One of the most expensive home repairs is replacing your home’s roof . While it’s true that not all roof problems require a new roof, you should be prepared for that possibility, when a problem arises. Catching a problem early is always preferable to catching it later when it’s more expensive to fix.
First things first, if your roof is missing shingles, it’s a good bet your roof is past it’s recommended life span. Similarly, shingles that are missing large pieces from cracking or splitting usually mean the roof needs to be replaced. If your roof still has all its shingles, but they curl, especially in cold weather, then the shingles are too old, and it’s time to think about a new roof.
This is a very obvious sign, but many people ignore it. Are there pronounced leaks in the ceiling in your home during or after a hard rain? Is there paint peeling from any of the ceilings in your home? Do you have leaks in your attic? Do you have trouble with mold growing on the walls? These are signs of a roof that may need replacing.
The wood underneath your roof’s shingles can rot after years’ of exposure to leaks. That can make for weak or soft spots in your roof. At the very least, when the shingles are replaced, the rotted wood will need to be replaced also (rotted wood will not support the shingles’ weight). Rot is often not visible from the outside; you need to climb on top of your roof and test for spongy spots when you walk on it.
If your roof is at or past it’s expected life span, you should probably replace it. Just because it looks fine doesn’t guarantee it is. And, if your roof is two layers of shingles, the life span of the top layer is shortened.
A failing roof doesn’t insulate as well as it used to, making for higher heating and cooling bills. If your utility bills are steadily increasing, and not because of higher gas or electric prices, you might need to have your roof inspected.