By Target Roofing & Sheet Metal / Published March 2021
Roofs are designed and engineered to last for decades. Unfortunately, many roofs never reach their projected lifespan. A harsh environment, particularly as found in Florida, can gradually wear down and wear out roofs, especially if they have not been properly maintained over the years.
The decision to repair or replace a roof is similar to the choice between repairing a vehicle or appliance or just buying a new one. It’s a financial decision. Sometimes, it’s just not worth investing more money into an aging car or refrigerator when it might need additional costly repairs in the near future.
Roof repairs can be as simple as reapplying adhesive around flashing or replacing a few cracked tiles here and there. More significant repairs can involve decking replacement, membrane repair, retrofitting drains, or fabricating new flashings.
At some point, every roof will need to be replaced. That’s a fact of life in Florida as the three Hs—heat, humidity, and hurricanes—take their toll on roofs. The big question is when. There are primary factors that help determine whether it’s time to replace a roof rather than repair it.
Experienced roofing contractors can provide property managers and owners with a qualified judgment about how long a roof should last. Buildings constructed 10 years ago may already be due for a replacement, while one much older could show virtually no signs of aging or damage.
Generally, the 15- to 20-year mark is when many businesses, associations, and homeowners begin contemplating a roof replacement. Roofing materials naturally decay over time due to heat, moisture, high wind, and even insects or critters.
Engineers have developed new roofing materials that are more durable, weather-resistant, and eco-friendly. The tiles, metal panels, membranes, shingles, and insulation materials being manufactured today have energy-saving properties as well. Monthly energy savings alone can make it a wise financial move to invest in a new roof.
Property owners and property managers must evaluate the current condition of the roof before deciding to repair or replace it.
Every part of Florida has been impacted by hurricanes and tropical storms, high humidity, and damaging UV rays. This will not change in the future. Professional roofing contractors can evaluate whether it’s best to repair damages like punctures, sagging flashing, open seams, cracked or chipped tiles, dry-rotted adhesives, rusted fasteners, granule loss, and clogged gutters or drains. Those are some of the most common causes of roof repair calls.
The best way to ensure a roof remains in good condition is by securing an annual maintenance plan. Plans can include semi-annual inspections, price guarantees and discounts, and service priority, and can even cover some repair costs.
While a repair fixes one problem, it does not guarantee that other issues will not surface on an aging roof. By comparison, a roof replacement offers peace of mind. Reputable, licensed contractors offer workmanship guarantees that cover the installation of replaced roofs in addition to the manufacturer’s warranties on roofing materials.
Whether it’s time to replace or repair a vehicle, appliance, or roof, allocating money for repairs might be a less expensive alternative upfront but may cost more in the long run. Always ask for a second (or third) opinion, and always hire experienced, licensed roofing contractors who will offer an honest assessment that has your best interest in mind.
Target Roofing & Sheet Metal
Target Roofing & Sheet Metal is a licensed and insured commercial roofing specialist headquartered in Fort Myers. For more information, please visit TargetRoofers.com or call (239) 334-7496.