Signs Your Roof Needs Repair Or Replacement

Often times, homeowners are unaware of early signs that their roof needs repair or replacement. Keeping an eye out for these warnings, however, can help minimize repair costs and prevent expensive damage to your home.

While leaks are an obvious indicator that it’s time to replace your roof, there are many other issues you should look out for. Here are a few of the most common:

1. Leaks

Leaks are one of the most obvious signs that it’s time to replace your roof. Not only does a leaky roof leave your home vulnerable to water damage, but it can also cause structural problems with the foundation of your home.

Moisture in the attic can lead to wood rot and even mold, both of which require a new roof. Moisture can also cause leaking through the roof’s flashing and vents, which can damage interior walls and furniture.

Another sign of a leaky roof is water stains on your ceilings and walls. These dingy stains are often yellow-to-orange and have a distinct darker discoloration around the edges. If you notice this, call a professional right away to schedule a roof inspection. The sooner you repair a leaky roof, the less severe and costly the damages will be.

2. Sagging

A sagging roof isn’t just an unsightly problem; it can indicate structural damage and a danger to the integrity of your home. If a part of your roof looks droopy, you should call in an expert immediately.

The joists in your ceiling hold the weight of your roof, and if they are damaged or rotted, they can shift their angles and cause the roof to sag. The sagging can also affect the pipes and ductwork that run through it, forcing them to shift their positions or even pull away from their mounts.

The sagging can also be caused by improper construction and aging of the roofing materials. A professional roofing contractor will be able to determine the underlying cause and recommend the correct repair solution.

3. Dark Streaks

The dark streaks you see on your roof aren’t dirt, but a form of algae called gloeocapsa magma. This type of algae thrives in dark conditions, and as it grows, it covers itself with a layer that protects against UV rays from the sun. Over time, this creates a black stain on your roof.

Airborne spores from gloeocapsa magma can easily travel between rooftops. This is particularly true if the houses in your neighborhood are located close together and share a similar climate.

Streaks on your roof aren’t just unattractive – they can also signal that your roof is no longer providing protection from the elements. This can lead to shingles curling and falling off the roof, which could lead to leaks in your home.

4. Algae Growth

Algae can be caused by a number of factors, including overhanging branches or clogged gutters, standing water, porous roof shingles, and poor attic ventilation. It starts as airborne spores that can be blown in by the wind or carried by birds and varmints, and it thrives in damp environments.

It grows into large colonies that look like black streaks on the shingles. It eats away at the limestone filler of shingles, leaving them brittle and susceptible to damage. It also stains the roof and can erode wood.

Roof algae, fungus, and mildew can all damage the structural integrity of your roof. If left unchecked, these substances can cause shingle damage, wood rot, and other problems that require in-depth roof repairs or replacement. In addition, breathing in fungus and mildew spores can affect your health.

5. Shingles

Your roof’s shingles provide the first line of defense against rainwater intrusion. However, asphalt shingles aren’t built to last forever. If you notice an excessive accumulation of shingle granules on your roof’s gutter runoff or in the surrounding yard, this is a sign that it’s time to get a new roof.

Look for shingles that are cupping, curling or clawing. These conditions are caused by prolonged thermal expansion and contraction cycles that damage the shingles and make them more vulnerable to leaks.

In addition to visible signs from the ground, check the attic for water stains on the wood sheathing, which are often caused by leaking shingles. Water damage in the attic can also cause mold, rot and other problems throughout your home. These problems can be difficult to repair and require a roof replacement.

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