Should I Repair or Replace My Roof?

Rate this project

Quality and professionally installed roof can last for quite some time, often decades depending on the type of materials they’re made of. But even if Bob Vila himself installed it, it’s not going to last forever.

There will undoubtedly be a time in the future when your aging roof will need to be completely replaced. But not every situation is going to warrant this type of extreme home improvement project.

As with tires, driveways, and several other items around the house, sometimes a problem area can simply be repaired. Properly done, this ensures that any costly replacement projects can be put off until some time in the future.

But how can you determine whether or not a roof needs to be completely replaced, or can simply undergo a much less costly repair? Well, you find yourself a reputable roofing contractor and you ask him these all-important questions whenever the need arises. “You usually want to start with a roofing inspection,” says Joel Kite, owner of Independence Roofing San Antonio.


Generally speaking, if only a certain section of the roof has been damaged, you can probably just have it repaired. But you’ll want to keep an eye on it to ensure that what you thought was an isolated incident isn’t, in fact, a much larger issue.

If you have doubts, then you may need to reevaluate. But if your roof is still just a few years old, a repair will probably do the trick.

The largest issue that results in total roof replacement is really just Father Time. As previously mentioned, nothing lasts forever, and this certainly holds true for roofs.

If your roof is nearing the end of its life cycle and you have more and more issues creeping up in spots where they never did before, this could be a telltale sign that it’s time for a roof replacement.

There are several warning signs you’ll want to be on the lookout for in regards to your roof, including cracked or missing shingles, discoloration, shingle granules falling into gutters or on the ground, indoor leaks and sagging areas of your roof. These are all signs you may need a new roof as soon as possible.

Now not all of these issues are going to lead to new roof installations, but they are things you need to keep an eye on.

When it comes to whether or not a roof needs to be replaced, you really need to consider the data. How old is the roof? How many times has it been repaired in the past? How big of an area has been affected? How much is it going to cost and can I afford it?

These questions will get you started, but you should really seek out expert advice along the way. If you have a reputable roofing contractor that you’ve used in the past, by all means, give him a call. If you don’t, do your homework and find one.

But if the damage to your roof is minor or if only a small area has been affected, you’re probably going to be okay with a repair job. This is not the case 100 percent of the time, but it will be true more often than not.

Fallen branches during a summer storm can result in a few damaged shingles and high winds can lead to a few more, but these issues can usually be fixed at a minimal cost.

Even if these sudden storms lead to the roof leaking into your home, a patch and repair job can usually get you back up and running at peak efficiency. That is unless your roof is already old, to begin with, and these patch jobs are becoming more and more frequent.

If you begin noticing missing shingles every month, if your gutters are getting clogged by shingle debris or if your shingles are curling or becoming discolored, a replacement is probably going to be needed sooner rather than later.

These are textbook signs that your roof is in its final days, so it’s probably a good idea to begin setting money aside for what’s likely going to be a rather expensive home improvement project.

Patch and repair your aging roof for as long as you can. But at some point, these repairs are going to be nothing more than stop-gap measures buying you just a little more time.

The most important takeaway is to have a professional and experienced roofing contractor at the ready, someone you can trust to give you expert advice in all roofing matters.

Doing so can save you a lot of problems, and money, in the long run.