The roof is one of the most important components of the home. It shelters the occupants and their possessions inside the home, as well as helping to reinforce and strengthen the entire structure of the house. When the condition of the roof is impacted, it can lead to a wide variety of serious home repair issues, including moisture infiltration, mold, wood rot, and more. But even though most new homeowners are well aware of the importance of their home's roof, many still have a long list of questions to help them learn how to spot problems and deal with residential roofing repair.
How long should the roof last before replacement is needed?
This question is top-of-mind for most homeowners simply because the cost of a total roof replacement can be substantial. When homeowners know how long they can reasonably expect their roof to last, they can plan their budgets accordingly and save enough to offset all or most of the cost.
The answer to this question is dependent on a number of things, including:
- the roof's current age and condition
- the climate where the home is located
- the workmanship of the existing roof
- the quality of materials used
- any previous damage or repairs that may affect the lifespan
The best way to closely estimate your roof's lifespan is to find out as much as possible about the current roof's history from previous sellers and then have a complete roof inspection performed by a qualified residential roofing contractor.
In addition to age, what are some other signs of declining condition?
Age is an important clue to help homeowners plan for periodic roofing repairs or replacement, but there are other signs, as well. Some of the most common ones include:
- shingles that no longer lay flat
- shingles that are missing, broken, or have edges that appear damaged or rough
- shingles that look smooth due to the loss of their abrasive coating
When examining shingles, it is not necessary—or advisable—for homeowners to climb up onto their roofs. Instead, they should always choose to use binoculars from ground level or view the shingles from an upper level window of the home.
How can small roof leaks be spotted without going onto the roof?
There are many times during the ownership of a home when it is wise to look for any evidence of developing roof leaks. By doing this periodically, you can often catch developing problems faster and enjoy a less expensive repair bill than if the leak was allowed to continue for a long time before being discovered.
A good way to check for developing roof leaks is to periodically spend a few minutes in the attic of your home on a rainy day with a good flashlight. To check for leaks, start by leaving the lights off and wait a few minutes for your eyes to become accustomed to the darkness. Once you are comfortable, begin carefully looking at all areas of the ceiling area of the attic for any places where light seems to be filtering in from the outside.
If any of these suspected leaks are found, use your flashlight to illuminate the area and inspect it carefully for any signs of moisture or dripping water. While doing this type of examination, always be aware of other dark stains or drip marks, even if they do not feel wet. These can be an indication of a leak that may only occur in certain circumstances, such as when snow freezes and thaws on the roof's surface during the winter.
To learn even more about shingled roofs and how to prolong the one on your home, contact a reputable, residential roofing contractor in your area. They can examine your roof and help you determine your best options for keeping it in good repair.