Reroofing FAQs: Is This Roof Replacement Alternative Right for You?

If you have an older roof that you suspect needs replacement or repair, then you should learn all about reroofing. While complete roof replacement often comes with a hefty price tag, reroofing is a more affordable roof replacement alternative that can improve the function and appearance of your old roof. 

Many homeowners do not understand how reroofing differs from complete roof replacement and have additional questions about the reroofing process. Read on to learn the answers to some frequently asked questions about residential reroofing.

How Does Reroofing Differ from Complete Roof Replacement?

Many homeowners wonder how the complete roof replacement process differs from the reroofing process. 

Complete Roof Replacement Process

When completely replacing a roof, roofing professionals first remove all existing shingles and any roof shingle underlayments. The exposed wood decking is then inspected for damage, such as rotted wood and improper attachment to roof rafters. If damage is discovered, then this damage will need to be repaired. 

After all wood decking repairs are completed, a new shingle underlayment is installed, and then this underlayment is covered with a layer of brand new shingles. Roof flashing, ridge vents, and other roof components are also replaced during the roof replacement process, if necessary. 

Reroofing Process

Before they start the reroofing process, your roofing professional will first inspect your roof for any underlayment or wood decking damage that can be detected with your current layer of shingles in place. If your roofing professional finds no obvious damage, then they will make small repairs to existing shingles where necessary to create a flat surface that will support new shingles well. 

Roof flashings may then be replaced, but only if necessary. Finally, a fresh layer of brand-new shingles is installed over your existing shingles to provide an additional layer of protection from the elements and to enhance the appearance of your home. 

What are the Unique Benefits of Reroofing? 

Reroofing offers many unique benefits when compared to complete roof replacement:

  • Speed. Reroofing can be completed much more quickly than complete roof replacement, and a simple reroofing job can take as little as one to two days to complete. 
  • Affordability. Reroofing is more affordable than complete roof replacement due to the reduction in the cost of labor needed to complete the job and the lack of a new roof underlayment or decking. 
  • Appearance enhancement. If you want to improve the appearance of your home, a new layer of attractive shingles can help you accomplish this goal with a minimum of effort.

When you reroof your home, an extra layer of shingles can protect your roof and home from the outdoor elements much more efficiently than old, worn shingles can. 

What Types of Roofs Are Good Candidates for Reroofing? 

While reroofing can be performed to improve the appearance of your home, this process is typically performed on homes with asphalt shingle problems that have not yet affected the roof decking. When many shingles on your roof are curled, cracked, bulging, or broken, water can penetrate your roof and eventually lead to extensive damage of your roof underlayment and decking. 

A roof is a good reroofing candidate if it only has one layer of existing shingles and all roof elements under the existing shingles, including your roof decking, are in relatively good shape. Many building codes prohibit adding a third layer of shingles to a home, because this extra layer can create a very heavy roof that may place unnecessary stress on a home’s structural components. 

If your roofing contractor notices signs of a failing roof deck, such as a spongy feeling when walking on your roof, or if you have a leak in your roof, then your home is a better candidate for complete roof replacement. 

Do New Shingles Have to Match Existing Shingles?

While only asphalt shingles can be laid over existing asphalt shingles, new asphalt shingles can differ from the original layer of asphalt shingles in quality, design, and color. 

While many homeowners opt to layer traditional three-tab shingles over their existing three-tab shingles, additional asphalt shingle styles include dimensional asphalt shingles and luxury shingles. Luxury asphalt shingles that mimic the appearance of slate or wood shingles are also available.

Dimensional shingles and luxury shingles tend to weight a bit more than three-tab shingles, so your roofing contractor will have to determine if your roof can support their extra weight before they install them. 

If you want your shingles to reflect more heat away from your home to help keep your home cooler in the summer, then choose light-colored shingles that reflect more of the sun’s heat.  Dark shingles tend to absorb heat and pass it into a home. 

If you suspect that you may need a full roof replacement, then keep these reroofing FAQs in mind as you decide. Reroofing may be a better option for your needs. Contact the roof experts at The Roof Doctor today to discuss all of your roofing needs.


Comments (1)

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    Amilia Shaw


    I never knew reroofing and roofing replacment were two different things! Thanks for the insight!


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