As a Boston roofing contractor, I can not tell you how many times homeowners have looked at me with fragile hope in their eyes, asking if their roof can be repaired rather than replaced. And I get it: we all have budgets, and it's a lot more affordable to repair a roof than to replace it. When repair is a realistic option, our crew will happily get right to work.
But sometimes I have to tell a homeowner that it's time to replace the roof. Here are the factors I use to make that recommendation:
The Condition of the Roof: If your roof is not structurally sound, with rotting boards and failing rafters, it's time to replace it. These types of roofs are dangerous and are prone to collapse in the event of a heavy snowfall - and if you think back not all that long, you know that the Boston area gets its fair share of snow! If your roof is visibly warped or sagging, or if you have moss growing on your roof, be prepared to hear that roof replacement is in your future.
How Much of the Roof is Repaired Already: A roof can only be repaired so many times. While local building codes vary by community, if a significant portion of the roof is to be repaired at one time (significant can vary between 25-50%) you may have no option but to replace it. Additionally, there's the cost factor to consider. Repeated repairs conducted over a short period of time could actually wind up costing you more than roof replacement!
How Your Roof is Performing: If the roof as it is right now means you're living with leaks in several areas in your home, it needs replacing. A localized leak - let's say in an corner bedroom - may be reparable, but if you have a leak in that bedroom and also in the kitchen and also in the family room and also in the back hallway - it's time to fix things.