Most people don’t think much about their roofs until they spring a leak. Unfortunately, by the time leaks occur, minor repairs aren’t enough to solve the problem. To avoid the need for total replacement, it’s important to stay on top of repairs. Here’s how you can determine whether your roof needs professional attention.
Check Your Records.
Start by reviewing your home improvement records to find out when your roof was last reshingled or replaced.
In addition to knowing when your roof was installed, it can help to know what it’s made of. A typical asphalt shingle roof lasts up to 25 years, while a roof installed over existing shingles should be replaced after two decades.
Inspect Your Shingles.
Keep a close eye on your roof to make sure it’s still in good shape, especially after heavy storms. Your shingles should always lie flat against the roof. If you find areas that are damaged.
cracked or buckling, you need to call a roofing contractor for repairs.
You should also check your downspouts and gutters for shingle granules. If you see a significant buildup, it could be a sign your roof is nearing the end of its useful life.
Check Your Flashing.
The flashing around chimneys, skylights and vents helps seal your roof from rain and snow. Inspect these areas to make sure there are no breaks or cracks, which could allow water to enter your home. In older houses, flashing is often made of tar or roof cement, but it’s best to upgrade to modern metal flashing for added durability.
Watch for Signs of Rot.
If you have a sagging, droopy roof, you should act quickly to repair or replace the damaged areas. Since rot may not always be obvious, look for telltale signs of decomposing boards, trapped moisture or sagging spots, especially near the lowest portions of the roof.
Look for Organic Growth.
While it may seem relatively harmless, organic growth can spell big trouble when it develops on your roof. Moss, mold and fungi indicate trapped moisture which can promote rot. It’s not enough to scrape away the matter with a coarse brush; you need to hire a contractor to address the underlying causes.
If your roof’s shingles have a dark outline or streaks, this could be airborne algae. While you can usually clear this growth with a bleach and water mixture, it’s important to be careful not to damage your landscaping with the chemicals. A reputable contractor will be able to clean the shingles properly and determine if any moisture is causing damage to the roof.
Beware of Bad Weather.
High wind speeds can tear shingles away from your roof. If you see any missing shingles after a storm, have them replaced as soon as possible to prevent further damage. Without shingles, exposed portions of your roof can be easily damaged and are vulnerable to leaks.
Hailstones can also cause tiny dents in your shingles, which can leak over time. Shingles can also lose granules and deteriorate much faster after being damaged by hailstones. If the damage is minor, some simple repairs may do the trick. In cases of widespread or severe damage, however, a new roof may be the solution.
Look for Poor Workmanship.
Poor craftsmanship is a leading cause of roof failure. If a roof has awkwardly placed shingles, it will deteriorate more quickly than it should. This will lead to a reduced lifespan and more leaks, which can lead to rot and mold infestations.
Maintaining Your Roof
Proper maintenance and regular repairs can help you save thousands of dollars by extending the life of your roof. A well-maintained roof can also reduce your energy bills by ensuring that it is well insulated and free of gaps where air can escape. Leaks in your roof can increase the cost of air conditioning and heating inside the house.
Sonners Contracting provides Castle Rock, Denver and the entire Front Range area with flawless roof inspections, repairs and installations. Contact our skilled roofing professionals to make sure your home’s roof is ready for Colorado’s harsh winter conditions.