The age of the roof on your house can play a crucial role in how you proceed if you are dealing with leaks or other problems. The type of roofing material can also make a difference in the roof's life, so if you suspect there are issues with the roof or the structure under the roofing, it's essential to work with a contractor to determine the best course of action.

Getting a Roof Inspection

The first thing you may want to do before starting any work on your home is to schedule a roof inspection to assess the structure's overall condition. If the roof is solid under the roofing material, replacing the roofing and leaving the plywood that supports the roof in place is often the fastest and cheapest option. 

Unfortunately, if the roof is leaking, it is common for the plywood to be damaged and rot to form under the roofing material. Once water gets in under the roofing materials, it can do a lot of damage very quickly. The roofing contractor will need to check the condition from the attic side of the roof if it is accessible. 

If the attic is finished and the back of the roof is not visible, the only way to determine if there is damage under the roofing material is to remove it. Often the roofing contractor will include new plywood and other materials in the estimate for the work so that you are prepared for the expense, and that can be removed if it is not required once the job is underway. 

Removing the Old Roof

Your residential roof replacement starts with the roofer removing the old roofing material across the entire roof. Once the material is stripped, the contractor can do a full inspection of the underlayment or plywood on the roof and decide if they will replace it. 

If the underlayment is rotting, has mold growing on it, or is wet, it is best to remove and replace it. If only one area is damaged, it is possible to patch in that one section with new material but talk to the roofer to determine if that will work for your situation. 

Replacing the Roof

After the new plywood underlayment is in place, the entire roof is covered with heavy felt paper to create a vapor barrier and protect the wood under it. In some cases, specialized vapor barriers are used when materials like metal roofing or wood shingles. 

If you selected asphalt roofing shingles for your new roof, the roofing contractor and their crew can install them in a few days on an average-sized residential home. The asphalt shingles will typically last twenty to thirty years with proper care. 

For more information, contact residential roofing system services.