If you’re considering starting a roof repair project, there are a few things that you need to take into account before you really get going. Among them is how the project will fit into your budget, and how it will fit into, or disrupt, your daily life.
That second aspect can be tricky to define, as roof repairs are not one-size-fits-all. Every type of roof damage will need a different fix, which will take a different amount of time, and require different materials.
So, in order to help you better approach and plan for your roof repair, we wanted to go through the types of common roof problems, what would need to be done to fix it, and how long that process usually takes.
In this blog, we’re going to go over:
Alright, let’s get started!
Common Roof Repairs
Most of the roof repairs that do fall into a couple of different categories: Storm damage, wear and tear, and improper installation.
When storms come through an area, they can do a lot of damage to local roofs, like knocking off shingles, tearing holes in flashing, and damaging other parts of the roof, especially if the roof is at an advanced age, or has already received some previous damage. That’s why it’s so important to take care of standard wear and tear damage when it happens. Normal wear and tear on a roof could be some granule loss, or a damaged pipe boot. The third category comes when you have to fix damage that’s a result of poor workmanship in your installation. Usually this kind of damage shows up pretty soon after the installation, whether it’s improperly driven nails, or poorly done flashing. The first heavy rain that comes through your area will likely expose some of this, and require you to call out another roofing company to address the problem.
Now, let’s go over some of these repairs more specifically, and talk about how long each of them will take to fix!
Shingle repairs are most often needed after a strong storm, on older roofs that are getting close to the end of their lifespan. Wind can blow up under aged shingles, causing them to bend or break, and hail or debris can strike them, creating cracks or chips. When this happens, you may need a roofer to come replace a small section of shingles.
For most instances, this repair won’t take very long at all. If you are using a roofing company that has worked on your roof before, they should already have record of the brand, line, and color of shingle on your roof, which will speed up the process. If you’re going with a new roofer, there’s a good chance they can tell you what’s on there by examining the shingle. To the untrained eye, a shingle is probably just a shingle, but roofers who see this stuff everyday have likely learned how to identify what’s what.
Another case on your shingles comes as a result of improper installation, more specifically, the nailing of the shingles. If the nails are driven into the roof too much, or too little, it will create weak points in your roof system that can be easily exposed by rain and wind. To fix this, the roofer will need to examine the roof and replace any nails that have backed out, or were driven in too much.
If they’re prepared for what you have on your roof, an experienced roof technician should be able to replace a small patch of shingles or nails in 2-5 hours, depending on the extent of the damage.
If the damage takes up a much larger section of your roof, you may be interested in starting to look at a roof replacement. The more damage there is, the higher the likelihood of damage occurring in the structure of your roof, which would need a replacement to address.
Another repair that can be caused by weather damage or poor installation, is a flashing replacement. If you’re unfamiliar with what flashing is, it is a soft metal material that covers the gap between the roof’s surface, and a wall or penetration, like a chimney. Flashing can become damaged by hail, and if it becomes dented or torn, it can very easily develop leaks and cause some undesirable problems. The same kinds of leaks can occur if it wasn’t installed or sealed correctly, since it would allow water to pass through into very sensitive areas.
Though it’s very common to be done improperly, adequately experienced roof technicians should be able to get the job done fairly quickly, usually in a matter of 1-3 hours. One of the more time-consuming things is determining that the flashing is actually what needs replacing, especially around chimneys and skylights. Both of those penetrations are pretty complex, especially when coming through the middle of your roof, and they have multiple different points of where things could go wrong, and spring a leak.
Though you may not associate gutters with a roofing issue, as it turns out, they very frequently go hand-in-hand. A gutter clog, or damage can have very important effects on your roof, and if your roof isn’t cleaned off enough, it could increase the workload your gutters have to deal with.
Keeping your gutters clean and clear of debris is a super important part of roof maintenance, but that being said, replacing a section shouldn’t take very long. If the contractor knows the right material to install, they’ll be able to move at a pretty quick pace, swapping the damaged section out in 1-3 hours, largely depending on how large it is, and how easy it is to access.
Pipe Boot Replacement
One of the simplest, but also most common repairs that we do in our work is a pipe boot replacement. Pipe boots are similar to flashing, in that they cover the gap between the roofs surface, and the penetration, which in this case is a vent pipe.
These boots are usually made out of plastic, metal, or most commonly in the past, a rubber composite. Unfortunately, that rubber composite is prone to drying out in the sun over the years and can become brittle, and crack open.
Once those cracks or holes develop, the whole boot will need to be replaced when possible, or water will run down the pipe and into the roof decking and into your house.
Thankfully, this repair is easy to do when caught on time, and should take as little as an hour, maybe two. The roofer will be able to pop off the pipe boot, and install a newer, better functioning version fairly quickly. Once a sealant is applied, it will bond to the pipe, and should be able to give you several solid years of protection!
Looking for more about common roof repairs?
If you’re in the market still for a roof repair, we’ve got some more content dedicated to that, and would love for you to check it out!
One blog that you might be interested in checking out, is one we’ve written all about the costs associated with these common roof repairs, and what homeowners can expect to pay to have them completed. Give it a look!
On Tops Roofing is a local roofing contractor that provides roof repair services to the Raleigh, North Carolina area. We’ve been in the business since 1991, so we’ve got the experience to handle whatever fix your roof needs!