You have two options when it’s time to do a roof replacement: either tear off the old roof and replace it or add a new layer over the existing roof (what we call an overlay). While tear-offs are often the more practical choice, there are instances where overlaying is more applicable. When looking at roof overlaying pros and cons, it’s important to keep in mind that adding extra layers of shingles and roof overlaying temporarily fixes a roof. Knowing when to overlay roof systems and when a full tear off roof replacement is needed is important, and something you should speak with a roofing professional about.

Roof Overlaying


Stapleton Roofing’s team of roofing experts has worked with clients throughout Arizona for both roof replacement and roof overlay. Here, we have discussed the question of is roof overlay practical, and when is it a good idea versus when is it not?

In this post, Stapleton Roofing discusses what overlaying is and when is it the practical choice when replacing the roof. Understanding roof overlaying pros and cons, when is roof overlay practical for a roof, when to overlay roof structures or replace them, and how extra layers of shingles and roof overlaying temporarily fixes roof problems that will require more intensive repairs later can help you determine next steps for your roofing project.

Overlaying can be a good way to repair minor roof problems temporarily, costing you less than a full-on roof replacement. It could even extend the life of your current roof slightly longer if done at the right time. However, there are times when overlaying a roof won’t work, and times when overlaying a roof might not save you money or time on your roof because more serious repairs were actually needed. You can always have a professional like Stapleton Roofing assess your roof’s condition and discern whether overlaying your roof is a wise option.

Overlaying: When Is Roof Overlay Practical?

As its name suggests, overlaying involves adding a new layer of shingles on top of the old roof. It’s easier to do and is less labor intensive than a complete tear-off. More importantly, it’s less expensive due to the shorter construction period required by the roofers. Overlaying with extra layers of shingles is a good method if you need a new roof immediately and if the main structures holding your roof are still relatively intact.

When considering roof overlaying pros and cons for your roof, the relative ease of roof overlaying, the lower cost and labor required, and the lesser investment are strong factors that draw homeowners to overlaying. These advantages can be strengths for a roof that is not in such bad condition and can afford some years before it really needs replacing. Roof overlaying temporarily fixes your roof and gives it a new look without requiring as much from you as a homeowner.

Keep in Mind for When to Overlay Roof Structures

When looking at overlaying pros and cons, you will want to pay attention to the drawbacks of roof overlaying as well. When asking yourself “is roof overlay practical for my roof?”, consider the age and condition of your roof. You cannot continue to overlay a roof indefinitely, especially if the roof is in rough condition and arguable in serious need of complete replacing. Roof overlaying temporarily fixes problems with your roof, but those problems will eventually need to be addressed more directly.

Keep in mind that while there are some instances where an overlay is a more practical choice, it’s not necessarily the better choice. Overlaying with extra layers of shingles is like putting a BAND-AID® on the roof; it addresses the existing concern, but it doesn’t really improve the condition of the roof. This is why your new roof needs to be still structurally intact for a successful overlay.

In addition, remember that laying down a new layer of shingles adds extra weight on your roof that your home may not be able to support. Always have a roofer do an inspection of your roof if you are considering an overlay.

Finally, look at overlaying only as a temporary fix. The new layer of shingles won’t last as long as they should since they’re laid over the old roof. This process can also trap heat between the layers. Overlaying with extra layers of shingles can address the immediate effects of a storm-damaged roof, but a more long-term solution is required to address underlying problems, such as leaks.

Getting a Great Roof Repair or Replacement

As one of the top local roofing companies, Stapleton Roofing is ready to assist you with all of your roofing needs and help you determine when to overlay a roof or when to replace it. You may reach us at (602) 562-4991 or (602) 833-7663 (ROOF) for more information on our services. We are local roofers in Peoria, Scottsdale and Paradise Valley, AZ.

Stapleton Roofing is committed to excellence in roofing. Our team has seen generations of quality roofing projects completed, satisfied customers throughout Arizona, and a lasting relationship with the community we have served for so many years. Clients know they can trust the experts at Stapleton Roofing with any project, whether it be roof repair, roof replacement, roof maintenance, roof installation and construction, roof inspection, roof consultation and recommendation, or any other home improvement task we tackle. They turn to us knowing we have the discipline to complete each project on time, the mastery to attain excellence, the expertise to provide great insight, the accessibility to top-quality products, and the relational credibility to build respectful, friendly, reliable partnerships with them.

If you or someone you know is ready to experience service from the team that has raised the bar in roofing industry excellence, reach out to us. Serving customers in Arizona with all their roofing solutions is our specialty, and we are ready to meet you wherever you at with your roof or home. If you have questions, we’re here to answer them, and if you have a need, we are here to hear it and fulfill that need with our roofing services. If you are ready to begin a great partnership, don’t hesitate! Call Stapleton Roofing today!