The Top 15 Roof Replacement Myths
There’s a lot of misinformation and misconceptions about Roof Replacement when it comes to it. Roof MD’s mission is to give the best education possible to the public regarding their roofing options, and in this blog article, we’ll debunk 15 Roof Replacement Myths.
Table of Contents:
- Roof Replacement Myth 1: “My Roof Isn’t Leaking So It’s Fine.”
- Roof Replacement Myth 2: “Only Extensive Damage Requires a Roof Replacement”
- Roof Replacement Myth 3: “The Roof Looks Good from the Ground, So I Don’t Need it Inspected”
- Roof Replacement Myth 4: “I Was Told That This is a Lifetime Roof” or “These Shingles are Supposed to Last 30+ Years”
- Roof Replacement Myth 5: “Roof Replacement is an Expensive Project That I Can’t Afford.”
- Roof Replacement Myth 6: “I Can Install My Roof for Much Cheaper”
- Roof Replacement Myth 7: “The Cheaper the Better. All Roofs are the Same”
- Roof Replacement Myth 8: “I’m Going to Wait for the Economy to Improve & Costs to Go Down”
- Roof Replacement Myth 9: “My (insert other contractor here) said the roof looks fine”
- Roof Replacement Myth 10: “A Metal Roof Will Last Forever”
- Roof Replacement Myth 11: “Roof Replacements Take a Long Time”
- Roof Replacement Myth 12: “The Process of Roof Replacement is Disruptive and Inconvenient.”
- Roof Replacement Myth 13: “A New Roof Doesn’t Require Maintenance or Inspections for Years”
- Roof Replacement Myth 14: “You Can’t Install a New Roof in Cold Weather”
- Roof Replacement Myth 15: “I Will Save Money by Installing New Shingles Over the Old Ones”
“My Roof Isn’t Leaking So It’s Fine.”
Many believe that a roof does not need to be replaced until it begins leaking, but this is a dangerous assumption. By the time your ceiling starts dripping water, extensive damage may have already been done to concealed parts like sheathing, insulation, framing, and drywall. This means that when you do replace your roof later on down the line, it will cost significantly more than anticipated and often lead to additional expenses that can’t be estimated until after everything has been torn-down.
It’s important to have your roof inspected regularly, by a certified roofing contractor. They will be able to catch minor problems before they become major (and more expensive) issues.
“Only Extensive Damage Requires a Roof Replacement”
Most people believe that unless the water is pouring from the ceiling, their roof doesn’t need professional help.
Even though you may not be able to see it, small problems can cause extensive damage to the sheathing, framing, insulation, drywall, and interior elements of a building. Getting a “patch” from a non-licensed person may make things worse, and it may cost two repairs to fix just one problem. Even if they aren’t leaking, heavily worn shingles lose their water-proof characteristics, allowing only enough water through to slowly rot out the wood deck without causing visible leaks in the house.
It’s crucial to have roofing professionals evaluate the roof, and they will know exactly what to look for to determine if your roof needs to be replaced or just minor repairs.
“The Roof Looks Good from the Ground, So I Don’t Need it Inspected”
It’s difficult to assess the condition of a roof from the ground. Most issues, except obvious flaws like shingles missing, require close inspection and access. Roofs that are severely worn, popped fasteners, damaged flashings, hail damage, tiny tears, and other concerns are not visible from below.
Depending on where you live, a trained and certified roofer must examine your roof every 2-5 years. This is especially true if you have recently experienced a severe storm with high winds, rain, or hail.
“I Was Told That This is a Lifetime Roof” or “These Shingles are Supposed to Last 30+ Years”
This is a very common misconception.
Except for a few very highly-priced products out there, very few roofs last as long as the manufacturers (or some roofers) will promise. These lifetime estimations from manufacturers are often gimmicks and at the very least are based on very mild climates and regions. If you live in a place with lots of wind, high and low temperatures, lots of rain, or even hail and snow, chances are your asphalt shingle roof will typically only last 10-20 years.
Get a qualified and licensed roofer with great reviews online to give you a real assessment and don’t take unnecessary risks on one of the most important components of your home.
“Roof Replacement is an Expensive Project That I Can’t Afford.”
Many people assume that roof replacement is expensive and that they can’t afford it. The cost of roof replacement depends on multiple items like pitch, size, materials chosen, and complexity. Although it may not be the first thing that comes to mind, roof replacement can be quite affordable. In addition, many roofing contractors offer financing options with little to no money down and fair interest rates.
This makes replacing your roof a much more feasible option for most people. If you choose the financing option, you can often get a roof for as low as $65 per month depending on the size.
“I Can Install My Roof for Much Cheaper”
Contrary to what one might think, a Do-It-Yourself roofing installation is not advisable.
In fact, out of the hundreds of DIY installs we see every year, only around 5% were done correctly. A wrong install often causes premature failure and costly repairs in the future that could have been avoided if a licensed roofer had installed it from the start.
With something as dangerous as a roof replacement, falls can also lead to serious injury or death–so why take the risk?
“The Cheaper the Better. All Roofs are the Same”
Cheaper rarely means better.
When it comes to roofing you do get what you pay for. If one contractor’s price is much cheaper it is not because they are fair, and the other contractors are trying to rip you off. To get prices that low something must be taken out of the equation.
Usually, it is one of the following that gets compromised:
- Cheaper materials that don’t last as long.
- Leaving out important materials and items like drip edge flashings, ice & water shield, other flashings, and proper underlayment.
- Using laborers that don’t install correctly leads to premature failure.
- Unlicensed and uninsured contractors disappear or go out of business soon after installation.
- No valid warranties to protect your investment.
Be sure to do your research, check Google reviews and references, look for a roofing contractor with an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB), make sure they are licensed in your state or province, and that they offer valid warranties.
“I’m Going to Wait for the Economy to Improve & Costs to Go Down”
Things have been volatile, and costs have gone up a lot in recent years, however, the chances of prices going down is not likely.
Even if the general cost of gas and living go down, manufacturers, distributors, and laborers get comfortable with their prices and will rarely ever lower their prices once things calm down. The new prices become the new normal. Predicting these things can be incredibly difficult as well. It most likely is not worth the risk of holding out for better prices. We recommend financing long-term to get the lowest payments possible and then dropping larger payments when you have them to pay off early. A good roofing company should offer great financing options with no penalty to pay off early.
Some even offer no interest and no payment options for 6 to 18 months that may allow you to get today’s prices and pay for them later.
“My (insert other contractor here) said the roof looks fine”
This one is always entertaining.
A lot of contractors have extensive experience in other professions, but the fact is that without frequent and constant interactions in a particular trade, there is a significant amount of knowledge that goes missing. Roofers with a license have specialized expertise in their field and are more likely to notice things that other contractors would miss. Roofers who replace numerous roofs often see the damage that others will not detect until it’s too late. Seeing past damage after removing a roof helps educate roofers on issues that may go unnoticed until later.
You wouldn’t hire a foot doctor for a heart transplant. Why would you trust a window washer to judge and diagnose your roof? Trust the expertise and training of roofing specialists with your roof.
“A Metal Roof Will Last Forever”
Unfortunately, nothing lasts forever.
Some metal roofs indeed have a very long life. However, not all metals are created equal and unless your installer did everything properly per manufacturer’s criteria and local code, most metal roofs fail way before they were estimated to.
There are a lot of roofers that install metal roofs for relatively cheap, collect your money, and disappear. What we find is they don’t tear off the original roof and leave out proper insulations, high-temperature ice/water shield, underlayment, and proper spacing between the wood deck and the metals. These things can cause premature failure and expense costs for the owner down the road.
If you have a metal roof and notice any indications of problems, don’t wait another minute and call a roofing professional.
“Roof Replacements Take a Long Time”
A lot of people think that a roof replacement takes a week or more.
This is rarely the case unless it is an extremely large home or a commercial job. In most cases, we can have a roof completely replaced in one day.
“The Process of Roof Replacement is Disruptive and Inconvenient.”
It does not have to be this way!
With sufficient communication and preparation, the roof replacement process may be completed without disrupting your routine. We work with each customer to detail the whole roof replacement process so they know exactly what they’re getting into, ensuring that everyone is on the same page.
“A New Roof Doesn’t Require Maintenance or Inspections for Years”
Although sometimes a roof does not require maintenance, usually keeping up with it little by little can save you from having to do an expensive repair or replacement prematurely. Several things need attention on a roof like plastics, rubbers, and sealant, which don’t last as long as the roof itself. To avoid costly repairs down the line and make your roof last longer money-wise, get it inspected regularly.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Many high-quality roofing contractors (including us) offer FREE Roofing Inspection so you have nothing to lose! Schedule yours and keep that peace of mind.
“You Can’t Install a New Roof in Cold Weather”
Some roofers choose to set up roofs in colder months because the materials are stronger, and the granulation is more secure. Unless it will be below 40 degrees for an extended period, installing during colder weather tends not to present any issues. Although the adhesive strips will still warm up and adhere to surfaces in warmer weather, the process might not be as quick.
Plus, if you have a leak or major damages, time is of the essence so it is not worth holding out for warmer weather.
“I Will Save Money by Installing New Shingles Over the Old Ones”
This upfront cost saving will end up costing you much more shortly.
Installing a second layer on top of old shingles leads to the new shingles buckling, tearing, and aging faster than normal. The extra weight on your home can also cause foundation problems, cracks in stucco, brick and siding, drywall damages, and many other more expensive problems. Putting a layover on your roof will typically lose you 30% to 50% of life on the new install which means you will be buying another roof much sooner. We always recommend removing the first roofing material completely to avoid any future complications.
These Roof Replacement Myths Are Debunked, Now What?
With this new information, we hope you feel more confident about a roof replacement. If your roof is old and needs to be replaced soon, you must take the time to educate yourself on the process. That way, when it comes time to make decisions about your roof, you’ll know what’s best for your home.
And if you have any questions or concerns at all, please don’t hesitate to contact us and schedule a FREE Roofing Inspection today.