Wear and Tear: 7 Warning Signs Your Roof Is in Dire Need of Replacement

A roof is an especially important part of a home because it protects the owner’s belongings and the house’s structural materials. A sound roof increases property values and improves curb appeal. But if roofing materials fail, they cause problems that lead to costly damages. Fortunately, homeowners can protect their property and avoid these surprise expenses if they recognize signs that roofs need to be replaced as soon as possible.

1. Parts of the Roof Are Sagging

There are several reasons why a roof might sag but all of them point to the need for replacement. Sagging can be a sign that materials are deteriorating. Roofs often sag when they are supporting too much snow or ice. The problems can occur when original roofing materials were installed incorrectly. Professionals such as DennisAndSonsContracting.com roofing suggest homeowners discuss their issues with contractors who can provide replacement roofs that solve and prevent problems like sagging.

2. There Is Water Damage in the Attic or Home Interior

Water that pools in an attic or seeps from a ceiling is usually a sign of roof problems. Although a small leak might seem like a minor issue, it can hide problems that create health issues and damage to structural materials. Water damage professionals like ServiceMaster advise that water seeping from a roof can short wires and compromise a home’s structural integrity. It could also cause toxic mold growth that leads to breathing problems.

3. Shingles Are Missing or Damaged

Sound roofs can withstand storms without damage, but high winds often lift older shingles and may tear them off. Shingles on aging roofs can simply become loose and fall off, and that means the roof is not protecting the entire home. When shingles are past their prime, they might also start to curl, blister, or become dry. Any of these problems indicate that a roof is reaching the end of its life and should be replaced as soon as possible.

4. Dark Patches Appear on Shingles

Over time the granules on shingles may begin to fall off and create dark spots on roofs. That is a signal that shingles have aged and should be replaced. Moss and algae growing on roofs also cause dark spots that may indicate the presence of underlying moisture.

5. Flashing Is Damaged or Missing

During installation, roofing contractors install flashing around chimneys, vents, and skylights to seal roof seams and prevent water from leaking through them. Over time flashing can develop breaks or cracks that cause leaks. The problem is common in older roofs and can mean materials are reaching the end of life.

6. A Roof Is More Than 20 Years Old

The average asphalt shingle roof lasts between 20 and 25 years. A home roof that is 20 or more years old is likely to develop problems and should be replaced before it causes expensive damages. Older roofs can also cost homeowners money when they file insurance claims due to roof damage. According to insurer Mutual Benefit Group, clients with Actual Cash Value (ACV) homeowners’ policies are only paid a portion of the amount needed to replace older roofs. That is because insurance companies calculate roofing depreciation when determining the value of a claim.

7. Air Conditioning and Heating Bills Are Increasing

A failing roof that is leaking or damaged can increase heating and cooling bills. Even minor damages may allow bad air to get in and let good air escape. An old roof often has insufficient ventilation, which can also affect energy usage.

A well-installed asphalt shingle roof can last 25 years, but even the best materials eventually develop problems and need to be replaced. Homeowners can spot the signs of roof failure by looking for common indicators. Signs of roof failure include leaks, damaged flashing, and missing shingles. Sagging, dark spots on shingles and increased energy costs can also signal that a roof has reached the end of life and should be replaced immediately.