Roof Repair or Replacement?

Given enough time, all roofs will need to be replaced, but how do you decide if you need a roof repair or replacement?  Clearly, replacing your roof is a bigger, more costly job, but sometimes a repair is just not enough.  Essentially, whether you repair or replace your roof is mostly a matter of timing.  You certainly don’t want to wait until your roof is in shambles before you replace it, but you also want to get the most out of your existing roof.

Indeed, though a new roof may cost you thousands of dollars, water damage to your home and property can also be extremely costly, so you need to determine whether the condition of your roof is suitable for another year.  This means you need to be aware of the early signs of roof leaks and when repairs are the most sensible option, especially in regards to your budget.  Finally, you’ll want to discuss your options with an experienced professional roofer.

Your Current Roof

The condition of your current roof is the single largest factor that should influence your decision about whether to get a roof repair or replacement.  Ideally, you want to check the condition of your roof on a yearly basis so you can look for signs of damage and determine the extent of the damage.  Cracked caulk, rust spots on flashing, damaged shingles, or damage around roofing fixtures may indicate the need for replacement.  In addition, there are even internal signs that your roof may need replacement.  Dark areas on ceilings, peeling paint in your home or on the underside of roof overhangs, wet spots or water stains on your walls, fireplace, or venting are all signs that your roof is not providing adequate protection.

Similarly, the age of your roof is an important indicator of its quality.  On average, a asphalt roof will last around 20 or 30 years, especially if it has been properly maintained.  If you know your roof is getting old, and you’re seeing signs of leaks, it may be time for a replacement.

Repairs Make Sense

Minor leaks in your roof can likely be repaired.  If your roof is relatively new, you should check to see whether it is still covered by a manufacturer or labour warranty.  The cost of repairing a roof is considerably less than replacement, so you also need to consider your financial situation when deciding whether to repair or replace.  Ultimately, you should discuss your options with a qualified roofing professional.  S/he will be able to tell you if there are more serious structural problems that make replacement the sensible choice.  Still, unless there is significant, widespread damage, if your budget cannot accommodate a new roof, repairs may extend the life of your roof long enough for you to finance a replacement.