Covering an Old Roof

Replacing a roof can present a significant cost, loss of time and inconvenience to the average homeowner. However, instead of a new roof installation, some homes are viable candidates for a reroof overlay, which is the installation of a new layer of shingles over the current layer. Many homeowners choose the overlay option because of the savings. Unlike a new roof installation, a reroof eliminates the need to tear off the existing roofing materials, can reduce the necessity to add roof underlayment and offers a significant reduction in labor costs.

However, before you make plans to add another layer of shingles on your roof, you should consult with a professional Toms River roofing contractor who can determine if your roof is able to support an overlay. For example, if a large percentage of your roof has leaks, damaged areas or curled shingles, your only option is to install a new roof. In addition, the building codes in most locations only allow a maximum of two layers of shingles on a roof. If your roof already has the maximum number of overlays, the roofing contractor cannot perform a reroof.

Furthermore, the current roof must be able to support the weight of a new layer of shingles. For example, if the roof’s sheathing cannot support the extra weight, it will sag between the roof’s rafters.

In addition, the entire roof may collapse the next time there is heavy snowfall in your area.

Besides the lower cost, there are some benefits to overlaying a roof. The first benefit is that in comparison to a new roof installation, an overlay project takes less time to complete. This is especially important if the roofing project causes a major disruption for you and your neighbors. Another benefit is that an overlay has less cleanup than a new installation. This is because a new installation includes the removal of old roofing materials, which can create a large amount of trash.

In many instances, a new overlay can also add another layer of protection to the roof. If your roof’s current materials are nearing the end of their life cycle, their effectiveness against harsh weather conditions, such as a snowstorm, may be reduced. Additionally, most manufacturers also cover shingles that are installed in a roof overlay, which does offer some peace of mind to homeowners who decide to pursue the reroof option. Although an overlay is not a good option for every home, it is a viable solution for homes that fit the right criteria. The roofing contractors at Fortified Roofing of Toms River NJ can answer your questions about roof repairs or gutters.

Common roofing term explained by Fortified Roofing, roofing contractors of Toms River NJ:


The roofing underlayment is the layer of protection between a house’s roof deck and its roofing materials, such as shingles. An underlayment can extend your roof’s life, act as a vapor barrier and prevent moisture from penetrating the roof deck. Examples of underlayment materials include rubberized asphalt, fiberglass and felt paper.

Roofing contractors of Toms River NJ, Fortified Roofing answer a question:

Does a homeowner need permission to install a roof overlay?

Some municipalities do require a permit to make any significant changes to a house. Ask your roofing contractor if you need a permit before beginning any roofing project. If a permit is required, contact the appropriate local, county or state regulatory office for information on acquiring the right permit to stay in code.

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