When should you consider new roof installation?

Lifespan of the roof is quite long. The accurate amount of time depends on its construction, quality of materials used and workmanship. Of course, elements play their part as well and can take huge toll on the covering. Particularly in places like Chicago. Regular maintenance and repairs performed by professional roofing contractors go a long way. They improve your roof condition and lengthen its lifespan. However, the day will come that no amount of fixing will help and you face decision of roof replacement. Such investment is costlier than the repair but it also poses great opportunity to upgrade your house.

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Think of your roof’s age

One of the good indicators that you may need new roof installation is its age. But what exactly does that mean? Is there a specific “use by date” for the covering and after that time you just replace it because someone said so? Definitely no. Let’s start from the beginning. You’ve probably heard that roof should last 20 to 30 years. Unfortunately, this is huge generalization that won’t tell you nothing or not much about your particular roof. Its actual lifespan depends on several factors. First is type of covering material. Asphalt shingles, widely used across US, can last anywhere from 15 to 30 years. Such spread it’s easy to understand, when you realize that term asphalt covers wide range of products. As result, you can have common, 3-tab shingles with a lifespan 15 to 18 years and architectural ones that may last 24 to 30 years. Those are large differences but they still cover only one type of material. Wood shakes and shingles can last up to 30 years, the same as built-up roofing. Modified bitumen and EPDM rubber should be good for 15 to 25 years. Record belongs to stone and ceramic. Concrete, slate and clay tiles have life expectancy well over 100 years. Seeing roof of such materials that is 150 years old isn’t unusual. And I haven’t mentioned yet about metal roofing. Its life expectancy differs widely depending on the rating body. The Metal Roofing Alliance estimates it for at least 40 to 60 years. The International Association of Certified Home Inspectors gives it 40 to 80 years. In reality, it can even reach 100 years, particularly with metals like zinc or copper. Whichever number will apply in your particular situation, it still means that the roof will probably last for your lifetime. Of course, aforementioned numbers are only averages. However, in real life there is no such a thing as average conditions, so you have to adjust the covering life expectancy accordingly. Several years before roof riches its supposed “use by date”, you should have it inspected. Professional LION Roofing Companies in Des Plaines or somewhere else near you will assess overall condition of the construction and inform you about necessary action, be it repair or complete replacement.

While discussing the expected lifespan of different roof covering materials, I mentioned average conditions under which those measurements are true. And that “average” doesn’t actually exist. There are factors that can contribute to either a longer or a shorter life of your roof. Of course, weather is one of them. Unfortunately, that’s something you cannot influence. What you can do, is choosing materials that performs best in your climate, which results in lengthening roof’s life expectancy. One of the products best suited to harsh weather with heavy rain and snow, strong winds and hail is metal. At first glimpse ceramic or slate may sound like a better choice but that’s not the case. Metal is much lighter than the other two so it won’t strain your house’s construction, even with additional weight of snow. However, it’s not the only advantage of that particular type of roofing. As any of metal roofing manufacturers will tell you, under general term “metal”, you can find different products, such as galvanized steel, zinc, aluminum or copper. Each of them has slightly different qualities and comes with its own price tag. Metal is considered as expensive choice of covering option but part of that notion comes from premium price of zinc and copper. I’m not saying that rest of products is particularly cheap, but become more affordable. On top of that metal has very low life cycle cost. This means that higher initial price is balanced by other aspects. Metal is almost maintenance free and very resistant to wind, hail, snow, fire, rodents, mold – you name it. It also allows lowering your heating and cooling bills thanks to its excellent thermal qualities. There are less apparent benefits as well, like savings on your home insurance and increase in house resale value. Team all those advantages with very long life expectancy and there is huge chance that you’ll never again think about your roof’s age and won’t need installation of a new one.

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Look at the shingle’s condition

Age of your roof doesn’t sound like an apparent and conclusive reason for its replacement. Type of material plays huge role but you have to take into account another factors as well (pitch of the roofline, reflective qualities of the covering, typical weather conditions and so on). In such a case, when there is no obvious damage, is best to ask for professional opinion in one of the roofing companies in Chicago. Nevertheless, there is a bunch of issues that call for roof replacement, you can easily identify yourself. First sign of the future problems isn’t actually major leak or roof sagging but something more menial – mainly condition of the shingles. Of course, there is no saying that every sign of their damage requires tearing off old covering altogether and installing a new one. However, in some cases that will be the most viable option. When exactly? Go around your house and have careful look at its roof. If you cannot see it properly from the ground level, you could climb a ladder of course for a better view. If you spot one or more of the following characteristics that affects large areas, then you should definitely think of imminent replacement. If you have asphalt shingles then at some point you’ll notice their balding. That funny term describes shedding large amounts of granules and resulting exposition of underlying asphalt coating. It’s part of natural aging process but unfortunately it speeds deterioration of your shingles and eventual loss of water resistance. You don’t have to worry about leaks in your attic during the next heavy rain yet but it’s a good moment to look for a good roofing contractors. Another alerting sign is blistering that starts with small bubbles on the surface of asphalt. When blisters brake, they leave small cavity, roughly circular in shape, which exposes underlying material to the elements thus reducing the lifespan of your shingles. Blistering process consists of vaporization and expansion of volatiles in asphalt due to high ambient temperatures. There are two reasons for blisters occurrence. Hot weather and direct exposition to the sun or overheated attic are the usual suspects. Buckling is another characteristic often exhibited by aging asphalt. Middle part of the shingles bulge out either from side to side or top to bottom. Unfortunately, that’s not solely the question of esthetics. Actually more immediate problem comes with the ridges creating sort of dams that prevent water from running off of the roof. As result, moisture starts seeping through the shingles and the covering deteriorates more quickly. Similar effects on your roof condition have clawing, that is downward curling of the shingle corners. Another characteristic of aging asphalt that call for a roof replacement might be curling and cupping, when corners and sides of the shingles lift up.

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Asphalt, however ubiquitous isn’t the only roofing product available. Ceramic, slate and wood are other materials that are often made into shingles. However more resistant to the elements and aging than asphalt they still can be damaged. Wooden roof is more prone than other options to rodents and insects infestation. On the other hand, cracking or breakages aren’t uncommon to any and every type of covering, particularly after it has been subjected to strong winds and hail or sudden impact from a branch or thrown object. The good thing is that usually you won’t have to replace the whole covering. Limiting itself only to repair of the crucial fragments will be enough. However, when too many shingles are cracked, installation of a new roof might be the only viable option. Same goes as well for the situation, when too many shingles are missing. Sometimes actually, it doesn’t even have to be that many. If you don’t have enough spare elements and cannot buy identical ones, then you may want to consider replacement as well. Patchy looking roof isn’t the end of the world but it reflects badly on your house’s curb appeal. When during your inspection, you spot one of the aforementioned problems, contact with good contractor for professional assessment and following repair / replacement of your roof. One of the very good choices will be Cezar Roofing Companies Arlington Heights, IL. They provide you with comprehensive evaluation as well as remediate the problem. And if you think about upgrading your roof covering to the more durable and long lasting choice, they’ll also offer expert advice on the subject. The most important thing here is not to procrastinate as unnecessary delay may detrimental to house’s overall condition.

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Can you see the daylight through your roof?

It’s not good when your roof is well past its expiration or when too many of its shingles are broken / missing. But seeing daylight through it, advertises real trouble. Umm, there is nothing unusual in such situation. That’s what skylights are for. Well, exactly – skylights and not the holes in your roof. No matter how small, it’s best to have them repaired as soon as possible. If sun gets in then frost, rain and critters as well leading to further deterioration of the roof and surrounding area. Fixing doesn’t sound like a big but DIY approach might not be the best way to tackle this problem. Hole may be result of missing shingles but may hint toward more serious structural issues as well. Experienced roofing companies in Mount Prospect or roofing contractors in Arlington Heights will be able to make thorough assessment of the roof and determine extent the damage. If you’re are lucky, then replacing missing shingles and underlayment will be the only requirement. If not, then there are several scenarios. In moderate version, roofers may discover rotten decking that is part of your light-through-the-roof problem. They will have to remove covering and underlayment, cut out damaged decking and replace it with new piece of wood of the same size. After that – installation of underlayment and shingles. New ones of course as old were cause of the problem in the first place. If repaired area is close to vents and chimneys or rooflines meet there together, then checking on flashing is in place as well. All nice and well but unfortunately you can face worst-case scenario. Upon inspection, your roofing contractors may determine that there is more to the problem than holes, which are few and far between. If decking has been compromised by worn / damaged covering, then you may need installation of a new roof. No worries though, good roofing company with help you both with minor fixes as well as major repairs or replacement. And the sooner you tackle the problem the better for your house and finances.

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