Debunking the Most Common Roofing Myths That Exist Today

People worry about their roofs and with good reason. A problem with your roof generally means a problem for your whole house. That offers a good explanation for why roofing is a perennial fave on home renovation project lists.

Unfortunately, roofing and the roofing industry are subject to a lot of myths and rumors that people assume are true. Those myths and rumors can lead homeowners to make unfortunate choices about their roofs when it’s time for that roofing project.

Keep reading and we’ll debunk some of the more common and damaging myths about the roofing industry and roofing itself.

All Shingles Work the Same

Some people believe that all shingles are functionally the same and the roofing industry just markets them differently. That is a myth you should ignore. There are several types of asphalt shingles and they do perform differently.

Your standard asphalt shingle is the three-tab shingle. These are found on millions of homes across the nation.

They are also generally adequate for your normal range of weather. You see an average lifespan of around 15 years to 20 years with them, although severe weather conditions can cut that in half.

Next up are dimensional shingles. These are thicker than the 3-tab variety and usually last upwards of 25 years.

The final option is luxury shingles. These shingles are around twice the thickness of 3-tab shingles and often fare better in high-wind conditions, such as a hurricane.

Overall, shingles are probably the most common of all the types of roofing.

Roofing Is a DIY Job

Homeowners often become DIYers out of necessity. They don’t like a faucet, so they learn how to change one out. A drain is clogged, so they learn how to use a pipe snake.

As they become more proficient, some homeowners take the approach that all home improvement is DIY-friendly. That just isn’t the case with the roofing. Even installing the comparatively simple shingle roof can prove more difficult than the average DIY homeowner expects.

Plus, there is no margin for error. Get something wrong with your roof and you can end up flooding your walls or attic with the next heavy rain. DIY roofing also typically invalidates any warranty on the shingles themselves.

Once you get into more obscure types of residential roofing, such as slate, metal, or ceramic tiles, you often need specialized training or equipment to do the job

Roofing jobs are best left in the hands of a roofing contractor. A professional roofing job helps ensure proper installation and secures your warranty. Plus, most roofers will provide some kind of guarantee on their work.

It’s Not Leaking, So It’s Fine

Another common myth is that a roof that doesn’t actively leak is working just fine. While leaks are a cause for concern, they aren’t always obvious to someone who doesn’t know exactly what they’re looking for. Just because you didn’t spot the signs of a leak, it doesn’t mean those signs aren’t there.

Beyond that, roofs can suffer from other kinds of problems that you should address sooner than later. For example, even if the roof isn’t leaking, a professional inspection might expose damaged or loose shingles that could become a source for leaks after the next serious storm.

Don’t assume your roof doesn’t need attention just because it’s not leaking. Schedule a roof inspection every year or two so you can stay ahead of problems before they bloom into disasters.

I Can Ignore My New Roof

A new roof can leave a homeowner with a false sense of security, much as a new car can make someone worry less about maintenance. The reality is that a new roof is no guarantee of a problem-free future.

Severe weather events like hail or high winds can damage a brand new roof. The roof might hold up a little better than a 10-years-old roof, but it’s not immune to damage.

Beyond that, roofing installations can go wrong. It’s not that common, but people do make mistakes. You should pay attention to your new roof the same way you would with an older roof.

If you’re not confident about your ability to spot problems, get a pro in for an inspection once a year.

Dark and Metal Roofs Make My Home Warmer

This myth is more understandable. Dark clothes and dark paint absorb heat more readily than lighter-colored clothes and paint. The metal of cars left sitting out in the sun can grow painfully hot.

Those facts can make someone assume that a dark roof or metal roof will turn their home into a 2000-square-foot pizza oven. That’s just not the case.

Modern homes include substantial installation in the attic space. That should create a firm barrier between any heat in your attic and the living space in your home.

Just as importantly, adding vents in your attic space is standard procedure for homes. Those vents let any hot air that builds up in your roof escape to the outside, rather than heating your living spaces.

Roof Repairs Cost a Lot

This one is a partial myth. A brand new roof costs a lot. Making major repairs costs a lot.

Minor repairs generate equally minor bills.

Think of it this way. Your bill consists primarily of labor and materials. If there the roofer only needs a small amount of materials and an hour or two to make the repair, the bill shouldn’t stagger you.

Ignoring Roofing Industry Myths

All of the myths around the roofing industry and roofing itself can mislead homeowners into making bad judgment calls, like assuming the roof is fine.

Your roof needs regular maintenance the same way your car or your teeth need regular maintenance. Inspections and minor repairs extend your roof’s life and keep expenses down.

If you decide on a new roof, let a professional handle it. It maintains your warranty on the shingles and ensures you don’t accidentally leave your home exposed to leaks.

Looking for more home improvement tips? Check out our Home Improvement section for more posts.

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