When it comes to home repairs, few projects can compete with the cost and scale of replacing your roof. But if left unattended, an old or damaged roof can cause a whole host of problems. To avoid cave-ins, water leaks, structural damage, mold, and increased utility bills, learn when to replace your roof. A few key indicators can let you know when a few shingles need to be replaced or when it’s time to bite the bullet and splurge on a brand-new roof.
When to Replace Your Roof
How Long Do Roofs Last?
Your roof won’t last forever. Every day it experiences wear and tear due to weather and exposure to the elements. According to the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors (NACHI), the lifespan of a roof varies based on several factors including your local weather conditions, the roof’s building and design, material quality, and maintenance. Roofs located in hot climates or areas that experience severe weather typically have shorter lives. NACHI provides the following lifespan estimates for common roofing materials:
- Asphalt Shingles (architectural): 30 years
- Asphalt Shingles (3-tab): 20 years
- Clay Tiles: 100+ years
- Metal Roofing: 40 to 80 years
- Simulated Slate: 10 to 35 years
- Slate: 60 to 150 years
- Wood: 25 years
How Will I Know I Need to Repair or Replace My Roof?
When your roof is in need of repair, you’ll notice several signs. Keep an eye out for these indicators to know when to replace your roof:
Shingles usually lay flat against one another, which helps them keep out water. Over time, however, shingles can warp and curl. It might not seem like a big problem, but this simple change in the shape of your shingles can drastically reduce your roof’s ability to keep your home watertight.
There are two types of curling: cupping and clawing. Cupping occurs when your shingles start to turn up at the edges. Clawing happens when your shingles are flat at the edge but start to bend upwards in the middle.
Damage to your shingles will occur naturally over time, but it can also be caused prematurely due to severe snow and ice. If you live in an especially cold climate, it might be worth investing in a moisture barrier to prevent damage to your shingles.
If you notice a few missing shingles, don’t panic. This doesn’t always mean it’s time for a new roof. Your roof may not look great, but you can usually replace individual shingles relatively easily and inexpensively. If many shingles are missing, however, and the remaining shingles are in bad shape, your roofer may recommend that you replace the entire roof. Consult an expert about the missing shingles and discuss when to replace your roof.
Cleaning your gutters doesn’t just prevent leaks and help direct stormwater away from your home; it can also help you keep an eye on your roof. If you start to notice granules in the gutters, and your roof is several years old, this could be a sign that the asphalt shingles are starting to deteriorate. As this article in Good Housekeeping explains, the rough granules on asphalt shingles help keep sunlight off the asphalt. Once those granules start coming off, your roof’s quality will head downhill quickly.
How Often Should Your Roof Be Inspected?
According to Consumer Affairs, the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA) recommends spot-checking your roof for damage every two years. You can easily do this yourself by climbing into the attic and looking for water damage and soft spots in the roof. From the ground, you should be able to notice curling or missing shingles, which can help you decide when to replace your roof. The NRCA also recommends additional inspections after severe weather because wind, debris, snow, ice, and hail can damage the durability and structure of your roof. While these bi-annual self-inspections are useful, it is important to have your roof inspected by a professional at least every three years.
Wondering when to replace your roof? GlennStone Roofing and Gutters can help. If you’re considering replacing individual shingles or your entire roof, we can help you match or choose colors. We can also help you decide what type of roof best fits your needs and your budget. Just give us a call at 417-860-8125, send an e-mail to info@GlennStone.net, or contact us online. You can even set up a free roofing consultation by requesting a quote from us today. We look forward to hearing from you.