Generally, a home is the biggest purchase that most people make in their life. More and more homeowners are taking on do-it-yourself projects and major chains like Home Depot and Lowes offer free classes in all kinds of projects. However, sometimes you may not be aware a problem exists. In this article, we're going to take a look at the roof of a home and how to tell if it needs to be repaired or if the entire roof needs to be replaced.
Charles Richey is a long time resident of Las Vegas and authors a blog, lasvegasnv.blogspot.com about the area. He is also the webmaster for lvrealty.net, a comprehensive guide about the Las Vegas real estate market.
- Inspect the exterior of the roof. Check for anything missing or loose roof tiles. Remove any shrubs or trees branches that may hit the roof because, over time, they can damage it. If you have a roof-mounted HVAC unit, make sure that the drain pipe is working correctly and not leaking onto your roof; over time it can damage the tiles and cause a leak.
- Check your ceilings inside your home. Often a leak will cause the ceiling drywall in your home to become discolored or to bulge. Check your ceilings for any irregularities or spots.
- Inspect the attic interior. This is very important because the outside of the roof may look fine as well as your ceilings inside the house, but a small leak will leave marks on the underside of the roof. Check for signs of mold, discoloration of the wood and dry rot. Finding a problem here and having it fixed will save you a lot of costly repairs later on.
If you do find mold in your attic, I recommend that you contact a company that specializes in mold remediation. Certain kinds of mold are very toxic and I don't recommend that you try to get rid of it yourself.
- Water testing. If you live in a dry climate like Las Vegas, you don't get a lot of rain. The best way to test for leaks is have a friend take your garden house on top of the roof. Have them start in one section of the roof eves and slowly pour water over it, working their way backwards, while you are in the attic with a flashlight and a bucket watching. If you find any leaks, mark them with a permanent marker or even a nail pushed through the hole so you'll know exactly what needs to be fixed. Have your friend on the roof mark the spot as well, just in case the hole allows the nail to come lose.