Is It Time to Replace Your Roof?

January 13, 2016 9:00 am

1007_4987259Many homeowners wait to replace a roof when they begin to spot ceiling leaks or notice other damage on the exterior. Harsh weather conditions can often be the culprit of roof damage, so checking after a big storm is always a good idea. The key is to identify damage long before it becomes a problem for your home.

Follow these quick tips to determine if your roof is in good condition:

Roof age – Most experts say a roof will last between 20 and 25 years before it needs to be replaced. It’s important to take into consideration how many layers of shingles are on the roof. Often, rather than removing the roof before adding a new one, people will just place new shingles on top of those existing ones. If the original roof layer on your home is older than 20 years, it likely needs replacing.

Shingles – When shingles have begun to curl or buckle, it is likely that they need to be replaced. Look at the portion of your roof that is in direct sun and notice if shingles are curling or losing granules – this is a sign that the shingles have reached their maximum age.

Damaged roof valleys – If shingles on your roof begin to fall apart or are missing, especially in the valleys, you can be certain that you need a new roof. Rain can flow through the valleys and into the gutters, making them one of the most important working components of your roof. If this area becomes damaged, your roof is more likely to leak. 

Dark streaks and moss – Airborne algae can cause dark streaks on your roof and moss can grow, causing moisture to be retained. While neither of these things necessarily mean it is time to replace your roof, it is best to take action before these cause any serious damage. Algae streaks can be removed using a 50:50 blend of water and bleach sprayed on your roof. Make sure that you use a low-volume garden hose so you do not remove protective granules from your shingles.

When you are walking around your neighborhood, pay attention to other homes. If your neighbors are starting to replace their roofs, it may be time for you to consider it too. Homes build around the same time period and experiencing the same kinds of weather conditions could near their useful life around the same time, so being observant is key. If you have questions about your roof or need the name of a great roofing company, please let me know because I know some great folks who can help.