Even though your roof may appear to be in good shape there can be signs that only a professional can observe. The age of a roof is significant, but you can’t always predict the condition because weather conditions and other issues over the life of the roof may not be the same depending upon where you live. Roofing in regions that get more snow, storms or high humidity can age faster than other areas.
A professional roofer can determine the age and condition of your roof in a short appointment. Your roofer will inspect the exterior surface by walking the roof taking care to note of any cracks, broken, worn, curling, or missing shingles. Shingles without nails, or tearing around the nails can be an indication of an aging roof. Roof valleys where sealant cracks are notable with sizeable gaps can lead to water intrusion onto the main roof surface. They will look around chimneys and external vents taking note of the state and condition of the material used to seal up flashing looking for cracks, or separation.
Another indication is inside your gutter. All asphalt shingles lose grit (sand-like pellets) over time that falls into the gutter and sit at the bottom. This grit known as shingle granules is normal, however, if you have a relatively young roof with excessive grit, roofing nails, or shingle pieces in the gutter this could be a sign of excessive aging, or a combination of age and the quality of the shingle when the roof was most recently replaced.
Other signs to look for are increased heating and cooling utility bills. The roof may not be providing the insulation it did when it was first installed due to age or damage. Compare your summer and winter utility bills for the last five years and it will give you some idea if something else is going on with your roof.
A professional roofing contractor will want to take a look in your attic to check for proper ventilation, inspect for signs of leaks, or water ingression, seals that don’t appear to be as strong, or wood rot, or damage from humidity, or water from a previous storm. One of the hardest things to determine for the layperson is just enough storm damage to mean more roofing problems down the road. Damage such as big tree limbs on your home, or facia fall off or easy to spot, but the trained eye can walk a roof line and determine if there has been wind, hail, or storm damage. Inform your roofer when they come if there were recent storms dating back 6 months and if other homes in the neighborhood had their roofs replaced.
Roofers may also determine if you have a critter ;iving rent free in your attic. Every roofer has a story of seeing a pair of eyes in a dark attic whether it’s mice, squirrels, raccoons, etc. Each of these pests can do their fare share of damage to insulation, wiring, vent openings and their droppings carry all kinds of bacteria that an cause upper respiratory problems when it gets into the ventilation system. If you hear something in your walls and attic at night the first call should be to a licensed termite and pest control company to rid the walls or attic of the nuisance. Then call the roofer to determine what damage if any has been done to the attic.
Finally no matter how old you are save climbing on the roof for the professionals. More people have been hurt climbing ladders to inspect their roof, or clean out their gutters from leaves and debris by simply mis-stepping or overreaching. Leave the physics to the pros and spend the time and money with them instead of the hospital, or doctors due to a fall.
If you bought a 30-year old home do the math. Depending on where you live and the year round weather your probably going to be a candidate for minimal roof repairs or a replacement. A reputable company will not recommend a replacement roof unless you absolutely need it and they will be honest about repairs that need to be made. They care about their reputation, their BBB rating and Google Reviews. Only a roofing pro can fully determine if your roof needs some love and attention or a total overhaul.
Gilstrap Roofing as a great BBB rating and reviews. We’ve been meeting the needs of homeowners in the Upstate since the 1930’s. As family-owned business we live work, play and worship where you do so our reputation matters a great deal to us. Call us today to talk about your roofing needs.
Brian Gilstrap, President
Greenville, SC 29611