How Often Should Your Roof Be Replaced

roofing inspection - how often should your roof be replaced?

Is it time for a roofing inspection? Sometimes it’s pretty easy to determine when your roof needs replaced. Specifically your ceiling has brown stains and your cat insists on wearing a snorkel just to cross the kitchen floor. The key when knowing when to replace your roof is to avoid getting to those points.

The thing is, it can be hard to know when your roof is ready to fail. Granted, products have lifespans and warranties but those can either be shorter or longer than expected because of climate, maintenance, etc. Replacing your roof too early might legitimately cost you 5-10 years of “free” roofing that could have boosted your return on investment. Doing so too late however means you’ll likely be replacing insulation, drywall, flooring, and more.

Replacing a roof is a lot like finding love – “how do you know?” Just like a hot date, inspections and comparing cost versus value will tell you when it’s time to tell your roof to take a hike.

Roofing Inspection

The only way you’ll truly know the current condition of your roof is to have it inspected. It’s actually recommended that you have the roof inspected as much as twice a year – in the Spring in Fall. The Spring inspection lets you know how the roof held up to the snow and ice. The Fall inspection makes sure it’s ready to do it again.

So what do inspectors find that tells them of the roofs condition? Issues such as sagging, visible holes, mold, mildew, and missing shingles / tiles will warn of problems to come or currently present. The severity of these damages will determine whether it’s more cost-effective to replace or repair a roof.

How Often Roofing Replaced Depends on Material

Regardless of what material is installed, your roof has a definitive life span. The first couple years of installation there should be no reason to expect any problems unless hit by a large storm. As the years pile on though, the wear is going to take its toll. Some materials respond better than others:

  • Composite (asphalt) shingles – They may carry a warranty up to 30 years but it’s important to remember that it is usually prorated. As an asphalt roof ages it starts to lose granules, may be missing shingles, and can easily develop leaks.
  • Wood shakes – Another 20-30 year roof that will show signs of age significantly before that. Wood shakes will start to curl and splinter over time and could be ripe for infestation by insects and mold as treatment sealants wear off.
  • Clay / concrete tiles – The weird thing about knowing how often a tile roof should be replaced is that inspections can actually damage the materials as they crack when walked upon. Life span is 40+ years but remember to especially be vigilant in looking for problems after a bitter cold Winter.
  • Metal – Your metal roof is a 50+ year product and the only major problems that develop are with aesthetics as the sheets start to oxidize over the years causing the paint to flake.
  • Slate – These roofs are supposed to last up to 150 years but if you have an older home they really start to show their age as they reach the end of life.

Whether you have a 150 year roof or a 20 year one, the only true way to know how often your roof should be replaced is with a inspection. It’s always better to have peace of mind rather than a wet cat. Contact us today to get your free inspection!

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