Keeping your roof in good condition is essential for maintaining a dry, energy-efficient home. Because roof work is such a major project, we often worry about being blindsided by the need for replacement or repairs. The best way to decide what type of work is needed is to consult with a qualified professional, but there are some rules of thumb that can start you in the right direction.
Every so often, a roof that is otherwise solid may lose a shingle or two. This can be a result of severe weather, damage caused by someone walking on the roof, or poor installation. If it is not a widespread problem, missing shingles can be fairly easy to replace. The hard part may be finding a match for them. Even different packages of shingles bought together can have some differences in color, so take the broken shingle to the store to try to get a match. A safer, easier way to repair roofing is to have a contractor do it.
Grit is the durable part of your roof. It’s what keeps the roof tough and solid for so many years. As the grit begins to crumble away, you’ll be moving toward the need for a new roof. Some signs of this are “shiny” areas where tar and backing have become exposed. This is often seen after hailstones knock off some of the grit, but it’s also just a function of time. If you’re seeing these thin spots or just finding a lot of grit in your gutters, it’s probably time for a new roof.
A leaking roof is a tough situation to diagnose. There’s always a chance that an isolated problem like missing shingles is to blame. At the same time, the issue could be a result of long-term damage through loss of grit. You can gain more information if you can get into the attic and locate the leak, but that’s tougher than it sounds. The most important thing with a leaking roof is to take action quickly so you’re probably better off to call a reputable roofing contractor for an inspection and evaluation.
Whatever the situation with your roof, you need to take action as soon as possible. Even a minor roof problem can quickly worsen and lead to damage on the inside of the home, pushing your frustration and the bill much higher.