Depending on your roof's quality, the materials it's constructed from and how well you care for it, you can expect your roof to last between 20 and 30 years, according to the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors. It's true, however, that homeowners who live in very hot climates like Atlanta's can expect to need a roof replacement sooner. Elements such as heat, hail, hurricanes and tornadoes decrease the life span of shingles.
Average shingle life span is useful to know, but there are also common signs you can look for that indicate how well the shingles are faring and whether it's time for a roof replacement project. Here's what you should look for:
- Ceilings: If there are leaks in the ceiling, crawl space or attic, the roof could be letting water through. Check the vents, rafter and chimney for leaks. Finally, check the condition of the shingles, and look for evidence of damage.
- Flashing: Water may be seeping through the flashing if it was not installed correctly. It may be possible to replace the flashing without having to move forward with a full-scale roof replacement.
- Shingles: Look at your roof to see if any shingles are missing. Poor installation may have caused some shingles to come loose, but the glue underneath the shingles may simply be wearing out. High winds and exposure to the elements can also hasten shingle demise. An expert can access their condition and determine if individual shingles can be replaced.
- Damaged shingles: Signs that your shingles have fulfilled their service life and need to be replaced include shingles that buckle or curl.
- Blistering: Often, shingles blister when moisture gets underneath the material. It's also possible that the installers used too much cement or sealant when the shingles were first installed.
- Algae: A small amount of algae on roof shingles is normal, especially in climates that are humid. Generally, algae shouldn't affect the life span of the shingle. It's possible to purchase algae-resistant shingles if its presence is unsightly.
- Granules: Older shingles are prone to losing granules. If you notice missing granules, it's time for a roof replacement.
- Rot: Many problems are caused by moisture that seeps into a shingle's internal components and causes the shingle to rot. Rotting is a particular concern with shingles that are constructed from organic materials.
At Findlay Roofing, we've replaced over 40,000 roofs for homeowners in Bartow and beyond. Give us a call if you notice any of these warning signs, and talk to one of our consultants about your roofing options.
Image source: Wikimedia Commons