Roofing-Common Problems

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During a home inspection we find common issues with roofs, whether the home is new or not. A majority of these issues are due to lack of maintenance or incorrect installation. There are many common issues, but we’ll limit this discussion to the most common ones. Weathered shingles are one of the most common defects. Usually it doesn’t mean the roof needs replacing, simply that it is in need of maintenance or repair. Weathering and aging are typical. Missing shingles can lead to moisture intrusion into the attic or rotting of the roof decking. Significant loss of granules can indicate the manufacturing process was not the best, leading to premature aging of the shingles. Loss of granules can also clog gutters and downspouts. This in turn can lead to water entering the interior causing wood rot and possible mold production.

read more Improper flashing can also mean water penetration into the home. Flashing is a series of metal “L” brackets inserted under each shingle install to keep water out of the home. If the chimney is improperly flashed, then wetness can get into the attic. Water in the attic can lead to possible mold, wood deterioration, and soggy installation. Multiple layers of shingles are more common than one might think. Most municipalities allow for up to 2 layers, with some permitting three. The problem with multiple shingle layers is not limited to just one issue. The drawback of multiple layers is:

The weight of the multiple layers on the roof decking, which can lead to roof sag or failure. The second shingle layer will not last as long as the manufacturer states due to improper installation. A second or third layer installed over the original will void any warranty the manufacture provides. Second or third layers will not stand up to severe weather. In the event of a hail storm, the roof allows the pellets to actually embed themselves into the shingle. On single layers, the pellets actually bounce off the roof. There can still be some hail damage, but it will be less than if there were multiple layers on the roof.

Roof issues are a common find on most home inspections. To make your roof last the length that it’s designed for, keep these issues in mind a have them inspected and/or repaired. Repair any issues now rather than later as this will save you money in the long run. The more you monitor and maintain your roof, the more money you get to keep in your pocket. If you’re selling your home, this can lead to a quicker sale too.

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