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Should I tear off my old roof or just roof over it?

Complete removal of the existing roof system is mandatory if it contains moisture, or if the additional roof layer exceeds safe load design, or if local codes require that the existing roof be removed. Most local codes will only allow two layers of 3-tab shingles.

A second layer of shingles cannot be installed over Dimensional / Architectural style shingles, because the weight would exceed most local code requirements and the irregular surface of the existing shingles would not allow the new shingles to lie flat and seal properly.

Installing shingles over an existing roof system requires proper preparation of the surface. Blisters, splits and other roof membrane or flashing defects should be repaired in accordance with good roofing practices to attain a surface which is smooth, dry, clean and free of sharp projections and depressions. If the roof is not smooth and flat, the flaws will project and be seen through the new roof.

Finally, the service life of the new shingles should be considered. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development performed a study which concluded that as much as 25% of the service life of the new shingles will be lost when installed over an existing layer of shingles due to heat retention.

How long should my roof last?

Just as the human body ages and changes appearance over the years, so too will your roof. Due to the severity of the roof environment, even a one-year-old roof may look different from a roof that was just installed.

Research indicates that aging begins soon after the shingles are installed and progresses rapidly during the "Initial Curing" phase of its life cycle. During this stage, minor granule loss may occur, a few small blisters may develop or the shingles may curl slightly at their edges. The good news, however, is that after this "Initial Curing" stage the shingles enter a long period of slow aging, which lasts for the major portion of the shingles’ natural life.

Is ventilation really important?
Yes. Attic ventilation might seem like a minor consideration, but when done properly, it can extend the life of your attic and roof structure; and save you hundreds of dollars in repair and energy costs.

In the summer, hot, moist air in the attic can warp roof sheathing and cause shingles to deteriorate prematurely. A hot attic also makes a home more difficult to cool and can result in added energy costs.

More information.....
The Roofing Institute Tile Installation Manual LINK



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