Replacing the roof of your home is an inevitable expense you will face as a homeowner. But ignoring the need for replacement can cause structural damage that will be far more costly. It's easy to take your roof for granted, but bi-annual inspections will help you determine what condition it is in. Here are five signs that it may be time for a new roof.
The average lifespan for a roof is around 20 years, however, this length of time is drastically impacted by a number of factors including the type of shingles, how it is ventilated, and what type of weather conditions it is exposed to. Maryland homes are in a climate that experiences extremes throughout the year; this is likely to affect your roof. Unfortunately, if the roof was installed by a previous homeowner, it may be impossible to know exactly how old it is. If that is the case, then you will need to rely on a physical inspection to determine if it is time for a roof replacement.
Curling, Bald, or Missing Shingles
Shingles that appear damaged or missing completely is another sign that you may need a new roof. Shingles should lie flat against the roof. If they are curled or buckling, you have two options – repair the effected area or replace the entire roof. Repair is a less expensive option, but it may be difficult to find shingles that match the existing roof. Plus, if there is damage in one area, it's likely that other areas are past their life expectancy. Missing shingles especially problematic because they expose the decking to the elements. This can cause mold and water damage problems if not corrected.
Flashing is weatherproof material that is installed over joints or seams. It is impervious to water penetration. Flashing is typically installed around chimneys, vents, and other common roof installations. There are a variety of materials that can be used for weatherproofing but typical signs of failure include cracked or flaking flashing, or evidence of water damage on the underside of the rood. Again, flashing can be repaired, but it may be a tell-tale that the entire roof needs replacing.
A lot can be discovered about the condition of your roof by looking at it from inside the home. Use a flashlight in the attic to inspect the decking that is underneath the shingles. Look for discoloration, streaks, or wet areas. Even if the shingles look fine, evidence of moisture means the roof needs replacement. Similarly, if the roof feels bouncy or sags a little under your weight, moisture has permeated the wood. There is clear damage and your roof is no longer waterproof.
As asphalt shingles age, the granules come loose. A quick inspection of the gutters will indicate if this is occurring on your roof. You may also find small piles of granules at the base of downspouts or in areas where water runoff is common. Visually, as granules come loose, the roof will begin to change color or become inconsistently colored.
Your roof protects you, your family, and your home from the elements of nature. Even with routine maintenance and periodic repairs, wear and tear is inevitable. As a homeowner, your best approach for avoiding costly repairs is to be observant and monitor your roof for signs of problems. Detecting issues early is a proactive approach. If you suspect that it may be time for a roof replacement, consult a roof expert. If you are in the Silver Spring or surrounding areas, contact us for a free estimate. We pride ourselves on providing the best service to our customers, and we will use our expertise to find the best solution for your roofing needs.