If the roof on your house was installed a while ago, you may start to wonder whether or not it is still able to hold up well to the elements. When you look at the roof, the shingles may still seem as though they are intact and in good condition, leading you to believe that there are no issues with your roof. However, there are a few other areas that make up the entire roofing system that you should check to determine whether the roof needs repairs or replacement.
1. Check the Gutters
One part of your roofing system that you should check when trying to decide whether you should have a professional take a look at your roof is the gutter system. The gutters are responsible for catching and directing water away from your roof and home's siding, making it an integral part of the system.
When you're checking the gutters, there are two things which you should be on the lookout for. First, observe how straight the gutters are hanging and whether or not their anchors are firmly in place.
If the anchors are loose, the issue is with the gutters themselves. However, if the gutters are attached firmly to the eaves of the roof and are still sagging, this could indicate an issue with the roof's structure.
2. Inspect the Flashing
Another important part of your home's roofing system is the flashing that is wrapped around any pipes, chimneys, and vents coming out of the top of your home. This flashing serves to shield the openings between the structures and the roof from water, ice, and snow.
When the flashing is still sound, it will still have a shine and little to no rust. The flashing will also have no bends in the middle or curling at the edges.
However, as time goes by and the metal is constantly exposed to moisture, it may start to corrode and eventually lose its structural integrity because of the rust. It may start to pull away from the roof and the structures around which it is wrapped, leaving these areas vulnerable to water.
If there already gaps at the edges of the flashing or holes where the rust has eaten away the metal, water is already running through the gaps, and the roof may already have unseen water damage underneath the shingles.
3. See How the Roof Lays
After inspecting the flashing, step back away from your house to see how the roof lays. When the underlying structure of the roof is sound, there should be no areas resembling hills and valleys. Rather, the roof will appear flat and even.
However, if you start seeing concave or pushed-up areas on the roof, there is likely a problem with the roof sheathing. Constructed from a layer of either plywood or oriented strand board (OSB), sheathing gives the roof its strength and provides the base on which the shingles are attached.
If water has started to run underneath of the shingles because of unseen gaps or problems with the flashing, the wood will start to deteriorate and rot. When this happens, the structural integrity of the roof becomes compromised, necessitating the replacement of the sheathing and correction of any underlying issues.
Even if your roof's shingles appear to be in decent condition, problems found with the gutters, flashing, and/or sheathing could indicate greater issues that you are unable to see. If you find any of these problems, contact a roofing company near you to have them inspect your roof to see whether sections need to be repaired or the entire roof needs to be replaced.Share