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3 Signs It Is Time To Replace Your Home's Cedar Shake Roof

If your home has an old cedar shake roof, you may wonder whether it is time to have a new one installed. If so, look for the following signs that it may be time to replace your home's cedar roof.

Wood Is Curling

Even though cedar is a hard, long-lasting wood, it will still succumb to the constant moisture and extreme temperature changes to which it is exposed by being on your roof. Eventually, the expansion of the wood fibers and moisture buildup inside the shingles will make the wood expand.

This expansion is most noticeable around the edges of the shingles, which will start to curl up over time. When this curling occurs, gaps are formed between the shingles that allow water to leak under the roof and into your home.

Cracks in the Shingles

Another sign you should look for when trying to determine whether your roof should be replaced is the presence of cracks in the cedar shingles. After years of exposure to direct sunlight, the natural oils and moisture inside the wood are essentially baked out of the fibers.

Because the wood becomes dried, the fibers will start to separate. As this separation worsens, cracks will start forming in the shingles. Eventually, they may crack so severely that the shingles become split, making them virtually useless at providing sufficient protection from water leaks.

Mold or Algae Is Present

As the cedar shingles deteriorate from both excessive water and natural oil extraction, they will start to wear down. The shingles will become porous and may start to rot, providing an ideal environment for mold and algae growth, especially in shaded areas of your roof.

Since wood provides a natural medium in which the mold and algae can flourish, the growth can easily spread into the shingles, as well as underneath them. Since it can be difficult to remove the growth in these hidden areas, the mold and algae will break down the wood at a rapid pace.

If you find either of them growing on your roof, there is a good chance that the problem is more extensive than what you can see with your eyes. It is likely that the damage done by the growth will necessitate a partial or full replacement of your roof.

If you notice any of the above signs on a majority of your roof, it is time to have a professional look at it. Contact a residential roofing contractor to have them inspect the cedar shingles and discuss with you options for either replacing only the damaged parts of your roof or installing an entirely new cedar shake roof.


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