Roof Overlay 101

Posted on: 27 April 2020

If your old roof is aging, then you need to have it replaced before leaks and water damage occur. Unfortunately, the cost of a roof teardown and replacement is not in everyone's budget. The good news is that there are other options, like a roof overlay. This method of replacement is more cost-effective than a full teardown and replacement. The following guide can help you learn more.

What is an overlay roof?

In a traditional roof replacement, the old shingles are removed down to the roof decking, and then the whole roof is built up again. With an overlay roof, the old shingles are left in place and new shingles are placed on top of them. This saves the cost of the teardown and disposal as well as some of the costs for installing fresh underlayment such as roofing felt.

Can any roof be overlaid?

There are some restrictions when it comes to what roofs are eligible for an overlay. The current roofing material should be asphalt shingled. A roof can only be overlaid once, so your roof can't be overlaid again if there are already two layers of asphalt shingles. Furthermore, the roof shouldn't have any active damages or leaks. Small damaged areas can be repaired before overlaying, but larger damages that affect the decking will require a full teardown.

What material is overlaid on a roof?

Most people have an existing roof overlaid with asphalt shingles. Any type of asphalt shingles can be chosen. It is also possible to overlay a roof with a new metal panel roof. Metal is relatively lightweight, but your roofer will still need to verify that your home can support the weight of the metal panels before proceeding with the overlay.

Are there concerns with a roof overlay?

There are some concerns to be aware of. The most obvious concern is that there may be hidden damage on the roof that an overlay can't repair. Before opting for the overlay, have a full inspection of both the roof and attic so that you can be reasonably assured that any damage or leaks has been found and addressed.

Does an overlay stand out?

Once complete, your overlay roof will look just like a conventionally replaced roof as long as the roof wasn't sagging or showing any other structural issues. Only you and your roofer will know that you opted to overlay instead of replace.

Contact a roofing contractor such as Done Right Home Improvements, INC. to learn more about your options.