Warning Signs of a Roof in Need of Replacement
1. Sagging Plywood
A sagging roof is a sign that something is structurally wrong with your roof, and it is in need of roof repair. Often times this is the result of the outer layers of a roof failing, such as the shingles, to keep water out. This water then penetrates the i-nner layers of the roof, weakens the wood, and the wood will either sag or break. Which leaves you with a sagging roofline. This is not good, and one of the cases where a new roof will be urgently needed. Although it can support the roof’s weight for now, it is structurally damaged and may not be able to support it for much longer. If it snows or rains the roof will be heavier and has a chance of collapsing. A collapsed roof will be much more difficult and expensive to fix than a sagging roof. So if your roof is sagging it is in dire need of repair.
2. Cracked and/or Discolored Shingles
Roofing shingles are made of asphalt, the same material a road is made from. This means they are susceptible to cracking, much like pavement. Shingles crack when exposed to high heat, or rapid temperature shifts. Water can then get into these small cracks, expand due to freezing, and make these cracks even worse. A big crack will allow water to seep into the lower layers of the roof and damage the internal structure causing the problem listed above. Cracked shingles do not always indicate the need for a new roof, but many of them on the same roof is usually an indicator of an old roof in need of replacement. Either way, a cracked shingle will need to be replaced. Discolored shingles are shingles that have lost some of their outer layer, or have been discolored by the sun over a long time. Discolored shingles are a good sign your roof is nearing its end and it may be time to consider a completely new roof.
3. Missing Shingles
Missing shingles can be caused by harsh weather, such as high winds during a hurricane, or improper installation by whoever installed the roof previously (obviously not us). While many shingles nowadays such as the Owens Corning Duration line come with a guarantee to stand up to winds much higher than those seen on Long Island in even the strongest storms, older shingles will give out much sooner. A missing shingle means that there is a very vulnerable spot on your roof where water can get in, and not only that, shingles work in conjunction with each other which means if one shingle is missing the ones nearby are much more vulnerable to damage. Sometimes shingles can just be replaced after they get removed, however as is the case with numerous cracked shingles, if there are many shingles missing, it might be a sign of a larger problem such as an aging roof.
4. Algae and Moss Growth
Plants can grow anywhere. I’m sure you’ve seen moss and dandelions growing in even the smallest cracks in cement. They can even make their home on your roof in some cases. Moss can grow on a roof in an area that receives little sunlight and areas where water can accumulate. As you can see in the attached photo, the moss and algae accumulate in the shadow of the chimney against the siding. Unfortuantely along with being unsightly, moss will actually retain water which can cause potential issues with your roof. In situations such as the photo these shingles will need to be pulled up, and replaced. However if the moss problem is larger, the entire roof could be in need of replacement. If you’re unsure about how severe your moss problem is, feel free to give us a call and have us inspect your roof.
5. Granule Loss
Shingles are like onions, they have layers. The outer layer of a shingle is called the granule. As rain hits the outer layer of a shingle it can cause the outer layer to be worn out over time. Shingles can also be damaged by tree branches falling on them or rubbing against them, and hail damage . That’s why we include a tree trimming in our roof maintenance package. Once the granule is removed the asphalt layer below it is vulnerable to heat which can cause it to get deformed as seen in the picture. Evidence of granule loss can be seen in this picture where you can see the granule in the gutter. These deformed and “bald” shingles are in dire need of replacement, and often if many shingles are in this condition it’s best to just replace the entire roof.
Regardless of what issue you’re having with your roof, we are here to help. Give us a call at (516) 796-1952 if you think your roof has any of these signs.