Stay on Top of Your Roof

The roof over your head is an important facet of maintaining your home and it’s crucial to know its lifespan. A standard asphalt roof typically lasts 20 to 25 years, but how do you know when it’s time to replace it? Doing it too soon can waste money... Wait too long and you risk paying to repair water damage in addition to the cost of replacing the roof. Below are some easy ways to keep your roof in good working condition.

roof and gutters

Stare at the Ceiling

If you’re seeing dark spots on the ceiling, it could be an indication of water stains. If it’s not from a plumbing leak, chances are your roof is leaking. When spots suddenly appear after a heavy rain with strong winds and hail, it’s likely the result of storm damage.

Other signs of a failing roof include moisture around the fireplace, stains on water heater vent pipes and peeling paint under eaves and overhangs. The good news is, however, these warning signs don’t necessarily indicate the need for a new roof. You may only need to replace a few shingles or re-caulk some gaps to resolve the problem. Or, it could also be as simple as repairing the flashing around the chimney and vent pipes.

To prevent further damage while waiting for repairs to be done, place buckets under dripping leaks and protect damaged roof sections with a tarp.

Get to the Roof of the Problem

You don’t always have to climb onto the roof to inspect for any problem areas. Grab a pair of binoculars and take a closer look for cracking caulk, rusted flashing, buckling shingles and sections missing the gritty surface that protect shingles from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays. Consider calling a roofer to examine any damage you see. While you’re at it, look in the gutter system for an accumulation of debris and clean it out, if needed.

The Rule of 20

If your roof has less than 20 years of wear and tear and the damage is not extensive, repairing it is likely a good option. However, if it’s closing in on 20 years old, or it has been damaged by a storm, it’s usually best to replace it.

Keeping an eye on your roof can help prolong its life and protect your home from water damage. With the rule of 20 in mind and the upkeep of small repairs along the way, you can rest easy knowing you have a solid roof over your head.