If you are a homeowner looking to replace an aging or damaged asphalt roof, you should contact professional contractors to get the job done right. Because replacing the roof of your home is a major investment, there are a few important aspects to take into consideration before the project begins. After enlisting the services of a roofing contractor, mull over the following facets:
1. Will the New Roof Be Placed Over the Existing Roof?
If you haven’t replaced your roof in the past, there will currently be one existing layer. If your existing roof shingles are not severely damaged, you might consider having the new roof installed over your current one. This means there will be no need to strip the existing roof, saving you time and possibly a fair bit of money.Also, without stripping the old roofing materials, cleanup will be easier.
However, there is an advantage to removing your old roof before installing a new one. Your roof deck and flashing may need repairs, but without removing the old shingles, this is not possible. A complete inspection of all components can be performed once the old roof has been stripped. In addition, you may request rubber installation (shields) to prevent leakage.
If your budget will allow the extra work of a complete stripping of the old roof, you might want to choose this option. Ask your contractor for advice.
2. Roofing Materials: Should You Choose Fiberglass Shingles, or Will You Go Organic?
Choosing your roofing materials is an important decision. Assuming you’ve chosen asphalt, there is something to keep in mind. Not all asphalt shingles are created alike. If you are unfamiliar with roofing components, you need to consider fire resistance. The shingles will be rated as class A, B, or C, with A offering the most resistance to fire. What you need to consider is that fiberglass asphalt shingles are rated A for fire resistance; therefore, they will provide you with the best protection.
Regardless of the class you have chosen, you may also have a coating added to the shingles to guard against algae growth. This coating may consist of copper or zinc. Consider the coating if your region is typically humid and warm. As for aesthetics, you will have various color options, so this shouldn’t be a cause for concern.
3. How Important Is R-Value and What Does It Mean?
If you are unfamiliar with the terminology, R-value indicates how well your roof will prevent the transfer of heat. If your new roof has a high R-value, your home may be more energy efficient, possibly saving you money on energy costs.
If you live in a warm and sunny environment, ask your roofing contractor to install sun-reflective coatings and insulation. Also, ask the experts for R-value recommendations that would be suitable for your climate. R-30 or R-40 is considered standard for a roof.
4. What Time of Year Is Best to Install Your New Roof?
If you live in a cold and snowy region, you should probably not have your new roof installed during the winter months. The cold temperatures and accumulation of ice particles may cause the newly installed shingles to constrict and crack. That said, you might want to opt for early summer or late fall. The temperatures should be more moderate and contribute to a more successful job.
There is, however, something else to consider. During the summer and fall, the costs may be somewhat higher due to demand and busy times. If costs are your concern, you might want to consider having your new roof installed during early spring when roofing companies are not quite as busy. In any case, if your roof is in bad shape, don’t delay, and get the job done as soon as possible.