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Union County Roofers: Article About Shingle Overlay Projects

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Major rooftop renovations are investments that require strict attention to installation details. Each installation task has associated material and labor costs. In some cases, homeowners may be inclined to look for project shortcuts. Homeowners could consider a shingle overlay project as a viable option. Contractors simply lay new materials on top of old shingles. However, this procedure isn't recommended by reputable Union County roofers for several reasons.

Traditionally, contractors use roof replacement projects as a perfect time to inspect wood decking. This plywood layer resides under shingles and roofing felt. However, an overlay project prevents contractors from evaluating the decking underneath. If there's moisture damage, it will remain hidden along the decking, contributing to slow rooftop decline. In fact, homeowners may have a sagging rooftop shortly after an overlay project. As a result, residents must reserve more funds for extra rooftop work. In contrast, tear off and replacement projects often address all rooftop issues as contractors lay new materials.

Shingles remain flush with the rooftop surface because of their relatively thin construction. However, overlay projects require shingle stacking. In these cases, roofing materials are offset from their flat position. Hanging tabs can flap in the wind.

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As a result, blow off and wind uplift damages can occur more frequently after installation. Shingles are meant to hug the rooftop to keep all wind flowing over their exterior surfaces.

Wind isn't the only weathering element that can damage overlay installations. Primarily, water damage is the major issue plaguing these rooftops. As shingles lift and move with prevailing winds, moisture easily seeps under the new materials and reaches the damaged old shingles. Even if a rooftop has a steep angle, moisture damage is still a common threat to shingle overlays.

Homeowners must also evaluate an overlay project and its influence on material warranties. Generally, material manufacturers won't honor a warranty if shingles aren't properly installed on a structure. As a result, homeowners have no recourse if shingles prematurely fail. Shingle overlay installations can actually cost homeowners more than if they financed a normal tear off and replacement service.

From a logical standpoint, homeowners might think that extra rooftop layers are better for a structure. In fact, overlay projects often are subject to accelerated rooftop decline. New shingles stacked on old materials tend to decline more quickly under normal rooftop stresses. As a result, homeowners could replace the roof again in just 10 or 15 years. Removing old materials and adding new shingles properly is the best installation choice.

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