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How to determine if a roofing problem is urgent

Last modified: 2021-08-02 | Approximate reading time 4 mins

Amanda Harvey

As with all structural aspects of your home, wear and tear happen. Whether it’s a result of age, weather conditions, or a sudden incident, it’s important to be flexible and prepared when approaching necessary home renovations.

Your roof is one of the aspects of a house that’s crucial when it comes to your interior remaining comfortable and feeling secure. Now, what happens when we encounter an issue with our roof? First, it’s necessary to determine how urgent the problem is and then, how it can be dealt with.

But, how do we know when a roofing issue needs our immediate attention? Well, luckily this article will discuss some of the more serious signs of roofing damage and how to deal with these accordingly. 

How to determine if a roofing problem is urgent

white roof

Water leakage

When the structure or material of your roof is damaged or compromised, it will allow water to leak into your attic and the rest of your home. Water leakage is serious and if left untreated, can easily cause several other issues including mould and mildew growth, deterioration of interior materials and in some cases, infestation. Thus, we would consider this an urgent problem. 

If you notice water leaking into your attic, this could point to cracked or damaged shingles and also, damaged flashing. This problem should be dealt with immediately and will involve determining which section of your roof needs repair. Roof repairs are a skilled job and may require the help of a professional roofer, so bear this in mind before pulling out a ladder.

We’d also recommend doing a yearly attic check to look out for any significant signs of water damage or leakage. Stains on your attic ceiling, as well as around pipe vents or chimneys, can be a sign of water infiltration.

Soft spots and a sagging roof

Missing or damaged shingles definitely don’t point to an urgent problem, as this is a common occurrence that happens to most roofs on occasion. We’d suggest attending to these shingles as quickly as they’re noticed, as missing or damaged shingles can leave your roof vulnerable to weather conditions and urgent issues such as the aforementioned water leakage. 

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Now, if you notice a sagging roof, this may prove to be more serious. A roof can sag in two different ways: at the ridge of the roof or on the roof deck. The ridge is the spot where two shingle surfaces meet at the peak. If it was once straight but you’ve started to notice it dip, this could be a sign of a problem. Specifically, this points to the failure of your roof structure.

The roof deck is the flat part of your roof where the shingles live. Commonly, the roof deck is susceptible to heat build-up, causing it to bend and warp. If you’re noticing any area of the roof dipping, then the wood beneath it may be rotting or that the rafters are beginning to fail. If you notice a sagging, dipping roof, it should be dealt with immediately. A structural problem happening to your home should not be taken lightly. 

roof landscape

Loss of granules

If you’re noticing a loss of granules on shingles turning up in your gutters, this could point to a concerning issue. The granules on shingles serve three main purposes: UV ray protection, providing fire resistance and aesthetic beauty. It’s common for a few granules to end up in your gutter, as the adhesive bond that keeps them in place will wear out over time.

However, if you’re finding an abnormal amount has descended from your roof, then you may need to take immediate action. Their purpose is to protect your shingles from the elements and without them, you will have to deal with a quicker deterioration of the shingles. Not to mention, a loss of granules could point to even deeper, underlying issues.

Moss growth

Moss often grows on roof shingles, notably in the spaces between the shingles. Though it may be pretty, in certain climates it can grow quite thick and once established, actually collects and stores rainwater. Unfortunately, all that water can find its way into the structure and materials of your roofing.

If the moss is left untreated, it will lead to a build-up of water which has the ability to create mould and mildew growth in your home’s ceilings and walls. Do bear in mind that mould and mildew growth is very dangerous for you and the health of your loved ones. 

Although an urgent issue, luckily dealing with moss growth is quite easy. Your local hardware store will have moss-killing chemicals which can take care of the issue. Another option is to get up on your roof and take a broom or brush to remove it. Lastly, you could get in touch with professionals to clear off that moss for you. In this regard, never let anyone climb onto your roof with a power washer or wire brush, as these devices are much too harsh. Good luck!

Are you still wondering if your roof needs repairing? Check out our additional article on the subject!

Would you like to have an idea of the cost of your next roofing renovation project? Try our cost calculator!

maison au toit en pente

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