People don’t think about their roofs much; not really anyway. Unless you are savvy with homeowner stuff or you know someone who has been victim to severe roof damage or even lost their entire roof during a storm, you might not consider the possibility of needing a roof replacement.
The truth is, anyone who owns a home in South Florida for 15 years or more will likely need to consider a roof replacement at some point. Knowing the best time to undergo a new roof installation will help you when the time comes. Honestly, take it from us, replacing your roof is not something you want to leave ‘til the last minute. That will only end up costing you more time and money.
So, when is the best time to get a new roof in South Florida? As you could have guessed, there are regulations and South Florida has its own set of criteria for this and all things roof related.
First, What Is a Roof Replacement?
Before we get into the minutia of when the best time is to replace your roof, it’s worth noting that reroofing is quite different from roof replacement. Reroofing refers to replacing the cover layer; roof replacement involves removing everything down to the decking.
When Is the Ideal Time for a Roof Replacement in Florida?
The short answer? Winter. Winter is the best time to replace your roof in Florida.
It’s not only about avoiding hurricane season, albeit that’s a bonus. It’s also about when roofing contractors are the most likely to be busy.
So, if you have the luxury of choice, meaning replacing your roof is not a result of a crisis that is forcing you to act now, then try to schedule your roof replacement, and all roof work in general in December, January, or February.
If you still aren’t convinced, don’t mind us while we break it down even further!
Roof Contractor Availability Is Better in Winter
Hurricane season in Florida ends in November, with the most active months typically being August and September. The winter months are the time of year with the least number of weather damage emergencies or pressing needs. Spring also tends to be okay for roof work, but it would do you well to remember that contractors are busy preparing roofs for summer and so you may have to wait longer or pay more.
Roof Work Is More Efficient
There will be fewer interruptions with your roof replacement job. Some people will argue that there are fewer hours of daylight in winter for contractors to work. But logically, in summer they will not be able to use the hottest hours to be on the roof and will likely need more breaks.
Additionally, there will also be very little chance that weather conditions, like rain or even oppressive humidity levels, will cause any delays in the process. Aside from delays, inclement weather can be destructive if it happens at the wrong stage. Teams can get in and get done in as few days as possible. We probably don’t need to talk about how much less disruptive that is, for you and your neighbors…
Ideal Climate for Most Roofing Materials
Some materials can be almost unbearable to install in full South Florida heat. Shingles, a very popular choice, get too soft to work with in the heat. Excessive humidity can also affect some adhesion products. Where some materials don’t work in the cold, becoming brittle, we just don’t have that kind of cold here–not even in the prime of winter!
Actually, Florida winters offer ideal conditions all-round, being dry with a temperature range of 40 °F and 85 °F which is recommended for most roofing materials.
Choosing The Right Material for Your Conditions
When selecting your style, consider doing thorough homework on the subject. Many materials have gone through upgrades that can give you the exact look you’re after while being made of a material better equipped to stand against Florida conditions than some of the more obvious or popular choices.
Here is a starting point. For these conditions, these covers work best:
- Fire – metal
- Hurricane – tile or metal
- Wind – tile
- Energy – tile
- Maintenance/upkeep – tile
The Age of Your Roof Might Dictate the Best Time for Replacement
Depending on the material you use, some roofs might very well last for 50 years. Your insurance however, won’t. Even if your roof is in good condition, this is going to be one thing your insurance will use to get out of covering you. So, unless you want all the money you have paid to be for nothing, make sure to replace your roof before you experience storm damage that becomes your problem.
Florida codes are pretty strict, and roofing is regulated. You never want to find yourself outside of the recommendations on this point. So, in Florida, the best time to replace is before your roof is too old to be covered properly, or old enough to actually start giving you problems.
Your Roof’s Surroundings Can Dictate This
What your roof gets exposed to everyday will also be a determining factor. If you’ve not been keeping up with a regular roofing maintenance schedule, then you will likely need to replace your roof sooner. But more to the point, the slope, ventilation, orientation, weather exposure, and proximity to trees will all affect how your roof ages and how soon, risk-wise, you will have to consider a roof replacement.
When it comes to ventilation, humidity will shave years off your roof’s life in so many ways. You need to make sure moisture cannot build up in the cavities in your roof.
Trees and other nearby features can be at high risk during hurricane season. If they are going to impact how well your roof handles a storm, then they are also going to determine how soon you should replace your roof. You will thank yourself for a newer, sturdier roof built to the latest specs when the tree branch doesn’t puncture something.
If your roof regularly gets pummeled by high winds, then you probably already know to do very thorough checks. Lifted roof tiles are near impossible to see from the ground, but they could be the difference between a repair and replacement, if damp has been getting in anywhere.
The Forces of Nature
We’d love to leave this one out, but nature might decide when the best time to replace your roof is, by pulling some of it off for you. Florida roofing codes have something to say on how much of a roof can be repaired before needing to do the whole thing over.
It’s not only storms that wreak havoc on the reliability of your roof. Wear and tear happens particularly fast in extreme conditions. There are some visible signs of ageing on your roof that you should keep track of.
Resources Available That Will Facilitate Roof Replacement
It’s great if you have the option of winter but sometimes, we have to work within the constraints we are given.
If you are not able to have roofing contractors work on your roof for three or four days straight, then it’s not the best time to undergo a roof replacement. The time it takes to finish the job will be further affected by the slope and position of your roof, so you need to have the right kind of time and/or alternative accommodation available.
Roofing Contractor Choice
If you are set on using a specific contractor, or your insurance limits you, then this will obviously mean you have to do the work when the right people are available. But remember! Try to get them in winter…
Like all states, Florida is not one of those places you want to be replacing your roof as a DIY project. The permits and inspections involved are because it has to be done so perfectly. You cannot afford your first line of defense in a storm to be put together without knowledge and partiality to the right technique at every level.
You must do this when your budget allows a little more wiggle room. Ideally, you want a roof that will last longer than you need it to on paper.
The Basics of Roof Replacements in Florida
Where it is vital to use the right contractor, it’s also important that you understand the basics too. You need to be able to look and identify the signs of roof damage. Things like really bad moisture damage or sagging, knowing the age of your roof, what materials you want to use and what climate conditions will be most suitable. Winter is your best choice, notwithstanding other factors that will help guide you on the perfect time to replace your roof when you live in Florida.
Are you considering replacing your South Florida roof? For over 30 years, ABC Roofing has been Coral Springs roofers and our reviews speak for themselves! To schedule a consultation and get a free roofing estimate, call us today at (954) 344-4622.