Water can be a home's number one enemy. When water infiltrates your home's building envelope, significant damage and deterioration can occur. The structural integrity of your home will be weakened and your family will be at risk of exposure to toxic mold.
A sound roofing system serves as the first line of defense against water leaks. Unfortunately, many homeowners don't give their roofing systems a second thought until a major malfunction occurs.
If you want your roof to remain waterproof and problem-free well into the future, you need to learn to recognize the signs that your roof is in need of professional attention. These three signs indicate it's time to have your roofing system tuned up by an experienced roofing contractor.
1. Attic Leaks
Not all of the roofing materials protecting your home are visible from the outside. One of the most important layers within your roofing system, the underlayment, lies between your roof decking and shingles.
The underlayment is responsible for serving as a waterproof barrier for your home. Shingles overlap one another as they are installed, which creates gaps that water can filter through. Strong winds and severe storms can damage shingles, leaving your roof decking exposed to the elements. The underlayment prevents water from coming into contact with your wood roof decking and leaking into your home.
You should take the time to conduct routine visual inspections of the interior of your home's attic space. Discoloration or water stains that signal an attic leak could be a sign that your underlayment is failing. A roofing professional will be able to assess the attic leak and replace the damaged underlayment to maximize your home's protection against moisture in the future.
2. Granule Loss
If you look closely at the surface of your asphalt shingles, you will see that each shingle is coated with a coarse material. These granules are actually small shards of fiberglass, and they play a critical role in the proper function of your home's roofing system.
Granules offer protection against the elements for the underlying shingles. Fiberglass granules are also responsible for helping to make your home's roofing system more fire-resistant. Granule loss can leave your roofing system weak by exposing shingles. Bare shingles are more likely to sustain damage caused by UV rays, hailstones, and wind.
A good way to check your roof for granule loss is to complete a visual inspection of the roof itself. Shingles that are shedding their granules will appear darker in color than the surrounding shingles. You can also look in your rain gutters for granule buildup, as loose granules are often carried into the rain gutters by water draining off your home's roof.
Signs of granule loss should never be ignored. Contact a roofing contractor to replace the compromised shingles so your roof will continue to serve as a waterproof barrier for your home.
3. Corroded Flashing
Your home's roof is not one continuous surface. Holes to allow for the protrusion of a chimney, skylight, or vents are made when your roof is installed.
The roofing materials around these holes expand and contract as the outdoor temperature fluctuates. This can create gaps between your roof and the protrusions that might serve as entry points for water. Metal strips known as flashing are installed over these gaps to keep your roof watertight.
Because flashing is made from metal, it can begin to corrode over time. Look for evidence of rust, holes, or other types of corrosion in the flashing when visually examining your roof. An experienced roofing contractor should be called to replace any corroded flashing as quickly as possible to prevent potential water leaks.
Catching small problems before they can become major disasters will keep your home's roof in good condition. Contact the professionals at C & W Roofing, Siding & Window Co. to schedule a tune-up for your home's roofing system.