If you think you might need a new roof, the first consideration is how long ago your roof was replaced or re-shingled. The age of your roof helps determine if your roof has reached the end of its useful life. For example, a new asphalt shingle roof in Gwinnett County typically lasts 20 to 25 years, while a roof installed over an existing layer of shingles should be replaced after 20 years.
You can look for signs of roof damage yourself. According to the National Roofing Contractors Association, homeowners should examine their roofs semi-annually, in the spring and the fall.
Interior Roof Inspection
The interior check is fairly easy if you have access to your attic. Once you get up there, look for four particular signs of roof troubles:
- Light shining in from outside – This is the easiest problem to discover, even without a flashlight. Any light shining in through your roof from outside is a problem that should be addressed immediately. If light is getting through, so is moisture.
- Sagging Areas – If there is a sag in your roof this will be one of the easier ways to tell if you need a new roof. Sagging is a definite indication of structural issues. Something has given way, either due to external pressure from outside or from moisture damage to the wood that makes up your roof.
- Dark Spots or Trails – Dark areas and trails are an indication that moisture is penetrating your roof somewhere and probably creating mold in the process. Moisture will eventually cause real problems, both with your roof and with the interior of your home.
- Leaks or Water Damage – If you actually see a leak or obvious water damage it is time to call in a roofing repair company. Water causes damage and it is important to patch any leaks as soon as possible.
These are ways to determine if you need a new roof or not.
Exterior Roof Check
Getting onto your roof is required to inspect the exterior. Avoid walking on your roof if it is constructed with easily damaged materials such as tile.
- Look for Damage – Major damage to roofing materials should be fairly obvious. Shingles will split, crack and warp if they get too old, while tile will break if it has been damaged by hail. If your roof is older and there is visible damage it is far easier to tell if you need a new roof.
- Look for Moisture Problems – Mold and other moisture related problems could wreak just as much damage outside as in. A bad shingle can allow moisture to sit instead of shedding it down the roof. Keep in mind that water will flow down, so you may have to track the problem higher up.
- Shingle Granules – As your shingles age they will shed more and more granules. If they are getting too old you will likely find excessive amounts of granules in your gutters. This is a sure fire way to tell if you need a new roof sooner rather than later.
- Look for Wear – Roofing materials around chimneys and vents can wear over time, so keep an eye out for any issues here.
- Check Your Drainage – Your gutters and downspouts are an important component of your home and should be cleaned a few times a year. Check to make sure they are securely attached and that water is flowing where it should be.
Call Bob Hundley at 770-418-9476 if you have a leaking roof or roof damage, for a free estimate to repair or replace your roof.