A roof replacement is expensive, inconvenient and hopefully – a rare occurrence. Understandably, one of the most common questions we get from homeowners is “How long is my roof replacement going to take?”
While the exact answer depends on a variety of factors, a roof replacement for a typical home (approximately 3,000 square feet) can usually be completed in one day.
There are of course some circumstances that can impact this timeframe and cause the roof replacement to take longer. By the end of this article, you’ll have a reasonable expectation for how long your roof replacement will take and how to spot any warning signs from a roofing contractor in Louisville, KY.
How long does it take to replace a roof?
We advise our clients to expect a roof replacement to take one to possibly two days. This estimate is applicable to just about any average sized (3,000 square feet or less) home. However, there are a few mitigating factors that we’ll explain more in depth below.
A reputable roofing contractor should have enough crews to be able to complete your roof replacement in a timely fashion. Replacement timeframe is certainly something your roofing contractor should discuss with you prior to signing a contract.
Obviously, every home is different and not every roof replacement is completed in one or two days. There are a few factors that can increase this timeframe.
What factors influence how long it will take to replace your roof
There are three main factors that will influence how long your roof replacement will take, and if it will take longer than one to two days. These factors include:
1. Size of the home: The larger your home is, the longer your roof replacement will take – unless your roofing contractor can send out a larger crew. Regardless of the size of your home or business, completion timeframe should be clearly communicated prior to the start of your roof replacement.
2. Size of the crew: Obviously a smaller crew will take longer to do a roof replacement. Choosing a reputable, well established roofing contractor will help ensure the appropriate sized crew is assigned to your project.
3. Complexity of the roof: The more peaks, valleys, penetrations (like vents, skylights, plumbing vents, etc), and of course the steeper your roof is – the more complex the roof is considered. Complexity lengthens the replacement timeframe because special care has to be taken to fabricate shingles and material around every area to ensure a watertight seal. Also, the roofing crew has to take more safety precautions to complete the replacement, which takes time.
What should be included in your roof replacement?
Your roof is made up of more than just the shingles you’re able to see. Your roofing system consists of many elements that work together to protect your home. During a roof replacement, all (or most) of those elements should be replaced to ensure your roof functions properly.
1. Shingles: Although this is fairly obvious it should be noted.
2. Underlayment: Underlayment is the final line of protection against water damage to your roof decking. There are many grades of underlayment quality; we advise our clients to use synthetic underlayment.
3. Ice & Water Shield: In central Kentucky, ice and water shield is mandatory on certain places on your roof. An ice and water shield forms a moisture tight seal. Meaning, when shingles are affixed to the roof, the ice and water shield ensures there are no gaps between the nail head.
4. Drip Edge: Your drip edge has to be replaced with your roof. Aside from being required by local code and regulations, this is another critical component in leak prevention. Drip edge is metal flashing that is positioned at the roof’s perimeter to direct water away from your fascia boards. In Kentucky, having a drip edge properly installed is codified in the housing code.
5. Ventilation: Proper ventilation is critical to the longevity of your roof and preventing costly dry rot damage. New roof vents should be included in your roof replacement. It’s important to know the difference between passive and active ventilation, and ask your contractor what makes the most sense for your home.
6. Pipe boots: Penetrations in your roof due to HVAC and plumbing must be sealed. A pipe boot is fitted around these penetrations to form a watertight seal. Cracked pipe boots are one of the most common causes of a roof leak. Replacing these boots during a roof replacement is important to prevent leaks.
7. Flashings: Flashings are a vital component of your roof. They direct water away from your roof and into your gutters. You may not have to replace your flashing during a roof replacement. However, you will have to replace your flashings if their integrity has been compromised or if you’re switching from a 3-tab to a dimensional asphalt shingle.
8. Roof decking (as needed): Every third or fourth roof replacement, you will need to replace your roof’s decking. Decking is a foundational element of your roof and is made of plywood or OSB sheathing. Your shingles are nailed into your decking. After a few roof replacements your decking becomes too damaged to hold any more nails and must be replaced.
We always recommend interviewing a few contractors to make sure you’re getting a fair price. It’s also a great idea to look at reviews (the good and the bad ones!) of the roofing company you’re considering. Make sure your roofing company is properly insured according to Nicholasville, KY standards and has been in business for some time.
It certainly is a red flag if you’re interviewing a roofing contractor who will not give you a definitive completion timeframe and does have the proper certifications. This may sound like a no-brainer, but many homeowners fall victim to pushy, door to door salespeople.
There’s no way around it – a roof replacement is inconvenient. While you’re in the process of vetting roofing contractors, inquiring about the size of the crew and completion timeframe are great questions to ask. If you’re deciding between two bids and one can complete your roof in one day and the other will take one week – the decision becomes that much easier!
Have more questions? We can help!
Replacing your roof can seem like an overwhelming process. We want to help homeowners feel confident and make informed decisions throughout this process. From what questions to ask a roofing contractor, to evaluating and comparing your roofing estimates, you can find help for every step of the process by visiting our Learning Center and YouTube channel.
You never want to trade speed for craftsmanship. With AIC Roofing, you won’t have to. We are part of the elite 2% of roofers in North America to hold the GAF MasterElite Certification. AIC Roofing and Construction has been serving the Nicholasville and Central Kentucky area since 2003. We’re proud of the stellar reputation we’ve earned from helping homeowners. Replacing your roof is expensive and can be a stressful process. Rest assured knowing that our expert staff are with you every step of the way – before, during and after. We are an earnest, experienced and MasterElite Certified roofer in Louisville, Kentucky. If the time has come to replace your roof, we’d love to see if we would be a good fit for your home project. Contact us today to schedule your free estimate!