Replacing a Roof in the Winter

January 26, 2015

What to do when you need roof replacement during the year’s coldest months.

Roof repair in the winter is problematic in the winter, but it can be done. Though you might not see the kind of snow in Portland that other areas of the country get in the winter, there are still plenty of ways for your roof to wind up damaged. Minor problems may be able to wait until spring, but sometimes roof repair is suddenly and unavoidably necessary. If you find yourself in such a predicament, keep these tips in mind when deciding whether to undertake wintertime roof replacement.

Know Your Roof Material

Certain materials stand up to cold temperatures better than others. An asphalt roof can be installed during the winter without much risk of damage from the chill. If your roof isn’t currently made of asphalt or another sturdy material, consider upgrading to prevent future winter roofing problems.

Wait for the Right Weather

Roof replacement is possible in cold weather, but it can’t be too cold. Rain or snow also rules out roof work. Wet conditions make it hard for roofers to do their jobs and may result in an inferior roof. Frigid temperatures can create problems such as brittle underlayment and shingles, frozen adhesives, and an inability to properly seal the roof. Manufacturers of roofing products set temperature limits as guidelines, and your roofing company will be able to tell you whether current conditions meet the requirements.

Provide a “Bare Deck”

A wet or frozen roof is slippery and dangerous for anyone to work on. Therefore, the entire roof will need a thorough cleaning before any winter work can be done. It’s also necessary to have a clear space for installation to ensure proper adherence of materials and prevent problems with wet shingles.

Understand the Limitations

Roofing isn’t really a winter job, so if you don’t absolutely need a new roof right away, you might be better off waiting. Have a roofing company assess the damage to see if you can get by until spring with minor repairs. Repairs cost less than all-out replacement and don’t take nearly as long most of the time, so they can be done on days when the weather is agreeable. This bypasses potential problems such as brittle materials, uncooperative tools, and people not wanting to work out in the cold. Putting off roof replacement until the spring may also save you headaches in the long term since the final installation is likely to be more reliable.

If you find that your roof needs attention this winter, call Interstate Roofing. We’ll give you a free estimate and stick with you through every phase of roof replacement to ensure a job well done. Contact us for more information about our services or to request your free estimate today.