2015/08/08 - Replacing a roof is expensive. Nobody wants to do it if they can get their current roof to last longer. So how do you know if you need your composite roof replaced?
The biggest indicator is age but inspecting the roof annually is an excellent practice. We provide an annual roof inspection service for our customers. If your roof is old you might want to inspect after any storms. Here in Bellevue we sit in a convergence zone where we get wind storms that can cause damage to the roof. You can do this with a binoculars if you are not comfortable on a roof.
For shingles themselves you are looking for edge curls on the tabs, broken and cracked shingles, or missing shingles. Look for missing granules. That is an indication that the shingle has lost its pliability and it is failing. If you have an attic, go in the attic on a bright sunny day and look for light cracks or pinholes. Look at the roof deck and rafters for water damage or marking. Be aware that as a roof starts to fail it tends deteriorate at an increasing pace; granules wear off leaving the shingle unprotected which increases the rate of granules wearing off creating a spiral of failure.
Some people want to or need to push their roof to the limit for longevity. That is understandable in today's economic climate. But one has to weigh that against the cost of structural damage that will ultimately increase the price of replacing the roof. Our best recommendation is to replace the roof when it is clear that it is rapidly deteriorating before leaks begin. Otherwise, inspect your roof annually and as it starts to fail increase the frequency of inspections accordingly. Make sure you account for the lead time in having a roofer replace the roof, as well as the weather. Here in Bellevue and the Northwest we have no restrictions in terms of ice and snow for replacing a roof, but it is always best to to it when the weather is clear.