A roof replacement will always be an expensive investment. Because of this, some homeowners try to go the DIY roof replacement route.
We’re a roofing company, so of course, we’ll tell you to contact a professional. But your roof is your property, so you’re free to do your own roof replacement.
And with the rise of DIY videos and articles, it’s never been easier to gain knowledge to do things yourself. But before deciding if a DIY roof replacement is a good idea, there are some warnings to consider.
For over 30 years, the team at Bill Ragan Roofing has educated homeowners on all things roofing and the roofing industry. Now we want to help you determine if it really is a good idea to do your own roof replacement.
Let’s get to the 4 warnings you need to consider before doing a DIY roof replacement.
1. Working on a roof is dangerous
The first and probably most important thing about a DIY roof replacement is that working on a roof is dangerous. Roofing contractors have the safety training and knowledge required to properly work and walk on a roof.
But even with all the experience a roofer has, accidents can still happen. So, if accidents can occur with professionals, there’s a chance it can happen to you.
Roofing contractors also have safety equipment to work on a roof safely, like ropes and harnesses to tie off on steep roof pitches. You also need to consider how comfortable you are getting on and off a roof with a ladder.
If you’re not comfortable on a ladder or walking on a roof, you probably shouldn’t be up there. I understand a roof replacement is expensive, and saving money where you can is tempting.
But even if saving money is important, there’s no amount of money worth the safety risks involved with a DIY roof replacement.
2. You’ll have to buy the right materials and tools to do the job
No matter what DIY roofing project you’re planning, you’ll need the right tools and materials to do the job. You may already have a hammer, but there’s much more you'll need.
(Tear off fork)
Some of the things a roofing contractor needs are roofing nails, a tear-off fork, a chalk line, and measuring tape. But just know even more tools are needed to do all the intricate work a roof replacement requires.
While tools are important, getting the right materials is more important, especially if you want to avoid leaks in the problem areas of a roof.
You may think you can get by without installing or replacing one of these materials. But the truth is, all of them are crucial to keeping your roof leak-free.
Leaving off drip edge can even make you fail a home inspection because building codes require it. If you’re seriously considering a DIY roof replacement, make sure you have a list of all the tools and materials needed.
3. It takes knowledge, training, and skill to replace a roof
In the last section you learned you need the right tools and materials to do a DIY roof replacement. But it also requires knowledge, training, and skill to replace a roof.
A roofing contractor and the installers on your roof have years of roofing experience under their belts. While mistakes may still happen, you can count on a correct roof install most of the time.
I understand there are videos and articles to help you do this. But there’s a drastic difference between watching a video and trying to do it yourself.
You’ll not only need to know how to install the materials correctly but also what order to do it in. Making a simple mistake like not changing out rotten roof decking before installation can lead to big problems down the road.
(Rotten decking that needs to be changed out)
If you decide to do it yourself, just know the quality of your roof replacement versus a certified contractor can be drastic. If you’re not 100% confident that you can pull off a roof replacement, just call a professional to ensure you’re not throwing your money away.
4. You won’t get the same roof warranties
After getting a new roof from a professional roofer, you’ll have two types of warranties to protect against potential problems. You’ll have one on your roofing contractor’s workmanship and one on your roofing materials.
Well, if you do a DIY roof replacement, you obviously won’t have a contractor’s workmanship to fall back on. This means any mistakes you made during installation will be on you to fix.
These problems can show up right away with the first rain or 5 years down the road. Either way, you’ll have to take care of it yourself or pay a roofing contractor to fix the issue.
On the other hand, material warranties are a little different for DIY roof replacements. You’ll still have basic warranties from the manufacturer on the materials you buy yourself.
This means if there’s ever a problem caused by a defect with the materials themselves, the manufacturer will take care of the problem. But this requires actually going through a process with the manufacturer to get it done.
Just know, installing materials incorrectly voids their material warranty. So, if you’re serious about a DIY roof replacement, make sure you read all the installation instructions provided by the manufacturer before installing your materials.
Learn how much a new roof costs before doing a DIY roof replacement
Now you know the 4 warnings of doing a DIY roof replacement. We’re a roofing company, so of course, we’ll always recommend hiring a professional roofing contractor.
But like I said, it’s your property, so you’re free to do your own roof replacement. Before doing so, take these 4 warnings and really consider if it’s worth doing it yourself.
If you’re unsure about just one of the warnings this article covers, just call a professional and get it done right. At the end of the day, it’s up to you to decide if you have the skills needed and experience required to do a DIY roof replacement properly.
No matter which one you decide is right for you, there’s still one thing you need to know before reaching out to a roofing contractor or starting the DIY process. This is how much a roof replacement actually costs.
To help you even further, we wrote another article breaking down the budget you'll need for a new roof.
Since 1990, the team at Bill Ragan Roofing has provided high-quality roof replacements to thousands of homeowners in Nashville and surrounding Middle Tennessee areas. When you work with us, you’ll never have to worry about your roof again.