"Understanding Your Home" by Building Inspector Mark Visser
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Starter strip
Starter strips are required
at the eaves and the rake edge. They are made of shingles or roll roofing.


Starter strip
A starter strip is required at the eaves and the rake edge. They are usually made from traditional 3-tab shingle installed upside down with the taps facing away from the roofs edge. They provide protection by filling in the spaces under the cutouts and joints of the first course of shingles.
Asphalt Shingles
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Asphalt shingles are made of several layers of material pressed together. The quality of these materials determines whether we have a 15, 20, 25, 30 or 35-year shingle. Some shingles have asphalt saturated felt reinforcements while others have asphalt coated fibreglass reinforcements. Fibre reinforced shingles resist curling and blistering.

South-west exposure. Due to the exposure to the sun, the south-west sides of a roof will age faster than other parts of the roof.
Water run-off will wear out the shingles more rapidly. Downspouts from the top roof should not discharge the water onto the lower roof.
The top downspout should be extended to the lower eavestrough.

Moss and fungus growth
will shorten the lifespan of the shingles. It usually appears in shaded areas where the shingles stay wet for longer periods. In many cases tree trimming or removal is the only option available to prevent moss and fungus growth.

Small blisters, about the size of a dime, are signs of aging. Once the blisters pop, the inner layers will be exposed to the weather and deteriorate rapidly.
Sometimes these blisters will appear on new or fairly new shingles. The shingles most likely have been manufactured with water damaged felt. Check the shingle warranty and call your roofer.
Other sign of old age are curling, buckling, cracks, splits, missing taps, worn aggregate, brittle.
Installing new over old
shingles is not recommended. A nail-over may save you the cost of stripping and dumping charges but may cost you more in the long run. The old shingles can trap heat and moisture which will shorten the lifespan of a new shingle by as much as 30%. A 20-year shingle effectively becomes a 13 year shingle on the day of installation.

Any roof that is past its prime should be checked twice yearly, especially after a bad storm. At the same time the attic should be checked for leaks. Make any repairs as necessary or replace the roof.

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