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RISMEDIA, December 14, 2010—If you think roof leaks are only a problem if you live in a climate with frequent rain, think again. While roofing problems are obviously most often caused or exacerbated by rain, there are other just as insidious, but lesser-known, sources that contribute to roof leak issues. Whether you’ve got a new home or an older one, most roof shingles, on average, can go 15 years without needing repair—but that doesn’t mean you should set the alarm for a decade and a half and forget about it. A roof can get in bad shape well before the 15-year mark, and the longer you wait to repair it, the more expensive the repair will likely be.

To keep repair costs as minimal as possible, be aware of some problems that can cause serious roof leaks, and stop them at the source whenever possible to prolong your roof’s life. If you aren’t experienced with home repairs, it’s a good idea—for safety’s sake—to call in a professional home inspector to assess the damage, and a trusted repairperson to fix it correctly. And if you’re in the home buying or selling process and a home inspector is required anyway, choose a professionally trained inspector who knows the importance of checking for all of the following problems, which can contribute to leaks:

1. Incorrect shingle installation.

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