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How to Know whether to Repair, Patch or Replace your Roof

Posted by Northface Construction  - Owner & Founder

From enduring one brutal winter after another, to withstanding the extreme heat waves of summer, it’s inevitable that every Minnesota homeowner will eventually come across various roofing predicaments. Keeping your roof in pristine condition is crucial to ensure you won’t encounter bigger problems further down the road, and knowing how and when to apply the three methods of mending (repair, patch, or replace) can help keep your maintenance costs down and keep your roof adequately protected, all year round. Here are the key signs to knowing whether you need to repair, patch, or replace the roof of your Minnesota home:

When to Repair

Whether it’s a matter of shingle buckling or you’re noticing consistent clogging in the gutters, roof repair is the broad phrase that covers plenty of maintenance issues you may experience with your roof. For starters, routine roof inspection done by a trusted contractor is important to help you catch any needs for repair before any areas of concern grow out of hand. While inspecting, be on the lookout for any signs of shingle damage, be it curling, bending, or missing shingles. Shingles that are placed in areas that receive the most sunlight are more than likely going to need repair work over time.

If you’re noticing that your gutters are clogging up more than usual, it could be because loose shingle granules are plugging up the gutter, which typically happens with older roofs. If you think the guttering is the problem, you might want to get in contact with gutter guard suppliers and see if a guard is suitable. The best gutter guards can stop leaves and debris from falling into the gutter and clogging it. It’s also important to keep an eye out for any signs of color inconsistencies, which can also signal loose single granules or possible rotting. Catching discoloration before it gets out of control can not only mean the difference between repairing and replacing, but also save you thousands of dollars in maintenance costs. Finally, also try to keep an eye out for loose nails, which can typically happen after you’ve recently experienced extreme winds or rainfall. Loose nails need to be addressed as soon as possible to avoid potential leaking or further shingle damage.

When to Patch

It’s easy to start to panic whenever you notice signs of leaking from your roof. But just because a little water is falling through doesn’t mean you need to take any extreme courses of repair action or replace the entire roof. Patching up isolated areas of holes or damage that are contributing to leaking is one of the more DIY-friendly methods of repair work you can do without contacting a roofing contractor or serviceperson. The general methods of patching require as little as some roof sealant, a brush to dust off any excess material, and a roof roller to smoothen out the sealant. However, if you’re inexperienced in patching a roof, it’s always a safe bet to contact a roofing specialist, and minor roof patching will never cost you too much.

When to Replace

When the time has come where your roof is vastly approaching the point of no return, there may be no other alternative solution to the problem than full out roof replacement. The first sign that you might need to look into replacing your roof is knowing how old it is. The general rule of thumb is that if your roof is reaching or past fifteen to twenty years of age, then it’s better safe than sorry to replace it. If you’re not sure how old your roof is, then be on the lookout for any neighbors getting their roof replace, because odds are their roof was built around the same time as yours.

Other general indications that a new roof might be in order are large patches of discoloration, multiple areas of daylight coming through the floorboards, dark streaks of moss or algae formulating, or repetitive repair work on cracked shingles. Don’t let money scare you off if you’re hesitant to such an investment. Roof replacement typically saves money over time, so you don’t have to repeatedly repair shingles damaged or old shingles every summer or continue to spend money on annual roof repair equipment. Don’t be shy to reach out to a Northface Construction representative today for an estimate or evaluation on your roof’s status.


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