The roof is perhaps the most essential part of any home, and it takes quite a beating throughout the year. In the summer, the hot sun beats down on it from morning to night. In the fall and winter, it is pummeled by rain, snow, and maybe even hail. Year round, fluctuating temperatures and wind also stress your roof. Despite all your roof does to protect your home, you tend to not think about it as long as it’s doing its job. It’s when your roof begins to leak that you suddenly realize you haven’t been taking care of your roof.

Because roofs are out-of-sight, out-of-mind, there are many questions homeowners have about roofing when problems do arise. Here are three of the most frequently asked roofing questions.

1. My roof is leaking, can it be repaired or does it need to be replaced? There isn’t an easy answer to this question. The answer depends on a number of factors. The most important factors are how big the leak is and how old the roof is. A smaller leak can easily be patched, and it’s a lot cheaper than replacing the whole roof. If the roof is new, patching the roof as opposed to replacing it is a no-brainer. If the damage is more wide-spread (and it often is with older roofs) then it makes more sense to replace the roof than to continue to patch up a failing roof.

2. How can I extend the life of my roof? By taking good care of it. Inspect it regularly and perform maintenance on it. Stay on top of mold, leaks, and other roofing problems. Keep your roof and gutters free of leaves, branches, and other debris.

3. Do I need a building permit for roof work?  For a typical roof replacement, the answer will probably be no. If you’re replacing a lighter roof, like asphalt shingles, with something heavier like slate or cement, then your roof deck may need some extra support and that will probably require a building permit.

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