damaged shingles

How to Tell if Your Roof Needs Repaired vs. Replaced

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It’s that time of year in the Treasure Valley when the leaves change color, and temps drop and….you notice leaks in your roof.

Your roof might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you’re thinking about home maintenance or repair, but let me tell you….the first time it rains and you see telltale water spots, you’re going to wish you had!

But how to tell if your roof needs repaired vs. replaced, especially before the buckets come out? Here in the Treasure Valley weather can sometimes feel like it’s trying to pack all four seasons into a single afternoon.

Look INSIDE first

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Inside might not be the first place you think to look at your roof, but it’s the best place to start (plus you don’t even have to break out a ladder). When you’re wondering about the health of your roof, check your attic first.

Check your attic carefully for the following issues: 

  • Critters
  • Leaks
  • Water damage
  • Attic is too hot/too cold

Check your records

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Go through your home’s records, both your own and any records from previous owners, to see how long it’s been since the roof on your home has been worked on. Generally, a typical asphalt shingle lasts 20-25 years, so keep that in mind when you’re planning to check for issues.

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • When was your roof installed?
  • How old is your roof?
  • When were the last repairs done​

Check the condition of your roof’s shingles

Ah yes, shingles. The reason your roof works so well to protect your home from damage and weather. Make sure you check your shingles, especially after heavy storms. Shingles should lie flat against the roof, and if you find patches that are cracked, damaged, buckling, or shiny because of granule loss, then repairs are in order (at least).

And while you’re up there, be sure to check your gutters and downspouts for shingle granules—a roof that is losing a lot of granules may be at the end of its useful life. And it DEFINITELY means your roof’s shingles aren’t protecting your roof very well.

Look at your Flashing

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Roof flashing is a thin material that professional roofers use to direct water away from critical areas of the roof, wherever the roof plane meets a vertical surface like a wall or a dormer. Flashing is installed to surround roof features, such as vents, chimneys and skylights, and seams. Flashing protects your roof from rain, snow, and anything in between. Basically keeping your roof free of ice and water damage.

Check for roof rot

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A droopy, sagging roof is one that uh, probably needs replacing before further damage occurs to your home. If you see sagging, make sure to check your roof for signs of trapped moisture, rotting boards or sagging places.

And if you find signs of rot, sagging or drooping, you probably do need to call a professional roofer to make sure you get those issues checked out by an expert.


Get rid of unwanted houseplants

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It might remind you of a cottage in the woods, but here in the treasure valley (and the real world), moss on your roof spells trouble. Moss, mold, and fungi are signs that point to trapped moisture in your roof, which causes a lot of damage. This is another one that can be a pain to find because you do need to be careful to address any underlying problems.

Don’t Panic

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By far the most essential part of deciding to get your roof replaced, choosing the right roofer can mean a difference in price, quality, experience, etc, all definitely important to consider. When dealing with an investment in your home that is this important, you want to be educated. After all, we’re talking about your home! You want an experienced contractor and locally owned Boise roofer you can trust.

Do your research! Look up Your Boise Roofer First

Not even as close to as hard as you think it’d be – this is the digital age after all! There are a few really simple steps you can take to make sure you’re choosing the right roofer in the Treasure Valley before you even talk to your contractor in person.

Look up your Idaho Roofer on Google (no, not Bing…GOOGLE).

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It might seem a little obvious, but you should always start your research online! After all, if you look up how to fix your car or cook a new recipe on the good old internet, you should definitely be researching your roofer. In fact, you can make a really educated choice about your Boise roofer based on what you find online!

Of course, start on Google. Check for ‘Idaho Roofers near me,’ and check for roofers in your area of the Treasure Valley. You’ll get a list of roofers in your area, their contact info, and links to their website (if they have one).

Another great place to check for local Treasure Valley Roofers is Idaho’s Best! These awards are voted on by the community, so you can trust that contractors who have won this award have a great reputation.

What does their online reputation look like?

Google is a good start, but there are all kinds of other places you can look up information on a roofer’s reputation in the Treasure Valley.

When looking at reviews, consider the following:

  • How many reviews do they have?
  • Are they good or bad reviews?
  • Most importantly, how does the company handle a bad review? Do they make it right when there are issues?

Wondering where to find reviews? There are actually a lot of places you might not know to look:

Take the time to do the research on what other people like you are saying, and you won’t regret it. Previous customers’ reviews will tell you more than almost anything else. Obviously the more reviews the better! Plus, it’s extremely difficult to have a majority of positive reviews, so you can feel a lot more confident when you see 4+ stars.

Talk with your roofing company!

Don’t be intimidated to ask questions! A good roofing company will be happy to sit down and go over your roof in-depth with you, so you know where every dollar is spent and the quality of the product you’re paying for.

You’re much more likely to end up happy with your roof if you’re as educated as possible. Any good roofer will be happy to show you examples of the products and answer all your questions about the process.

If you’re looking for more information on the process of choosing a roofer, be sure to check out these articles:

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