Five Early Signs That It's Time To Replace Your Roof

Many homeowners falsely assume that if their roof is not yet leaking, they do not need a new one. However, it's really best to replace your roof before it springs a leak – since leaks can cause costly, permanent damage to your walls, ceilings and personal items. To know when it's time to replace your roof, look for these early warning signs.

Shingle granules in your gutters.

A granule or two is not a sign of anything serious, but when you start to notice a constant stream of shingle granules running out of your gutters (or accumulating and clogging them) this is a sign that your roof has begun to deteriorate rapidly and you should make plans to replace it promptly. Without these granules, your roof won't offer as much protection from rain and the elements.

Shingles or chunks of shingles in your yard.

By the time shingles actually start coming off or breaking on their own, you can bet that your roof is in pretty bad condition. You may want to get up on a ladder and check for missing shingles, however, since there is a chance that shingles you're finding in your yard came from a neighbor's home.

Discolored wallboards.

Sometimes, small amounts of water may begin to trickle in from damaged areas of your roof, but you never actually see a puddle because the leak is still so small. Your wallboard, however, may begin to discolor near the top. This is because it has been absorbing little bits of water over time. Even if it does not feel wet to the touch, discolored wallboard means it's time for a new roof before more water starts coming in.

A musty smell in the attic.

Once again, this is a sign that a small, unnoticeable amount of water has begun to trickle in, causing mold growth in the attic. You may also notice that your insulation has begun to look moldy or discolored as a result.

Peeling, cracking paint.

If the interior paint on the outer walls of your home has begun to crack and peel, this is a sign that water may be seeping in near the edge of the roof. This often occurs when ice dams have worked their way under the edge shingles, allowing small amounts of water to trickle in.

If you notice any of the signs above, it is time to call a roofing contractor and make plans to have a new roof installed. Waiting until you have a major leak will just make the experience more expensive, since you will then have to pay to repair water damage, too.