When your roof reaches the end of its lifespan, your first instinct might be to have the old roof removed and a new one installed in its place. Known as roof replacement, this is a common approach. However, there is another approach known as re-roofing. Re-roofing involves placing a new roof right on top of the new one. There are both pros and cons to this approach, and you should consider both sides before deciding whether re-roofing is right for you.
Pros of Re-Roofing
1. It's cheaper
If you get a full roof replacement, the roofing company will have to spend at least half a day stripping the old roof off before putting a new one in place. This is time and labor you will have to pay for. Comparatively, re-roofing just involves putting a new roof in place; the roofing company does not have to spend time removing the old shingles first. As such, you can expect to save a lot of money when you choose to re-roof.
2. You don't have to worry about disposing of the materials.
Roof replacements create a lot of waste. The old shingles need to be hauled away in a dumpster. You may end up with a mess on the ground in the process. With re-roofing, you do not have to worry about what to do with the shingles. You won't have shingle chips all over the ground or a heavy dumpster in your driveway.
Cons of Re-Roofing
1. Replacing the roof will be harder next time.
Your new roof will probably last 20 or 30 years or so, and then you'll need another new roof. You won't be able to just re-roof that time around if you already have two layers of shingles. Your roofer will then have to remove and dispose of two layers of shingles, which will take more time and require a larger dumpster.
2. Moisture can get trapped inside.
If the old roof is moist, putting a new layer of shingles on top of these old, moist shingles will trap all the moisture inside. This can lead to algae and mold growth. As such, re-roofers need to be really careful to let the current roof dry out before applying a new layer of shingles.
Is re-roofing right for you? That depends on your budget and preferences. Consult with a roofing company to learn more about the best approach for your situation.