A roof is one of the most important parts of a home; and roof repairs may not be enough. Your home's roof provides protection and structural stability. A properly installed and maintained roof should last for years. However, over time roofs sustain all types of damage.
The question is whether to just repair it or replace the roof entirely. Repairing your roof is often the go-to solution and can be sufficient in maintaining your roof. Other times, repairs won’t be enough.
Warning Signs that Roof Repairs May Not Cut It
To recognize the signs of roof damage, you must inspect your roof. It is recommended by the National Roofing Contractors Assn to inspect your roof twice a year and after extreme weather. When inspecting the roof, you need to look at the exterior as well as the interior. Some signs to look for include:
- Patches of moss or algae. They both trap moisture which can lead to mold growth.
- Tree branches, piles of leaves or other large debris
- Loose, cracked, or rusted gutters. Also, check to see if granules are in your gutters.
- Broken, curling or missing shingles
- Cracked or curling caulk or sealant
- Worn, peeling or cracked plastic rubber boots around pipes
- Cracked or rusted spots on the metal pieces around chimneys and vent pipes, also known as flashings
- A damaged or missing chimney cap
- Crumbling or missing chimney mortar
- Moisture in the rafters and attic. Check your attic for signs of water leakage or damage.
Is It Time to Replace the Roof?
Most minor damage can be repaired up to a certain point. However, there are a few indicators where a full roof replacement is necessary.
Age of the RoofIf your roof is nearing the twenty-year mark, then replacing it should be on your to- do list. Most experts agree that a typical asphalt shingle roof will last between 20 and 25 years. Repairs will be less efficient the older a roof is. Most of the shingles will start to loosen, crack, and curl after 20 years.
Other considerations include poor roof ventilation and backed-up gutters. All of these factors can accelerate the aging process of your roof.
Check Around Your NeighborhoodMany homes in nearby areas were built around the same time as yours. If your next-door neighbor is having their roof replaced, then it might be good for you to have your roof inspected and possibly replaced if needed. This is also a good time to talk with your neighbors about recommendations for roofing contractors and materials.
Sagging AreasA droopy, sagging roof needs to be replaced before further damage occurs to your home. Check for signs of trapped moisture, rotting boards, or sagging spots at the lowest points in the roof. Water can make the structure of your roof begin to sag.
If you identify sagging areas in your roof, use your hand or a broom to lightly prod at the sagging spot. If the spot feels soft or bends easily, it means you have moisture damage. Call a professional immediately to assess the damage and replace your roof.
Daylight Shining ThroughIf daylight is coming through the roof boards in your attic, the underlying decking and shingles are too moist. This means water is getting through the roof via cracks or holes. Moisture weakens the roof decking and gives it a spongy feel.
Also, check for moisture in the insulation. This is a sure sign that part of your roof is damaged and most likely needs to be replaced.
Severe StormsWhen your roof has been through extreme weather inspect it for damage. If there are only small branches or pieces of debris, you can simply clean it off. However, if strong winds have blown away shingles or your roof has been punctured by heavy tree limbs, make sure that you can repair those holes, otherwise you may need to replace the roof if it is severely damaged.
Multiple IssuesIf your roof has some bald patches, loose or missing shingles, and streaks of algae, all occurring at the same time, a roof repair may not be enough. Multiple problems should concern any homeowner. These could lead to installing a roof replacement.
Want to make sure your roof is in good condition? Let Brian Dawson Roofing inspect your roof and offer solutions to make your roof last. If there are minor issues, our roofing professionals can repair it. If not, we offer complete replacements. Contact us today for all your roofing needs.