How often do you look at your roof? And a quick glance backing out of the driveway doesn’t count. Unfortunately, most homeowners don’t really look at their roof until there is a problem. Make sure to perform a visual inspection of both the interior and exterior of your roof at least once a year.
An interior inspection often starts in the attic. Use a flashlight and check for stains and streaks on the wood as well as any moisture in the insulation or signs of mold/mildew. Also, check for any sunlight coming through the roof boards or any sagging. Something as simple as a consistently increasing heating bill can also be an indicator that your roof isn’t performing as well as it should.
When performing an exterior inspection, visually inspect the roof from the yard or road. It isn’t recommended that homeowners walk on their own roofs to do an inspection – it’s too dangerous. Depending on the type of roofing material you currently have, you’ll notice different signs wear and tear during your inspection.
Cedar Shakes – If you notice that the cedar is buckling or cracking, these are key indicators. Oftentimes pieces of cedar shake will come off the roof and be in the yard after a windstorm. When that starts to occur, it’s time to call in a professional to do a more thorough inspection.
Asphalt Shingles – When you are doing regular homeowner maintenance, you’ll start to see a lot more granules building up in your gutters; as the shingles get older this is a sign that the roof is nearing the end of its life.
Concrete Tile – Most often homeowners will know their concrete tiles are giving them issues when they start leaking. Everyone thinks a concrete tile roof lasts 50 years but the reality is in our climate replacements happen around the 15-25 year mark.
The general rule of thumb is that after your roof is beyond 15 years old it’s probably time to get a professional opinion.