Repair or Replace? How to Know When it’s Time for a Full Roof Replacement or Simple Repair

In case you didn’t know, your roof is one of the most important aspects of your home. It is what protects you and your family from the elements. If you ensure that proper maintenance is done, it can last for many years. However, it’s important to understand that your roof will sustain damage at some point. At that time, you will be faced with whether it’s time to repair or replace it. 

Many times, you will need a repair to maintain your roof. However, there will be times that a repair isn’t enough- you’ll need a full replacement. 

Recognizing Signs of Damage to Your Roof

There are times when roof damage will be obvious. Other times, it’s more subtle. Therefore, you must be vigilant and pay attention. It’s always important to schedule regular roof inspections. You should have one done at least annually, if not with the changing of the seasons and any time you have extreme weather. This is especially important if your roof is getting old. 

You will want to hire a professional to get up on the roof to inspect, but there are some things you can notice from the ground, and be sure that you look inside your home as well, along with ceilings and in your attic. Keep in mind that roof damage can appear anywhere, even inside. 

When checking the outside, look for discoloration and water spots, which are small areas of water damage where shingles and exterior finish are warped. You’ll want to pay close attention to where the roof meets exterior walls, and the line can be distorted if there is damage. 

Also, if you have gutters, you’ll want to check them. If you have roof damage, you may have granules from the shingles clogging your gutters and/or washing down the downspouts. The granules are from shingles that have been exposed to sunlight for too long (older roof) or have sustained damage. Granules could also indicate other roof damage, such as cracked/cupping shingles due to weather conditions or lack of proper ventilation from underneath. 

Next, you’ll want to check inside your home for roof damage. Look in the attic and the rooms closest to the roof. Water damage can warp ceilings and walls of rooms below it. If you have non-carpeted flooring, you may notice drops/puddles of water in the room. If there is any outside debris in your home, you may have a hole in your roof. Figure out where the debris may have come from to find the hole. 

All of these are signs that you need to do something right away. Detecting roof damage is the first step. Once you know what you’re dealing with, you can decide whether you need to repair or replace your roof. 


Most of the time, roof repair will be the best option for addressing roof damage. It can help extend the life expectancy of your roof without having to replace it. There are several situations where the repair will be your best choice. 

Consider the age of your roof. If your roof is fairly new, you can likely repair the roof damage. If your roof is still under warranty, contact the manufacturer for repairs. 

Next, you’ll want to think about how the roof damage occurred. If you know when and how it happened, you can decide whether a repair will be enough. For example, if you just had a storm, the roof damage may be due to that storm. Generally, damage due to weather conditions can be repaired, and in most cases, exterior damage will be visible. 

The last thing to consider is how extensive the roof damage is. It is repairable without issue if it’s small, such as one or a few shingles. As long as the damage is just on the surface, a few shingles can be easily replaced. 


At some point, you will have to replace your roof, whether you have roof damage or not. The older your roof is, the less efficient a repair will be. Of course, you can continue to do repairs, but it will start costing you more and more. If your roof is old and nearing the end of the warranty, it’s probably a good idea to move forward with replacement. If you are not sure of the age of your roof, it’s probably time to replace it. 

Also, if the roof damage is extensive, you might want to consider replacement as an option. While it’s true that most damage can be repaired, if the damage is affecting the structural integrity of the roof, you’ll want to replace it. 

Finally, if you notice leaks or water damage inside your home, the roof damage is definitely beyond repair. You’ll want to move forward with a replacement right away, and your main priority should be to have a solid roof to protect you and your family. 


Whether you need to repair or replace your roof due to roof damage, the best time to do something is immediately. The longer you wait, the worse the damage will be, and the more exposed your home to the elements. Contact A&J Reliable today for your free roof inspection and estimate. We will be happy to help you decide whether it’s time for a roof repair or replacement. Our contractors are always honest, and we only recommend what we think is best. We will never recommend a service beyond what you need.