When to Replace Roof Decking When Replacing a Roof in Michigan

Although most of us are familiar with roofing shingles, many do not know about the roof decking – located right under all the shingles.  Along with shingle damage from high winds, rain, and heavy snow loads, your roof decking is also vulnerable to damage.  Left without proper care, a roof decking can cost a pretty penny to repair.  Read on to make sure you are informed on when to replace your home’s roof decking and the signs you should be aware of if it’s damaged:

An Overview: What’s a Roof Deck?

The roof decking – also known as sheathing – is the layer of material located right under the shingles.  Most commonly made of plywood or oriented strand board (OSB), the roof deck plays a critical role in the structural integrity of your home.  Sheathing ties all components of the home together, helping to keep out moisture to hold up your home’s shingles, so it’s important to keep it properly updated.

Common Causes for Roof Decking Damage

Most roofs typically last for 20 years, and Michigan homes go through more damage than others due to the variable weather.  Michigan storms and winter weather often leads to shingle and roof decking damage.  When heavy snow or ice loads sit on a roof for long periods of time, it can cause moisture to enter the home or roof collapse.  Damage can also occur when high winds or storms result in missing shingles, exposing the roof decking of your home to the elements.

In addition to winter elements, excessive interior moisture and solar panel installation can also result in roof decking damage.  In both of these cases, the humidity and weight of panels can trigger roof decking warping or splitting.

Common Signs of Damaged Roof Decking

While it’s always best to have an expert assess your roof for damage, there are a few signs you can look for that may indicate you need roof decking repairs.  These easy-to-spot signs include:

  • Holes – Visible holes in your roof, either internal or external
  • Mold – Signs of mold or mildew in your attic, including mildew smell or visible growth
  • Missing shingles – Shingles that are missing due to strong winds or storms
  • Curled Shingles – Shingles that are curled or buckled due to moisture or Michigan elements
  • Roof sagging – Visible signs of roof sagging, either internal or external

If you are replacing your roof, you may not to replace the roof decking, but you should have it carefully inspected before completing the roof replacement.  After removal of the shingles, make sure your roofing company or contractor takes a look at the plywood decking before applying new shingles to your home.  While spending extra to repair your roof decking can be costly in the moment, you’ll save money in the long run if you catch the problem earlier rather than later.  If you think your roof decking may need to be replaced or are in need of a roof replacement, give your local experts at Herbert Roofing a call.

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