As you’re doing the annual roof inspection, you may notice damaged or missing shingles, algae streaks, or bare patches where the shingles are missing granules. These are signs that the roof needs attention.

If it’s time for a new roof, start making some calls now as schedules do fill up. Roofers get busy with the improved weather.

1) It may be tempting to save money by laying a new set of shingles over the old ones. But by removing old shingles the roof deck can be inspected for water damage and wood rot and repaired if needed. Plus, shingles are heavy and roofs are built to handle only certain weight loads.

2) Ask about installing an “Ice & Water Shield.” This is a rubberized sheet that’s applied to the roof decking in corners and valleys, wherever pooling of water is possible: above the eaves, around chimneys, around skylights and around vent stacks. The waterproof underlay helps prevent water from seeping between shingles and flowing into the house.

TIP: When getting quotes, be sure that their “roofing team” is covered by liability insurance.