Are you considering a roof replacement? Would you know if you did? Many times, the signs can be pretty noticeable, but other times they aren’t. A fortified roof above your head is pretty crucial if you’ve become used to having a warm, comfortable, and leak-free home. Here’s how to notice and address potential issues before they become big ones.
Right off the bat, on your journey to understand roofing, you’ve probably come across the” 20″ year rule for longevity of most roofing systems. That figure is utilized as a benchmark. The majority of residential roofs need a replacement during that timeframe. However, there are many factors at play, and not any roof is the same.
Your roof takes a substantial amount of external wear and tear throughout each passing year. Intense sunlight, powerful winds, flying trees, vermin, hurricanes, rain, or destructive weather conditions – all of these have a direct effect on a roof’s lifespan. How often your roof needs to be replaced depends on many factors:
- What kind of weather is experienced.
- Timely maintenance and care.
- How old the materials are.
- How good the materials used are.
- How well it was installed in the first place.
- Were repairs addressed when needed?
- Keeping pests and rodents away.
- External debris builds up.
Your Roof Is Over 20 Years Old
Typically an asphalt shingle roof lasts about 10-20 years, with metal and tile roofs tending to have a longer lifespan. If your roof is nearing its average replacement age, you should probably start thinking about a roof replacement. If previous roof repairs were placed over the top of your pre-existing roof – a practice called overlaying – you should definitely think about getting a new roof. Overlaying is a patch job that can mask larger roofing problems beneath the shingle surface.
Start By Inspecting Your Roof From the Inside Out
The first step is to scoop up a flashlight and get to the attic for all intents and purposes. Ensure to grab a flashlight with a powerful beam to ensure no damage is overlooked, and always be mindful as you go through these types of inspections.
Once you are in your attic, try to identify one (or several) of these four signs that you need a new roof:
1) Sunlight Shining In Through The Roof
Before turning your flashlight on, see if you can notice any rays of sunlight coming through cracks or holes in your roof. If you do spot any light coming through your roof, repair or replace your roof immediately. If the light is shining through your roof, then water is also leaking into your roof.
2) Dark Streaking & Stains
This one is also simple to uncover. If you see dark stains or dark streaks on the underside of your roof or running down the walls from the base of your roof, then your roof is probably leaking, and moisture is causing damage to both your roof, as well as your home’s interior structure.
3) Sagging Areas
Much like how a soggy cardboard is weak, water can also make the structure of your roof begin to sag. If you discover sagging portions of your roof, use your hand or a broom to lightly prod at the sagging spot. If the spot is wet or bends easily with your broom’s prod, then your 100% dealing with water damage.
Besides just looking for dark streaks and saggy spots, make sure to look for any obvious indications of water leaking or rotting your roof on the inside. If you find any clear signs of water damage, it would be wise to call a roofer to evaluate your roof immediately.
Curling Or Missing Shingles Are Visible
The issue with most roofs is that they’re overlooked and out of sight. Most of the time, not taking a good look unless there is a stain or dark spot viewable from the street or yard.
Old or dilapidated shingles are very simple to uncover if you search for them. Missing shingles may be replaced one by one, but it’s usually a sign of the larger issue. Large areas of broken or weakened shingles (or ones that are visibly falling apart) indicate that your roof needs a replacement.
Shingles can curl in two ways – cupping when the edges turn towards the sky and clawing when edges remain flat, and the middle starts coming up. Both of these situations could mean that:
- Moisture has built up underneath the shingles due to poor ventilation in the attic.
- Shingles were poorly installed.
- Old age and wear from direct sunlight and weathering.
Bald spots on your shingles indicate that the granules have begun falling off, exposing the asphalt below. Tip: Inspect your gutter for shingles granules. If rain carries them into your gutters, it’s likely your roof needs replacement.
Excessive Growths On Your Roof
Dark spots (or generally dirty-looking shingles) are caused by moss and algae growth. These might not be directly tied to when you have to replace your roof (or that it needs repair), but these problems can spread and cause damage.
Have you recently noticed fungus or other types of nature growing on top or out of your roof? If so, don’t worry. The natural world tends to grow over any structure in its path if it is not adequately looked after and maintained.
When looking over your roof and the moss you have noticed, make sure to do so by inspecting both the inside and outside of your roof. While most plant growths are likely to be visible from the outside of your roof, when there’s a larger issue at-hand, nature may also be growing on its own indoors without your knowledge.
Quite often, eliminating the algae from a roof is a way to quickly remedy the issue without considering a re-roof. However, if you see substantial growths on your roof or inside the property, it is highly advisable to locate a roofing company to identify the root cause and reason for the growths.
In the event the roof is just completely overgrown, then the sole plan would be to get a roof replacement. This mostly happens to roofs that are unattended for long stretches of time.
The silver lining here is that natural growth and accumulation are not typically indicators that you must fix or replace your roof. Rather, moss is moreso an eyesore to your roof and is rather common in humid areas like Florida.
If in the end, you do require a full roof replacement, there then becomes a number of decisions in the near future. Such as which roofing material to use. Which West Palm Beach roof repair & replacement company to work with? If by chance, there’s a valid insurance claim. For many people having the cash on hand to get a roof replacement may not be viable; there is financing accessible for homeowners offered by many roofing contractors. Ensure to do due diligence prior to making any final decisions.