Albany's Roofing & Construction Specialists
Reroofing vs. Roof Replacement: What's Better?

Reroofing vs. Roof Replacement: What's Better?

Your roof is having significant problems and your roofer says repairing it is only a stopgap measure. You have a couple of options. You can place new shingles on top of the existing shingle layer, or tear up the shingles and do a full roof replacement.

Which option is the best way to protect your home?

Let us get into the details of reroofing and roof replacement.

What Is Reroofing?

Image of reroofing over existing shingles

Reroofing is usually the lower-cost option when compared to doing a full roof replacement. While it does cost less, it's not always the better option. Let's look at what's involved and when it's a viable choice for your asphalt shingle roof. (As a note: reroofing is usually not recommended with roofs covered in metal, tile, or slate.) The reroofing process involves adding a new layer of shingles over the existing one.

How To Reroof Over Existing Shingles

Reroofing over existing shingles is what is typically referred to as the reroofing process. Roofers recommend reroofing if the roof deck is in good repair and there is only a single layer of shingles in place. This means that this process can only be done one time. Although reroofing may seem like a faster and less costly option in comparison to roof repair, it is important to make sure that your roof is constructed in a way that makes it appropriate for reroofing.

Below are a few circumstances when re-roofing is not recommended:

  • If there are two or more layers of shingles in place

  • When there is damage to the roof deck

  • When the roof has a steep pitch or is two stories or more

  • When the existing layer of shingles are in poor condition

Reroof cost

Because reroofing involved adding new shingles over an already existing layer, it is usually the less costly option; however, choosing to reroof over a roof replacement can be more costly for you in the long-run. Reroof pricing can range, depending on the roof and the extent of reroofing. At RBR construction, we provide you with a free quote to help you get started and gauge a better understanding of your reroof costs.

What Is A Roof Replacement?

Roof replacement services image
Replacing the entire roof involves removing the old layers of shingles and making any necessary repairs to the roof deck. If the roof deck is compromised in multiple spots, it may be necessary to replace it entirely. Once the roof deck is repaired, a new layer of shingles is put down. The work includes replacing or repairing flashing, edging, and other components of the roofing system.

Pros of a Roof Replacement:

  • You get an entirely new roof

  • The installation will be stronger because there is nothing between the new roofing materials and the roof deck

  • The roofing materials will last a lot longer than with a re-roof

  • It adds value to the property which can be handy if you decide to sell in a few years

Usually, replacing the entire roof does cost more than a simple reroof. That's why many homeowners prefer a reroof over a replacement. However, many roofers will recommend replacement more often due to the questionable integrity of a roof or circumstances where reroofing would be almost as expensive as a replacement.

Pros of a Roof Replacement:

The Breakdown

The roofing materials used in a reroof will not last as long as with a full roof replacement. Roofing experts estimate the materials' lifespan will be 25 percent less than if they were installed on a full roof replacement.

Additionally, adding a layer of shingles over an existing—and damaged—one may not be as aesthetically pleasing as a full roof replacement. The old layer of shingles could be warped or curling, which transfers this uneven surface to the new layer.

Reroofing also adds additional weight to the roof structure. For older homes where roof rafters are not as strong, this additional weight can put the entire structure into question.

When it comes time to sell, a reroof can be a negative aspect to a potential buyer. It's a sign that the roof already faced issues and a new roof is going to be needed sooner as opposed to later.

If money is tight, a reroof can give you a few additional years before you will need to do a full roof replacement. However, if the roof deck is compromised or if the labor involved with the reroofing is exorbitant, a full replacement may be the better choice.

Which Option Works For Your Roof?

To learn which option is better for your roof, you need to call in a roofing specialist. Any qualified roofer will do a full inspection and give you their recommendation on what to do with your roof.

If you need an inspection, call the expert technicians at RBR Construction & Roofing. We are the experts on roofing maintenance, repairs, and replacement who you can trust to protect your home.