FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Should I repair or replace my current roof?
If your roof is less than 15 years old and it is obvious where the leak is coming from, minor repairs will probably solve the problem. If the shingles on your home were installed 15 to 20 or more years ago, carefully inspect the condition of your roof, because the likelihood of reroofing increases with the age of the roofing materials. Note: Keep in mind that a relatively new roof might have major issues and may need to be replaced due to poor installation.
What are some signs that my roof may need to be replaced?
Damaged or missing shingles: Damaged or missing shingles indicate a worn-out roof. When shingles start to curl or crack, they cannot protect your roof properly.
Granule loss: look for shingles with major granule loss, also look for granules on your gutters and downspouts.
Age of your roof: when purchasing a house try to find out the age of the roof and keep that in mind. Typically, a shingle or composition roof lasts anywhere from 20 to 25yrs depending on several factors, such as climate, weather conditions, surroundings, maintenance, etc. For more details see our Article: “How long does a new roof last?”
Neighbors replacing their roofs: if you are not sure about the age of your roof, seeing your neighbors re-roofing their houses might be a good indication that yours will need to be re-roofed soon.
How important is having a good roof?
Below you’ll find three reasons why you should make sure your home’s roof is in good shape and what to do if it needs work.
A good roof will protect your house: Your roof stands between the interior of your home and everything in it, including your loved ones, and the exterior world. If it’s in good shape, your roof serves as a barrier against the elements. If your roof is in poor shape, your home can get water leaks, develop mold in the roof deck and structure, and experience other issues.
Increase the value of your home: A good roof increases your home’s aesthetics; if your roof is full of moss and algae, is missing shingles, or flashings are defective, it sends the message that your home hasn’t been properly maintained. If the roof is in good shape, a potential buyer will assume the rest of the house has been tended with care. That will result in higher prices when you sell your home.
Improve energy efficiency: Most people don’t realize the connection between a good roof and the energy efficiency of their home. When you have a good roofing system, proper attic ventilation, and insulation, your home will experience fewer air leaks. As a result, you will see lower heating and cooling bills during the summer and winter months. If you care about comfort in your home and want to save money, then a good roof is a must.
Can I re-roof my house on my own?
The simple answer is YES, you absolutely can. But there are definitely a few things to consider when thinking about replacing a roof on your own. These are some of the most important things to keep in mind.
- The Risk of a fall: Professional roofers have spent so much time on roofs that they just know how to walk around, even on steep roofs, and not only move skillfully but also feel comfortable while doing so. This comes from years of experience on a roof. The average homeowner doesn’t spend any time on their roof, and even if you are comfortable with heights, navigating a roof is an entirely different animal.
- The Risk of doing a bad job: After you have considered your ability and suppressed your fear of being on a roof, you now need to consider the process of the job. Will you able to install the materials the right way?
- The Cost: While DIY homeowners could save money on labor, most likely they will end up paying higher prices for the materials. Roofing contractors have established relationships with shingle manufacturers and suppliers which allows them to get better pricing and access to a variety of different products. Also, they can get better warranties because of their experience and certifications.
Finally, doing your own roof installation is possible but not encouraged. We firmly believe that the risks outweigh the benefits. If you are handy and have some roofing knowledge, then most likely you don’t even need to read this article. But if you are considering whether you can do this, just be aware of the factors listed above.
Can I add a second layer of shingles to my roof?
Adding additional layers does not make a new roof any more waterproof, on the contrary, it often creates its own problems. The reason some homeowners choose to do it is to save time and money. By keeping the old shingles on, they skip the messy and labor-intensive tear-off step and they will save some money on the roof project.
Why adding additional layers is not recommended?
- Shingles are designed for flat surfaces. Asphalt shingles are meant to be installed over a plywood deck. When adding a second layer of shingles, the bumps or imperfections from the old roof will transfer to the new layer. Your roof will not look as good as when you do a full tear-off.
- Shingles add weight to your roof. Most likely, your roof structure was designed for a dead load of one layer of shingles, plus extra for snow and a safety margin. Installing new roof shingles over old doubles the weight of the roofing, so you must make sure your roof structure can handle the extra load.
- No visual inspection of roof deck. In order to thoroughly inspect the roof decking and address any potential issues with it, you need to remove the existing shingles.
- Unable to replace underlayment. The underlayment installed between the roof decking and the shingles is there to prevent water from coming in through the roof deck and into the attic. If the underlayment is old and damaged, it won’t protect your roof deck from the water that gets past the shingles.
How much does a new roof cost?
There are a number of factors that combined determine the cost of a new roof. These factors include the roof size, the roofing material being installed, the roof slope or pitch, the number of layers of old roofing to be removed, other roofing components being installed and the roof access.
How much value does a new roof bring to your home?
Each year, Remodeling Magazine conducts an extensive research that compares the return on investment for a wide range of home improvements. Kitchen remodels, new decks, replacement of siding and bathroom additions are among the many remodeling projects included in the survey. According to the Remodeling Magazine’s 2019 Cost vs. Value Report, homeowners who have a new roof installed can expect to recover an average of 63.0% of the installation cost through increased home value.
A new roof not only increases the value of your home, it can also save you money on cooling and heating bills and, of course, improve the curb appeal of your house. There is no doubt that replacing the roof of your house is a big investment and you should take the time to find a trustworthy contractor to complete the job. We advise not to sacrifice quality for price.
What are the main components of a roofing system?
Roof decking (also known as sheathing), roof underlayment, roof flashings, ventilation products and shingles are the five main components of a residential roofing system.
If neighbors are replacing roofs on their homes, is mine due for reroofing?
If you live in a development where all the houses were built within a year or so of each other and quite a few of your neighbors have been reroofing their homes, it is likely that your roof is ready for replacement. Salespeople for roofing contractors will often work an entire neighborhood, convincing potential customers that every roof in the area is worn out. You should look for signs that your roof is in bad shape and not make a decision based on your neighbors replacing their roofs.
Why are many homes with wood-shingled roofs being reroofed with other types of roofing materials?
Because of the characteristic flammability of wood, some communities now restrict or ban the installation of wood roofing shingles and shakes. Homeowner insurance rates for wood roofs are higher and insurance might not be available for a home with a wood roof. That is why many shake roofs have been replaced with asphalt shingles or other types or roofing materials.
What is the most popular roofing product for homeowners and contractors?
Because of the comparatively low initial cost and ease of application, asphalt shingles (also knows as composition shingles) are by far the most common roofing material used on recently constructed or reroofed homes in the United States.