How do I Know if I Need a New Roof??
Perhaps the most unsettling sound one can hear as a homeowner!
You are lying in bed, well into the night, when the peaceful patter of rain against your window or on the ground outside in the late winter, is interrupted by a dripping sound that you just cannot ignore.
You pop up and discover a drip. Possibly stemming from a piece of top window trim. Possibly coming from a light fixture in the living room. Possibly leeching out a seam in the drywall of the bathroom ceiling. Etc., etc., etc…
Wherever the dripping is occurring, it is certainly not something fun to endure.
After the rain stops and things are cleaned up, the next obvious step is figuring out where the dripping leak is starting from.
Assuming that things are narrowed down to the roof being the point of origin, is it time to replace the roof entirely or could it possibly be an issue that can be patched and the roof replacement being kicked down the road a little bit?
In answering this question, certain things should be investigated before ultimately answering it.
Are all penetrations properly flashed? This includes chimneys, your sewer ventilation piping, and other venting that may be coming through your roof.
Are any existing dormers properly flashed?
Inadequately installed and worn flashing are most often at the heart of the issue for the majority of these apparent leaky roof situations.
Are there any really visible areas that need to be patched? If so, this could be the issue and should be addressed as soon as possible.
Even when roofs look really worn, it may actually be a flashing issue or an area that needs minor patching, rather than an entire roof system needing to be replaced, in order to stop the dripping.
If all the flashing in the entire roof area is tight and there are no blatant areas that seem like they need patching, it may be time to look into installing a new roof.
If it appears that the roof indeed needs to be replaced, we ALWAYS recommend stripping the roof back to its sheathing, making sure the sheathing is solid, and installing a roof system in-line with modern building code and the manufacturer’s guidelines on the roof product that will ultimately be put into place.
“Drip…Drip…Drip…” during a rainstorm in the middle of the night is often not a pleasant sound.
Knowing the difference between a roof repair and replacement, however, will potentially save you thousands of dollars should this disturbing situation ever arise and present itself.