Angie's List: Signs of a leaky roof

LEWISTON, ID - Homeowner Matt Cairns checked out his finished attic after a hard rain and noticed water stains around the skylight.

Cairns knew it was going to be a problem he would have to address, but he didn't expect it to be an urgent roofing repair.

"The next night it rained hard again and I came up here and the spot had gotten way worse," said Cairns. "I was able to just stick my fingers right through the drywall. Then I knew I needed to get some attention on this pretty quickly."

Your roof is your home's number one defense against the elements. No part plays a bigger role in keeping the elements out, so when a roof requires a repair, there's little time to waste.

"Inspecting your roof regularly will help you determine if there are leaks from your roof," said Angie's List Owner Angie Hicks. "You want to be sure to check a leak and fix it as quickly as possible because if you don't it can lead to structural damage in your home and also mold which can turn into a costly repair."

"Regularly scheduled maintenance is very important on a roof," said Roofing Company Operations Manager Justin Vorbroker. "General roof lifespan can be 25 to 30 years. But you need to get someone out there every 5 years of so just to make sure your roof is ok, you're not missing any shingles you didn't notice or missing any granule loss."

Angie said though your situation might seem to be one of desperation, avoid settling on the first contractor who comes along and offers to do the job.

Vorbroker said shingles are manufactured with extra granules and you'll have granule loss over but, but if you see more granules than normal under your downspouts after a storm, that is a cause of concern.