As a homeowner, “How do I know if I need a new roof?” is a question that has probably crossed your mind at some point.  Whether you have an active leak, missing shingles, or are just curious about the lifespan of the roof on your home, knowing the signs that a roof replacement is necessary can help you make proactive decisions to protect your home.

Here are 8 common signs that you might need a new roof.

  1. Water Damage

The most obvious sign that your roof needs to be replaced is visible water damage inside your house or attic. Signs of water damage include a steady drip or wet spots in your home during rain storms, and streaks or water spots on the walls of your attic. Water damage can spread quickly, so it’s important to act fast if it is present inside your home.

  1. Missing Shingles

Missing shingles are an obvious sign that your roof needs to be repaired or replaced. When shingles are missing, parts of your roof are left unprotected from water and UV rays. This can cause heat damage and roof leaks that will further damage your roof and home.

  1. Damaged Shingles

Cracked, lifted or curling shingles are signs that your shingles are wearing out. In addition to being an eyesore, worn out shingles leave your roof more susceptible to water and UV damage. Wear and tear on shingles is caused by a number of factors, including water damage, heavy storms, heat, and old age.

  1. Moss Growth On Your Roof

Extensive moss growth signals the need for a new roof. When moss takes root on your roof it absorbs the moisture in the area and begins to spread. As it grows, it begins to lift the shingles and expose your roof to moisture, bacteria and mold. Moss can also cause water damage to the roof and attic of your home.

  1. Dark Streaks or Stains On The Roof

If there are dark colored streaks or stains on your roof, it may be a sign that extensive water damage is present. If this is the case, your home most likely needs a new roof.

  1. Shingle Granules In Your Gutters

Asphalt shingles are covered in small particles, called granules, which are made of small bits of crushed stone and minerals. They protect the roof from UV damage, and add color to the shingles. As shingles wear out, they shed the protective granules. Significant buildup of these granules in the gutter system is a strong indication that your roof is wearing out, and can no longer protect your home as well.

  1. Your Roof Is Sagging

If you notice your roof is sagging inward, it may be time for a roof replacement. A major cause of sagging roofs is water damage inside the roofing system. Over time, the moisture causes the roofing materials to weaken and they begin to sag. This is a sign that a new roof is needed. If left alone, the roof will eventually weaken to the point of collapse!

  1. Your Roof Is Older Than 20 Years

Roofs don’t last forever. The average lifespan of a shingle roof ranges from 20-50 years, depending on the type and quality of the materials. If your roof is older than 20 years, it may be time for a roof inspection to see if a roof replacement is necessary.

If your roof is showing one or more of these signs, your best course of action is to call a professional roofing contractor to come inspect your roof. A roofing contractor will be able to diagnose the extent of the damage, and provide you with a quote for a new roof.