Re-Roofing vs. Roof Replacement: Guide for Florida Homeowners

June 28, 2024

When buying a new roof, affordability is a big concern. One way that homeowners can save money is by choosing to re-roof instead of getting a roof replacement. But what does that entail, exactly? And what are the drawbacks? We’re PITCH Roofing, and today we’re going to help you choose between re-roofing and roof replacement.

Whether you’re not 100% sure what re-roofing is or you just want to know how to choose between re-roofing vs. roof replacement, we’ve got you covered. As experienced Florida roofers, we’ve seen it all and know both the installation costs and the long-term value of these roofing systems. Keep reading for our complete breakdown of re-roofing and roof replacements in Florida!

Re-Roofing vs. Roof Replacement: The Basics

Re-Roofing vs. Roof Replacement_ The Basics

A roof replacement is pretty simple. Someone tears off your old roof, replaces any damaged decking, then installs a new one. This is the most common thing to do when your roof reaches the end of its life, but it’s not your only option.

Instead, you could choose re-roofing, also called a roof overlay. With this method, roofers don’t tear off your old roof. Instead, they install your new roof over top of the old one. This is most commonly done by installing shingles or metal over an old shingle roof, although other combinations are sometimes possible depending on the state of your roof.

Re-roofing is substantially cheaper than a roof replacement because you don’t pay for the labor to tear off and dispose of your old roof. But in roofing, there’s a lot more to these big decisions than just the price tag. So let’s talk about what you need to know to choose between re-roofing and roof replacement.

When to Choose Re-Roofing vs. Roof Replacement

There is no “best” option between re-roofing and roof replacement. Instead, both roofing services work best in different scenarios. So how are you supposed to know which one you need? Let’s talk about the different situations in which you need re-roofing and which ones call for a roof replacement.

When to Pick Roof Replacement

The right thing to choose depends, in part, on the state of your old roof. For example, if your roof is leaking or showing other signs of water damage, this could indicate that your roof decking has been damaged. Adding another layer on top of that may not be structurally sound, so your best bet is probably to tear off the old roof and install a new one.

Roof replacements are also more widely available since they aren’t limited to any specific roofing materials. This means that no matter what your old roofing material is or what new roofing material you want, roof replacement is always an option, and many Florida homeowners appreciate that flexibility when deciding between re-roofing and roof replacement.

There are also cost considerations to make. A roof replacement usually costs more than re-roofing, but some exceptions could make your situation different. In some cases, your homeowners insurance may pay for all or part of a roof replacement, especially if it was damaged during a storm. Ultimately, whether re-roofing or roof replacement costs more will depend on your unique situation.

When to Pick Re-Roofing

In just as many situations, re-roofing could be a better option for your home. If you need a new roof because yours is getting older but hasn’t shown signs of weakening, then it could be safe to add another layer on top. If there’s no existing damage, the new layer should protect the older layer beneath it from further wear and tear.

Because all roofs have a weight limit, your material options are more limited with re-roofing than roof replacement. The most common re-roofing choice is to install new shingles over your old shingle roof. However, you can also install a lightweight metal roofing system over your old shingles. Generally speaking, though, heavier materials like tiles or slate are out of the question.

Of course, one of the biggest factors when choosing between re-roofing and roof replacement is cost. Floridians pick re-roofing when they need a new roof on a budget. As mentioned, getting a roof overlay is a great way to save on roof replacement costs. However, it may be better to think of it as just delaying those costs.

That’s because you won’t be able to install a third layer on your roof, so your next new roof will require a replacement. When that happens, you’ll have to pay to have both of your roofs removed and disposed of. Re-roofing could still be a good idea, especially if you plan to sell before the next roof replacement or to be in a better financial position, but it’s important to take this into account when figuring out total re-roofing costs.

Get Your Free Estimates for Re-Roofing and Roof Replacement

Both re-roofing and roof replacement are the right choice in different situations. In addition to using the information above, getting a free estimate is a great way to help you decide on what to do about your new roof. That’s because, when you choose Pitch, every estimate comes with a brief roof inspection to determine what we can safely install on your roof.

For your free, no-obligation estimate, call us at 727-607-4553 or schedule your estimate online. Whether you already know what you want or want to talk about your options with an expert, we’ve got you covered. Our crew of friendly roofing pros will be happy to answer all of your questions and prepare estimates for any options that you’re considering.

Choosing between re-roofing and roof replacement will impact your home for years to come. Let Pitch guide you through this process and give you the expert insight you need to make the right decision for your home!

FAQs About Re-Roofing and Roof Replacement

FAQs About Re-Roofing and Roof Replacement

We’ve covered when to pick re-roofing vs. roof replacement, but we understand that you may still have questions. As your local roofing partners in your corner, we want to do everything we can to help you make an informed decision. That’s why we’re answering the most common questions that we see about re-roofing and roof replacement!

1. Q: How much does re-roofing cost compared to a roof replacement in Florida?

A: Re-roofing is significantly cheaper than roof replacement because of the lower labor costs. However, there’s no way to say exactly how much it will cost. Your total roofing costs will depend on your new and old roofing materials, the size of your roof, its condition, and many other factors. For this reason, we strongly recommend getting an estimate if you’re interested in re-roofing!

2. Q: Are all roofs eligible for re-roofing?

A: No, sometimes a roof is not suitable for re-roofing and needs replaced instead. This includes roofs that have already undergone a roof overlay and heavily damaged roofs. Additionally, re-roofing is limited to lightweight roofing materials like shingles and some types of metal.

3. Q: Do roof overlays still have warranties?

A: In most cases, shingle warranties are only valid for total roof replacements. There may be exceptions, but generally speaking, choosing a roof overlay means foregoing any warranties on your roofing shingles.

4. Q: Does re-roofing help with energy efficiency?

A: Yes, by adding a new layer of materials to your roof, re-roofing can add insulation and improve energy efficiency. However, getting a roof replacement is also an opportunity to upgrade your roof and add more insulation, so this isn’t technically a leg up on roof replacements.

5. Q: How do I know if my roof needs replacing instead of re-roofing?

A: Signs that you need a roof replacement include multiple leaks, algae or mold in your attic from water damage, roof sagging, and large sections of missing shingles.