Whether you’ve recently purchased a home or you’ve been in your current home for a while now, the summer is a great time to a moment to inspect your roof and determine how well it’s holding up. Roofs are important, they not only keep the rain off our heads, but they also help to regulate the temperature of our homes. An old roof can mean more than just leaks, including higher energy bills and potential damage to the structure of your home. So a new roof could save you money and headaches in the long run.
But with shingles now lasting up to fifty years, most of us will only have our roof replaced once or maybe twice in a lifetime depending on how often we move. So how do you know what to look for? How can you tell when it’s time for a new roof?
Find your Paper Trail
Check to see if you have a warranty, extended warranty, or invoice from the last time the roof was repaired. These documents will help provide you with important information, like the materials and actual age of the roof.
Go from the Inside Out
It might be a bit toasty in your attic, but this is a good place to start when checking the health of your roof. You’ll want to look for signs of moisture, which are easier to spot on a sunny day than an actual crack or leak in the roof. You can use a reader or sensor but you can also rely on your good old-fashioned senses like sight, touch, and smell.
Check the Edges of the Shingles
When a roof ages, the edges of the shingles may warp or change shape. Sometimes they curve, creating a “cupped” look. As shingles continue to age, they become brittle and may crack at the edges.
Check the Color and Composition
Over time, as a result of the elements and bad weather, shingles can develop stains or streaks. If you see any change in the overall color of your shingles it may be an indication that you need replace that section, or the whole roof. Shingles may also lose the granule coating overtime. Give your shingles a good look over to see if your roof is developing bald spots.
Also check to see if you spot any green. Algae, moss, and other plants can take up residence on your roof and cause damage over time. If you spot any green (unless your shingles are actually green), you’ll want to take care of it before it becomes an issue.
Has Your Roofline Changed over the Years?
Take a look at the level of the roof and the rooflines. These should all be flat and square, not drooping or sagging. If any part of your roof is sagging, this could be a sign of damage that needs to be repaired in order for your roof to maintain its structural integrity.
Are Your Neighbors Getting a New Roof?
We aren’t suggesting that you keep up with your neighbors when it comes to home repairs, but houses built in the same location are generally built around the same time period, and/or exposed to the same weather patterns. If your house or roof are of a similar age, and your neighbor is getting theirs repaired, it’s a good idea to have someone look at your roof too.
Is Your Roof Over 20 Years Old?
Over this time your roof may wear and need replacement due to the health of your shingles, but if your roof was built over 20 years ago, it may not be properly ventilated. Building codes have evolved and now suggest additional ventilation. This can be a health issue as well as provide the airflow needed to keep moisture at bay.
If you’re not comfortable checking your roof, give us a call for an estimate, or ask a knowledgeable friend or neighbor. There’s always someone willing to help out!