When is it time to replace my roof?

A roof should provide 10-to-20 years of protection, but knowing the warning signs can help you determine when it's time to replace or repair.
A roof should provide 10-to-20 years of protection depending on conditions, but knowing the warning signs can help you determine when it's time to replace or repair.

Ceiling spots
  • Survey attic or crawlspace for signs of dark wood, which indicate leakage.
  • Inspect rafters for signs of transferring leaks away from its source.

  • Check for sagging in the ceiling

Damaged flashing
  • Check flashing around chimneys and vents for damage or cracks which create access for moisture.

  • Damage may be caused by improper installation, settling, drying and cracking or denting.

  • May be fixed without replacing the roof.

  • Unfixed, it allows access for moisture, which encourages algae and mold growth under the primary material of your roof, damaging the layers underneath and weakening the seal of the outer layer.

Shingles

Like skin, they offer early-warning signs like these that something might be wrong.
  • Missing: An open invitation to moisture and the loss of more shingles.

  • Buckling: Could be indication of a serious moisture problem with the underlying felt.

  • Curling: If new, it's a problem with the installation, otherwise, it may be time to replace the roof because it indicates moisture.

  • Blistering: Indication of either moisture in the shingle or too much asphalt plastic cement used.

  • Algae stains: Mostly an eyesore, but if it dislodges granules, it will accelerate roof decay.

  • Rot: Indicates the penetration of moisture. More prevelant in organic-based shingles.

Loose granules
  • Expect some loss during installation.

  • With older shingles, loss of granules weakens UV protection and breakdown becomes rapid.

  • Accumulation in gutters and drainspouts indicates loss.

Replacing a roof is a considerable investment. Be sure to find the best deal, but just don't chase the lowest price in your search for a roofing contractor. Quality matters. Also, check with your insurance company whether any improvements are included in your policy.

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