When many people think about their roofs, they are only considering the visible portion. However, your roof is a structure that consists of far more than just the shingles or metal panels that you can see. If you strip away the roof covering, you should find an underlayment that covers the decking. Beneath the decking, you will discover rafters and trusses that support your roof. All of your roof’s components must be structurally sound to provide adequate protection and prevent a roof collapse. Although homeowners often call licensed roofing companies and state that their roof collapsed without warning, experienced contractors know that there are virtually always signs that indicate a roof has lost its structural integrity. If you see the warning signs, you can take action to prevent a total collapse.
Is Your Roof Structurally Sound? | Austin, Texas
What Are Some Warning Signs of a Structurally Unsound Roof?
It is a common misconception that a roof is fine if it is not leaking. Signs of water penetration, including stains on ceilings, mildew in the attic and damp spots on roof trusses, are certainly worthy of an emergency roof repair. However, there are several other indications that your roof may have been compromised.
1. A bend in the middle of the ridgeline indicates structural instability. This poses a major safety hazard that needs immediate attention.
2. Damaged decking, trusses or rafters can allow sections of the roof to sag. The sagging may be noticeable when you view the roof from the ground, but it may also manifest as a section of a ceiling that shows signs of sagging.
3. Windows or doors may suddenly become hard to open or refuse to close easily. Their obstinance may be caused by a shift in the structure of your roof.
4. You may hear popping or creaking noises that you attribute to settling. Although settling can be responsible for some unusual sounds, the same noises can also indicate that a roof collapse is imminent.
5. When you are in your attic, if you notice that any rafters are cracked, rotted, or covered in mold, you should take immediate action. Should a truss or rafter collapse, the problem can snowball into a roof collapse.
6. An unstable roof can damage your chimney’s masonry. If your chimney has breaks or cracks, you should have repairs made by a contractor who offers chimney repairs as one of his roofing services. He will also be able to determine and correct the problem with the roof itself.
What Steps Can Homeowners Take to Protect the Structural Integrity of Their Roof?
When asked whether they prefer a roof repair or a roof replacement Austin homeowners typically state that they would rather repair than replace. If you want to reduce the possibility of a structural problem with your roof, the following tips can help.
1. An annual roof inspection can help identify issues before they develop into serious problems. Some roofing companies offer routine maintenance plans that cover periodic inspections as well as inspections after an incident of severe weather.
2. Be vigilant and proactive. Once a month, walk around your home’s exterior. Use a pair of binoculars to take a look at your roof. Go into the attic on a sunny day and look for sunlight that is penetrating through your roof or at its edges. Look for water stains or mildew on the underside of your roof decking as well as on rafters, trusses, insulation, and items stored in the space. Call a reputable roofer if you spot any signs that your roof is in distress.
3. Sometimes, you may feel that something is wrong with your roof. You may notice a new draft or a soft spot on a floor, but the change could also be something that you cannot identify. When in doubt, it is better to err on the side of caution and ask a roofer for an inspection.
4. No roof can last forever, so you should keep a closer eye on your roof as it nears the end of its expected life. Watch for shingles that are cupped, curled, degranulated, or cracked. Make sure that flashing is not damaged or missing. The time to replace your roof is before it has become so deteriorated that its underlying structure incurs significant damage.
If you are concerned about the health of your roof, contact the professionals at Alpha Roofing. We are a well-respected roofing company serving Austin and most other locations in Central Texas. We have a reputation for providing exceptional quality at affordable prices. Whether you need your roof repaired, asphalt shingles installed, your roof inspected, a metal roof installed, moss removed from your roof,or siding installed, your chimney repaired, your flashing replaced or a skylight installed, call 512-777-1086 or fill out our request form to obtain your free quote.