roof replacement vs roof repair

Roof Replacement Vs. Roof Repair—Which do You Need?

How to Choose Between Roof Replacement and Roof Repair

If you’ve recently noticed signs of damage on your home’s roof, you may be concerned regarding the process necessary to address the damage. It can sometimes be challenging to determine whether a repair will effectively halt the progress of damage, or whether a full replacement would be the better option. Fortunately, a trustworthy Austin roofing company can help you determine which option makes the most practical and financial sense for your home. 

Five Factors That May Lead to Roof Replacement

There are multiple factors to consider when deciding whether to repair or replace your roof. While a roofing contractor can help you accurately assess your roof, it’s important to build a little knowledge first so that you can answer the necessary questions during a roofing inspection. Keep these factors in mind during your roofing conversation:

1. Overall Extent of Roof Damage

Whether your roof has simply deteriorated over time or has suffered one or more incidents that caused physical damage, it’s important to assess the overall condition of your roof before attempting to decide between repair or replacement. As mentioned, it’s important to do this with the help of a trusted contractor who knows what to look for and can help you identify potential trouble spots. 

In general, look for these common signs of damage:

  • Rusted metal roofing panels
  • Missing or absent shingles
  • Cracked or broken tile, wood, or asphalt shingles
  • Cupped and curled asphalt or wood shingles
  • Balding spots or portions of asphalt shingles that are missing protective granules
  • Dented, pitted, or dimpled appearance of any type of shingle
  • Generally old or worn-looking roof appearance
  • Dark streaking, which can indicate moss, lichen, or algae growth on your shingles

2. Presence of Roof Leaks

When shingles or other roofing materials are compromised, water can make its way beneath your shingles and underlayment and begin to affect the supportive decking below. Over time, this moisture can find its way to your insulation, ceilings, and other drywall and begin to cause water damage inside your home. 

Leaks tend to get worse over time and need to be identified as soon as possible. While the source of water damage can be challenging to identify, with help from a trusted roofing contractor, you should be able to find and address the issue. Without it, leaks can lead to:

  • Extensive water damage to interior walls and ceilings
  • Damaged, damp insulation
  • Rotting, unsound rafters and roof decking
  • Mold and mildew formation

3. Age of Your Roof

If your roof is aging, otherwise deteriorated, or has experienced significant physical damage, replacing may be the more economical option. Opting to replace an old or damaged roof can prove well worth your initial investment if it means avoiding having to pay for repeated significant repairs. However, you’ll also need to consider whether you’re planning to stay in your home or may sell your home soon.

4. Potential for Storms

If you live in an area with regular exposure to weather events like tornadoes, hurricanes, hailstorms, or severe straight-line wind gusts, speedy attention to roofing issues is essential. After a storm with hail, heavy winds, and torrential rains, missing or damaged roof elements can compromise the water-tightness of your roof. Replacing these elements or the roof can help ensure the continued safety of your home.

5. Cost

One major consideration when you’re deciding whether to replace or repair your roof is the cost of each. Repairs are usually significantly less expensive than a full roof replacement. However, if your roof will continue to need frequent repairs, you may wind up paying more than the cost of an eventual replacement. 

Replacing your roof is more expensive initially, but saves you the cost of ongoing or continuous repairs. If you have an aging roof with multiple issues, a total replacement is often worth the investment. A trusted roofing contractor can help you consider both options and weigh the cost of each.

When To Consider Roof Repair

While roof replacement is often a longer-lasting, more cost-effective measure, there are times when roof repair is the better option. Consider these two situations where partial or selective roof repair may be preferable to a total roof replacement:

  • Minor roof damage. Repairing minor damage, such as missing, broken, cracked, or curled shingles due to wind damage, can often be approached with repair in mind instead of replacement. You can replace only the damaged materials and leave undamaged portions alone. However, this method is more suitable for asphalt shingles—metal roofing materials are more difficult to replace selectively.
  • Moderate roof damage. For more significant damage, repair may still be an option. If the damage is localized to one side of your roof, you can utilize partial re-roofing instead of a complete roof replacement project. To avoid the new portion standing out from the original roofing materials, speak with a roofing contractor about ordering shingles that closely match the faded roof portion.

Benefits of Choosing a New Roof

Although installing a new roofing system may require a more significant investment to begin, you could save money over time by avoiding the cost of constant repairs and upgrades. Also, a new roof comes with multiple other benefits, including:

  • Energy efficiency. Modern roofing materials are much better manufactured than even those from 10 years ago and can help insulate your home from the elements. As a result, you’ll likely experience reduced energy bills.
  • Curb appeal. A new roof can drastically improve your home’s appearance. You can choose a more modern combination of shingle styles and colors that fit your architecture and your neighborhood.
  • Peace of mind. Installing a new roof comes with the peace of mind of knowing your most important possessions and your family are protected from the elements.
  • Whether you need a new roof, roof repairs, or need help with your decision, speak with the professionals at Red Owl Roofing. We have over 35 years in the roofing business and can assist you in assessing your roof and making your next roofing decision. Best of all, as a certified contractor, we offer a 50-year warranty for our new roofs.