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Tuesday, May 31, 2016

When Do I Need a New Roof?

Do I need a new roof?
When is the right time to replace your existing roof? One of the most common questions regarding a roofing system is how do I know when to replace my roof. If inspected regularly, you could avoid lengthy, expensive roofing projects resulting from small avoidable problems. The best way to catch any potential roofing issues is to inspect your roof at least twice a year. You don’t necessarily need a licensed contractor to inspect your roof, however one is highly recommended when problems do arise to correct the problem. For Minnesota residents, or residents of areas where cold temperatures and heavy precipitation (such as snow or rain) are common and make up at least 3 or more months of the year, inspecting your roof before and after every winter will help in preventing weather related issues.

The most important factor to take into account is the age of the roof; how old is your current roof? Depending on your type of roof, you may need to replace your roof more or less frequently. For example, the average asphalt roofing system lasts 20-25 years while slate or tile shingles could last anywhere from 50-200 years. Whatever your type of roof, it is important to recognize the signs for a potential replacement in order to avoid creating any structural issues with the house.

Shingles can tell you many things, namely when it is necessary to replace the roofing system. If the shingles are cracked, buckling or curling, losing granules, or completely missing, it may be time to replace your roof. Cracked shingles are typically a result of wind damage, while buckling is caused by repetitive exposure to direct sunlight over a longer period of time. Shingles lose more granules towards the end of their life cycle causing darker areas, which can sometimes affect gutters or leave undesirable residue around the house.

A common concern with asphalt roofing that typically causes worry is the presence of moss on the roof; have no fear, however, because it is nothing more than an aesthetic issue and renders itself completely harmless. However, it is encouraged to avoid resolving the issue without the assistance of a licensed contractor as there could be more damaged caused to the roof than necessary.

Other less common issues may arise such as: water damage, sagging roof, or light shining into the attic. These are all signs that a licensed contractor should be contacted to discuss potential repair options. In addition to roof inspections, gutters should be cleaned at least once a year to prevent water from backing up. If not addressed immediately, this backup could lead to a complete roof replacement regardless of the roof’s age.

~ Meghan Beck