Southern and Western Quebec’s humid, rainy summers and long, cold winters inevitably wear down your home’s exterior. Familiarizing yourself with the top roofing and siding materials and completing important home maintenance tasks protects your house from whatever Mother Nature delivers.
“Cost-effectiveness and efficiency make asphalt shingles one of the top choices in Quebec,” says Steve Goodhand, president of Abbey Roofing in Pointe-Claire. “Second choice is metal roofing, which is three times more expensive than asphalt, but holds up longer against rain, snow and sun,” he says.
Metal and other long-lasting roofing materials definitely have their place, agrees Paul Grizenko, president of Les Couvertures PRS Inc. / PRS Roofing Inc. in Dorval. The company installs a variety of roofing materials, depending on the circumstances.
“If a homeowner currently has a low-slope tar-and-gravel roof, we would propose either a membrane solution or a vertical steel panel roof, both of which withstand the water pressure possible with snow cover,” says Grizenko. “If the roof has steep slopes with valleys or eaves that can spill snow onto walkways or sensitive areas, then we suggest non-slip ceramic coating roofing products.”
In siding, the most popular choices are aluminum or vinyl, says Goodhand. “Both materials are about the same in cost and efficiency, although vinyl is sometimes preferable because it makes less noise in the wind than aluminum,” he says.
Top Home Maintenance Tasks
- Seal Roofing:
Just as you would add a protective coating to decking, you can increase the longevity of your roof by once a year applying a product designed to repel water or a sealant that seals out moisture, advises Goodhand. “Ask in your local hardware store for their best sealant.”
- Clear Eavestroughs and Downspouts:
Heavy summer rain can overload your roof’s drainage system and cause wear-and-tear on roofing and siding. Before every season, clean debris from your eavestroughs and downspouts and make sure that the downspouts drain at least five feet away from your house.
- Check Foundation Sloping:
Avoid basement leaks during heavy rains by ensuring that the ground around the perimeter of your home slopes away from the house’s foundation. If necessary, build up the soil around the foundation so that it encourages excess water to flow away.
- Inspect your Roof Ventilation System:
Adequate airflow leads to long-lasting roofs, says Grizenko, who suggests that you have ventilation installed in your roof if it is inadequate or non-existent. If you do have ventilation, check air vents, including whirlybirds, for accumulated debris and snow twice during the fall and winter months.
Take the time to maintain your home’s exterior now, and you can rest easily the next time Mother Nature comes to call.