When considering a roof replacement, the first question most homeowners ask themselves is if they will hire a professional roofing contractor or make it a do-it-yourself project. DIYers are known for their willingness to take on new projects – any gaps in their skill sets can be filled by a lot of research and some good instructional videos. But installing a new roof takes roofing experience. Your personal safety, cost-effectiveness, and disappointing outcome are other reasons why a DIY roof might not be a good idea.
Is it Worth It?
There are many steps involved when installing a new roof. You might save money on labour costs since you will be doing the work yourself. But attempting unfamiliar roofing techniques can result in unintentional gaps or cracks that allow in air and moisture. If a roof is not installed correctly, a household’s energy bill can be 30% higher every month than it needs to be.
Summer is certainly the ideal time for a DIY roof project. But if it will “cost” you weekends at the beach with family or friends it might not be worth it in the long run. When trying to figure out if doing your own roof replacement is worth it, also consider non-monetary factors such as having fun, spending quality time, and the project taking longer than expected.
You Might Not Save as Much as You Expect
A roofing contractor will give a homeowner a free estimate for a new roof that includes the cost for all roofing materials. Many roofing contractors work with the same suppliers and purchase the materials, tools, and equipment at wholesale prices, allowing them to offer budget-friendly installation packages to their customers.
When you plan a DIY roof, materials costs will add up quickly – roofing tiles, underlayment, nails, etc. In addition to the roofing material, you will also need specialized tools and equipment – renting and buying what you don’t already have can significantly add to your budget. You should also factor in the cost of removing the old roof before installing the new one; the cost of gas when buying roofing materials and supplies from different stores; and the cost of overruns and unexpected expenses.
Falling off ladders when cleaning the gutters and falling off the roof are two of the most common accidents that occur when doing home maintenance chores or home improvement projects. Some of these accidents result in fatalities. Other injuries experienced by do-it-yourselfers include twisted ankles, serious bruising, and back injuries.
Pests with nests on the roof, in a chimney, or in trees growing near the roof can pose a serious threat to a person tearing away an old roof or installing a new one.
Climatic conditions such as a summer shower, overnight dew, or a windy day can add an additional element of risk to working on the roof.
Living with the Results
When installing a new roof, there are a lot of calculations involved that can affect the final outcome, including how many shingles are needed, the roof pitch, and roof ventilation requirements. If any of the calculations required to complete your roofing project are even slightly off, the results could be disappointing.
It has to be pretty! Your roof isn’t just about function, it is also about aesthetics. Everything installed on the roof (vents, etc.) should be straight and roofing tiles should align in such a way that is pleasing to the eye.