I found a leak. Do I have to replace my whole roof? Well, maybe not. Do yourself a little favor and inspect a bit first. If a leak is detected on your ceiling or down your walls, take a look up in your attic or crawl space. Water always follows the path of least resistance. Often, these leaks are caused by a fairly minimal issue, believe it or not. Something as little as flashing coming loose or shingles being blown off can allow water to get into places it should not. It’s a good practice to check out your roof after every storm, both inside and out. If caught quickly, these things can be repaired, your ceiling will dry, and you can simply repaint. However, if left undetected or ignored, a leak always gets worse and will cause more damage over time. Being proactive can probably eliminate the need for a new roof due to a simple leak.
How do I know if I need roof work? That thing we mentioned above about routinely checking your roof? That is always, always a great idea. Your roof is the first line of defense for your home and often gets takes brunt of the weather. With a combination of seasonal and post-storm inspections, you’ll be able to get a good idea of whether you need roof work or not. Always clear debris and look for things like curling shingles, leaks, missing or damaged flashing, even damaged gutters. An issue with any one of these can indicate the need for roof work or repair.
Doesn’t another layer just add double the protection? You would think so, but more does not always mean better. Sure, you can add a second layer onto your original roof (NEVER a third). It can even save you money by eliminating the tear off. However, this is rarely advised. If you don’t tear off the original, you may miss some troublesome areas that you didn’t even know were there, like rot. Adding another layer adds more weight to your structure. Simply, shingles must be laid flat to work like they are supposed to. This cannot be guaranteed with a second layer. Many roofing companies won’t even offer you a warranty if you do not remove the original roof. Because of the possibility of underlying issues, a company won’t take on that liability and can’t guarantee that there will be no leaks.
Why do I have stains on my roof? Simply, the answer is algae. Gloeocapsa Magma to be more scientific. Don’t worry. It’s not the death of your roof. These common algae spread by airborne spores and came about when limestone was added to shingles to give them more weight and to be more cost-effective. The algae form a protective layer, which is the black color you may see. By the time the streaks appear on your roof, the algae have probably been there for a few months. But it’s ok! There’s no need to panic. This happens to almost half of the homes in the entire United States that have shingled roofs. The solution? Wash the roof! You need some pretty hefty chemicals, so a professional is recommended, but you can do it yourself. Make sure to do your research, suit up, and use caution.
What exactly is flashing? Flashing is a very important part of your roof! Essentially, it is weatherproofing around sensitive areas. So, think of the areas for around vent stacks, skylights, around seams, so water flows where it should. It is your roof’s safeguard and a pretty important one at that.
Can’t I just do it myself? Eek. If you just asked the above question, the answer to this is decidedly, absolutely no. Snarky humor aside, roofing is not your typical DIY project. It’s difficult, labor intensive and quite honestly, some cities and townships don’t even allow you to do it. In these areas, it’s actually illegal to do any roof work without a license. While we love that there are DIYers out there, this is definitely a job for the licensed pros. Also, when you work with a professional, you get the warranties. Many roofing manufacturers won’t honor or even offer warranties if the roof was not professionally installed.
When is the best time to repair or replace my roof? Well, the best time to repair is immediately following the discovery of the issue. The longer an issue sits, the more damage it causes. As for replacing the roof, spring in most parts of the country is a great time for a roof replacement. The weather is pretty fair and while the cold of winter is gone (for those up North), the heat of summer hasn’t yet kicked in (for everyone, especially the South).
How long will it take to replace my roof? This one isn’t the easiest to answer. While we would love to provide an answer for you here, this all depends on structure size, roof type, any issues, etc. This is something we can discuss during a quote!
How long does a roof last? The most common roof in the U.S., the asphalt shingled roof, can last upwards of 30 years if maintained properly. There are roofing materials (metal and slate for example) out there that last longer, but because of their cost, most homeowners continue to go with asphalt shingles. When a roof is properly maintained and cared for, you will have yourself a cover on your home that will protect you for decades.
And of course, how much will my roof cost? An excellent question and to some, the most important. As mentioned above with how long, there are many factors to take into consideration when pricing out a roof replacement, including the size of your home, the materials used, any issues that might need to be remedied. All of these questions and more can be answered after we come out to your home. Please give us a call and set up an appointment. We’ll come out, get a quote going, and answer any questions you may have.