Tear off the old shingles or shingle over?

Many people mistakenly believe that shingling over a roof rather than replacing it can save them money. While it may be tempting to try to cut short-term costs by cutting corners, shingling over an old roof often proves to be much costlier in the long term. Those costs can be physical as well as financial.

While tearing off and disposing of your old roof may cost a bit more, it also provides a number of benefits that re-shingling doesn’t. One of the benefits is a thorough inspection that reveals any hidden leaks. Sections of the roof decking that may have warped, buckled or rotted may need to be replaced to preserve the integrity of the structure and prevent further costly damage. Flashing assemblies for waterproofing around chimneys, sidewalls and eaves are also inspected and replaced if necessary.

Shingling over an old roof by adding another layer has the effect of adding more weight and stress to the roof decking. That extra weight can become a real problem when combined with the weight of snow during the winter. The extra layer also attracts and traps more heat, which contributes to the newer shingles curling and deteriorating prematurely. Both layers will eventually have to be removed, which doubles the future cost of the disposal of roofing materials. That’s one reason that a reshingled roof decreases property values, while a new roof increases them. Another reason is that a re-shingled roof often presents an unattractive, uneven appearance as well as posing a higher risk for future leaks.

Water and ice leak barriers adhere directly to the wood roof decking and isn’t replaced when shingling over a roof. That makes it possible for ice to get caught under the overlay and leak under the old roof. Additionally, old shingles are usually overgrown with algae and bacteria. Preventing the health dangers associated with mold caused by hidden leaks is probably the most important reason that we recommend replacing rather than reshingling a roof. Medical conditions caused or exacerbated by mold cost more than just money and can affect a homeowner’s quality of life.

Let the experienced professionals at STA assess the condition of the roof that has you covered.

Call STA today at 630-370-0447.

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