Homeowners know property ownership and management is not for the faint of heart. There are many challenges, including whether to DIY (do-it-yourself) or call professionals for repair or replacement jobs. The one structural section you really can’t DIY is your roof.

Homeowners living in what they hope will be their “forever home” want to know: How often does a roof need replacement?

Determining Factors: How Often a Roof Needs to Be Replaced

Signs it’s time for a new roof can include:

  • Age
  • Damage and inside leaks
  • Holes and dark spots
  • Missing, broken, cracked, or rotten shingles
  • Mold
  • Sagging roof

You may not have been the original decision-maker when the roof was installed. Perhaps the quality of the installation or the materials were not something you could control. Many things out of your control can determine whether or not you need a new roof:

  • Installation quality
  • Materials used
  • Roof age
  • Weather challenges

If you’ve already replaced your home’s roof, chances are you won’t need replacement anytime soon. But if you’re on the roof’s third or fourth generation, you may not know the exact age. Thanks to improved materials development and installation standards, a roof can last at least 15 years.

Why Would a Minnesota Roof Need Replacement?

And then there’s Minnesota weather. Our weather is also not for the faint of heart. Our bodies and our roofs need to be healthy and sturdy to withstand extreme weather. Our roofs protect us from:

  • Hail
  • Ice
  • Rain
  • Sleet
  • Snow
  • Wind

Roofing Materials Matter

When choosing a type of roof replacement material, your decision will likely be driven by cost and materials. This is a typical roof replacement schedule based on types of shingles:

  • Asphalt: 15-30 years
  • Composition: 12-20 years
  • Wood: 20-25 years

Rubber roofs are good for 30-50 years and metal roofs can last between 50-75 years. Again, weather conditions play a big part in any roof’s durability.

Recovering vs. Replacement

It’s not uncommon to lay a new roof atop an old one; many homeowners feel it offers double protection and greater durability. That’s not exactly true and in fact, the added weight of an overlay roof can cause even more problems. It may not be the best option because:

  • A new roof can offer a “cleaner,” smoother finish.
  • An ice-protection underlayment is installed with a new roof.
  • Existing roof defects must be repaired before installing an overlay roof.
  • New roofs last longer than overlay roofs.

The State of Minnesota says overlay roofs cannot be installed when any of these conditions exist:

  • Deterioration that makes the old roof unsafe for an overlay installation
  • Existing roof is:
    • Asbestos-cement tiles
    • Cement
    • Clay
    • Slate
    • Wood shake
  • Roof already has 2 or more “layers”
  • Water-soaked layers

What’s the Best Roofing Material?

You can opt to save money or go for stunning curb appeal, but there are no “bad” roofing materials manufactured in the U.S. The most popular type of roofs are asphalt shingles. Other options for a roofing project include:

  • Clay/ceramic tile – With manufacturing advances, these appealing roofs can be fire-retardant as well as lighter-weight. They shouldn’t be overlooked here in the Midwest.
  • Composition slate – Synthetic tiles are popular and can be made from recycled materials. They are appealing as well as lightweight and affordable.
  • Metal – Metal roofs are very trendy, but they’re expensive. They may be more cost-effective because of their durability and long life.
  • Slate – Slate roofs are very attractive – and costly. They’re also very heavy and may not be a good choice for some architecture.
  • Wood shakes, shingles – Shakes are thicker and more uneven than shingles. These would not be a great choice for California, but they’re fine for us.

What Happens When You Replace Your Roof

Just as we arrange bi-annual HVAC (heating, ventilation, air conditioning) and/or plumbing maintenance, your roof needs a maintenance check, too. Fall and spring are the best times to schedule a roof checkup.

Remember when your mom said, “Shut the back door! Are we heating the outside?” That’s exactly what your roof may be doing. We’d be happy to check your roof’s condition and offer any suggestions that can save money long-term. It’s not unusual for our customers to see lower heating/cooling bills after a roof replacement.

It’s a busy time of the year but you don’t have to put it off until later. Your roof replacement job could possibly be completed in 5 days. Estimates are free. Contact LB Solutions, LLC if you have roof or siding questions. We want what’s best for your health, safety (and budget) because we live here, too. The roofing and siding pros at LB Solutions hope you and your family have a relaxing and enjoyable winter season.