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However, before you begin your quest for roofing remedies, let’s discuss two options of application: Roof replacement and Re-roofing. While the two terms are used interchangeably, they are notably different. One is less expensive by bypassing the strip down and removal of the current roof, the other takes the roof back to a near baseline of starting over. Both are reasonable options but only if the current condition of the roof allows. Below, we explain a little further.

Re-roofing as opposed to Roof replacement


Is the process of applying new materials over aged? Re-roofing is a practice deemed acceptable in most communities of our nation. It has its limitations, first the current roofing materials must be stable enough to shoulder the new. If the current roof has multiple areas of obvious damage or far along deterioration, it cannot be remedied with the simple action of covering. Second, in many communities, local codes will only allow for one re-roof, meaning it is not allowable to stack one roof application over a previous re-roof.

What is roof replacement?

As the name suggests, roof replacement is about replacing the entire roof. Unlike re-roofing, everything is removed down to the deck.


Inspection by an experienced licensed roofing contractor to verify if re-roofing is an option. If yes, the process of purchase, delivery and application is “simple”.

Roof Replacement

Is the process of removing all the current materials down to the actual wooden decking.   This begins the entire roof lifecycle. This may be more expensive, but you, the homeowner, will begin anew.  The stripping of the old for the preparation of the new is a messy job.  If needed, any decking (sheathing) will be replaced.  Any flashing will be inspected for weather integrity.  Flashing is around the base of vents or chimneys.  It must be sealed.  Next, rolled roof underlayment is applied.   It’s installed directly on the roof decking and provides a secondary layer of protection from the elements, including rain, snow, and wind.

  • Careful with low cost contractors recommending not to utilize underlayment. This layer of protection really does extend your shingle’s lifespan.   Require it.

Next, the shingles will be applied over the underlayment.  Any angled rain valleys installed, gutter drip edges installed if warranted.

Cost Range

While roofing costs vary based on many factors ranging from location to size of the roof, roofing materials, etc., you should expect to spend about $8,388 when reroofing the average U.S. home. The costs can go as low as $5,571, according to HomeAdvisor. On the other hand, a total roof replacement can cost you $14,108 (and well beyond)

Re-roofing or Roof Replacement, which is best for you?

  • What does your inspection present? Are there areas of weather or storm damage that requires bare stripping to correct water damage underneath?
  • Are your shingles intact but dramatically aging?
  • What is your budget?

Re-roofing is a reasonable choice if the current roof allows for it.

Roof replacement is the choice if the current roof is so far gone that it does not allow for simple over application.  However, re-roofing can only be done once before a full replacement is mandated.   If your roof has already been re-roofed, then replacement is your only option.

A new roof is also warranted conditions with major roof leaks, structural damage, large mold/mildew growth, and other major problems.

Full roof replacement services are a complete roof overhaul.  If you wish to ensure your roof is in pristine condition, replace everything.  Replacements focus on every aspect of the roof, from signs of damage to repairing major defects.  However, plan to spend (invest) more.

Decisions on which direction to take can be eased if you periodically have an experienced roofing contractor check out what condition your roof is in.   If you catch a problem before it becomes a crisis, then you can manage better with a re-roof application.   If the inspection discovers problems on the future horizon, you can plan out your opportunities better.   Spending excessive money is generally a result of not managing what you have now.

When you’re a doing your research, you may find that a re-roof can be a “do it yourself” project, and it can.   But understand, that the money you save by climbing the ladder carrying about 75 bundles of shingles, each weighing around 70 lbs. to the top of your roof may not be a reasonable offset.  The risk of falling off the roof after hammering in few thousand nails is now introduced.   Rehab after falling off is now an unexpected cost.    (3 bundles equal 1 square or 100 square feet.  An average sized home will usually take around 25 squares.  25 x 3 x 70 lbs. equals 5,250 lbs.)   Your roof can take it, but can you?

Working on a roof is a skillset for people who perform it every day.   Experienced in guarding against the possible dangers while teaming up to finish it properly and on time.

Seriously, let’s start and finish with experts.  SmartRoof AI (Formerly Bearded Brothers) are just those experts.


Important: Consider the best roof replacement expert near you first before attempting a DIY roof replacement project. The best roofing companies can sell you roofing materials and offer discounted roofing services and/or critical roofing information.

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