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A home is one of the most important investments for any homeowner. That is why when it comes to your roof, it is important to protect that investment properly. Unfortunately, there will always be that moment when you realize that your roof has reached its maximum useful life and needs to be replaced. Ignoring this fact can lead to costly damages to the exterior as well as the interior of your home. Although they may be subtle, there are many key signs that you should look for when inspecting the roof of your home.
To save money, many builders install low quality, 3 tab shingles that have a complete performance life of only up to 20 years before they start to break down and wreak havoc the your structure. It is always important to know when it is time for your roof to be replaced. What many people don’t realize is that although the roof may have a maximum performance life of 20 years, that performance life can be drastically reduced by improper installation, insufficient ventilation, high winds, high temperatures, tree debris, hail and rain. If you see signs of a failing roof, temporarily repairing problematic areas will only put a temporary “band-aid” on a roof that needs to be completely replaced. Those band-aids add up pretty quickly and will cost you a significant amount of money.
Not sure exactly what to look for when examining your roof for warning signs? Below are a few key aspects to look for when doing an inspection of your roof.
The first key point is most likely the obvious one, but often overlooked. If your roof is around 15-20 years old, chances are that it has outlived its usefulness. Many contractors install roofs that will not last longer than 20 years in order to save money. If this is the case, no amount of “band-aid” fixes will prolong the lifespan. Since most roofs only come with a 20 year warranty, at this point it is time to get a new roof.
Valleys are key to the structural integrity of your roof. Since water collects and runs down the valleys into the gutters, it is important to check to see if there is any cracking, separation, or missing shingles in these areas as the roof may be compromised and susceptible to leaks.
Another obvious sign to look for is missing shingles. If your roof is fairly new, these may be replaced. If your roof is old, as mentioned before, it may be time to replace the roof.
Flashing around the chimney area as well as pipe boots, if not properly installed, can fail and allow water to seep through. Make sure to check if the flashing has been properly sealed and installed and that there is no damage to the flashing itself.
When you start to see an excessive amount of granules collecting in your gutters, it means that your roof has come to the end of your its lifespan. Discoloration on some parts of the shingles, especially darker areas are another sign that the granules are falling off.
When roofing shingles are no sealed to the roof properly, any type of curling and buckling of shingles will allow moisture in through the substrate. This most often occurs as the roof ages, but sometimes can also be caused by improper installation.
If you are seeing signs of moisture in the attic, it probably means that the roofing system is failing. It is important to check for water stains on the plywood, as well as signs of moisture collecting on the insulation. Although there may be other factors involved, most likely than not, there is a problem with the roof.
One sure sign of a failing roof is when you start to notice water stains and leaking on the ceilings on the inside of your home. One way to avoid this is to examine your roof periodically, once or twice a year and look for warning signs of roof failure.