Should You Repair or Replace Your Roof?
From storm damage to the sun’s rays, your home’s roof takes a beating from Mother Nature every single day—and that takes its toll over time. But how do you know if you need a roof repair or a full roof replacement? Here’s a quick guide to help you answer the repair-or-replace question.
Remember, these are general guidelines. The best way to protect your home and possessions is to schedule a roof inspection with an experienced contractor. If you choose to inspect or repair a roof yourself, always take proper safety precautions, including using a safety ladder and safety rope, wearing shoes with good traction, and working with a partner.
Signs Your Roof Needs Repair
- Damaged or missing shingles are limited to a small area.
Shingles that are damaged or missing prevent the roof from shedding water properly, creating the risk for messy and costly leaks. If the shingle damage is confined to a small area and the roof is in otherwise good shape, you may be able to replace just those damaged shingles. Be aware that the color of new shingles may not be an exact match for the existing ones.
- Damage is confined to areas around roofing features, such as chimneys or vents.
Any feature connected to the roof is vulnerable to damage from the elements. For example, it’s not uncommon to see damage to flashing, which is the material (usually galvanized steel or aluminum) that prevents water from entering at a vulnerable spot, like the edge where the chimney meets the roof. As long as the rest of the roof is in good shape, flashing can be patched or replaced.
Signs Your Roof Needs Replacement
- The roof is nearing the end of its lifespan.
As a roof age, weather and other factors–including critters!–take their toll on shingles, breaking them down so they no longer offer maximum protection against the elements. The lifespan of a typical asphalt shingle roof is about 20-25 years.
- The shingles are shedding a significant amount of granules.
When asphalt shingles are manufactured, many granules are embedded into the asphalt, while others are embedded in that bottom layer of granules. Over time, it’s common for granules on that top layer to come loose and fall off. But as the shingle ages, it may lose embedded granules more uniformly and more frequently, which indicates the roof is near the end of its life cycle. If you see lots of granules from your not-so-new roof littering the gutters, consider roof replacement.
- The shingles are curling or splitting.
This problem can be triggered by several sources, including roof age, UV exposure, or improper roof installation. Another source is inadequate attic ventilation, which causes excessive heat and moisture, warping shingles from underneath. Curling and splitting reduce the roof’s resistance to water, so your home is more prone to leaks. If the damage is relatively widespread, it might be time to consider replacing the roof.
- Replacement may be more cost-effective.
Sometimes the decision to repair or replace comes down to dollars and cents. If you’re facing significant repairs, it may be more cost-effective in the long run to invest in a new roof that will last at least another 20 years.
These aren’t the only signs your roof needs to be repaired or replaced. Talk to a roofing professional with the know-how to expertly assess your roof’s condition. Schedule a free roof inspection in PA, NJ, MD, and DE. You can also ask us about our interest-free financing options that we provide.