Time for a New Roof?

by J on March 12, 2010

Of all the possible home improvement jobs, most of us dread the thought of having to replace the roof. We would rather sink the money into something, well, more fun than a roof—maybe a granite countertop or a bathroom remodel. While replacing your roof may not make it to the top of your glamorous list as far as home remodels go, it should be a top priority because of the havoc a leaky roof can inflict on your home—and your life.

If you’ve been wondering if it’s time to replace your roof, let’s consider some of the signs of a damaged roof.

Outside Signs

  • Check for signs of moisture, mold, rotten areas or termite infestations on the roof. These are often indicative of wet spots on the roof, and consequently a problem you will need to fix. A roofing contractor will be able to help you access the extent of the damage.
  • Check for any visible signs of damage on your roof such as cracked, torn or missing shingles.
  • Inspect your chimney, pipes and vents to see if there are any cracks or loose material surrounding them. Sometimes minor repairs to these areas may be all it takes to fix a leak.
  • Check your gutters for large amounts of shingle granules (they look like grains of sand, only bigger). It’s time to replace the roof if your shingles are losing a majority of the granules.

Inside Signs

  • An obvious sign that your roof is damaged is if it is leaking. However, don’t panic at the first trickle of water. It may be that you just have a missing shingle, or if you had a particularly severe storm with high winds, water could have blown in around a roof vent.
  • Check in the attic to see if the roof deck is sagging. This needs to be evaluated by an expert to determine the cause and the solution.
  • Look for any dark stains or trails on the walls, which could indicate water leaking in the past.
  • Check to see if any light is visible through the roof; if a hole if big enough for light to come through, it’s probably also big enough to allow water to pass through.

In the end, when it comes to any questions about your roof, your best bet is to call in a reputable roofing contractor and have them do a thorough inspection. They will be able to tell if you can just repair it, or if you need to put that bathroom remodel on hold and go for the new roof!

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