How Old is my Roof?

One of the most vital things to figure out is the roof age of your home.

You can know the history of your home by uncovering the facts from its previous owners or the contractors who handled the last roof repairs.

Continue reading here to discover other ways of finding out the age of your roof.

Determining Your Roof’s Age

Inquire from the Previous Owners

Contacting the roofing contractor of a home or contacting its former owners is one of the easiest ways to know the roof’s age.

For this reason, when you buy a new home, it is essential to maintain contact with the previous homeowners of the property.

Most people will not mind getting you some answers about their former home, including the roof’s age and the last time they conducted a home inspection.

Finding a professional legal expert to help you make those inquiries is vital.

If the former owners had lived in the building for a long time, they would know about the roof’s lifespan and when the current roof installations happened.

Look for the Building Permit

Researching when you need to figure out the age of your roof is always a good idea.

It helps you determine if your state regulations require every roofing expert to have a building permit to carry out a full roof replacement or installation.

If that is the case, you can get in touch with the local state government to check out the public records for the permit details.

It will be prudent to go through the documents to check out the exact date when a roofing specialist installed your old roof, as it will provide you with accurate data about the building.

Find the Home’s Receipt from the Last Roof Replacement

When you talk to the house’s former owners, they can tell you about the roofing company that did the full replacement of the old roof.

Although the homeowner may not have the receipt from the roof repair service, they will provide you with their name.

Use the contact details provided to reach out to the company and request a copy of the receipt since there is a good chance that they may still have all the records of their previous projects.

Hiring a Roof Inspection Company

If all else fails, getting a professional inspection from the right roofing company to determine if the entire roof is in good condition is vital.

A well-trained professional roof inspector will detect any signs of wear on older roofs and can use the data to estimate the age and lifespan of your roof.

Besides, the expert roofing companies’ reliable evaluation will help you know if any warning signs will help you prevent any further damage.

So you can contact local roofers to get a free estimate and a detailed assessment of the overall age of the roof.

The best way to know the condition of your roof is to find an experienced home inspector whose aim at that moment is not to make a product sale.

Their estimation will be more objective than an inspector sent by your roofing expert.

Signs that You Need a New Roof

You can repair or replace the roof of an older home when it shows the signs of an aging roof with extensive damage.

However, just because it is an older roof does not mean you need to upgrade it, especially when it has only been within the first 25 years from the last time you installed it.

The type of roof shingles used when installing a roof will determine when and how fast the top will age.

As a result, you can evaluate the roof’s age by looking at multiple factors.

Regardless, there can be a sure sign that the current condition of your roof is beyond restoration and upgrading. So, what are the signs that you need a new roof?

Curled Shingles

Your home’s shingles will curl due to the effects of high winds, heat damage, and overall roof aging effects.

So if you spot curled shingles, you should know that it alters with the proper functioning of the roof system.

As time passes by, the sheets which bind shingles and keep them attached begin to strip off from one another.

One of the common signs of an old roof will, thus, be the curling shingles that appear distorted.

The phenomenon leaves the old shingles susceptible to wind damage that will create a leaky roof.

The last thing you want is strong winds or a heavy storm to leave you with a leaking roof.

Therefore, calling a professional roofer to replace the old shingles will be the best way to protect your home.

How do you know if you can only repair or replace the entire roof system of your home?

Whether you upgrade the roof or do a complete replacement will rely on the extent of the damage.

Missing Shingles

Apart from curling, strong winds and storms can cause the shingles to fly off the roof.

Such effects of hail damage can also expose passers-by to injury and destruction to adjacent buildings.

Their complete absence will indicate that the bonding agent that holds your shingles together is not functional anymore.

If such a thing happens to your roof, it is the ultimate of its lifespan, which means that you need an entirely newer roof.

A Leaky Roof and Water Damage

The role of the roof is to protect your home against elements such as water and wind. One of the classic signs that your roof’s lifespan is over will be water damage.

Parts of the roof start to wear out, and you can detect the signs of damage when the roof starts to leak to imply that it is not performing its job anymore.

So, the moment you notice any visible roof damage when you check out your attic, you will know that it is time to invest in a new replacement.

Missing Granules

Every asphalt roof contains granules whose critical role is to protect the coating from excessive sunshine and water elements.

The main components of the granule layer include crunched stones, slag, slating, and ceramic.

As the roof of your home ages, the granular layer loosens and starts to slack away, leaving bare patches.

Upon removing the covering, the roof shingles become more vulnerable to weather-related issues such as hail damage and ice dams.

Thus, missing granules indicate that your roof is no longer in good shape, and you may need to install a new one. In most cases, granules fall off the top due to storm damage.

However, if the house’s gutter system is out of a few granules, it does not necessarily imply the need for a replacement of the entire roof.

So, unless the building is missing many granules across the gutter system, you may not need new shingles.

Damaged Roof Flashing

Professional roofers use a component known as roof flashing to ensure that water flows away from the roof.

Experts lay out this common roofing material across crucial parts of the roof, including the meeting point of vents, walls, and chimneys.

Over time, both your roof and its flashing become older and deteriorate.

Once the flashing diminishes, water leaks or leaves stains in the building when it rains; you may want to get a newer roof for your home once you notice the deteriorated flashing.

Dark Spots

If you find dark patches on your roof, you should know that it is a common sign of aging. If you have metal roofing on your building, then the dark spots can result from rusting.

A rusted roof can be dangerous to your entire household since it can collapse. The damage that comes from rust is the worst and can endanger your family and property.

Also, your roof can darken in some areas due to the growth of algae.

So, conducting a quick check in the dark spots to rule out the possible causes can help you know what is eating it away and find a suitable solution.

Growth of Moss

Moss is one of the hazardous components that threaten the condition and lifespan of your roof. When it grows and spreads across the top for a prolonged time, you may have to get a new roof.

With time, the roof will begin to fade away and deteriorate due to the moisture captured by the moss.

Often, there are specific measures that you can take to rid your roof of the moss.

Take a mixture of water, soap, and a bleaching agent and use it to clean and brush the moss away.

Besides, distilled vinegar can be a crucial agent for removing the moss from your roof if you want a natural mixture. Follow the following guidelines to eliminate the moss from your roof:

  • Take about two to four cups of distilled vinegar and add two gallons of water.
  • Stir the mixture properly
  • Apply the mixture to the affected spots using a hosepipe. You can also use a spray gun to spray the affected areas with the water-vinegar blend.
  • Leave the moss spots to soak for an hour or thirty minutes.
  • Take time to scrub the moss off the roof correctly.

The best way to prevent the moss growth from recurring is to clear off any extending tree branches.

Removing the overhanging twigs prevents the surfaces from getting water or absorbing moisture.

It is essential to keep track of potential moss growths in patches or crack holes and gaps in the roof system.

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Keep an Eye on Your Attic

The attic is the first part of your home that will indicate the signs of roof damage.

So, you want to thoroughly inspect that inner part of the roof space before you get to the roof itself.

When you keep track of the internal part of the roof, you can take note of the changes that might occur in the attic that point to roof damage.

Essentially, here are the things that you should look out for in your attic:

  • Look for sun rays penetrating the building through the roof boards
  • Dark pigments and stains on the attic
  • Sagging spaces
  • Water leaks and water-damaged surfaces

If any of the above signs are visible in your attic, you must contact a professional roof repair company for immediate help.

An aging roof will begin to leak, sag, and stain after some time, which means that tracking such changes will allow you to take appropriate steps.

So, if you are considering the installation of a new roof as a new homeowner, checking out the attic might provide you with the answers you need.

Understanding Roof Replacement Costs

When your home indicates single or more damages that require full replacements, it can take a significant investment to get a new roof.

Whether it is about your wood shingles or metal roofing materials, the cost of roof replacement for your residential building will range from $5000-$11000.

The overall prices of restoring roofs may differ depending on the size, location, and extent of damages.

In some cases, insurance companies can cater for the roof replacement expenses depending on the cause, but it happens on rare occasions.

Thus, getting a homeowners’ insurance policy can save the day when the need to repair the roof of your residential building arises.

Bottling Up: How Old is My Roof?

Determining the age of your roof does not involve a simple process. If you are lucky, the most straightforward approach is to ask the former owners of the building.

You can also contact the roofing company that handled the last replacement or inspection process for the receipt of the project to examine the details.

However, other means of evaluating the age of your roof include looking for leaks, missing or curled shingles, and damaged flashing.

Regardless, the best way to understand the roof’s lifespan is through a professional roof inspector’s work.

Certified specialists have the necessary training and experience required to do a decent job whether it involves inspection, replacement, or repair.

Therefore, checking the national roofing contractors’ association websites in your region will help you to identify licensed roofing contractors.

by Richard Kelly

Having experienced significant success as a house flipper, I am often approached with questions about all things home improvement. That’s why I decided to start this site. My objective is to share all of the insights I have accumulated over the years so other people can design the homes of their dreams.