Discovering roof damage can be tricky. It may not manifest itself as something serious as leaks or large cracks for quite some time. However, failing to catch the first signs of roof damage could lead to costly repairs and severe problems with your home’s integrity.
Each homeowner should be ready to provide sufficient maintenance for the roof, especially before the cold season starts. We’ll discuss the top roof damage prevention steps later in the article.
All roof care starts with regular inspections. Let’s talk about signs of roof damage you should look out for. Remember, climbing the roof to discover damages is dangerous. You should dedicate the job to an expert with special training and proper equipment.
1. Water Stains on the Ceiling
Make it a habit of inspecting your attic regularly. If you see water stains running across the ceiling and running down walls, your roof may be in trouble. Tracking the leak down may be tough. However, once you do, repairs shouldn’t take long.
If your roof is leaking, you must attend to the problem immediately. Small leaks tend to turn into larger issues, which with time could ruin your roof and undermine the integrity of the entire house.
Tiny leaks could cause such serious problems as mold, rotted framing, damaged sheathing, and insulation problems.
2. Damaged Shingles
One damaged shingle may not look like a serious problem. Meanwhile, with time, it can lead to leaks. Replacing roof shingles is easy. It doesn’t require too much time or effort. However, if you don’t pay due attention to a problem, it may turn into a disaster.
You should look for such signs as damaged, rotting or missing shingles. According to experts from a Chicago roofing company, Len Roofing, if you discover numerous decaying shingles, it may be time to get a new roof.
3. Clogged Soffit Vents
Proper attic ventilation is vital to the integrity and well-being of your home. Normal ventilation starts with soffit vents. They provide proper airflow from the attic to the roof. When the air comes into the vent, it goes through an air chute. Keeping these chutes from damages and clogging is the key to proper airflow. Without normal ventilation, roof and house damage is unavoidable.
If the soffit vent is even partially clogged, moisture can build up inside, leading the high humidity in the attic. This could cause roof problems and result in poor air quality in the entire house.
4. Rusted Gutters
Gutters are responsible for channeling water away from your home and roof. If they are rusted, they may crack and stop functioning properly. Eventually, moisture will collect on the roof and cause damage. Rusted, clogged, and damaged gutters are some of the top causes of roof leaks, shingle damage, and ventilation problems.
It’s important to clean and inspect gutters at least twice a year to ensure their proper function and prevent roof damage.
5. Mold on Exterior Wall
If you notice mold growth on exterior walls it could be the sign of your roof leaking. Make sure to inspect all walls both inside and outside to find leaks. Remember, leaks may not be discovered until it’s too late. That’s why even the tiniest sign that they could occur should raise a huge red flag.
Hire an expert to perform a thorough inspection to discover leaks.
6. Stains Around Bath Fan
Pay close attention to any “holes” in your ceiling. Be it space around your lighting fixtures of bathroom fans, you need to inspect it carefully. If you see water stains around the bath fan, it may mean that there is a leak. Another cause of such stains could be improper insulation of the bath fan ducting. You may need professional assistance to identify the reason.
7. Hail Damage
Whether you live in the area where hails are common or only see them once a year, you need to inspect your roof for damage after each episode. Hail can damage shingles substantially, which will eventually lead to serious roof problems. When hail hits shingles, they can lose their protective layer of granules and become highly susceptible to UV rays.
8. Streams of Light in the Attic
Make sure to inspect your attic during the day with windows (if any) closed. Tiny streams of light in the attic could indicate roof damage. You need to figure out which openings the light is coming from. They could signal serious shingle damage.
9. Higher Energy Bills
If you notice that the size of your energy bills is increasing, it could mean that cold or warm air is escaping your home through the roof. Even though it’s one of about a dozen reasons for an energy bill spike, it could be the costliest. Inspect the roof inside and out for air leaks.
Top Roof Damage Prevention Tips
To prevent roof damage, you should follow these simple tips:
· Whenever you notice a damaged shingle, replace it immediately.
· If you see ponding on your roof, call the repair company ASAP. Puddles of water on your roof will lead to damage shortly.
· Clean gutters regularly to avoid standing water and excessive moisture on your roof surface.
· Inspect places where there are openings or joints on your roof (vents, valleys, skylights, chimneys).
· Inspect attic ceiling for light streams and water stains.
· Remove ice and snow after snowstorms to reduce pressure on the roof as well as standing water as the temperatures rise.
· Always hire professionals for annual roof inspections to make sure no signs of potential damage go unnoticed.
· Remove debris from your roof before winter starts.
· Trim tree branches hanging over your roof.
Roof repair doesn’t have to be costly. If you catch the warning signs and call professionals timely, you don’t have to worry about time-consuming roof repair or replacement. Follow the above tips to prevent roof damage.