Emergency home repairs have a way of creeping up on us. A leaky roof may suggest the need for patching but, if funds are available, there are some sound reasons to opt for a replacement instead. Today’s architectural style shingles can last up to 50 years – a vast improvement over roofing materials of yesteryear, which may have had just a 20-year life. If the roof is within the first third of its expected life, a repair might make sense. 


     “A durable shingle repair should last a couple of years, but there are many variables that dictate or change that,” says Senior Project Consultant Tom DiRocco. Everything from roof style and shingle color to the quality of workmanship of the original roof comes into play. Regarding the latter, if the current roof was installed on top of an older roof, a repair will not hold up. Roof replacement at G. Fedale comes with the assurance that install will first require the removal of a pre-existing roof.


     Discontinued shingle style or color is another concern. Bear in mind that even if both are still available, sun exposure to existing shingles causes fading. As a result, a new order of the same color or garage-stored shingles from the original job will also present a color-match issue.


     The entirety of a damaged area is not fully visible to the eye. As shingles are installed with an overlap from above, repair will likely require replacement of the row above the damage as well. As shingles age, they become brittle. As a result, damage may occur to nearby shingles during the repair. Upon removing the damaged shingles, should the plywood be moldy or water damaged, it too will require replacement. 


     Roofing style further dictates ease of repair. For instance, a modified bitumen or mod-bit roof is harder to repair than an EPDM flat roof. Still, due to the single membrane nature of an EPDM roof, the repair is still a complex venture.


     Regardless of whether the decision is a repair versus a full replacement, it’s important to call a reputable roofing company to first assess and next, remedy. Leaks find the path of least resistance. Where the shingle meets the sidewall, for instance, it may appear that the roof is the culprit. The damage, however, may actually be coming from the siding. Without doing due diligence, a homeowner may have unnecessarily paid for a roof repair.