We all age, and so does the roof of our house. There’s a certain age limit to each and everything in the universe, and while death is irreplaceable, roofs are. But sometimes, a simple roof inspection followed by repair can correct the damage to your roof.
Other times, you might need to completely replace your roof. So how can you tell when it is time to panic and when you need your roof replaced? There are some classic warning signs and red flags to look out for if you’re confused about getting a repair done or entirely substituting your old roof with a new one.
What your roof is made up of can determine how long it will last. Normally cedar and asphalt roofing have an age limit of 20-25 years, after which they start deteriorating. Tiled roofs generally don’t have a fixed lifespan, but when the individual tiles start cracking easily, that’s when you know the roof is old and needs to be replaced. Sometimes tiled roofs may take a long time to break, and they can last for up to a hundred years. Concrete, on the other hand, is immortal and never needs replacing, only repairing.
Some common roofing problems like blocked drainage by rainwater debris and plants only need fixing. Leaks and improperly sealed flashing and vents also only need repairing. If your roof is covered with mould, it’s because your roof has a faulty drainage system, but there’s no need to panic. Most of the times, leaks are easily fixed and mould eliminated.
Any apparent issue with the shingles of your roof should raise red flags. Shingles curling upwards from the edges or curling from the middle mean they no longer can support harsh weather conditions and need to be replaced. If the shingles start breaking, cracking or if they start going missing because of a storm, you need to get ready to replace your roof. Shingles make the backbone of your roof; any problem with shingles should prompt you into action. Looking for roof repairs? Look no further! Top Glaze has you covered.
Early Signs You May Need a Roof Replacement
It’s hard to know when you might need a roof replacement because a roof isn’t something that you check every day. With so many other things to think about, it’s easy to forget about maintaining your roof – but not doing so can cause problems.
It’s important to check your roof at least twice a year to look for any signs of damage. That way, you’ll be able to make the necessary repairs or replace your roof if needs be. Finding damages early can save you a lot of trouble and a lot of money in the long-run – and you could avoid potential dangers, too.
Signs of water damage can be easily mistaken for something else. If you find some damp patches on the upper floors of your room, for example, then you’d be forgiven for thinking that.
You were suffering from damp. Watermarks and mildew can also easily be chalked up to water coming in from the window when it last rained – but don’t be so sure.
Although your assumptions may be true, these signs can also mean that you need a roof replacement or at least make roofing repairs. Even the smallest watermarks and mould could mean that water has seeped in from your roof or that your roof has a hole or a crack.
When you find signs of water damage, check your roof. Don’t wait for further damage; doing so could be costly and require you to have your roof replaced entirely.
Mould and moss growth
Something else to check out for is moss and mould. If mould and moss have grown outside your roof, then tiles could force themselves apart, creating a gap that lets in water.
Check your roof and look for tiles that show signs of rotting, moss or mildew. Deal with this as soon as you can; if you don’t, bacteria and fungi could grow and cause water damage to your roof. If you find lots of problematic mouldy areas, a roof replacement may be required.
The light coming through your roof
Make it a habit of turning out the lights in the upper rooms of your home and looking up at the roof every once in a while. The best time to do this is at sunset, as it will be dark enough inside with the lights out yet bright enough outside for you to see the light coming through.
The light coming in from your roof could mean that you have cracks and holes in your roof – which should be attended to as soon as possible. Check your roof to see if repairs could fix the damage or whether an entire roof replacement is needed. Looking for a roof replacement? Check out Top Glaze for a wide range of roof services.
Loose roof tiles
During your annual roof check, check to see whether any of your roof tiles are loose. By simply stepping on them and checking their state, you’ll be able to assess whether repairs are needed.
If you spot more than a couple of loose or missing tiles, then you should consider replacing your roof. A weak roof with missing or damaged tiles could cave in on you – so act quickly.
The top of your roof should follow a straight line along the ridge. If there is a saddleback or sag in the middle, it may be a warning sign of structural damage and might cause your roof to collapse if not detected and treated early.
Roofing sagging can be caused by frequent exposure to moisture and a vast amount of water, faulty roofing materials, improper installations despite high-quality roofing materials and, for countries who experience winter or too much weight on the roof, snow and ice.
To prevent the chances of sagging, it’s important to clear your roof from rainwater, ensure that your roofing materials are of good quality and were installed properly. You should also assess how much weight your roof can tolerate. If you feel like something is wrong with your roof upon inspection, there is most likely. Get in touch if you need assistance.
Flashing is the material placed around objects that protrude from roofs, such as your chimney and roof vents. Flashing is designed to prevent the movement of water into your roof by averting the water away from seams where water runoff is greater. It is made up of thin pieces of impenetrable materials; aluminium and galvanised steel are most popular.
Your flashing may be damaged as a result of the caulking material under the flashing drying out or deterioration of the material caused by weather and oxidation. Loose flashing is another common problem; having loose flashing can cause water to seep, leak inside your walls and ceilings and cause extensive damage such as mould and mildew growth and rotted wood, which can cause irreparable damage to your roofing structure.
Debris in gutters
Check your gutters for pieces of asphalt shingles or sand-like granules that are used as a topcoat; this material protects your tiles, and if granules are falling from your tiles and into your gutters, then it could be a sign that your shingles are deteriorating. Of course, a few loose granules are normal, but if you notice an increase in residue, this may be a warning sign.
The protective coating of a roof tends to slough off due to atmospheric changes, constant exposure to weather, long-term usage and moisture, which causes the asphalt to weaken. Therefore, you should aim to repair tiles and replace their protective coating on a regular basis.
You should also check for debris falling from trees nesting on your roof, as this can cause the coating of your roof to weaken. Therefore, regular garden maintenance is important.
Make sure that you inspect your roof regularly in broad daylight, and if you notice deformed, distorted, curled areas, or tiles bald from their protective coating, then you may need to make some roof repairs. And, if you live in North Yorkshire, give us a call. We’d be happy to have our Harrogate roofers take a look at your property and recommend repairs. Take a look at our range of roof repairs Melbourne.
If you find water inside your property, then you should inspect your roof. Dark streaks or other leaks in the attic can show penetration; you may find circular stains on your walls or ceiling, hear a sound of dripping water within walls, or notice flat surfaces bubbling or blistering. All of these are signs that water is getting into your attic through the roof.
Attic leaks are commonly caused by missing tiles or broken seals under the flashing of your chimney. Another cause of leaks is a complicated roofline or poorly-installed roofing.
There are hundreds of materials that can be used in building roofs, and in the United Kingdom, the most common type of roofs are installed with tiles and shingles. These types of roofs are designed to stand the test of time and withstand the Great British weather.
The age of your roof will determine which materials were used, how the roof was built and how you maintain it. It also depends on whether or not a house has a single layer or multiple layers of shingles. If your roof is made up of multiple layers of shingles and it’s around 20 years or more, you might want to have it replaced.
Furthermore, as roofs are exposed to many extremes of weather, which will eventually take its toll, professional roofers and roof experts agree that if your roof is 15 years or older, it might be time to have it looked at by a professional.
Mortars are mainly used for bedding roof junctions such as ridges (the outer horizontal area where two roof slopes meet) and verges (the outer edges of roofs). You should check your mortars frequently, as these materials have a limited lifespan, and you should also lookout for early signs of degeneration caused by extreme changes in the weather. These ridges and verges are highly susceptible to cracking (due to building movement and frost) and eventually maybe dislodged and fall off in occurrences of strong winds.
Falling mortars may be a problem for older roofs where the mortar was used as bedding for the tiles. If this starts to break down (and fall off), then it may be an indication that the roof is reaching the end of its life. Keep in mind that mortar is best replaced rather than repaired.
Roofs rely on the underlay and tiles working together to keep water out. If there is a single tear in the underlay, then you may be able to patch it, but since there is already an existing tear somewhere from the roof, it can be an area where water may seep through.
If you look at the outside of your roof, you might not be able to notice a roofing problem. A tiny leak in the roof can go undetected, and that’s what makes it riskier. These leaks tend to grow in size, and you’ll only notice when the water has already seeped through the underlay.
If the underlay is already worn out and rotting, then it will need a replacement. Rotted underlay can weaken the foundation of your roof and cause it to collapse. In this case, a new roof will be required, as it’s impossible to replace only the underlay of a roof.
According to the National Roofing Contractors Association, ridges are defined as the “highest point of the roof, represented by a horizontal line where two roof areas intersect, running the length of the area.”
The ridge area should have a top-cover or a cap that will ensure that no water can enter the roof.
Ridges are also used for aesthetic purposes of your roof, accentuating the architectural design of the house. They’re also used for ventilation.
Ridges usually require attention more often than the rest of the roof, as they’re at the highest point of your property. Damage to the mortar or the bedding of the ridge can also damage the ridge, which can, in turn, damage the rest of your roof. If the ridge is in a poor state, the whole roof should be thoroughly checked, and other damages should be repaired.
Gutters on the ground
Roof shingles rely on an overlapping system to be fully functional, and these tiles are kept in place by sealants that act like glue. If you notice parts of tiles or excessive amounts of granular material on the floor or in the gutters, your roof might be telling you something.
Tiles are made to last for years, but these tiles tend to get exposed to constant and extreme changes in the atmosphere, which most likely cause sealants losing strength that eventually will cause tiles to weaken, crack and chip off parts. It is important to check your roof if the weather permits.
If not, you might notice parts or granules of your tiles on the floor or in the gutter, and it might be time to call your roof repairman or for you to change or repair your roof before those chipped off parts hurt someone.
10 Signs That You Need Roof Repair
Ever notice how when some people are looking to decide on something, they wish they would receive a “sign from above?”
Well, regardless of your spiritual beliefs, this approach is accurate when it comes to figuring out whether it’s time to repair or replace your roof. So when you turn your gaze toward the heavens (or climb up onto your roof and gaze downward), here are some signs that it might be time to call in a roofer.
1. Shingles that are curled cracked, or absent. These are indications that the shingles are nearing the end of their lifespan. If you see (or don’t see, as the case may be) lots of these types of shingles, you should consider getting your roof replaced.
2. Shingles that are dark, dirty, or even wet. If shingles are allowing moisture to be trapped, they aren’t doing their job. Keep in mind that the wetness may not be right under the offending shingle (since water runs downhill).
3. Lots of shingle granules in gutters. Composite or asphalt shingles shed their granules when they start to wear out. These granules often find their way into your gutters. The granules look like coarse, black sand.
4. Wear and tear around roof objects and openings. Chimneys, vents, pipes, and other objects that penetrate your roof are places where deterioration may initially develop. Often, the fixes can be confined to these specific areas.
5. Blistering or peeling exterior paint. If your attic is poorly ventilated, moisture or increased humidity can build up near the roofline — which can cause the paint to peel or blister. (This may also be an indication that your gutter system is failing.)
6. Staining on interior ceilings or walls. Many different things can cause water stains or discolouration on walls or ceilings. But your roof’s underlayment may be allowing moisture into your home, which leads to the stains. Replacing your roof will solve this problem.
7. Leaks in the attic after a rainstorm. If rain is getting into your attic, it may be simply a question of replacing some flashing. But again, if the culprit is a porous underlayment, you’ll probably need a roof replacement.
8. A roof deck that is sagging. If you notice the decking or rafters in your attic are sagging downward instead of remaining straight, they may be wet from leaking moisture. If it’s localised, you may be able to avoid a complete roof replacement.
9. The presence of outside light in your attic. If you’re up in the attic during the day and you can see streams of light coming in, know that water can invade your attic through those same openings. Check the shingles to see if they need replacing.
10. Higher energy bills. If you suddenly see a spike in your air conditioning or heating costs, the cool or warm air may be leaking out through your roof. But if you address this ventilation issue in your attic, your heating and cooling expenses should drop.