A house at its essence is about providing shelter to those who dwell within its wall. But a house is more than just shelter. It is the place where you can feel safe and accepted. It is the repository of your most valued possessions and treasured memories. It is your home. Your roof plays an important role in making sure that your home and all of its contents stay safe and secure. Keeping your roof in good repair will ensure that your roof takes good care of you.
Take a Proactive Approach
Our family has been taking care of roofs in Tallahassee Florida for over 30 years. We know the importance of keeping your roof in good repair. Beyond just avoiding leaks and water damage associated with a little rainfall in Tallahassee Florida, your roof has to withstand the full force of nature to keep your home safe. When the storm winds come, a solid roof is one of your best defenses.
Not every roofing flaw is easy to detect. A roof that looked like it is “good enough” before the hurricane winds come can quickly give way and leave your home exposed to the elements. Even a roof that is just a few years old can have weaknesses that an intense storm can exploit.
That’s why every Tallahassee homeowner should have their roof inspected by a roofing professional regularly. By taking a proactive approach to roof inspection and repair, you can avoid significant costs and heartache down the road.
Reading the Signs
When deciding if your roof is in need of repair, a qualified roofer will look for several things. Obviously, if you have had any leaks or your roof is missing shingles, then immediate repairs are in order. Other signs of trouble include sagging or dips in the plane of the roof.
These are an indication that your roof’s load-bearing components are failing to hold up the roof’s weight. If your gutters are filled with granules from your shingles, this means it is time for action. Sunlight, age, and environmental damage have taken their toll, and your shingles are no longer performing at their best.
Dark spots or moss growth on your roof means trouble lies beneath. Mold, mildew, and algae are usually signs of unwanted moisture. When inspecting a metal roof, your roofing professional will look for signs of rust or corrosion; loose, missing, or bent roofing materials, and missing fasteners. Loose flashings, soffits, gutters, or ridge caps are all structural flaws that must be addressed if you want the inside of your house to stay dry and secure.
Inside your attic, an inspector will look for cracks in your roof’s sheathing, the support (usually plywood) for your roofing material. Evidence of moisture in the attic may point to a leak in your roof or improper ventilation in your attic. Insects or water can cause major structural damage to your home’s rafters and trusses if left unchecked. Signs of termite activity or wood rot should be addressed immediately.
Preparing for Action
Once you’ve determined that you need to take action to take care of your roof, you will need to decide just what action to take. Here are some factors to keep in mind when you are considering a roof repair or replacement:
- License Required: If you are hiring someone to install or repair your roof, Florida law requires that they are licensed. Allowing an unlicensed contractor to make even a small roof repair on your home can be costly. Even in an emergency, an unlicensed contractor may only be paid to dry-in your roof by placing a tarp or other covering to protect it from further harm.
- Replace or Repair: To qualify for homeowner’s insurance your roof must meet certain age and condition requirements. If your asphalt shingle roof is over 25 years old, you will be required to prove that it has at least three years of useful life to qualify for insurance. If your roof is approaching the end of its useful life, you may be running out of time to keep your home insured. Instead of investing in repairs for an older roof, installing a new, safer, more efficient roof now will keep your homeowner’s insurance in good standing.
- Double Benefit: Roofs constructed with tile, slate, clay, concrete, or metal are eligible for insurance without replacement for up to 50 years. This age limit is twice as long as that of a shingled roof. If the time has come to replace your roof, you can double its insurable life by choosing one of these materials. A metal roof may cost a little more upfront, but you will be able to save the cost of replacement for an extra 25 years.
- Wind Mitigation: Homeowners who install wind mitigation features in their homes can qualify for homeowner’s policy discounts. Selecting roofing materials that are rated to resist high winds and water intrusion, and using special attachments designed to help your roof stay put during a storm, can save your home in a storm and save you money right away.
- Thin is Not In: In the past, some metal roofs were installed by directly attaching the metal panels to the rafters. If your home has a metal roof or other roofing material that was installed without sheathing, we recommend that you make a replacement. Sheathing performs several important duties. First, it provides a stable base for the attachment of roofing materials. Second, sheathing helps evenly distribute the weight of your roof across the rafters. Finally, sheathing forms a second line of defense in the case of damage to your roof. If a storm manages to peel off a piece of your roof, whether shingles or metal panels, the underlying layer of sheathing forms one more barrier between you and the force of the storm.
For generations, the Callaghan family has been helping other Tallahassee families take care of their homes. When you need someone to help take care of yours, give us a call. We are happy to lend our 30 years of experience to help you protect the people and things you love.