Roof Replacement Guide

Roof Replacement Options for Your Home

Buying Guides
Home » Buying Guides » Roof Replacement Guide

A house just isn’t a home without a roof — or at the very least, a functional, watertight roof. Arguably the most important part of your home after its outer walls, your roof offers protection from the elements, provides insulation, and acts as a conduit for ventilation. 

When older roofs fail, the results are often catastrophic. Water ingress can damage your attic, the insulation in your exterior walls, interior paintwork and plaster, and your home’s electrical system. With that in mind, it’s important to check your roof regularly for signs of damage and to address issues as they arise.

In this guide, we’ll talk about reasons to get a new roof, and then we’ll explore the practical side of roof replacement. After that, we’ll examine different roofing materials, types of roof ventilation, and roof insulation. By the time you finish reading, you’ll have all the answers to your burning roof replacement questions.

Why Get a Replacement Roof?

There are lots of reasons why roofs need replacement. Badly installed roofs generally have shorter lifespans than high quality roofs, for instance. Storm damage is another major reason for roof replacement. If you have an older home, your roof might simply be old too. Finally, a new roof can boost a home’s resale value.

Reasons for a Replacement Roof

Storm DamageClose view of damaged shinglesMan fixing leaking roof

A few missing shingles are easily replaced; severe storm damage, on the other hand, is much harder to patch up. Storms, hurricanes, and strong winds can all strip asphalt, concrete, and clay tiles straight off underlayment. Sometimes, large trees fall on or against homes, creating holes in roofs. When underlying structures like trusses are damaged, complete roof replacements are almost always the only solution. 

Old Age

Older wood shingles, terracotta tiles, concrete tiles, and metal roofs eventually require replacement. Wood shake roofs last about 25 years, while terracotta and concrete tiles last 50 or more years. Copper and slate roofs can last more than 100 years — but even they eventually need redoing. Modern asphalt shingles offer a low-cost alternative to much pricier clay or metal tiles, so they’re a popular choice for many homeowners.

Boost Home Resale Value

A high-quality replacement roof can significantly increase the value of your home. The value-boosting effect of a new roof goes way beyond curb appeal, too. When potential buyers see fresh shingles, they know they won’t have to spend thousands on the job themselves — at least not for the next few decades. For best results, choose a shingle color that matches your home’s overall aesthetic.

How is a Roof Replaced?

Great roofs begin with a strong truss structure. Contractors install a wood deck, which is generally made of oriented strand board (OSB), over the trusses. They apply an ice and water barrier — a waterproof underlayment membrane — on top of the wood deck and then a thick layer of felt underlayment. 

With the felt underlayment in place, contractors usually begin the shingle work with a long starter shingle. They leave space for ventilation under the eaves and work from bottom to top, stapling asphalt shingles into place with a special nail gun. When they’ve completed the slope shingling, workers install a ridge vent and ridge shingles to make the center of the roof watertight. 

How Long Does It Take to Replace a Roof?

Roof replacement times vary, depending on the materials used. Tile and slate roofs are pretty labor intensive, and some projects take more than a week to complete. Copper roofs are pretty, but they’re expensive and they can take months to install.

Asphalt shingles offer value for money — and they go on very quickly. Most contractors take between one and three days to finish an asphalt roofing job. Here at Thompson Creek, for instance, our experienced contractors rarely take more than a day to finish installing an asphalt roof.

How Long Does a Roof Last?

Well-constructed roofs generally last many decades — longer than vinyl siding and far longer than windows. With that said, some construction methods are more durable than others. Let’s review some of the most common residential roofing materials:

  • Asphalt roll: Commonly used on flat roofs, asphalt roll lasts 5 to 10 years
  • Built-up roofing (BUR): BUR is also a prime choice for flat roofs, and it lasts between 20 and 30 years
  • Composite: Made of a blend of raw materials, composite roofing lasts between 15 and 40 years
  • Wood shake or shingle: Made popular by colonial-era homes, wood shake and shingle roofs last between 25 and 30 years
  • Asphalt shingles: Inexpensive and durable, asphalt shingles last up to 50 years
  • Clay tiles: Expensive and traditional, clay and terracotta tiles last between 50 and 100 years
  • Slate tiles: One of the oldest types of roofing material, slate can last more than 100 years

Thompson Creek offers several types of affordable pro-quality GAF asphalt tile. We follow the GAF Roofing Guidelines and use the best possible installation methods to ensure stellar results. Every roof replacement comes with up to a 50-year warranty for peace of mind.

Types of Roofs Offered:

Here at Thompson Creek, we offer a selection of truly luxurious asphalt shingles. Asphalt shingles offer great value for the money, and they’re also a high-performance product. They’re easy to cut, so they’re simple to install on any roof, and they come in a wide range of colors to match the existing exterior decor. We’ve been installing asphalt shingles in North America for more than 40 years, so you can trust that we’ll do the job right.

Benefits of Asphalt Roofing

Asphalt shingles are incredibly versatile. They come in many different shapes and sizes, so they work on all kinds of roofs — from gambrel and dormer to Dutch gable and cross hipped. Precision-cut shingles work well on contemporary properties; dimensional shingles emulate slate and look great on traditional homes. 

If you’re looking for a cost-effective roofing option, asphalt is the way to go. Made to perform in any weather, asphalt shingles offer amazing value for money. Asphalt shingles are energy efficient, too, so they could help reduce your utility bills. 

Prep for asphalt shingles installation on roof of home

Types of Shingles Offered:

We offer two main types of asphalt shingle: 3-tab and architectural. Both shingle styles look sharp, and both provide decades of protection. We believe that our architectural shingles are some of the best-quality roofing shingles on the market. 


3-Tab Shingles

Made of flexible asphalt, 3-tab shingles are long strips split into three tabs, each about 12 inches long. When they’re installed on your roof, these strips look like three shingles — but they’re really only one. An HOA favorite, 3-tab shingles provide a completely uniform look. Cost-effective and lightweight, 3-tab shingles are suitable for almost any type of roof. Thompson Creek 3-tab shingles come with a 25-year warranty.

Architectural Shingles

Constructed from two strips of laminated heavyweight asphalt, architectural shingles are dimensional and luxurious. They come in a number of different shapes and sizes, so they look more natural and interesting on your roof. Originally made to emulate wood shake, architectural shingles are now available in a range of colors. They’re more durable and wind resistant than 3-tab shingles, so they last longer. Thompson Creek architectural shingles have a 50-year warranty.

Roof Shingle Colors

Changing your roof color — or simply refreshing its faded roof — could seriously boost your home’s curb appeal. Both 3-tab and architectural shingles from Thompson Creek come in an array of colors, any of which will give your house a beautiful new look. Available shades include Appalachian Sky, Cedar Falls, Golden Harvest, Midnight Blush, Nantucket Morning, and Saddlewood Ranch.

If you enjoy smooth, uniform color, choose a 3-tab shingle. If you’d prefer a longer-lasting textured hue, go with a dimensional architectural shingle.

Types of Roof Ventilation

Roofing contractors sometimes focus on weatherproofing more than ventilation. But, in fact, ventilation is vital. Without adequate ventilation, your roof — and therefore your home — can’t breathe properly. A lack of air circulation leads to roof structure decomposition, because moisture can’t escape. Here at Thompson Creek, we offer four roof ventilation options: ridge vent, off-ridge vent, box vent, and solar attic vent.

Ridge VentGAF roofing ventilation system

Ridge vents sit at the ridgeline — the peak — of your sloped roof. They’re almost invisible from the outside, and they draw hot air out of the top of your roof to help keep your attic dry. Ridge vents run the entire length of your roof, and they don’t depend on wind to operate. Relatively inexpensive and very efficient, ridge vents work well in almost any climate.

Off-Ridge Vent

Long and thin, off-ridge vents sit quite close to the peak of your roof. They’re not quite as well known as ridge vents, but they essentially do the same job. Off-ridge vent installation begins with a slim cutout; the vent then sits in the cutout and pulls air out of your attic when the wind blows. Off-ridge vents look good and perform well.

Box Vent

Box vents look like little boxes on the outside of your roof. Sleek and popular, these vents are ideal for open-plan attic spaces, and they work especially well when combined with soffit ventilation. When the wind blows, the vent draws hot air and moisture out of your attic space. Small and inconspicuous, box vents are available in a range of colors to match your roof.

Solar Attic Vent

A newcomer to the attic vent scene, solar-powered vents come in a range of styles and suck air out of your attic via a solar-powered fan. Ideal for roofs that get a lot of light, these vents work in the daytime and can move a lot of air in a short amount of time. Some models have a backup battery, so they also run at night. 

Roof Insulation

The right roof insulation can improve roof performance over time — and it could also cut your utility costs. Several roof insulation types exist. Two of the most common types are blown insulation and batt insulation. Batt insulation is easy to install, and rolls of batt insulation are available in big box hardware stores.

How to Get a New Roof from Thompson Creek

If you’re ready for a new roof, Thompson Creek can help. You can depend on our expertise – after all, we’ve been installing roofs for more than four decades.

Your Thompson Creek roofing experience begins with a virtual or in-person consultation. After you select your favorite 3-tab or asphalt tile, we’ll use a tool called “Hover” to give you an estimate. Hover can also show you what your new roof will look like. 

To get a free quote for your roofing project, contact Thompson Creek today.

worker replacing a roof

Best Roofing Material for Your Home

Whether you’re searching for an optimal roofing material for your new home, or looking to replace your old roof..

Read More

worker repairing a roof with drill

How Long Does it Take to Replace a Roof

The time has finally come, and you are ready for a new roof. One of the most common questions homeowners…

Read More

beautiful mansion with brown roof

Questions to Ask When Replacing a Roof

If it’s time to replace your current roof, it’s vital to find a trusted roofing contractor to complete the job…

Read More

Request a price estimate

Start your home remodeling project today by filling out the form or calling us at (301) 328-1100 for your free, no-obligation price estimate.

Enter your zip code to begin your request