We receive plenty of happy calls from our customers after our work is done. However, we admit that it would be a rare occasion indeed were we to receive a happy call from someone who has just been taken by surprise by the fact that they need to replace their roof.
Everyone wants optimal performance from the materials on their homes, but it is an unfortunate fact of life that materials do have a life expectancy. In Georgia, most homes we see are made of asphalt shingles. The life cycle on asphalt shingles is estimated between 20 – 25 years. It can be difficult to decide whether it makes sense to repair your roof, or to undergo a total replacement. In simplest terms, it probably all comes down to the age of your current roof and the extent of the damages you are observing.
One of the biggest things that homeowners can do to mitigate damages to their structures is to commit to inspections every spring and fall. You can do these yourself, or enroll in a maintenance program. The earlier you catch signs of water damage, deterioration, or mold, the better your chances are of being able to conduct spot repairs vs. having to replace your entire roofing structure.
Experts suggest that your interior inspection should consist of making a trip to your attic to check for roof sagging, water leaks or signs of damage (there may be dark spots), and areas where sunlight is visible. When examining the exterior, be on the lookout for missing shingles, mold and/or algae, water stains on pipes, wet spots near the fireplaces, and shingles that appear curled or buckling in appearance. You should also inspect the underside of the roof overhangings to check for peeling paint.
If so, these types of spot roof repairs are relatively easy to fix and extremely affordable to homeowners. The only time this may not work is if you or your contractor cannot find replacement shingles to match your roof. If you plan to stay in the home, the mismatched shingles may not concern you. However, if you have plans to sell in the future, your buyer is not likely going to be impressed with your roof.
If so, this is one instance where it may be cheaper to replace the entire structure rather than stripping one layer and covering it with new materials. Ask your contractor for estimates doing it both ways. We typically see homeowners make this mistake when they are trying to achieve a quick fix when they are experiencing leaks. What winds up happening is that the first layer is still deteriorating, underneath the second layer, and the flashings and underlying materials are continuing to deteriorate as well.
When your shingles are showing signs of early deterioration or are close to the end of their life cycle, you may notice that the sand consistency is chipping away and showing up in your gutters. This is a sign that replacement is in order.
If so, it is probably not going to make sense to pay for roof repairs right now, and then incur replacement costs again, so closely together. Conversely, if your roof is younger than 15 years, it is very likely that roof repairs are more cost-effective than replacement.
The biggest factors you should consider when deciding whether on roof repair vs. replace are: age of your roof, isolated or widespread damage, and the extent of the damages you are experiencing. We are always happy to hear from you and answer any questions you have about how to determine whether it makes more sense for you to repair your existing roof or replace it.
We’re happy to answer any questions you have, call us today at 912-257-8525!