A homeowner may or may not be aware that they need a new roof. They might see that the tiles are getting dirty or a storm might have ripped some asphalt shingles away. If a roof is damaged, then the need for new work is obvious, and a temporary patch has to be placed on a roof to prevent leaks until a repair job can be arranged. If your roof is old shingles, it probably needs work. Consult roofing experts.
It pays to know what type of damage that a leaky roof can cause. The principal purpose of tiles and shingles is to drain water while reflecting the sun’s heat. Asphalt shingles last for a few decades because of their sandy upper surface, but eventually, the polymer wears out and starts to crack. Old shingles fly off the nails in storms. Holes can lead to leaks, and leaks do incremental damage to the house.
Here are some important warning signs of roof trouble.
1) Look at the Roof’s Age
Know the history of the house, including the last time it had a fresh roofing job. Old asphalt tiles can still look good if they have a natural color, but they structurally weaken over time. A roof that approaches its thirtieth birthday probably needs work. There is more leeway for aluminum and masonry tiles, but they need a good inspection. Areas with hot summers or windy winters can reduce the lifespan of a shingle job.
2) Look for Granules In The Gutter
Asphalt shingles are sheets of a durable polymer that has been sprinkled with grains of sand or other grit on top. These granules provide a variety of colors and also help to reflect sunlight. Asphalt is chosen precisely because it reflects heat and is easy to work with.
The problem is that asphalt shingles degrade and lose their grip on these granules. They can also be knocked off by hail, but weathering is the big issue. If you see granules in the gutter, it means that the roof tiles are getting old and are becoming more brittle.
The loss of grit further accelerates the deterioration of asphalt because the polymer is directly exposed to sunlight, which tends to break down any form of plastic. It is inevitable that some of these aging tiles will blow away in the wind and begin the process of trickling water inside the house.
It is a good idea to check the gutters every few years. Most of the residue will be leaves and maybe whirlybird seed. Newer houses will not see much grit in the gutter, but older homes certainly will. They hang around because they are heavier than water. Call a roofing expert, especially if bits of black asphalt is present.
3. Check For Plant Growth
The important point is that moss and shingles do not mix. Unless someone deliberately installs a sod roof over old asphalt, the moss will break the grit away from the rest of the shingle. Moss will also hold onto moisture and change the course that water flows down a roof. A greater concern is that many plants release chemicals that break down rock and plant matter. Do not let this happen to your roof.
New asphalt is sterile and does not promote growth. Old asphalt is chemically weak enough to support life. The growth of moss and seedlings on your roof is a sign that an inspection is long overdue. Believe a contractor when he says that a roof is old and needs replacing. Sometimes the damage can be repaired, but sometimes not.
4) Look For Damaged Or Curling Shingles
An amateur can look at a roof and see if there is any glaring damage. Shingles that do not lie flat or appear to be missing corners is an obvious sign of damage. A shingle that turns upward is described as buckling, and it means that an object might be lodged under the shingle or the shingle itself is damaged.
Curling is when a shingle curls at the edges so that the edges do not lie flat against adjacent tiles. These corners are liable to break away. These conditions might be caused by too much moisture. They can also be caused by old age. Walking on old tiles is hazardous because they might break.
5) Beware Cracking Sunlight In The Attic
Older homes do not always have easily accessible attics. On the other hand, walking around in the attic is one way to spot roof damage. If both the tiles and the underlying wood is damaged, then light might appear faintly in the darkness. This is a bad sing because the roof is damaged. Shingles are easy to replace, but sections of rotten wood are not. Contact an expert to inspect the problem.
6) Sagging Roofs And Changing Thermal Efficiency
Two additional signs are when the roof loses a straight incline and when it experiences a sudden increase in a heating or cooling bill. If a roof sags, it means that the wood of the roof is losing its structural integrity. Two probable causes are moisture and termites. Both are bad news.
Moisture can also cause a reduction in insulation by getting into the mineral cotton that lines the drywall of the indoor ceiling. Since this insulation is made of fiberglass, it does not deteriorate, but water does reduce its efficiency. The same moisture can also seep and damage the drywall. Asphalt itself plays a role in reflecting the sun, and losing too much grit might cause it to absorb sunlight.