A leaking roof is a potential cause of headaches for every homeowner. While you worry about your family’s safety, you also want a solution to the issue. Finding a solution to your leaking roof helps secure your home and keep your family safe. However, when it comes to finding a solution to a leaking or damaged roof, there is always one question to ask: do I need a roof repair or a roof replacement?
Honestly, this can be a tough question to answer. Many homeowners always find themselves going back and forth as to which option is the best for them. When deciding whether to repair or replace your roof, it is not easy to conclude which option you need best. But don’t worry; there are ways to know if you need a roof repair or replacement. This article explains the necessary factors to consider when deciding between them. Here are a few questions to ask yourself:
How to Decide Between a Roof Repair and a Roof Replacement
1. What Is Your Roof’s Age?
The first question to ask yourself when deciding between a roof repair and replacement is the age of your roof. How long you have been using your roof is a great determinant of whether you need a replacement or repair.
If your roof has hit the end of its lifespan, it makes sense to go for a roof replacement. Even when you repair the roof, other issues will inevitably come up in the near future.
For example, if you have had your architectural shingle roof for over 15 years, it may be best to go for a roof replacement if it starts to leak. A shingle roof should last anywhere between 15-30 years, depending on the brand and quality of shingles used. A tile roof will last a minimum of 25 years, but have been known to last 50+ years with proper care and maintenance. Hence, you can start budgeting for a new roof once your shingle or tile roof approaches their minimum lifespan.
If your home was transferred to you, such that you bought it, and you don’t know the roof’s age, there are a few signs to watch out for to get an idea of how old it is.
Signs of an old roof include:
- Continuous leaks
- Cracked or missing tiles or shingles
- Loose shingle granules in the gutters
- Dark spots on the roof deck
- Moss or algae growth on the roof
1. How Severe Is the Damage?
The severity of the damage on your roof can also help you make a decision between getting a roof repair or replacement. Getting a roof repair won’t be a bad idea if the damage is minimal and only affects a small area of the roof, such as leaks at a corner. But if the roof is severely damaged, such that you have missing or damaged shingles everywhere, it will make sense to replace the whole roof.
Experts recommend replacing a roof when more than 30% of the roof is affected.
2. How Long Will You Stay In Your Home?
Another important factor to know if you should replace or repair your roof is to consider how long you will stay in your home. Do you plan to stay in your home for just a few years, or will you be there for another few decades?
Perhaps that is your forever home, and you have no plan to leave soon, so you need a roof replacement, especially if the damage is severe.
But, if it is just a temporary home and you will be moving soon, and the roof is still in decent condition, opting for a roof repair service to solve the little problems would be a wiser decision.
However, if you plan to sell your home when leaving, you may find it difficult to find buyers if your roof is in poor condition. You want to find a long-lasting solution to a problematic roof before putting your home on the market, which is when you need a roof replacement. Although a roof replacement is not cheap, having your damaged roof replaced will certainly increase your home’s value.
3. What Is Your Budget?
It is not a hidden fact that a roof replacement is pricier than a roof repair. Hence, you need to assess which option makes more financial sense to you. While you have considered other factors, your budget has the final say in whatever decision you want to make.
For example, reinstalling a shingle roof on the average Florida home may cost between $10,000 and $20,000 depending on the brand & quality of the shingles, and the size of the home. This may be too much of an investment for many homeowners to afford based on their current budget. You may want to go along with roof repairs until you are financially ready to shoulder the price of a roof replacement. It is only important you keep in mind that the final solution to a problematic roof is a roof replacement. If your roofing contractor offers the option of roof financing, it may make sense to opt for it. Remember that constant repairs on your roof will escalate to more severe problems later.
Pros and Cons of Roof Repair
There are a few situations where going for a roof repair makes a better investment than a roof replacement, and there are a few circumstances where you need a roof replacement. Here are the pros and cons of a roof repair:
- A roof repair is more affordable than a replacement
- A roof repair takes a shorter time to complete (usually completed within a few hours), unlike a roof replacement that can take days to complete and have a longer lead time
- A repair buys you more time to enjoy your roof when you are not ready for a replacement
- A roof repair can alter your roof’s aesthetics, as you may not have the matching color for the original materials.
- More problems can ensue from unprofessional jobs (which is why you should always hire a professional roofer)
- A roof repair may not solve all the problems but only provide a short-term solution
Pros and Cons of Roof Replacement
While a roof replacement will help eliminate all your roof problems, it also comes with its disadvantages. Here are the pros and cons of a roof replacement:
- It eliminates all the problems, ensuring there are no hidden damages
- While it is expensive upfront, it helps save money on repairs in the long run
- It increases your roof’s aesthetic appeal
- It yields a good return on utility bills as it improves energy efficiency
- It gives peace of mind as you won’t worry about a roof repair any time soon
- A complete roof replacement is not cheap
- It takes more time to complete than roof repairs
- The process of replacing your roof could reveal unexpected issues with the underlying structure
- Some roof materials (particularly in older roofs) are not recyclable and contribute to landfill waste
Conclusion: Should You Repair Or Replace Your Roof?
Now that you have gone through the different factors to consider when choosing between a roof replacement and repair, you should be able to make a choice that works best for you. Your budget, the age of your roof, and how long you plan to stay in your home are crucial factors to consider when finding a solution to your damaged or leaking roof.
However, while these factors are great to make a decision, it is best to schedule an estimate with a professional roofer. The experts at Mid-Coast Roofing are some of the best in the industry and always give you honest feedback regarding your roofing needs. Please contact us at (941) 780-8713 if you would like more information about our roofing services or need to schedule a free estimate.