Repair vs. Replace: What Should I Do with My Damaged Roof?

Replacing a roof is one of the biggest expenses you will face as a homeowner. So you may dread the thought of it if you notice that your roof is looking a little worse for wear or if you see signs of damage, such as missing shingles or water stains on your ceiling. You may try to repair your roof instead of replacing it so that you don’t have to take as big a hit to the pocket book.

Rather than thinking about the bottom line for your next bill, you need to think about the long-term costs and benefits. You may be able to repair the roof and stop the immediate problem, but that may be like slapping a band-aid on an axe wound. If the roof actually needs to be replaced, you’ll end up spending more in the long run by resorting to repairs instead.

Here are a few things to consider when deciding if you need to repair or replace your roof:

Roofer Replacement Roof

Water Damage

Water damage can be insidious. If you catch it early enough, you may be able to get away with repairing only part of your roof. But if you don’t act quickly, the damage may spread enough that it would be cheaper to just replace the whole roof.

When water damage is discovered, it’s unlikely that you will be able to get away with replacing just a few shingles or tiles. The water is likely to have damaged the underlayment and decking, and that will need to be replaced also. But it is possible that the roofer can cut out the damaged areas and replace the materials in sections. Just be sure to get an inspection to determine the extent of the damage before you decide on a course of action.

High Winds and Storms

Arizona suffers from an intense monsoon season every year, and many roofs can be left damaged in its wake. Sometimes, high winds blow off a few shingles, and they can be replaced without replacing the whole roof. Other times, they do enough damage that a roof replacement is needed.

You should always schedule a roof inspection after the monsoon season comes to an end. Your roofer can let you know if the wind just blew a few things loose, or if there is serious damage that requires large-scale repair or replacement.


Age isn’t just a number when it comes to a roof. Different materials have an expected life span, and when the roof is reaching that age, it’s probably time to replace it. Shingle roofs last about 15 to 25 years, tile roofs last about 50 years, metal roofs last about 50 years, and so on. If you aren’t sure of your roof’s expected life span, ask an experienced roofer.

This doesn’t meant that if you have a shingle roof, for example, that your roof will crumble and collapse the day after it turns 25. The life span of a roof will vary based on how you care for it, the climate, and other factors. But if your roof is nearing the expected life span, you should be paying closer attention and talking to a roofer about when you need to consider re-roofing.

Always talk to a roofer to find out whether repair or replacement is appropriate. If you find out that you need a new roof, never attempt to put the new roof over the existing roof. You need to replace the underlayment and other materials when you replace the shingle or tile, as well. Choose the best roofing option for your home, and rest easy knowing that you will get decades more protection for your investment.

If you need a new roof in Arizona, call Allstate Roofing. We perform residential and commercial re-roofing and repair, and we work with all types of roofing, including shingle, tile, and metal. Our experienced and licensed roofers offer great service and great pricing, and we have a proven reputation in the community. You can hear from our many satisfied clients in our online review. Contact us today to meet with a roofer and get a free estimate for your new roof.

Written by Chad Thomas

“Chad Thomas, born in Arizona and influenced by his licensed roofer father, gained extensive experience in major companies before founding his own licensed roofing business.”