When To Replace Your Roof: How To Tell If Its Time
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Last time you climbed up a ladder and cleaned out your gutters, you got a magnified view of your roof. A few turned up shingles, moss, some rust action are these blemishes normal, or are they signs that you need a new roof?
When you start noticing your roofs age, bring in the experts to determine if its time for a replacement. Roof damage can lead to leaks and cause significant structural damage. Plus, beyond protecting your home, your roof plays a key role in curb appeal when its time to sell.
We want our houses to look as good as possible from the curb and from the photographs. And now that we use a lot of aerial shots and drone shots, the roof is much more visible. So its just that much more important that the roof looks good, shares top real estate agent Andrew Oldham, who, along with his partner Jennifer Oldham, sells 70% more single-family homes in San Jose than the average agent.
Dont let a roof in disrepair bring down your homes value. Follow these six steps to determine if you need to replace your roof.
Sign #: Light Coming Through Your Roof
Make it a habit of turning out the lights in the upper rooms of your home and looking up at the roof every once in a while. The best time to do this is at sunset, as it will be dark enough inside with the lights out yet bright enough outside for you to see the light coming through.
Light coming in from your roof could mean that you have cracks and holes in your roof which should be attended to as soon as possible. Check your roof to see if repairs could fix the damage, or whether an entire roof replacement is needed. Of course, you can get in touch with the experts at Findley Roofing & Building Yorkshire for a free roof health check.
Classic Metals Isaiah Industries
Product Warranty: Lifetime Limited Warranty covering manufacturers defects as well as specific things like cracking, peeling, flaking, chipping, and splitting, plus a 120-mph wind warranty on the roof system and the manufactured components.
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We offer lifetime steel and aluminum interlocking shake and tile metal roofing systems. Metal roofs offer distinctive beauty and durability, long-term protection and security that significantly increases the value of your home. Each style offers environmental benefits, energy savings, and protection against the weather. The metal roofing materials we use are made in America and use up to 99% recycled, quality aluminum, the majority of which is post-consumer.
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How To Know When You Need A New Roof
High-quality shingles, when correctly installed, will provide 10 to 20 years of service, barring potential damage from storms or falling tree limbs. Because new roofs are expensive, most homeowners want to get the most out of their existing roof before shelling out a chunk of change for a new one. The age of your existing roof is less important than its condition. Some older roofs are still going strong at 15 years, while others need replacing a couple of years after installation. Youll save money by knowing what signs indicate the need for a new roof.
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Curling Cracked Or Missing Roof Shingles
Asphalt shingles go through a lot of wear and tear as they age. With that in mind, noticing curling, cracked, or missing shingles is a warning sign that its time for a new roof.
Curling and cracked shingles are a clear sign that the asphalt shingles have reached the end of their lifespan. Just know that you may not know how to spot this sign without getting on your roof.
On the other hand, missing asphalt shingles could be caused by strong winds or improper roof installation. You might have an insurance claim if it was caused by wind damage.
But if missing shingles are caused by improper installation, youll have to rely on your roofing contractors workmanship warranty to take care of the problem. No matter the reason, damaged shingles lead to a roof replacement most of the time.
How Old Is Your Roof
One of the easiest ways to determine whether or not you need a new roof is to factor in its age. The average lifespan of asphalt shingle roofs is between 15 and 20 years. And, with the harsh weather condition in Florida and frequent storms in this region, you can expect your asphalt shingle roof to stick closer to the lower number.
Of course, this is not to say that modern shingles cant last for much longer. Some roofs can have a lifespan of up to half a century or more, but these are the outliers.
Its also worth mentioning that tile and metal roofs fare better in Floridas climate than asphalt roofs. If youve had the same asphalt shingle roof for over 15 years, it might be time to replace it.
Dont know how old your roof is? Keep an eye on what your neighbors are doing. If a few homeowners in your neighborhood are replacing their roofs simultaneously, this can be a telltale sign that you should too.
Homes in the same neighborhood are often built in a similar fashion and around the same time. This is a simple but effective way of determining your roofs age if you dont have any other useful information.
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Excessive Growths On Your Roof
Have you recently noticed moss or other types of nature growing on top or out of your roof? Dont panic. Nature tends to grow over any structure in its path if it is not properly tended to and maintained.
When inspecting your roof and the new growths you have spotted, be sure to do so by inspecting both the interior and exterior of your roof. While most plant growths are likely to be visible from the exterior and outside of your roof, if there is a more serious issue at-hand, nature may also be growing on its own indoors without your knowledge.
Oftentimes, treating and eliminating nature growths from a roof is a way to quickly remedy the issue without further investments or repairs. However, if you do notice excessive growths around your roof or even inside of your home, it is highly advisable to work with a professional to determine the root cause and reason for the growths.
When a roof has been completely overtaken by growths in nature, you may need to replace the roof in its entirety to stop the process in its tracks.
Your Attic Has Great Natural Light
If your roof is approaching the end of its expected lifespan, or you have other reason to suspect that you might need a new roof, the first place to check is the attic or crawlspace.
Its often much easier to tell if there are holes, cracks, or leaks in the roof from underneath than from above.
One reason for this is that accessing the crawlspace is usually safer and more straightforward than accessing the roof, especially if you have a sloped roof.
Its also easier to detect sunlight streaming in through a hole or crack in the ceiling of your attic than to try and find small defects in the roof beneath your feet.
The first giveaway that you need a new roof will often be a leak in within the attic or top floor or your home. But keep in mind that a leak does not always mean you need an entirely new roof.
Take steps to manage leaks as well as you can before professional help arrives, and have the damage analyzed by a licensed contractor before more extensive damage occurs.
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Check The Inside Of Your Roof
Inspecting the interior of your roof is a simple and safe way to assess the condition of your roofing structure. Take into account that interior damage always points to more significant problems than exterior roof damage.
With that in mind, if you dont find any issues on the inside of your roof, it doesnt mean that you should skip checking the exterior as well. That said, here are the biggest signs that you might need a new roof:
- Dark Stains Dark stains are very easy to identify and may point to more serious roof damage. Roof leaks can cause stains. But so can condensation, which is why its essential to know how to identify the difference between the two so you can fix it.
- Mold Your attic offers the perfect environment for mold growth. Thats why you should check it for mold at least once a year. A moldy attic is a problem that should be taken seriously. Here are the steps to take to get rid of mold from your attic area.
- Water Damage If you notice any water damage in your attic, your roof is leaking and probably rotting on the inside. Water can weaken your roofs structural integrity, cause it to sag and even endanger the entire household. If you notice any signs of water damage, contact a licensed roofing contractor without delay.
Sign #: Damaged Flashing
Flashing is the material placed around objects that protrude from roofs, such as your chimney and roof vents. Flashing is designed to prevent the movement of water into your roof by averting the water away from seams where water runoff is greater. It is made up of thin pieces of impenetrable materials aluminium and galvanized steel are most popular.
Your flashing may be damaged as a result of the caulking material under the flashing drying out or deterioration of the material caused by weather and oxidation. Loose flashing is another common problem having loose flashing can cause water to seep, leak inside your walls and ceilings and cause extensive damage such as mould and mildew growth and rotted wood, which can cause irreparable damage to your roofing structure.
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Cracks Puncture Holes Or Splits On A Flat Roof
Felt flat roofs often fall victim to cracks, puncture holes or splits round the edges of the roof caused by extreme weather. In turn, this can lead to water leaking through the gaps and can escalate to excessive water damage inside your home. Therefore, you must address this problem as quickly as possible and have your existing roof replaced.
As an accredited member of the National Federation of Roofing Contractors , here at Abbey Roofing we recommend that your roof is inspected by a professional at least twice a year to ensure it remains in top working condition for many years to come. As a leading roofing company serving throughout Hertfordshire, we have a wealth of experience in providing first-class roof repairs, installations and replacements for:
Final Thoughts On Roof Replacement
It is crucial to distinguish the warning signs when a roof replacement is necessary. The longer you wait on roof replacement, the greater your chance of damage to other areas of your home.
The roof replacement costs will also rise if other parts of the roof become damaged, such as the sheathing. Youll have much to think about when replacing a roof, especially the materials you choose.
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More Replacement Roofing Resources
Here are some additional excellent references on roof replacement worth a look at.
- What are the most popular types of roofing shingles see some of the most popular kinds of roofing shingles provided by GAF, including comparisons between 3-tab and architectural shingles.
- Comparing 3 tabs to architectural shingles see these types of shingles compared to help make a selection.
If you discover you need a new roof, use these roofing resources to help guide your decision-making process on what type of shingles you should choose, along with the expected costs for your roof replacement.
The above Real Estate information on signs you need a roof replacement was provided by Bill Gassett, a Nationally recognized leader in his field. Bill can be reached via email at or by phone at 508-625-0191. Bill has helped people move in and out of many Metrowest towns for the last 36+ Years.
Are you thinking of selling your home? I am passionate about real estate and love sharing my marketing expertise!
I service Real Estate Sales in the following Metrowest MA towns: Ashland, Bellingham, Douglas, Framingham, Franklin, Grafton, Holliston, Hopkinton, Hopedale, Medway, Mendon, Milford, Millbury, Millville, Natick, Northborough, Northbridge, Shrewsbury, Southborough, Sutton, Wayland, Westborough, Whitinsville, Worcester, Upton, and Uxbridge MA.
The Shingles Are Covered With Moss Or Algae
Okay, this is actually no reason to panic. “It’s just a cosmetic issue,” says McGavic. People may choose to replace the roof just because they don’t like the aesthetic . Whatever you do, don’t take matters into your own hands by power washing or scraping away at the green stuff. “That’s a good way to chip off all the granules, which again, essentially renders your shingles useless.”
How much time you’ve got left: As long as you can stand the look. Consider a wash that’s one part bleach and one part water to remove algae or moss. Or look into zinc strips that can be installed at roof peaks and will eventually eliminate the problem. If you do decide to replace your roof, consider tiles that are algae-resistant, like GAF Timberline roofs, a Good Housekeeping Seal holder.
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The Roof Has Outlived Its Lifespan
How old is your existing roof? Depending on the material, the lifespan of a roof could be between 20 and 50 years, but it varies by the roofing material.
- Asphalt shingles tend to last anywhere from 10 to 20 years in Florida.
- Metal roofs are more expensive but require few repairs and last 30 to 50 years.
- Clay tiles also fare well in Florida and last 40 years on average.
You should know when your roof was installed so you can estimate the lifespan for your roof. If youre not sure exactly when your roof was installed, you can check home improvement records to find out. It also depends on whether the old roof was removed and you only have one layer of shingles, and if it is properly ventilated. If the roof was installed over another layer or several layers and it is older than 20 years, chances are you need a new roof.
Signs That Your Roof Needs To Be Replaced
Before calling your local roofing contractor, do some investigating on your own, especially if you have an active leak. However, dont climb up onto your roof. If it is damaged, then you might exacerbate the damage or even injure yourself. Look for the following signs with binoculars from the ground:
- Bald spots on the shingles which indicate that theyre missing granules.
- Curling, cracked or warped shingles.
- Active leaks, especially in your attic or ceiling.
- Missing, damaged or rusting flashing.
- Your roof is more than 20 years old.
- Your neighbors are getting roof replacement .
- Your roof looks old or worn.
- Dark streaks on your roof.
- Moss or algae growth.
If you see any of these signs, contact us for an inspection. Fields Roof Service can identify the root causes of issues and provide you with a comprehensive solution.
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North Creek Roofing Staff
Dan started roofing in 1976 and started North Creek Roofing in 1996.
John started roofing at an early age and has over 30 years of experience. John joined North Creek in 2004.
Director of Sales & Marketing
Mike has 30 years of general construction and estimating experience. He joined North Creek in 2020.
Lifetime Designer Composition Roofing Systems
Over 130 years of quality and innovation
GAF has more than 100 years of experience and expertise. The company offers a wide variety of high-quality composition roofing solutions and strong warranties for your peace of mind.
Composite roofing is comprised of a mixture of various roofing materials like fiberglass, recycled paper products and asphalt. Composite roofing offers dependable performance and versatility, coming in many colors, shapes and sizes, and its resistant to cracking, peeling or warping.
Composite roofing generally lasts two to three times longer than most other roofing materials, and many varieties contain recyclable materials.
Artisan-crafted shapes combined with oversized tabs result in a sophisticated beauty unmatched by typical shingles.
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Your Flat Roof Is Torn Heat
Flat roofs are also prone to aging due to heat and UV exposure. If your flat roofs membrane is discolored or cracking, it may be time for a full replacement.
Built-up roofing and modified bitumen systems are prone to tearing from impacts like falling trees, as well as wind damage that can lift the upper tar layer. Look for torn sections or pieces that may be missing altogether.
The most critical issue to look for if you have a flat roof is pooling water. If the roofing structure underneath the top membrane is beginning to warp, your roof may be suffering moisture damage from standing water. When this is the case, your roof system may need to be replaced, including both the underlying roof platform and upper membranes. In addition to residential roofers, we’re also commercial roofers who can replace the flat roof.