Roofs: they’re what protect us from the elements. They give us privacy. They give us shade. And most importantly, they give us a shelter. A home wouldn’t be complete without a roof, so it’s important to keep yours is in tip-top shape. But is it? It’s best to find out before problems mount so you can avoid costly and dangerous repairs. Here are six warning signs that should be on your radar.
The good news is a standard roof should last at least twenty years, if not longer. But there are variables to consider, of course. How well ventilated is yours? How many layers of shingles do you have? Was the old roof removed? Knowing your roof’s history will help inform you its lifespan, but if you’re crossing the 20-25 year mark, it may be time for a replacement.
Moss? Yes, you read that right. If you live in a dry climate, this may not apply to you, but if you’re in a cooler region that doesn’t get much sun, then pay close attention. Moss may seem harmless, but that dense green plant is capable of serious damage. It can trap moisture against your roof’s surface, causing wreckage to the shingles over winter. Removing moss before those long cold months kick in can go a long way, and if you’re up for the challenge you can find ways to combat it.
Since most roofs are made up of shingles, these overlapping rectangular flaps can tell you a lot about your roof’s condition. While shingles can be made out of everything from wood to asphalt, the symptoms of a shot roof can be easy to spot if you know what to look for. Are your shingles buckling? Are there bald patches where granules are missing? Are actual roof shingles missing? These are all signs of trouble, so be on the lookout.
Sunrays through the roof
You may not notice these from looking down on your roof. Instead, you can check to see if any light rays are coming in through the attic. You can also inspect for moisture. Be on the lookout for any wetness in the insulation — or if you’re standing on the roof, feel for any soft spots. They may feel spongy or squishy, and that’s a sign of trouble ahead.
If you’re noticing a leak, there could be something wrong with your roof valleys. These channels are critical to your roof. They carry rain and snow to the gutters, so they get a lot of use. Unfortunately, this means wear and tear and possible serious leaks. Everything from thermal expansion to a worn underlayment can factor into potential problems, so you may want to educate yourself further on possible roof valley troubles.
Uh-oh. This is a biggie, so it’s time to act. A sagging roof should raise red flags because it’s not a safe situation. Your roof could very well collapse. There’s a good chance you’re dealing with a structural issue or possibly even trouble with the foundation. You really won’t know until you have a professional inspect your roof, but if you’re curious about other possible causes, there are some factors to consider.
While roofs have a shelf life, it’s good to know what you’re looking at. Issues can creep up on you, but if you stay ahead of them, these problems will be manageable and it won’t feel like the world is crashing down on you when it’s time to replace your roof. A quick inspection can make all the difference.