How often should I replace my asphalt shingle roof?
The majority of asphalt roofing shingles will provide 20 or more years of protection, but there are factors that play a big role in a roof’s longevity. Storm damage, sun, and heat are factors that can impact your roof’s ability to protect your biggest investment – your home. It’s best to have your roof inspected once-a-year in order to catch any damage or potential issues. During a roof inspection, a professional roofer can find damages early and offer appropriate repairs at an affordable cost.
How will I know if my roof needs replacement?
Many homeowners recognize the need for a new roof when they see spots on the ceiling or leaks, but there are other critical signs your roof may need to be replaced. Warning signs include shingle granules in the gutters, signs of water leakage or damage on the ceiling, light shining through the roof (inside your attic), shingles curling or cracking, dark spots or trails on the roof, saggy spots on the roof, missing shingles, or age.
It is important to know the different effects that hail damage has on different types of roofs. For example, hail damage to asphalt and composition shingles looks very different from hail damage on wood shingles. Detection of hail damage on flat roofs might even require a core cut to be made and sent to an independent lab for testing.
The following are factors to consider when determining if your roof has hail damage:
Asphalt & Composition Shingles
- Hail impact marks or “hits” that are black in color; older hail hits will show as gray in color – no longer black
- Loss of granules, which may expose the roof felt; you may notice these granules on the ground near your downspouts
- Random damage to the asphalt shingle with no pattern
- Hail hits that are soft to the touch, like a bruise on an apple
- A split in the shingle that is brown/orange in color exposing freshly cut wood
- A split in the shingle that has little to no deterioration at the edges
- Impact marks or dents along the splits
- Random damage with no pattern
Flat Roof Systems
This is often more difficult to determine on the surface unless there is a noticeable tear – often in a circular or semi-circle shape. Thorough evaluation requires cutting into the roof and inspecting a core sample.
If there is damage to your landscaping, siding, gutters, windows, screens or exterior appliances, there is also likely damage to your roof.
Will my homeowner’s insurance cover the repairs or replacement of my roof?
Most homeowner’s insurance policies cover roof replacements due to acts of nature such as hail, wind, rain, and fire. If you are looking to simply upgrade the materials on your roof or install a new roof due to age, it is unlikely your homeowner’s insurance policy will cover these expenses. It is best to check your insurance policy or speak with an insurance agent to determine what your insurance company will cover.
What should I do after a hailstorm?
Please note the following tips if you believe your roof has been damaged by hail.
- Record the date of the storm
- Contact a reputable local contractor to complete an inspection before you file a claim with your insurance company
- Be wary of any individual who knocks on your door immediately following a hailstorm. While some individuals may be reputable, we strongly recommend contacting a reputable, local contractor – not a storm-chaser. And never hand over any money on the spot.
- If your contractor discovers hail damage, it is extremely important to file a claim with your insurance company immediately. Some insurance companies have strict time limits of when a claim can be filed.
- Your insurance company will perform their own inspection. We recommend you have your selected contractor available when the insurance adjustor comes to assess the roof. It is important to follow your insurance company’s guidelines regarding the claim.
- Do not attempt to fix or repair your roof on your own.