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How To Find Out How Old A Roof Is

Why Do You Need To Know How Old Your Roof Is

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Knowing the age of your roof is helpful for both you and your roofing contractor. Your roofing contractor needs to know so they have a good idea of the next steps for your roof, such as repairs or a replacement.

Be aware, it takes a complete roofing inspection to really determine what your roof needs. But knowing the age of your roof provides your roofing contractor with important information before they come out to your home.

While its helpful to roofing contractors, it also helps you determine if its time to replace your roof. If you know your roof is near the end of its lifespan, youll know its time to start preparing for a roof replacement.

For example, a dimensional asphalt shingle roof has a lifespan of 30 years. As long as your roof is installed properly and your attic is adequately ventilated, its going to get pretty close to that 30-year mark.

Once your roofs age gets somewhere around 80-85% of its lifespan, youll know you need to start considering a roof replacement. For a dimensional asphalt shingle roof, thats around 27 years.

There are plenty of factors that go into determining what your roof needs. But knowing your roofs age is a crucial piece of information to have when trying to find out if you should get roof repairs or a full roof replacement.

Assess Visible Roof Damage To Estimate Age

You can only learn so much by climbing up a ladder and walking around your roof if you arent quite sure what to look for, so here are a few tips for assessing visible roof damage for different types of roofing materials:

Wooden Shake or Shingles: Depending on what climate you live in, you want to be on the lookout for any proof of warpage or dry rot if you are using these materials. You also want to be sure you know what the differences are when it comes to shingles and shakes shakes are hand-split on at least one face and either tapered or straight, while shingles are sawn and tapered. If you have noticed any problems with this material, and the official roof inspection has shown that around one-third of the material is damaged, it is most definitely time for a roof replacement. As a side note, you want to be sure to avoid walking on this material during an inspection because of how unstable it is.

Slate, Clay or Tile: If properly taken care of, this type of roofing material can last for an entire lifetime. While they are a bit more high-end and more expensive, the longevity is definitely worth it. The biggest downfall with this material is that they are more susceptible to unstable climates and ice damage. Because this material is so easy to break, you would want to do any kind of inspection by using binoculars to avoid any further damage by walking on the roof. You want to be on the lookout for chipped, broken or missing pieces of the tile.

Your Neighbors Are Getting Their Roofs Replaced

In general, neighborhoods are built around the same time. So if you begin to see or hear that a lot of your neighbors are getting their roofs replaced, it could mean its time for you as well. Of course, your roof could have been replaced before you bought it in recent years, but if its showing some of these signs, you can bet on it being the same age as everyone elses.

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Why Do You Need To Know The Age Of Your Roof

When you reach out to a roofing contractor, theyre going to ask you questions about your roof. The information from these questions helps determine what your roof might need and who to send before they actually come out to your home for an inspection.

I can guarantee one of these questions is going to be, How old is your roof?. Most homeowners dont think about their roofs age until they’re asked about it.

But knowing the age of your roof is valuable information to have for both you and your roofing contractor. Now youre probably wondering why.

Because we want you to be as informed as possible before reaching out to a roofing contractor, were going to break it down for you.

The team at Bill Ragan Roofing has proudly served the Nashville area since 1990. We provide high-quality roof repairs, replacements, maintenance, and even skylight installation. When you work with us, youll never have to worry about your roof again.

Presence Of Shingle Granules In The Gutters:

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Granules, made of crushed rock, slag, slate, tile, or porcelain, protect asphalt coating from sunlight and water. Once it gets old, it becomes loose and drives to fall off. Check your gutters to see whether or not they have shingle granules in it. Generally, the roof tends to lose more of its shingles when their life ends.

If youre noticing a few granules in your gutters, then that doesnt mean your roof needs a replacement. In many instances, this mishap happens due to a storm, so contacting a repair person would make more sense.

Final words:

While identifying the age of your roof may be difficult, the above signs can give you some idea of the same. In many cases, signs indicate direct replacement of the roof. So, take immediate action whenever you come across any of these signs. Do not wait for the storm to vanish your foundation.

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How Old Is Your Roof 7 Signals To Help You Find Out

Identifying the correct age of your roof can be complicated unless youve built your home from scratch. If youre unaware of it, then you need to investigate the age of your roof. However, knowing the same is vital for a lot of reasons. It will help you in deciding whether you need to replace them or repairs are enough to keep it sound.

It is a tough question to answer, but it is also one of the frequently asked questions. Here in this blog, well uncover seven signs that will help you find out the answer. So, be vigilant while reading it!

Check Your Citys Building Permit Records

A great place to check for information on work that has been done on your home is your city. Call the department that issues and archives building permits. In most places, construction work, especially that on a scale as large as a roof, requires a permit issued by the local municipality. These permits are public records and often indicate the date of the project, inspection records, and the contractor who performed the work.

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Can You Get Homeowners Insurance With A Bad Roof

It really depends on just how poor the condition of your roof is, but if your roof is simply old or has a few rough patches you might be able to get homeowners insurance, even if youâve been denied coverage by a home insurance company already. There are some insurance companies that have âflexibleâ underwriting and specialize in insuring homes with bad roofs or risks that standard insurers wonât touch.

Bear in mind that these types of companies typically charge far higher insurance premiums than standard insurers and the coverage youâre getting also might be subpar. Itâs possible that your roof might only be covered at its actual cash value. That means if your roof is 20 years old and it needs to be replaced due to windstorm damage, youâll only be reimbursed for its value after 20 years of depreciation has been deducted from its replacement value.

But if youâre in need of temporary coverage to tide you over while you save up for a new roof, or youâre planning on selling the property and donât want to put any more money into it, getting coverage through a high-risk carrier is a suitable option.

Ready to shop home insurance?

Your Roofing Materials Fail Prematurely

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Your roofing materials should live as long as the manufacturer specifies. However, there are cases when your roof fails prematurely and leads to a roof replacement well before you should need one.

Two of the common causes of premature roof failure are improper roof installation and inadequate attic ventilation. If your roof wasnt installed using correct roofing techniques, youre going to find shingles in your yard or even full sections sliding off your roof.

If your attic wasnt properly ventilated, then the damage from the trapped heat and cold will drastically shorten your roofs life. Be aware, when your roof doesnt have adequate ventilation or was installed incorrectly, the manufacturers warranty on your roofing materials will be voided.

This leaves you with only your contractors workmanship warranty to fall back on to replace your prematurely failed roof. If you dont hire a contractor that stands behind their workmanship, you could be in big trouble.

Thats why its crucial to ask how long of a workmanship warranty they offer before hiring them. But thats just one thing you need to ask when meeting with potential roofing companies.

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Curled And Buckled Shingles:

If your shingles are curled or buckled, then that is an indication your age has become old. Generally, it is because of not having enough asphalt on the shingle. So, check the slops of your house, which is getting direct sunlight. Are you noticing shingles getting curled and losing granules? If yes, then it could mean your shingles have over passed their expected life.

Furthermore, theres also a possibility of shingles being defective. However, this is one of the reasons to avoid installing lower-quality materials for your roof.

The Number Of Penetrations

Penetrations are anything that pokes out of your roof. Most commonly, this will include things like plumbing, gas, and kitchen vents, but it can also include skylights and chimneys. The more penetrations your roof has, the more time and care installers are required to have. Additionally, larger penetrations, like skylights, take longer to flash and work around than smaller penetrations like a gas vent, and will add more to the final cost of your roof.

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What Are The Dangers Of Removing An Asbestos Garage Roof

Weve all been exposed to asbestos at some point in our lives, but the implications will be minimal. However, theres no way of accurately quantifying how much or how little exposure is needed to contract a serious illness. The best way to minimise your chances is to take appropriate safety measures.

Important things to remember before you attempt to inspect or remove asbestos yourself:

  • Cover exposed skin, wear a hat, gloves, disposable overalls , safety goggles/glasses and a dust mask with built-in respirator
  • Dont eat, drink or smoke in spaces containing asbestos. Remove all clothing and outerwear thats been exposed to asbestos and move somewhere thats uncontaminated. Always wash and disinfect your hands and face.
  • Dont use power tools . Asbestos fibres will be released into the air if disturbed. It must be handled with absolute care.
  • Dont drop asbestos sheets on the floor. They must be carefully placed on the ground.
  • Keep family members and pets away from the removal area and notify your neighbours of the activity.
  • Lay plastic sheets on the ground to prevent further contamination of your garden.
  • Close all windows and doors in your house
  • Relocate outdoor childrens toys and play equipment
  • Contact a competent and licensed contractor to take the asbestos away and dispose of it responsibly

A Few Tips For Hiring A Professional Roof Inspections

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Ultimately, the easiest and best way to assess the age estimate and condition of your roof is to hire a roofing specialist to come and give an honest and thorough inspection of your roof.

Professional Inspections Are Accurate A roofing professional will be able to use their years of experience to help you avoid the really expensive and unseen issues much quicker than you or I ever could. Most roofing professionals will be able to see the problem before it gets completely out of control and ends up costing you way more money. Having a professional roofer check your roof is good for maintenance and upkeep. Just like you wouldnt neglect your teeth by never going to the dentist, having a roofer take a look at your roof from time to time could help prevent major issues. If you go with a true professional, they will be able to help minimize the odds of yearly inspections and get an end result that will last the test of time.

Professional Inspections Are Usually Free Roof inspections are almost always free! Make sure to ask before they come out. Why wouldnt you take advantage of having a professional come look at your roof for no additional cost? There wont be any add-on services or any additional hidden fees, just a good ol fashioned roof inspection to help you figure out the problems you need to address.

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Get An Estimate From A Home Inspector Or Roof Company

If all else fails, you can call in a home inspector to evaluate the state of the roof and estimate its age. Such professionals are highly trained in their field. They know the signs of advanced age when they see them and can provide you a reliable assessment.

You can get the same kind of service from a roofing company. However, you should know that the objectivity of a home inspector, who has no product to sell, will probably be sounder than a specialist sent by a roof installation company.

Curled Buckled Or Missing Shingles

As a roof ages, the layers holding together shingles begin to peel away from each other. Shingles that are curled or look warped are a classic sign of old roof age. If most of your shingles are curled, your roof is vulnerable to leaks and other types of damage. Youll want to replace any old shingles immediately to keep your home protected. Should you get a new roof? That will depend on the extent of the damage and how much needs to be replaced.

Additionally, if you notice shingles missing from your roof, replace them. Missing shingles can also be a warning sign that your roof is in need of additional repair.

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The Attic Is Not The Same:

Many homeowners directly pave the way to the roof to check its condition. Before you do that, inspect your attic. Doing a small check of the interiors of your home will help you to determine the position of your roof. Look whether or not:

  • Sunlight is coming through your roofs planks.
  • Streaks are dark and stained.
  • A few areas are saggy.

If you come across any of the above signs, then your roof has become old. Its time to call either a repairer or a roof installation company.

The Shingles Are Curling

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Shingles can curl in two ways: There’s cupping, which happens when the edges of the shingles turn upward and there’s clawing, which is when the edges stay flat and the middle starts to come up. “Both are signs of weathering and indicate that problems potentially leaks are relatively close to fruition,” says Mark Graham, vice president of the National Roofing Contractors Association.

How much time you’ve got left: “Depending on the extent of the curling, it could be anywhere from a year to five years before you need a new roof,” says Graham.

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Request A Copy Of The Receipt From Roof Replacement Company

The previous owners may remember the roofing company that replaced the roof. However, they may have discarded their copy of the receipt. If you have the name, you can contact the company and ask for a copy of the receipt or perhaps request that the previous owners do so. Roof installation companies tend to keep records of all the work they perform.

Therere Leaks And Water Damage:

No one ever wants to found themselves in this situation. It is the classic signal that your roof isnt doing what it is supposed to do. Many think that a leaky roof is merely a structural problem, but it can impose critical health issues too. Its possibly due to the worn of the protective layering on shingles.

In this scenario, either it could ask for roof repairs or replacement due to the old age of your roof.

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Ask The Previous Owners

Once you have closed on your home and moved in, you shouldnt cut off all contact with the previous owners. Most homeowners dont mind answering any questions you may have about the state of the house, including when the roof was last replaced. You can usually make such inquiries without going through a lawyer. If the previous owners were in the house a long time, then they probably know when the current roof was installed.

How Can I Find Out The Age Of A Roof

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There are four ways to determine the age of a roof of a home your are considering buying or already own:

1) Find out the date of the building permit. This the most accurate way to age a roof, but not all jurisdictions require building permits for roof replacement and sometimes the homeowner has the roof replaced without a permit. Many of the larger municipal and county governments in Florida have a database that the public can access online to find all the permits issued for a property. The address of the property or property appraisers parcel number can be used to start your search. Smaller building departments will often provide permit record information over the phone or from a fax request. 2) Request a copy of the receipt from the roofer for the completed work. This is not quite as foolproof as a roofing permit, but better than the next two options. Look at the document carefully to be sure it is not just a proposal to do the work. Also, if they are still in business, call the roofing contractor for verification that they did the roof.

3) Ask the seller or previous homeowner. While this is an easiest solution, it is often less accurate. Memory of years gone by gets slippery, especially for senior citizens. Also, dont be surprised if the the response you get is something like Well, when we bought the house in 5 years ago and the previous owner said she thought the roof was about 7 years old.

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