How Can I Tell if the Shingles on My Roof Need to Be Repaired or Replaced?

By Lawrence Englehart, GPI Franchise Owner, Halifax, Nova Scotia

Roof Shingles_shutterstock_154579022The roof helps to protect the building and its contents from the effects of weather. You should think of your roof as your home’s protective covering, and as such, its care and upkeep should be an important part of your regular maintenance to-do list. Depending of the type of shingles installed on your roof, you should be able to expect shingles to last upward of 20 years, or even longer.

However, many factors can negatively affect the life expectancy of shingles. These can include improper installation methods, insufficient attic ventilation, adverse weather conditions and trees.

An outdoor roof inspection can be performed safely from your driveway or backyard with a set of binoculars or a good digital camera that has a high-optical zoom.

Look for telltale signs of cupping or curling of the shingles; excessive granular loss; split, cracked or missing shingles; or areas with organic growth (e.g., algae, moss, fungus, staining).

An indoor roof inspection can be performed easily with a ladder and a flashlight from your attic access. Look for signs of damaged, split or sagging wood framing, dark areas that look wet, or significant discolouration on the underside of the roof sheathing. When excessive humidity is allowed to build up in the attic space, it is not unusual for mould to grow, and this will quickly deteriorate the sheathing and can have an adverse effect on the indoor air quality of the home.

Ventilation is extremely important to the health of your entire roofing/attic system.

If you do notice any of these deficiencies, you should first contact a trusted roofing professional for a more thorough examination of your roofing system. Sometimes the solution may be only a minor repair or “tune-up” versus replacing the entire roof.

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