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When to Replace Your Roof

When to Replace Your Roof

It’s Not Leaking, So Why Do Anything?

A leaking roof is the most obvious sign that it's time to replace your roof, but there are other signs that could indicate this need as well. Many of these signs will lead to a leaking roof, but if you identify them early enough, you can prevent such water damage form occurring, and thus, save yourself time and money on more costly repairs down the road.  

Things to Watch For

  • Shingles that are torn or missing will eventually expose the roof to water damage and rot.  Since shingles are connected, these missing ones will have a “domino effect,” thus causing other shingles to blow away.  Old shingles will curl, split, and thus, lose their ability to waterproof your home.  They also become fragile and more susceptible to being blown away by wind.
  • Flashing is known as roofing’s “last line of defense against links.”  It’s a metal that forms the intersections in roofing systems and surfaces.  Rusted or missing flashing can result in leaks, so it’s a good idea to check those intersections.
  • Check gutters, downspouts and splash pans regularly for decay or damage. You may also see broken pieces of paint and scraps of roofing, which can ultimately lead to leaks.
  • While inside, look for discolored plasterboard, cracked paint, or peeling wallpaper.

What To Do

If you see any of these signs, consult a contractor: it may be time for a new roof.  You have two main roof replacement options.

1)      Install a new roof on top of the old one – This is a cheaper option, but it doesn’t always work. If you have more than two roofing layers already present, your roof can get too heavy to accommodate all the materials, and these old layers may end up rotting, thus rendering your new roof unstable.  If you’re going to pursue this option, you need to find a quality roofing contractor, and ask to see your current roofing layers to see if they can support a new one.

2)      Remove and Replace the Roof – If you’re going to invest, make sure you get the mileage.  Once the old roof has been removed, there's a good chance the roof deck will need to be repaired first if it shows signs of rot or decay. You'll also want to review the slope of your roof to make sure you’re getting proper drainage.

The second option carries the better chance of a quality roof.  If you can’t afford the initial investment, speak with your bank.  They may be able to help you finance it through a home equity loan.  A quality roof is essential to a livable (and marketable) home.



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