Our previous roof was 20+ year old wood shake with a second overlay of 10+ year old wood shake. (Apparently re-roofing over old shake used to be common?) Ultimately with two shake layers falling apart, moss and broken shingles, our house was beginning to look like a hobbit house. When the wind kicked up little moss pellets would rain down, which we called “roof poop.”
We bought the house knowing the roof was bad, and this was going to be an inevitable (high cost) expense. Which would ultimately prevent us from big renovation projects the first year. We also knew having a roof installed is not that simple, even when someone else is doing the job. Here is a quick run down of what we learned from our experience and our free Homeowners Guide: Pre-Roof Checklist (printable).
Watch the weather forecast…And be prepared. We were biting our nails a week before the install because rain was expected the weekend of our roof tear off. Luckily the rain only came the day before. However Home Depot dropped off all the plywood/ skip sheeting on that rainy day. Luckily we had plastic tarps at the ready and were able to cover the wood in time.
Expect to be under house arrest during the roof tear off. Once they start tearing you will be surrounded by mountains of wood, shingles, nails, and all sorts of debris. We had to carve out a path from our back slider in order to get out of the house. Luckily the dogs got a walk and potty break before the demo.
Expect there to be surprises as the roof is coming off…Ours was the second layer of shake, two dump runs and some dry rot. Also do not panic when you see random men sitting on low eaves, with the dry rot.
Luckily our roofer was awesome and started cleaning much of it with a shop vac. However it is almost impossible to remove dust from loose insulation. You can always insist on a full clean-up clause in your roof contract, but the dust is unavoidable.
Expect there to be possible delays, and the job take longer than expected. (Ours was due to the rain delay) Also early morning noise…Rise and shine 6:45 am on a Sunday morning.Overall having a new roof brings incredible peace of mind and hopefully an expense that we won’t have for another 30 years.