Do I really need a new roof?
Hard to get an opinion that you can trust
In most instances, it is pretty obvious when you need to get some work done. If you car will not stop without squealing like a pig, if you have water pouring out of your sink, or your tooth hurts so bad that you cant even eat anymore, it is time to see a professional. Now, it is not uncommon for people to call a roofing contractor because they have an active leak. This article is not for them, if there is water coming into your house from somewhere above your head just pick up the phone immediately. No, this is for those who want to be proactive about a potential issue, for those that want to address the issue before it starts raining inside their beautiful house. Certain people like to plan ahead and to prevent any problems from happening in the first place. This article is for you.
Gaze deeply into the crystal ball...
There is definitely a little bit of guessing when it comes to estimating the remaining life span of a shingle, regardless of how long a seasoned professional has been roofing.
There is nothing worse then telling a customer that they have another year or so, only to get a call the following month that the new paint job they had done recently is now adding some undesired colors to the hardwood floors. On the other hand, you don't want to come off as that guy trying to scare a customer into doing something prematurely, out of desperation or pure and simple greed alone. Therefore, it is important to take any advise with a grain of salt, and to understand that this is not an exact science. Try to call out a larger company that has a reputation to protect. Smaller roofers will sometimes do or say whatever necessary in order to make the sale. For a larger company, these kind of tactics are not worth the liability as word travels fast now that we are all connected on the internet.
Any immediate issues, like a hole in the roof?
Yes, it happens all the time. A customer will call a contractor out only to discover a gaping hole in their roof that they were not even aware of. Whether it was caused by rotten boards, or a critter, does not matter. These matters require immediate attention, and a long term solution. If the overall condition of the roof is questionable, do not pay someone to patch it and think that you are going to be saving any money. One repair turns into two real quick, and from there the problems can grow exponentially. Next thing you know, you have spent over half the cost of an entire new roof and the problem still persists. The only time we recommend a repair is if the problem is clearly identifiable, if the section can be completed in full because it is separate, or if it is a new roof that was simply installed improperly. Otherwise, it is better to temporarily stop the water infiltration and to save up to get the entire thing done instead. Understandably, everyone is working with a different budget and finances, but this is a long term investment no matter how you look at it. Unless of course, you are just trying to fix it quick because you are looking to sell the property. Deep down, it is still better to do the right thing instead of pass along the problem to someone else though.
I can just inspect and repair the roof myself
Well, roofing is not rocket science so it is definitely a possibility. However, it will often involve putting your very life at risk working at such heights. If you do not have the proper safety equipment or experience, it is not recommended that you even attempt a simple inspection yourself. Most roofing companies are more then happy to come out and give you a free estimate and inspection, so call around if you are having any doubts. If you are not satisfied with what you here after getting a few opinions, then maybe it is time to venture up there and check it out for yourself. Nearly everyone has a cell phone camera, and can take pictures of their findings on the roof so that you need not put yourself in any danger. If you are into the adrenaline rush, there are better ways out there to get your kicks.