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Jacksonville Roofing: Article About Roof Sagging

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A sagging roof is a sign of a loss of support for the weight of the roof and can be an expensive fix. Traditional roofing support systems are based on triangular shaped infrastructure that is able to withstand a large amount of weight. These triangles are made up of two angled boards or rafters, a ridge line beam which forms the roof peak, and the horizontal boards, also called ceiling joists. Often two of these horizontal joists are lapped and toe nailed to make one long beam. Some roof supports will also include an additional horizontal board for support, called a collar tie, attached to the rafters between the joists and the ridgeline.

These support structures can either consist of stick built or prefabricated roof trusses. Trusses are engineered independently for each application and are designed with more support pieces, allowing them to be constructed of less expensive lumber materials. Each truss is a crucial part of the roof structure and any alteration can significantly reduce the strength of the entire building.

If a homeowner notices that his or her roof is slightly sagging, a Jacksonville roofing company can investigate the cause and formulate a repair strategy. Sagging is caused by a greater load than the structure is able to bear, be it from damage to the structural integrity of the roof system or from a load greater than the structure's load rating.

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Weather events can cause an overload, such as an unusually severe winter with heavy accumulations of ice and snow, harsh winds from weather events such as a hurricane or tornado or an excessive amount of roofing materials that cause the roof to carry a heavy burden.

Sagging can indicate poor construction, a design flaw or a modification resulting in structural weakness. Other factors that contribute to sagging are age and failure of load bearing walls or the foundation. Improperly sized or inadequate rafters or collars ties can cause the roof to sag in the middle, while undersized sheathing will cause sagging between trusses, which can be corrected by remodeling the sheathing when replacing the home's roof.

Water damage can also cause a roof to sag. Over time, moisture can build up, causing the roof sheathing to swell and rot. The underlying damage can cause a sagging appearance. The source of this type of deterioration is typically improper ventilation in the attic, missing or damaged shingles or damaged flashing. No matter the cause, correcting the issue once it has come to light is extremely important before more damage is done.

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