With proper maintenance, cleaning and repairs, the average residential roof lasts for 25 years. When you’re a homeowner, it is important to maintain the integrity of your roof and protect your investment. But what constitutes a quality roof that can be repaired versus issues that may necessitate replacement? How do homeowners determine when it’s time to replace their roof? A combination of any of the following issues may indicate a residential roof replacement may be necessary.

Curling, Cracked or Missing Shingles

When assessing a residential rooftop, it is critical to keep an eye out for curling, clawing, cracked or missing shingles. Curling describes a shingle that turns upward, while clawing occurs when a shingle’s edges stay flat and the middle starts to look raised. Excessive temperatures changes combined with improper attic ventilation can contribute to moisture creeping underneath shingles to cause these issues.

Similarly, one or more cracked shingles may entail severe roofing damage. This is because shingles form the first layer of protection against water and severe weather – damage or missing shingles can expose the underlying roofing system to water damage. Heavy winds and resulting debris hitting the roof may result in cracked shingles. A particularly violent storm may strip shingles off rooftops.

If you notice curling, clawing, cracked or missing shingles, contact a residential roofing contractor near you.

The Roof Is Sagging

Suffice to say, a roof that is buckling under its own weight is a clear sign of trouble. If a roof sags or buckles, it is time to replace it. Fortunately, this is not a common issue for most homes unless their roof is very old.

Unlike cracked or missing shingles, a sagging roof may indicate structural and/or water damage – a severe and costly problem that poses potential dangers, including harmful mold or at worst, possible roof collapse.

Granules and Fragments of Shingles in Gutters

This one can be tricky. If the roof of your home is relatively new, some granules in the gutters are to be expected. However, after 10 or 15 years, it can be a sign of a problem. Debris or hail hitting the roof can contribute to loss of granules, which serve to protect against UV ray damage. Over time, shingles will lose their granules due to weather patterns. This gradual deterioration may necessitate new shingles in areas of heavy granule loss, but may not indicate a complete roof replacement on its own.

Algae, Moss, Mold, or Mildew Begin Growing

If you notice roof discoloration and discover something is growing on the roof of your home, you have a problem. Temporary measures can be taken to reduce moss or mildew growth. Some experts recommend a dilution of bleach and water, though it is best to have a professional provide that treatment unless you’re very comfortable with heights, roof slope and handling a hose at the same time! That and other treatments can keep unwanted growth at bay for the time being. If moss, algae, and mold continue to grow in spite of your efforts, you may need to contact a roofing contractor. The true issue may be that moisture is fostering this growth, and trapped moisture and actively growing moss and algae can possibly cause or worsen roof leaks.

The Roof is 25 Years Old or More

Even the most fastidious homeowners can expect roofing inspections to yield damage requiring repairs at some point in their roof’s lifespan. Depending on the materials used and the quality of installation, the average residential roof lasts 25 years. After that, it may need replacing, or consistent inspections and subsequent repairs. When roofs reach the 25- to 30-year limit and begin to exhibit signs of old age or any of the aforementioned issues, it may be time to replace the roof.

At the end of the day, only a professional can determine the condition of your roof and provide the best estimate for its lifespan and need for a repair or replacement. Honest, reputable roofing contractors will advise when repairs are a viable option, or if replacing the roof altogether will ultimately prove to be the most economical decision. If your home’s roof exhibits any of the issues mentioned in this post, contact Select Construction today to schedule an inspection and estimate for your residential roof repairs or replacement.

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