Your home’s roof has a very important role – sheltering everyone and everything under it.
An asphalt shingle roof will last for approximately 25 years and a wooden shingle roof about 30 years. A slate tile roof has the longest lifespan at 75 years or more. But without regular inspection and maintenance, your roof’s lifespan will be shortened despite the roofing material.
There are a number of things that contribute to roof deterioration and we’ve outlined a few below.
- The elements are a common roof hazard. From strong winds, which can lift shingles, tiles or metal flashing, to sun that can cause cracking, to rain, snow and ice damage.
- Adequate ventilation assures that the temperature and moisture levels in the attic are regulated. Without proper vents, it becomes too hot and moisture builds up. This can damage the shingles, rafters and other areas as well as cause issues such as mold.
- Trees. Falling tree limbs can puncture the roof or cause other damage to the shingles. Overhanging tree branches that graze the roof can wear away the protective surface.
- Animals and insects. Where there’s damage or rot, oftentimes small animals or insects will try to take advantage of it and make themselves at home.
What to look for
Shingles that are missing, buckling, curling or covered in moss need to be addressed. Rotting fascia board or soffit often leads to more rot and significant roof issues. Roof flashing is built to last, but if it wasn’t properly installed, water will penetrate the barrier. And yes, it is possible for your shingles to appear in good shape and still get a leak in your roof. One of the more serious interior signs of a roof leak is a dark spot on the ceiling.
Inspection and maintenance are key. Be sure to have your roof professionally inspected every three years by a qualified roofer. You should also conduct your own visual inspection annually and following any major storm. (We suggest inspecting the roof at ground level using binoculars.)
Even if the damage is minor, if it is not repaired, it will worsen over time and become more expensive to fix. It may even require roof replacement.