For many homeowners, residential roofing installation will be the most costly home repair that they will ever incur. Given the important function of your roof, you want to ensure that it is capable of providing the protection that it should. At the same time, you probably want to make sure that you get true value for the money that you spend on a new roof installation. The following tips can help you achieve both of these goals.
Don’t Wait for Leaks to Appear Inside Your Home
Many people wait until they notice that their roof has been leaking before they consider replacing it. This can end up costing you a substantial amount of money. Your roof may be leaking for months or even years before you see any sign of a leak on your ceilings or walls. In the meantime, however, water has probably been reaching the roof’s decking and rotting it. Water may have been reaching the trusses or rafters that support your roof, and in some cases, it may be infiltrating the walls and rotting the studs.
Look for Signs that Your Roof is Nearing the End
Instead of waiting for leaks, look for other signs that your roof is reaching the end of its life. Most of these signs are visible from the ground although a pair of binoculars can help you see them more clearly.
• Can you see any areas of the roof that are sagging? You may notice an area that appears depressed, or you may notice that the lines of the shingles are no longer straight. Dips and sags are typically signs that the decking is damaged or has rotted.
• Are your asphalt shingles curled, blistered missing or cracked? Relatively new shingles that are curled or blistered may indicate defective manufacturing. If the shingles are older, curling and blistering could indicate that they are just worn out or that your attic ventilation is inadequate. Missing and cracked shingles are often the result of wind or hail damage although faulty installation could also pay a part.
• Do you have access to the underside of your roof from your attic? If so, can you see sunlight filtering through the roof? Even if you can only see a tiny beam of daylight, you should take immediate action to prevent leaks. Examine the underside of the roof decking for signs of water damage or rot. You should also check the insulation to make sure that it is dry and that mold or mildew has not formed.
• Are you finding excess granules in your gutters? New asphalt shingles will shed a substantial amount of granules during the first year or two following installation. If your shingles are older than that, you should plan to replace them soon. Without the granules to protect it, the asphalt will deteriorate and your shingles will lose their ability to repel water.
Decide Between an Overlay and a Tear-Off
An overlay is what roofers call the practice of installing new roofing materials over an existing roof. A tear-off means that the existing roofing materials will be removed to expose the decking. However, there are some situations that require you to choose a tear-off instead of an overlay. If there are already two layers of shingles on your roof, you cannot install a third layer without violating local building codes. If the shingles are severely deformed, they will probably need to be removed. If the manufacturer’s warranty specifies that a tear-off is required, you may not be protected if the product is applied over an existing roof. The roofing materials must also be compatible; for example, you cannot install asphalt shingles over a metal roof.
Hire an Established Roofer with an Excellent Reputation
When you are considering a new roof for your home, you should engage a reputable roofing contractor with experience in the type of roofing system you want. At Alpha Roofing, a roof contractor, we have more than 35 years of experience in the roofing industry. We have expertise in both asphalt shingle and metal roofing systems. We also offer roof repairs and inspections, and siding, repair chimneys and provide many other services. Our company is dedicated to providing exceptional work at competitive rates. If you would like to receive a free estimate, complete the online form or give us a call at (512) 777-1086.