To determine if you need repairs or a whole new roof, the first thing a roofer will do is complete an inspection. But what is the roofer looking for? Following is a list of items that experts look for when they inspect your roof.
Missing or broken shingles
Asphalt shingles are found on 80% of residential roofs in the United States. As asphalt shingles age, direct sunlight and temperature extremes cause them to become brittle. This can cause them to crack and break; wind can tear pieces or even whole shingles off the roof.
Moss, mildew, or mold
Moss, mildew, and mold create ugly patches on your roof. These growths also are damaging to the shingles and underlayment. All three need moisture to thrive, and all three hold that moisture. As moss, mildew, and mold grow, they create raised masses that can hinder water runoff. This causes even more moisture to be trapped on the surface of your roof, which means more moss, mildew, and mold growth. It’s a vicious circle that can destroy your shingles.
Roof vents help air to flow through attic spaces, moving warm, moist air out while letting cool, dry air in. Poor ventilation allows hot air from inside your home to heat the roof deck, which can make shingles brittle and cause curling. For homes in regions with snow and ice, a poorly vented attic can cause ice dams in gutters. Ice dams can cause moisture to get underneath shingles where it can start to rot the roof deck.
Ripples, blisters or buckles
Ripples, blisters, buckles, or physical changes can signal a variety of roof problems, including old shingles, inadequate ventilation, improper installation, damaged sheathing, multiple layers of shingles, and wet underlayment.
Shingles go through a natural aging process where some physical changes may begin to appear (just like wrinkles on our skin). When these changes become obvious from a roof inspection done on the ground, you may need a roof replacement. An old and deteriorating roof means a vulnerable roof deck. A damaged roof deck makes for a very expensive roof replacement.
Multiple layers of shingles
If a home has multiple layers of shingles, odds are good that there is roof damage – even if you can’t see it yet. When a roof has more than one layer of shingles, the roof won’t ventilate properly. Heat and moisture can be retained beneath the shingles. In addition, the new shingles can conform to the older shingles beneath them and follow any humps or low spots. As water flows down the roof, this unevenness can create areas of increased friction, which results in premature failure of the new roof over those areas.
No drip edge
Drip edge is a type of flashing at the edges of your roof. Flashing is installed underneath the shingles as a way to protect the wooden fascia from water runoff or wind-driven rain. A roof without drip edge, or with improperly installed drip edge, may have rotten or rotting fascia because of penetrating water. If shingles at the edges of the roof are starting to curl, it could be due to moisture.
If there are visible leaks inside your home, then roof repair or replacement is critical. An interior leak means that water has penetrated all roofing materials, and you can be sure that there is damage to the shingles and possibly the existing decking. When a roof leak is not repaired, water has the opportunity to damage joists and trusses, meaning costly repairs in addition to the cost of a roof replacement.
Action after the roof inspection
If you’ve noticed problems with any of these factors but haven’t called a roofer for a more detailed evaluation, it’s time to pick up the phone. Severely aged roofs often show more than one of these symptoms, and the clock may be ticking on the life of your roof deck.
Ready to replace your roof?
When you are ready for a new roof, contact Absolute Exteriors to get a free estimate on a new roof for your home in Ellisville, Chesterfield, Ballwin, and surrounding areas.