified early.

The gutter twisting and losing it’s shape – When a gutter becomes full, water can become trapped in the pipe. During cold weather this trapped water can freeze ans expand causing the gutter to change its shape becoming twisted. Once the gutter has been twisted, the damage is impossible to rectify and water draining from the rooftop will become re-routed and will likely cause water damage to the property. In this case, the gutter would need to be replaced.

Risk of falling – An overloaded gutter can become heavy, and in some cases detach itself from the roof if can no longer handle the weight. A falling gutter could cause a significant amount of damage to property in its path, but could also risk hitting a bystander. A falling gutter can also become costly to a home owner as it will require re-fitting, or if the gutter becomes damaged in the fall, require a new gutter to be fitted.

 

Send in the professionals

A homeowner should always ensure their gutters are checked and cleared every spring and autumn to reduce the risk of blockages which left untreated can cause significant damage to their home.

Not only should a home owner ensure the interior of the gutter is cleared, however it is also important to make sure the exterior of the gutter is cleaned regularly to prevent moss from breaking down the gutter’s protective coating causing a discoloration to the gutter.

 

How can we help?

If you have a client in need of gutter repair or cleaning, we can help! Here at Kidderminster Roofing Supplies ltd, we can provide a free no obligation quotation for roofing materials and tools you need. Contact us today to see how we can help you!

Tel: 01562 748270

Email: sales@kidderminsterroofing.com

Or drop us a message on Facebook!


The dangers of a slipped roof tile

A professional roofer will notice a slipped tile straight away, where as a homeowner probably wouldn’t notice there was an issue at all, or wouldn’t think it was significant until it was too late.

Here at Kidderminster Roofing Supplies ltd, we’ve seen after over 30 years of experience in roofing what damage can be cause when a slipped roof tiles are ignored by homeowners.

Here are just some of the reasons a slipped roof tile would need to be rectified straight away:

Risk of a falling roof tile – What goes up must come down, and when a roof tile slips the only direction it will go is down, which could damage property, or in worse case scenarios seriously injure passers-by. It might not seem too risky at first, however just a bit of wind can be enough to blow a tile off a rooftop. If a roof tile should land on a public footpath, the homeowner will be liable for any personal injury claims, so it would be in their interest to ensure any loose tiles are repaired.

Leaks and water damage – Once a tile slips, a weak spot is unearthed and a bit of bad weather can make one small problem into a massive one. Once you client notices a damp patch in their home, unfortunately the damage may have already been done, and what could have been a small repair on a slipped tile will probably be much bigger job, with major leaks often destroying insulation as well as other structural materials.

Unexpected visitors – A slipped tile doesn’t just mean access to water, but the potential for new house mates, such as nesting birds and even rodents or insects. Once a bird nests, it is illegal to remove the nest until the young flown the nest under the Wildlife & Countryside Act 1981.

Mold – Mold grows anywhere that is damp and warm, making leaky rooftops the ideal place to thrive. Mold can spreading across damp walls inside the home where a leak from a slipped roof tile has dripped down into the walls and even the brickwork. The mold caused by leaks not only look unsightly, however can also cause risks to health such as asthma, allergies, sinus issues and headaches, with children and the elderly particularly at risk.

Wood rot – A slipped tile means the timber structures to a home become exposed to the elements. Just a bit of rain, and these timber structures become damp and in time can rot. Timbers that begin to rot are irreparable and can end up costing a homeowner a lot of money to replace.

Risk of losing market value – If a homeowner is looking to sell, it would be in their best interest to have any slipped tiles repaired. The first thing any potential new buyer will look at when buying a new home is the roof. A slipped tile may be the difference between a successful sale or a substantial loss.

 

When not to repair a slipped tile

It is always advised to have a slipped tile repaired if it is easily accessible, however if the slipped tile is difficult to access, such as a slipped tile on the very top of the roof, it may cause more damage to repair than to simply leave alone. For instance, a slipped tile in a difficult to access area of a roof may require stepping on other tiles to access which in turn may damage or move the other tiles. Any slipped tile repair must be assessed with great care to judge if it could cause more damage to fix the issue or to leave it alone.

 

Send in the professionals!

It is always advised that any homeowner has a professional roofer review and assess their roof regularly to ensure small repairs can be rectified safely and affordably before they risk turning into big repairs.

 

How can we help?

If you have a client in need of a slipped tile repair, we can help! Here at Kidderminster Roofing Supplies ltd, we can provide a free no obligation quotation for roofing materials you need. Contact us today to see how we can help you!

Tel: 01562 748270

Email: sales@kidderminsterroofing.com

Or drop us a message on Facebook!


Nesting Birds In Roof Eaves

A common question we are asked at Kidderminster Roofing Supplies ltd, is how to stop birds nesting in roof eaves on a house.

Customers often have clients who will complain about noisy birds in their roof eaves and ask if they can remove the nests.

The answer is that it is illegal to remove nesting birds once they have settled. There are however ways to prevent birds nesting in roof eaves the following year, provided the correct work is done during the winter months when birds are no longer nesting.

We will explore the different reasons why birds decide to nest in roof eaves, and how they can be prevented from nesting in rooftops in the future.

 

Why do birds nest in roof eaves

According to the RSPB rooftops are vital sanctuaries for a lot of birds due to the loss of a lot of natural nest sites.

Birds that commonly nest on rooftops include:

  • House Sparrows.
  • Starlings.
  • Swifts.
  • Swallows.
  • Blue tits/Great Tits.
  • Jackdaws.

 

Why nests cannot be disturbed or removed

It is illegal to disturb or remove nesting birds from roof eaves once they have settled under the Wildlife & Countryside Act 1981. This includes removing or blocking the bird’s access to their nest. Nests must be left with access until the young have had chance to develop and leave the nest on their own and the nest is no longer in use.

The reason for this is conservation. The RSPB have identified many of these rooftop nesting birds are in decline. Swifts have declined with Starlings and House Sparrows now red listed, and House Martins and Swallows now amber listed.

 

When will I be able to carry out work on a client’s roof?

If a client requires work on their roof that risk’s disturbing a occupied nest, try to recommend leaving the work until the winter months when the birds are no longer nesting, ideally between October and February.

This may be frustrating for both yourself and the client, however legally an morally it is the correct thing to do.

 

What if you don’t have a choice?

You should always avoid roofing project if you are aware of birds nesting in a roof, however often, bird nests go undetected until major roofing projects or renovation projects begin.

If this happens and the roof cannot go untouched until the young have left the nest, one option recommended by the RSPB is to make an artificial nest box for Starlings or Sparrows by cutting a four-litre ice cream tub.

See the RSPB website for advice on building an artificial nest box

 

Ways to discourage birds nesting in roof eaves

There are many recommendations you can make to your clients to help prevent birds nesting in their roof eaves in the future, such as:

  • Keeping on top of roof maintenance, ensuring they have their roof checked each winter by a professional roofer (between October and February), ensuring to clean out and seal any holes or gaps as appropriate, to reduce the risk of birds nesting or becoming trapped.
  • Putting out bird houses, providing alternative safe nesting spaces for birds.

 

How can we help?

Need the right tools for the job? Here at Kidderminster Roofing Supplies ltd, we can provide a free no obligation quotation for any roofing materials you need. Contact us today to see how we can help with you!

Tel: 01562 748270

Email: sales@kidderminsterroofing.com

Or drop us a message on Facebook!


Removing moss from rooftop tiles and slates

 

A common request many of our customers at Kidderminster Roofing Supplies ltd will be asked by their clients is if they can remove the moss from their roof top.

To the inexperienced, removing moss from a roof may seem very simple, however reality is that moss removal can potentially cause even more damage if done incorrectly.

 

What causes moss to grow on a rooftop and what damage can it cause?

To deal with moss on a roof, first we need to understand what causes moss of a roof and the damage it can cause.

Moss and algae love to grow anywhere which is damp and shaded, making rooftops and gutters the perfect place to live. This moss that grows on the rooftop can then cause damage to the tiles or slates by both holding water, causing roofing materials to rot, or even causing trapped water to freeze and expand, resulting in damage to the tiles or slates, making them move, slip or even crack. Moss can even grow into the tiles or slates themselves, making them weak.

With excessive damage to tiles or slates as a result of years of moss, removing moss from a rooftop can be a very dangerous job, which should only be handled by someone who knows exactly what they are doing.

 

How not to remove moss

We often are asked at Kidderminster Roofing Supplies ltd how to approach removing moss from a rooftop, and there are many misconceptions about the best approach this particular job. Here are some of the questions we are asked below:

 

Question: Can the moss be pressure washed off the rooftop?

Answer: No. A pressure washer will only further damage the rooftop and tiles or slates as it is too abrasive.

 

Question: Can I use chemicals or a cleaner to remove the moss?

Answer: We wouldn’t recommend it. There are many products on the market that claim to remove moss from tiles and slates, however in our experience, moss will often grow into the tiles or slates, and using harsh chemicals and cleaners on a tile or slate surface will only aim to remove the protective coating from the roof tiles or slates, making them weaker and more susceptible to further moss damage. Not only this, however moss removing chemicals can be damaging to the environment, potentially harming both plants and animals.

 

Solutions and options 

Although moss may now seem to be a never-ending issue, there are some solutions and options we here at Kidderminster Roofing Supplies ltd can suggest removing or reduce a rooftop moss issue.

Brush or scrape the moss from the tiles or slates – Using a scrubbing brush, you can gently brush moss from roof tiles or slates to reduce damage to them. You can even use a shovel to scrape the moss from the tiles or slates. This option would require regular treatments to ensure the moss does not mount up, which may seem inconvenient to a client, however will save money in the long run.

Re-roof – If a roof is too far gone with moss to simply be brushed away, and the damage has already been done to the tiles or slates, a re-roof may be the only option to remove all the moss from the rooftop.

Leave the moss alone – It may seem an unusual option, however if a roof is too far gone to simply brush the moss away, yet your client cannot afford a complete re-roof at this particular time, the best option would be to leave the moss alone. Although it may be tempting to pressure wash the tiles or slates or put a treatment on it, it may cause far more damage to the overall roof than to simply leave it alone, resulting further issues such as leaks.

 

Tools for the job

To attempt to remove moss from a rooftop, you need the correct tools and equipment to do the job safely and effectively. Here at Kidderminster Roofing Supplies ltd, we stock everything you need to do the job right. Contact us today to see how we can help with you!

Tel: 01562 748270

Email: sales@kidderminsterroofing.com

Or drop us a message on Facebook!


Bromsgrove branch now open!

Kidderminster Roofing Bromsgrove

Kidderminster’s only roofing supplies specialist is now open in Bromsgrove! Our new branch on Sanders Road Industrial Estate offers the same products, prices and services that our Kidderminster branch does and we stock many materials that you need to get the job done including:

  • Firestone EPDM rubber
  • Building plastics
  • Flat Roofing felt
  • Solutions
  • Tools
  • Timber
  • Breathable membranes
  • Fixings

All bulk items available for immediate delivery from our Kidderminster depot Come and visit us today or call 01527 864944 for any price or product enquires.


Stringent Lending Stems Buyer Demand

Too few properties coming onto the market and more stringent lending conditions appear to be stemming the tide of prospective home buyers, according to the latest RICS Residential Market Survey.

The national supply of new homes coming onto the market dropped for the fifth month running in May and in London, where fears of an overheating market have been expressed, demand for new homes fell for the first time since June 2012.

In the month that saw UK house prices reach record levels and greater lending restrictions begin to impact the market, respondents reported that banks are lending less, with the average Loan to Value (LTV) ratios among first time buyers dropping to 85.3% (from 86% in April).

Meanwhile, respondents’ expectations for house prices over the next 12 months dropped from 3.9% to 3.6% – the lowest since December 2013.

Simon Rubinsohn, RICS Chief Economist, said: “What we are really seeing is some of the very strong upward momentum starting to come off the housing market, as a lack of supply, higher prices, more prudent lending measures and some of the talk from the Bank of England are creating a level of caution among sellers and buyers. The most visible indicators of this are the revised downwards price expectations for the next 12 months and the flatter picture regarding new buyer enquiries. In particular, we’re seeing the London market level off. There is some evidence to suggest that the Mortgage Market Review (MMR) has contributed to a tightening of the funding market, although it is hard to disentangle this from other factors which are now impacting on the sector and to know whether it will simply be a temporary influence as lenders adjust to the new environment.”

Read the full story at: Roofing Today


Construction Up 1.2% on the Month, 4.6% on the Year

The latest figures published today by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that construction output increased by 1.2% in April 2014 compared with March 2014.

Falls in construction output in February and March 2014 have resulted in the rolling three month growth rate falling by a modest 0.1%. However, compared with April 2013 construction output increased by 4.6% due to strong growth in new house building but the quarterly level is still 10.3% below its peak in 2008 Q1.

April’s construction data points towards a strengthening housing market and a pickup in commercial activity seen in private industrial and commercial building. These movements are supported in Bank of England reports which found an increase in housing market transactions, strong growth in house building and a gradual return of confidence in the commercial construction sector.

These improvements coincide with growth in mortgages for house buyers and rising house prices. The Bank of England has reported an increase in mortgage lending in every quarter since Q1 2012, while the ONS House Price Index has risen in every month since March 2012.

ONS say that while the underlying trend in new housing orders has been one of growth, the quarter on quarter fall of 9.0% in Q1 2014 misleadingly suggests that this trend has come to an end. Splitting the sector into public and private new housing orders shows that this fall is due to a significant fall in public housing new orders of -45.7%.

In April 2014, repair & maintenance work increased by 1.6% compared with March, up 4.2% on April last year. Housing repair and maintenance grew slightly due to an increase in public housing repair and maintenance. Non-housing repair and maintenance increased by 2.8%.

Read the full story at: Roofing Today


HSE Spot Checks Start This Week

This week sees the beginning of a two-week drive by HSE construction inspectors making unannounced visits across the country, focusing on ill health on construction sites.

HSE Challenges Sites to ‘Think Health’

Poor working conditions likely to lead to ill health on building sites will be targeted. Inspectors will be looking in particular at

  • respiratory risks from dusts including silica materials;
  • exposure to other hazardous substances such as cement and lead paint;
  • manual handling,
  • noise and vibration.

For every fatal accident in the construction industry, it is estimated that a worker is at least 100 times more likely to die from a disease caused or made worse by their work.

Inspectors will be looking at respiratory risks from dusts including silica materials usually caused by cutting tiles in the roofing industry; exposure to other hazardous substances such as cement and lead paint; manual handling, noise and vibration.

In 2012/13, 39 construction workers were killed. However, more than 500 deaths a year are due to silica exposure alone.

Read the full story at: Roofing Today


Now stocking Euromax

We’re happy to announce that we’re now stocking Italian felt manufacture Euromax complete range. Come down to our yard to check out the great prices!