Posted by McElroy Metal ● March 07, 2019

Need a New Roof? Roof Overlay vs. Tear-off

Many building owners think their only option is to remove and replace their existing roof when the time comes for a new roof. However, for many buildings, a roof overlay solution is a viable option that carries with it some tangible benefits. Understanding both retrofit options can help you make the best decision for your building's roof.

Tear-off and Replace

roof overlay vs. tear-offFor years, the only real option for building owners was tear-off and replace. As the go-to re-roof option, tear-off and replace has the benefit of an entirely new roof and all of the advantages that brings.

And lifespan is an advantage that is significant when you replace with a metal roofing system since their expected operating life is many decades.

New metal roofs are also extremely durable as they are resistant to wind, hail, and fire. They also offer building owners significant energy savings.

However, tear-off and replace is more expensive upfront than recover and it carries significant business disruption and higher material and labor costs.

Roof Overlay

For many buildings, roof overlay solutions are a viable alternative to remove and replace. Some overlay options include roof coatings and single ply recovers. However both of these overlay methods have serious downsides. In this article, we will focus on metal recover solutions because they offer building owners the greatest longevity, stability, and durability.

Advantages of Roof Overlay Solutions

roof overlay vs. tear-offOne of the most significant benefits of choosing to overlay a roof rather than tear-off and replace it is that recovering avoids all of the costs and risks of removing an existing roof.

There are significant labor costs associated with removing a roof. Not only do these costs include the actual labor, but there is also considerable downtime to the business when a roof is removed. Also, there are more risks associated with removing a roof as working over open framing is inherently more risky than working on a stable surface.

Additional costs that can sometimes be overlooked also include disposal costs as disposing of most roofs will require additional fees associated with removal. If the original roof was an asphalt shingle roof, there would typically be landfill fees, and if it was a recyclable material, then there will be labor and transportation fees for moving it to a recycling center.

Another advantage of overlaying a roof is that the process from start to finish is typically shorter than a full remove and replace. Leaving the existing roof in place means less disruption to the business and lower labor costs as a result of a shorter project construction timeline.

Learn More

Understanding the advantages and options available to you is the best way to make the right roofing decision for your building. Our eBook,  Need a New Roof? How Building Owners Reduce Cost with a Metal Roof was written specifically to help building owners understand the options available to them. The eBook focuses on the difference between Remove & Replace and Roof Recover with Metal. Follow the link below to download your copy of the Need a New Roof eBook.

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Learn everything you need to know about Residential Metal Roofing. Check out our metal roofing resources for inspiration and answers to your questions.

About McElroy Metal

Since 1963, McElroy Metal has served the construction industry with quality products and excellent customer service. The family-owned components manufacturer is headquartered in Bossier City, La., and has 13 manufacturing facilities across the United States. Quality, service and performance have been the cornerstone of McElroy Metal’s business philosophy and have contributed to the success of the company through the years. As a preferred service provider, these values will continue to be at the forefront of McElroy Metal’s model along with a strong focus on the customer.

Topics: Education, Metal Roofing, Recover and Retrofit, Commercial