If you’re planning a renovation or to sell your home, restoring your roof will not only add value to your property but enhance its street appeal. If your roof needs some tender loving care, a roof restoration can be a better choice than a complete roof replacement and extend the life of your roof without the huge cost. In this article, we will cover the signs that will indicate that you need to restore your roof, and the different types of roof restoration, and how much roof restoration costs.
What is a roof restoration?
The process of restoring a roof typically involves cleaning, repairing, and repainting. This is designed to extend the life of your roof, while usually being a cheaper option compared to a full roof replacement.
A roof restoration is different from a repair or a replacement. For starters, a repair is usually cheaper than a restoration as it typically involves fixing a small problem with the roof, for example repairing a leak. A roof replacement is generally the most expensive option, as it involves removing an existing roof and replacing it with a new one.
What Are The Signs You Need Roof Restoration?
Your first indication that your roof needs restoration will likely be that your roof has frequent leaks. If the interior of your home has been compromised, you may discover dark spots of mould or rot growing on your ceiling, or trails of moisture on your ceiling. These suggest water damage from a roof leak.
Generally, most roofs will last for 20 to 25 years, although this lifespan varies depending on the material used to construct your roof. If your roof has reached the end of its life, restoring your roof once will be less expensive than paying for frequent repairs.
A sagging area in the roof is a sure sign of roof damage. If you notice that there is a visible dip in your roof, chances are you have a problem with your roof rafters.
Deteriorating Roof Valleys
Damaged roof valleys require fixing as soon as possible. If you notice worn or loose material around the chimney, vents, pipes, and other areas where the roof has been penetrated and sealed, this is a sign your roof needs attention as soon as possible.
Corrosion, also known as rust, is a strong indication that water is collecting around your roof’s fittings and fasteners. If you detect rust alongside flaking paint and rotting timber, it’s best to have your roof professionally inspected to evaluate the level of damage.
Mould, Rot, or Moisture
Unlike algae and moss — which, in their proper settings, are healthy, natural flora — mould is a more clear-cut problem with hazardous health effects and no aesthetic value. Mould is easy to spot due to its rancid smell and slimy, unattractive appearance, which is characterised by black, brown, and dark-green blotches.
Deteriorating Roof Shingles
If your roof’s shingles look curled or worn, or you have shingle granules in your gutters, this is a definite sign your roof may need restoration.
Damaged Gutters and Downpipes
It’s easy for owners to overlook damage to their gutters and downpipes. If your roof’s gutters and downpipes show rust or corrosion, this is another sign your roof needs attention.
Cracked Or Worn Roof Flashing
If your roof’s tar or cement flashing looks cracked, broken, or worn, it may be best to have your flashing replaced with modern metal flashing, which will prevent leaks and delay the need for premature roof restoration or replacement.
Cracked Or Broken Tiles
Any cracked or broken tiles will need to be replaced as soon as possible. Tile roofing is very durable and rarely needs to be completely replaced. However, if you overlook individual damaged tiles, water can seep in and cause the timber holding up your roof to rot, leading to a more expensive roof replacement or restoration.
What is involved in roof restoration?
Due to the safety implications, it is surprisingly easy to fall off a roof, and specialist skills required roof restoration is not a DIY project. So you are generally going to need to hire someone who does this for a living.
Depending on the type of roofing you have, this will typically involve replacing tiles or sealing and repainting the metal sheeting/Colorbond – or replacing these elements entirely. Initially, the roofing specialist will clean the roof to remove all the dirt, mould, and algae. They will then either replace individual broken tiles and re-alignment tiles or seal and/or replace your metal sheet roofing.
Metal roof restoration
A patch is usually utilised to cover a localised leak in a metal roof and is from the same metal or colourbond of the original roofing. Metal screws are used to affix the patch and then sealed to prevent any further leakage.
Roof tile restoration
Roof tile replacement of a faulty roof tile can avoid serious structural damage to your home and potentially costly repairs. Roof tiles can crack or be damaged by several factors, including severe weather and falling tree branches.
Any necessary repairs are then made, such as rebedding and repointing the ridge tiles, or replacing broken, damaged, or cracked tiles. This is then followed by the application of an anti-fungicide and sealer.
How much does a roof restoration cost?
Based on estimates from multiple roof restoration companies, a full roof restoration for an average-sized Australian house will start from around $2,500.
Roofing companies typically charge by the square metre, with the price per square metre decreasing for larger areas in some cases.
When determining cost, the height of the roof will also be important, as businesses will need a safety rail in order to work on roofs above a certain height.
Other factors that may impact the price include:
- Pitch or steepness of the roof
- The number of repairs required
- Types of coating required
- Accessibility of the roof
In Australia, it is essential to mention that replacing the roof is costlier than choosing the restoration pathway.
Although you can save a sizeable chunk, refurbishment mainly depends on several factors, including the size of the roof and the type of repair. The ballpark figure can be arrived at when you take into consideration the following factors.
The Kind of Restoration
As it is made up of water, sand, and cement, a concrete roof is expected to last for at least two decades, especially when proper and thorough maintenance is done on a regular basis.
Although the restoration figures vary significantly, in Melbourne and Victoria regions, you can part with around $1.70 per square metre. The cost per year can extend to $28.88 per square metre, although you can get a higher or a lower figure than that.
The primary benefit of using terracotta tiles, besides the fact that they last for five decades, is that they suitably fit the salty coastal regions.
However, you will find that the restoration cost of terracotta is higher than that of concrete. In Melbourne, you can pay as much as $4 per each square metre and $33.33 per square metre every year.
It is less common to spot a metallic roof, but the restoration cost is much like that of the exquisite Terracotta tiles. However, it is energy efficient and perhaps suitable for harsh locations.
Factors that Influence the Cost of Roof Restoration
Access difficulties and the scope of work are a few of the common factors that determine roof restoration prices. Read the following aspects to help you define your requirements and allocate your roofing expenses.
The condition of your roof is the major factor that affects your roof restoration cost. Your local roofing specialist will inspect your roof to assess the extent of the work required. Restoration jobs that demand structural amendments attract increased costs.
Is cleaning required to remove algae, debris, or moulds that may weaken the durability of your roof? Does it need repainting? Are the gutters in good condition? Will there be access difficulties? Prices may vary based on these concerns.
Bedding and pointing
The type of bedding and pointing you will use also adds to your expenses. The price of basic mortar bedding may differ from polymer bedding. Likewise, the cost of repointing roof ridge tiles may vary from the standard labour rate of repointing metal roofs.
Size of your roof
The average-sized roof is between 200 m² – 300 m². Keep in mind your roof size will be bigger than your house due to overhang and pitch.
Metal roof restoration jobs may require a different process unlike with tiled roofs. Age-old metal roofs may need to be resealed or repainted to resolve aesthetic concerns. In some cases, replacing the entire sheet is necessary to avoid further leaks or damage.
Colourbond roof sheets cost anywhere between $13 to $37 depending on the type.
Tile roof restorations, on the other hand, involve repointing and replacing cracked tiles that show signs of structural issues. New installations can have an impact on the cost of roof restoration. Expect to pay around $3 to $5 per tile.
In some cases, large repairs are required to restore the look and functionality of your roof. This may mean spending extra for labour and materials. Replacement jobs also influence the cost of roof restoration services.
It’s often a good idea to get a couple of quotes from different roof restoration companies or contractors. When doing so, make sure you outline what needs to be done and describe your roof in as much detail as possible.
When do you need a roof replacement?
If you’re unsure whether your roof needs restoration or a replacement, it can be a good idea to get a professional to carry out an inspection and give their opinion. For example, it can often be better to replace rather than restore sheet metal roofs and some older tiled roofs.
A lot of the time, some of the very older tiled roofs are not worth restoring because, for example, certain designs are less sufficient in keeping moisture out.
We [also] generally recommend replacing rather than restoring sheet metal roofs because a good quality sheet metal replacement can last you 40 years. In contrast, a restoration is only as good as the paint you’re putting on it.
How long does a roof restoration take?
You’ll need to allow around three to 10 working days for a roof restoration. The exact time it takes to restore your roof may vary depending on factors like what repairs are required, the size of the roof, and the weather.
The Restoration Procedure
It’s standard to remove all debris before painting the roof, which could be in the ballpark of $220 for all three types of surfaces.
Ridge capping and gable cement are re-bedded and pointed to where it is required, and it depends on the size of the house. You can pay up to $2,900 for this.
How long does a roof restoration last?
You can expect a roof restoration to last for approximately 15 years. Additionally, paint manufacturers will typically give a warranty for the paint used, which can often be for 10 years or more. When seeking out roof restoration quotes, consider double-checking what warranties apply and what you will and won’t be covered for.
What are the options to finance a roof restoration?
How you finance a roof restoration may depend on how much work is needed and how much it costs. There are several options available for would-be home renovators to consider, including:
If the job is big enough, or you are doing a range of jobs at the same time, one choice you may consider is refinancing or restructuring your home loan, or adding a “line of credit”. For example, depending on your lender, you may be able to add a redraw facility to your existing loan (although it’s wise to keep in mind that some fees could apply to any loan changes and there could be redrawn limits).
Or, you could add an offset account, which could help reduce the interest paid on your loan while still allowing access to your money (although it’s wise to keep in mind there could be some fees involved here, too, and higher interest rates could apply to these types of loans).
Depending on your circumstances and the cost of the job, you may consider using a personal loan to fund the work. This could be a secured loan or an unsecured loan. It’s worth keeping in mind, though, that interest rates are generally higher for personal loans than for home loans, and it’s a good idea to read the lender’s terms and conditions first.
It may also be possible, depending on the cost and your ability to repay the debt quickly, to pay for the job on a credit card. There could be some fringe benefits for doing so, such as extra insurance cover in some cases (read the card’s Product Disclosure Statement to find out the conditions of the cover).
Keep in mind that credit card interest rates are typically much higher than home or personal loans, and interest can quickly accumulate on large balances. Hence, it is a good idea to weigh up your options and consider them carefully. If you don’t think you’ll be able to pay off the card’s balance in full each month, it may be worth re-considering whether a credit card is a right option for you.
Questions To Ask When Hiring A Roof Restorer
When hiring a roof restorer, it’s important to make sure they’re right for your job. Some questions to ask include:
- Are you licensed?
- Do you have valid insurance?
- Can you provide a written quote?
- How long is the warranty on your materials?
- Do you have any references I can follow up on?
- No matter the size of your roofing job, always request a fully itemised quote.
It is important not to let price be the determining factor when deciding which company to go with for your roof restoration. Ensure you are comparing apples with apples, and that quality products will be used on your roof, along with great workmanship. We want to see the end of peeling roofs and empty warranties.
The cost of a quality roof restoration is fair compared to doing the entire roof makeover. However, as a homeowner, do not choose a contractor based on the final figure alone. Consider such factors as the warranty, the track record, and if they are accredited and licensed in Australia.