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Can You Replace A Roof In Winter?

Posted on October 25, 2023

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Can You Replace A Roof In Winter?

Winter, with its freezing temperatures and heavy snowfall, is rarely the first season that comes to mind when you’re contemplating major home improvements. However, if you find yourself with a failing roof as the first flakes of snow begin to fall, you might not have the luxury of waiting until spring.

This might leave you wondering, can you replace a roof in winter?

The answer is yes, but it requires careful planning, the right materials, and a skilled crew.

Let’s learn the specifics of a winter roof replacement, examining the challenges, benefits, and strategies for achieving a successful installation regardless of the weather conditions.

Signs Your Roof Needs An Urgent Replacement

Before deciding on a winter roof replacement, you should first confirm if your roof indeed needs replacing. Here are a few warning signs:

  • Sagging roof deck
  • Curled, cracked, or missing shingles
  • Frequent roof leaks
  • Dark or moist spots on a ceiling
  • Moss, algae, or mold growth on shingles or in the attic

If you find any of the above issues, it’s time to get a new roof before the damaged one collapses or damages the structure of your home. If it’s wintertime, you should understand the challenges you and the roofers may face while replacing your roof.

What Challenges Will You Face When You Replace A Roof In Winter?

The main challenge of winter roofing revolves around the roofing materials.

👉 Shingle Installation Difficulties

Traditional asphalt shingles, while affordable and durable, can become brittle and prone to cracking in cold temperatures. Moreover, the sealants used to bond shingles to the underlayment can harden, making it tough to form an effective, leak proof seal.

Tip: If you’re dealing with shingles, consider hiring a highly skilled roofing professional who knows the best practices for cold weather installation, such as warming the shingles and hand sealing each one to ensure the adhesive works as intended.

👉 Weather-Related Delays and Shortened Workdays

Winter weather can lead to delays in project completion if it snows or the roof develops ice dams. Additionally, the shorter days and harsh weather conditions can reduce the amount of time that roofers can work each day.

Also Read: How Long Does It Take To Replace A Roof?

However, if your roof is damaged, it’s crucial to replace it before it affects the other parts of your house. Plus, there are many benefits of an urgent roof replacement.

The Advantages of Replacing A Roof In Winter

Despite the challenges, a winter roof replacement comes with several advantages.

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#1 Lower Cost

During the winter, the demand for roofing services tends to decline. As a result, many roofing companies adjust their pricing to suit their decreased workloads. This drop in demand can translate to significant savings for homeowners.

#2 Installation Performance

Roof replacements in winter provide an opportunity to test new roof installation under real-life conditions. If your roof presents specific challenges, winter might be the ideal season for a replacement.

#3 High Durability

Winter requires you to choose a highly versatile, sturdy, and durable roofing material. This helps keep your roof and house safe and free from issues year-round.

If you’ve decided to get a roof replacement in winter, this is generally how the process goes.

How To Replace A Roof In Winter

Understanding the steps involved in a roof replacement can help you better plan for a winter installation. Here are the typical stages:

  • Removing the existing roofing materials, especially if they are damaged
  • Inspecting, repairing, or replacing the inner layers of the roof, such as underlayment, the roof deck, and support beams
  • Tarping the exposed areas of the roof to protect the inner layers and attic
  • Installing a new ice or water shield over the underlayment, especially at the edges
  • Installing your chosen roofing material, such as metal panels or shingles
  • Adding skylights, vents, and other accessories
  • Flashing and sealing the roof
  • Performing a final inspection and cleaning up debris

This process can take anywhere from a couple of days to a few weeks, depending on the weather conditions and the size and complexity of your roof.

Now, let’s look at the best roofing materials that don’t get damaged by cold weather or snow during the installation process.

Choosing the Best Winter Roofing Material

If you must schedule a roof replacement service in winter, it’s best to use a different type of roofing material than asphalt shingles, fiberglass shingles, or wood shakes. Here are some of the top choices:

#1 Metal Roofing Panels or Shingles

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Metal like galvanized steel, aluminum, tin, and copper can be installed in any season. Their installation and composition do not get damaged due to moisture or extreme temperatures. Metal roofing panels are incredibly weather-resistant and come in impressive styles and colors. You also have the option of installing metal roof snow guards for added protection.

#2 Stone Coated Steel 

Another option is a stone coated steel roof. Although generally more expensive than asphalt shingles and metal roofs, this option can be installed at any time of the year without compromising quality. The stone coating gives a luxurious look to the roof that will last for decades!

#3 EPDM Membrane For Flat or Low Slope Roofs

EPDM is a rubber roofing membrane with excellent water resistance and a lifespan lasting around 30 years. It’s a great option for homes with a flat or low sloped roof. Ideally, the slope of an EPDM roofing system should not be more than ¼ inch per 12 feet of incline.

If you are getting your roof replaced in winter, you should consider these materials for a long lasting roofing solution.

Tips For A Successful Replacement Project

Here are some ways to make sure your roof does not jeopardize the safety and comfort of your family and home during winter:

👉 Selecting A Qualified Roofing Professional

One of the most critical steps is selecting an experienced and reliable local roofing contractor. Their team should understand the unique roofing needs and challenges of the area. They should also have the necessary skills and experience to work with various roofing materials and prioritize safety, professionalism, and punctuality.

👉 Scheduling Your Roof Replacement

After you pick a roofer, discuss your requirements with them. They might offer you a free or discounted roof inspection to assess your roof’s condition and suggest suitable roofing materials, and the best time for a replacement. Schedule your roof replacement project well in advance because fall and summer are the busiest seasons for roofing contractors and it can be tough to find a reliable team that’s not occupied during this time.

👉 Protecting Your Home

Due to winter weather conditions, it may be necessary to install a temporary roofing solution before, or during construction. Choose the best repair materials and techniques to make sure your home and family are safe with this temporary solution. Poor quality materials and quick fixes can be very dangerous when it comes to your roof.

So, replacing your roof in winter is definitely possible, but it requires a skilled crew, the right materials, and a well thought out plan. If done correctly, a winter roof replacement can save you money and provide your home with the protection it needs.

If you want a reliable roof inspection, repair, or replacement in Pittsburgh, PA, our team is always available to guide you.

Trust The Best Team In Pittsburgh For A Safe & Stunning Roof Replacement Service This Winter

At Hepler Contracting, we’re proud to be the trusted local professionals in the beautiful city of Pittsburgh. Our experts have the knowledge and experience to work carefully in unpredictable weather conditions. Countless homeowners and business managers turn to our friendly team for dependable roof replacement services in Pittsburgh. If you also need help with your roof, call us at (412) 694-8785 for a free consultation and estimate. We’ll be happy to answer all your questions and tell you why people trust our team at Hepler Contracting.

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