How to Inspect Your Roof
Your roof is one of the most important parts of your house and deserves just as much attention as the kitchen or the master bath. Just like any other feature in the home, it needs maintenance and attention. Check your roof for issues each fall and spring so you’ll be prepared for any issues.
Check the Age — Generally, a composition shingle roof (which most Americans have) should last 20 years. If your roof is past that age or approaching it, make regular inspections part of your home maintenance routine.
Check Your Shingles — Roofs show their age in their shingles. It may not be the most critical sign of wear, but if you are missing shingles, they are bowed or curled, or there are missing granules, it’s a good time to take a closer look.
Look for Granules — That gritty sand-like coating on shingles adds a layer of protection, but it doesn’t last forever. Look in your gutters; are they holding granules? Shingles will lose more granules toward the end of their lifespan, so it’s a sign the shingles may need replacing.
Roof Deck Sagging — If the roof itself seems to sag, it is a sign the roof deck is bowing. Older roofs will tend to sag as the house settles and are not always a cause for concern.
Look for Damaged Flashing — Worn or damaged flashing is another sign of an aging roof. Flashing is the barrier between shingles and other home elements like chimneys, skylights and eaves. Bad flashing is easily replaced but can be a symptom of a larger problem.
Check Indoors — Go into the attic and check for water stains. Even the best roofs can let in a bit of water during severe weather, but persistent water staining is a problem. Small stains shouldn’t be a concern, but large patches around spots of sunlight means a hole in the roof. In addition to checking your roof, there are other good reasons to take a look in the attic.
Keep Up With the Joneses — Are your neighbors getting new roofs? If houses in your neighborhood were all built at the same time, their roof problems are likely your roof problems.