The average lifespan of an asphalt shingle roof is about 20 years, or 30 for a metal roof. Most Pittsburgh homeowners don’t pay much attention to their roofs until problems begin to emerge. It’s a smart idea to check your roof frequently for signs of wear and tear. Small damaged areas can lead to deeper water damage if not taken care of promptly. If your roof seems to be worn or is missing several shingles, it’s probably time for a replacement.
Shingles are intended to lay flat against the surface of the roof. Using a ladder, check if all your shingles are still lying flat. Wind often lifts shingles, bending them back. This will create a shingle that appears to be curled. Bare spots and missing granules are typically seen on the curled tiles.
Shingles with missing granules or areas rubbed smooth can indicate you need to replace shingles. If there are multiple bald spots, climb on the roof to check for water damage. Encountering water spots on the top of the roof means you will also need to check in the attic for internal water damage.
Hail, snow, and ice can cause cracked shingles. Sometimes, only the shingles will need replacing. If there are multiple layers of cracked shingles, you will need to check for water damage.
One or two missing shingles is not a cause for concern. Unfortunately, this is a normal part of owning a shingled roof. Multiple missing shingles or areas of the roof without shingles is a bad sign. If your room is missing many tiles, chances are very good there will be water damage and possible mold.
Moss or Dark Streaks
Homes in areas of high humidity like Western, PA often have dark discolorations or streaks on their roofing. The problem is so common, many believe it’s a normal part of the roof’s aging. The dark streaks seen on these roofs is mold or algae. If the problem is widespread, you will likely need to replace the roofing. Homeowners in areas of high humidity would be better served to install a metal roof, which is resistant to many different forms of algae.
Replacing Your Roof
Replacing a roof is a big investment, requiring a good deal of research. If you plan to replace your roof, consider a metal roof installation over your current shingled roof. Often, roofing contractors can fix water damage and install the metal directly over the roof. This process will add extra insulation and speed installation.