If there is one element of a house that really makes it a house, it would have to be the roof. With a solid roof in place, you are defended from the worst of the elements that gather outside, you can be cozy in winter and shielded in summer. The roof, consistently, has to be the hardest-wearing part of any house, simultaneously repelling weather conditions, supporting your gutters and holding the house together. So it goes without saying that you need it to be secure and long-lasting. In this article we will answer the question when should I replace my roof?
So When Should I Replace My Roof?
Studies show that the lifespan of a roof is expected to be between 20 and 25 years, although undoubtedly some can last longer. But if you’re not sure how long yours has been in place – or even if you are quite sure, but haven’t checked it recently – it is of vital importance to have a look at your roof and see if it needs work done. It may even be the case that your home needs to have a new roof placed – and the following questions are essential guidance in that respect.
Are there missing tiles or slates?
Your roof will have potentially hundreds of tiles laid upon it, and that may suggest that one worn or loose, or even missing tile is no big deal. After all, it covers less than 1% of the roof, so it should be fine, right? Unfortunately, a roof is very much like a chain – it’s as strong as its weakest link, so one missing tile can be very bad news. A single tile can usually be replaced, but it is important to check if there has been damage caused to the area around it and whether any others are loose. The more extensive the damage, the more it becomes the case that a roof replacement is in your future.
Is the roof sagging?
Whether it’s a residential or commercial roof, the structure of your roof is one of the most important parts to maintain in your home. If a roof is even beginning to show signs of weakness, then there is a danger of the weakness spreading to the whole home, and of the home very quickly becoming unlivable. A sag in the roof is a sure sign that the structure is losing its rigidity – and if the roof dips, then it becomes more possible for rain or snow to gather in the dip, thus aggravating the issue. A roofing contractor must be called immediately.
Is daylight visible through the roof boards?
Every acute architectural problem begins with a single, usually small, area of weakness. Sometimes, it’s not even visible from the outside. But if you can stand in your attic and look up at your residential roof, and see daylight getting in, there is an area of weakness that needs to be addressed. If light can make its way in, then water can. Pests can. Before too long, you can be dealing with much larger gaps, and the only way to resolve that is to replace the entire roof from scratch.
How long has the roof been there?
As noted above, we expect that a roof will last for up to 25 years, and they can last for longer. However, if yours has been in place for that long, it is essential that you check it as closely as possible for any kind of fault. Quite apart from anything else, if your roof has not been maintained or replaced within a reasonable period, you may very well be refused an insurance payout if anything should happen to your home that could be attributed to the roof’s age. So it would be wise to get the roof looked over by an expert in order to be sure.
Are there holes or splits around the outside of the roof?
Very often, the edges of the roof are where the first signs of weakness will make themselves apparent. This is, after all, where the roof joins with gutters, siding and the walls of your home or place of business. An area where there is a join, is also an area where stress can be at its highest so any holes or splits need to be looked at with urgency. In all probability, this will mean that the roof needs to be replaced. Once a weakness has developed, it can rarely be cured entirely – it can merely be slowed and patched up. It is vitally important to recognize that constant repairs will end up costing more than a full replacement.