roof repair

Roof Repair or Roof Replacement: Which One Do You Need?

The average cost of replacing an asphalt roof is over $20,000.

At that cost, you likely want to hold off on a roof replacement for as long as possible. But will a roof repair be enough to save your roof for a few more years?

While some roof damage is only a matter of replacing shingles, other damage calls for a roof replacement. Knowing the difference can save you time and money both now and in the long run.

Before you decide how you’re going to deal with your roof problems, read this and find out if you can afford to put off your replacement any longer.

Roof Repair or Roof Replacement?

So how do you know when you need a roof repair and when you need a roof replacement? We’ve detailed all of the issues you may experience below. We’ll tell you whether these issues mean you need to repair or replace your roof.

Shingles

Curling, missing, or cracked shingles don’t necessarily warrant a replacement. But you might consider it depending on the extent of the damage.

Curling Shingles

When the edges of your shingles curl upward that’s known as cupping. When the edges of the shingles are flat but the middle pops up, that’s called clawing.

Curling shingles require a roof repair. You can simply replace the cupping or clawing shingles.

If the curling is extensive, you may only have a year left of your roof. But if there are only a few curling shingles, you can probably get another 5 years out of your roof before replacing it.

Missing Shingles

If your roof is missing some shingles, that’s a matter of repair. However, keep in mind that replacing missing shingles with new ones may leave you with a checkboard roof that’s not aesthetically pleasing. It’s nearly impossible to get new shingles that match your old.

Cracked Shingles

If you live in an area that experiences high winds, you may notice that some of your shingles are cracked. Shingles that are cracked as a result of weathering or other one-off instances are okay to replace.

But when you notice that the cracking is occurring randomly throughout the roof, and doesn’t appear to be the result of weather damage, that’s a sign you need to replace your roof. You might be able to stretch it out for another 3-5 years, but you’ll notice more leaks and damage if you wait that long.

Moss or Algae

The good news is, moss or algae on your roof doesn’t mean you have to replace it. Some people choose to replace a roof that’s overrun with moss or algae simply for the aesthetic appeal. But this isn’t necessary.

You can wash away moss or algae with a mix of bleach and water. You may also consider purchasing and installing zinc strips that help fight the growth of these unattractive roof-dwellers.

It’s important that you try to remove the moss or algae properly. Otherwise, you can cause damage. Don’t use a power washer or anything that scrapes away the moss and algae. This will cause the shingles to chip and lead to further damage.

If you decide that you prefer to replace the roof, look for algae and moss-resistant shingles to prevent the problem from reoccurring.

Granules

When shingles are new, loose, extra granules will come off. If your shingles are less than a year old and you find granules in the gutter, they’re nothing to worry about.

Granules in the gutter become a problem when your roof is between 10 and 15 years old. When granules start to flake off, your roof is about halfway through its lifespan. Meaning, you can get another 10 or 15 years out of it before you need to replace it.

Keep an eye on the shingles once this starts to happen. The granules keep sunlight off the asphalt of the shingles and when they start to go, you may experience other roof problems.

Sunlight

If sunlight is leaking into your home from your roof, you can be sure that other things are leaking in as well. That includes rain, cold, snow, as well as insects and other critters.

Check for water stains around the area where light is coming. If they change shape or size after a rainfall, your roof is leaking. To determine whether it needs to be repaired or replaced, you may want to consult a professional.

While smaller leaks can be patched and don’t require a replacement, larger leaks can cause structural damage. Depending on the size of the leak and where it’s leaking onto, a roof replacement can save you more damage in the long run.

Sagging

A sagging roof is generally an indication of structural problems that are not only costly but also dangerous. Sagging could be a problem with the decking or with the foundation. It almost always gets worse if left unfixed.

If your roof is sagging, you probably need a roof repair. When you see your roof begin to sag, it’s time to call a professional.

Your Roof is 25+ Years Old

Asphalt shingles are the most common roofing material. These roofs typically last between 20 and 30 years, with an additional 5 to 10 years if you’ve maintained and cared for your roof.

So, when your roof is at or above the 25-year mark, and it starts to show signs of damage, it might be time for a repair.

Do You Need a Roof Replacement or Reroofing?

Choosing between roof repair or roof replacement is a big decision. Considering a new roof can cost upwards of $4,900, you probably want to hold off on a roof replacement for as long as possible. And while issues such as missing shingles and granules in the gutter only require repairs, issues such as sagging call for a replacement.

If you’re still unsure whether you’re in need of a repair or replacement, contact us to schedule your free estimate.

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