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fritzc 10-02-2010 10:19 AM

Replacing a flat roof: need to remove old?
We need to replace our flat roof (old house, built in early 1900s), which has several layers of tar, gravel, aluminum, etc, and leaks in a couple places.

The contractor that just came out gave us an estimate of $5500 for our 1000 sq ft house, and we were surprised when he said that they would just put the bit. rubber right on top of the old materials. He said that the structure of the roof is in good condition, so no need to replace any of the wood, except in a couple places.

I hear mixed opinions - some say that it's best practice to tear away the old roof, others say it's not necessary. If we only have a couple leaks, that would be covered by this new roof, why would we need to tear away the old structure?


johnk 10-02-2010 05:06 PM

You said yourself you mad multiple layers.Tear it off,save yourself a headache.Will it work?It can,but IMO is a hack job and more than likely against building regs in your area.Check with your local building authorities.I have gone over 1-layer,never multiple.

Grumpy 10-03-2010 05:16 AM

Most municipalities will not allow you to put more than 2 layers. In my area a building as you had described, it's not unusual to have 4 or 5 layers.

Furthermore if you have multiple layers and you have leaks, you will have moisture trapped between the layers. When it comes to flat roofing, you can put multiple layers but there is a point where it's ridiculious to put more layers. You're past that point.

Have you gotten more than 1 quote?

One other thing that irks the living crap out of me is when someone calls modified bitumen "rubber" Gah I hate that! It's not rubber, it's asphalt. Rubber is EPDM. Ok rant over.

If you want to learn more about your flat roofing options visit this page on mywebsite at: Low Slope Roofing Options If you want to learn more about how to properly select a cotnractor: Hire the Right Contractor

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