Knowing When to Repair or Replace Your Roof

The roof is made of extremely durable materials. However, years of high winds, rain, extreme sun and falling tree branches eventually cause some damage. In some areas, snow, hail storms and a tornado will leave some noticeable damage in more than one place. So, how do you know when it’s time to repair the roof and when it’s due for a replacement? Here is a simple guide;


A good roof is designed to last for twenty years or more if you don’t have extreme weather. However, if you have been doing simple repairs here and there for about 15 years, it might be time to get a new roof. Just because the roof hasn’t attained its time limit doesn’t mean it is still okay. Regular inspection of the roof after ten years or after a hail is recommended to ensure everything is in order.

Extent of the Damage

What is it that made you think of repairing or replacing the roof? If it’s a few missing or bald shingles, a simple repair will suffice, and the shingles can be replaced. However, if there is a significant leak pouring water into your house or one-third of the roof was blown up, replacing the entire roof is better because there is apparently a more serious problem.

Choice of Roofing Material

There are mainly five roofing materials used in residential homes; asphalt shingles, wooden, metal, tile, and slate. Asphalt and wood roofing is ideally affordable but not very durable. Tile and slate are extremely expensive, durable and aesthetically appealing. Metal is the middle ground because it offers a balance between affordability and durability. With that in mind, replacing tile and slate roofs is never a good idea unless they are over 70 years. These two materials are very durable but brittle so several repairs will be done in the course of their lifetime. Repairing wood and shingles that have deteriorated over time doesn’t make financial sense because they will need to be replaced after a few years. Consider the cost versus performance and decide if replacing is cheaper and better in the long run.

Roof Layers

According to The International Residential Code, you should not put a new roof over two other layers of roofing because of the weight and durability issues. If the top layer of the roof has been damaged over time, you should consider replacing the entire roof instead of putting a new one on top of the old layers. Doing so will ensure you also inspect the roof deck not to mention the roof will hold better if placed directly on the deck. Removing all the layers and putting up an entirely new roof will ensure that it’s durable enough to withstand high wind and storms.


As stated earlier, it is essential to inspect your roof regularly. During the inspection, you can see and feel how the roof is. If you notice any spongy or trampoline feel when walking on the roof, it means the deck is weak from moisture, and you should replace it. Another way to tell that the decking has significant issues is if you can see daylight entering through the roof boards to your house or the attic. Apart from being a health hazard, a moist roof will eventually fall, and that can be dangerous.

Severe Weather

If your location experiences severe weather such as hailstorm, tornado or heavy rains that caused some significant damage in the neighborhood, you must have your roof inspected. Your insurance company will be willing to replace your roof during this time than any other period so you should take advantage of it if the roof is damaged or old.
Deciding whether to replace or repair your roof is not something that you should lightly. However, you must consult reliable professionals and make the decision before it’s too late.