7 Signs You Need a New Roof
Most people don’t pay much attention to the roof over their heads…until it leaks! Pay attention to your roof before water starts pouring through the ceiling and you have to break out the buckets. A regular roof inspection should be performed twice a year, in the spring and fall, according to the National Roofing Contractors Association. In light of the severe snow and ice accumulation this winter, a spring roof inspection is particularly important. Check for damage to roofs, drains, gutters, and downspouts, and remove debris from them. Check these things to see if it’s time for a new roof.
It is best to check your attic first if you think you need a new roof, not the exterior of your house. Therefore, you should crawl under the eaves with a flashlight. A leaky roof will cause beams of light to shine through the roof or streaks and stains to appear.
Identify how long ago the roof was replaced or reshingled by reviewing your home improvement records. Identifying the material and date of installation of a roof can tell you how long it has to live. When a roof is installed over an existing layer of shingles, it should be replaced after 20 years. Asphalt shingles, for example, typically last between 20 and 25 years.
You should keep an eye on your rooftop after heavy storms to ensure it is in good shape. The shingles should lie flat against the roof; if you find cracks, damage, or buckling, then they need to be repaired. You should also inspect the gutters and downspouts for shingle granules. A roof that is losing a lot of granules may be past its prime.
In order to protect seams on the roof from rain and weather, flashing is installed around vents, skylights, and chimneys. Take a look at these points. Ensure there are no cracks or breaks, which could lead to leaks. The flashing on older homes is often made of roof cement or tar, but metal flashing has more durability.
Rescue From Rot
If your roof is droopy or sagging, it needs to be replaced as soon as possible to prevent further damage. Especially at the lowest points of the roof, check for signs of trapped moisture, rotting boards, or sagging.
Photo: flickr.com via mrvklaw
Despite its beauty in shady corners, moss can pose a serious problem on roofs. In addition to moss, mold and fungi indicate trapped moisture, which can damage a roof. Use a stiff brush to remove moss that collects in shaded corners of your roof, but be cautious to address any underlying issues.
Do not automatically assume that you need a new roof because you have some damaged shingles or a leak. The roof may not need to be replaced if it has been properly installed and is younger than 15 or 20 years old. Get a professional opinion when in doubt by contacting a licensed roofer.