I’ve been in the construction business for over a decade now, and I’ve pretty much seen all there is to see when it comes to home construction, roof installations/replacements, wiring in the home, plumbing stuff and everything else you can find as part of building/restoring a home. As both I and my team specialize in roof replacement, I usually get asked very similar questions from (future) homeowners, tenants that need help with their roofing or curious newbies who are looking to get some information on the way things work in the business. So, I’ve decided to put together a little tutorial that may be very helpful to all the interested parties and shed some light on roof replacement specifics and the process itself. Stick with me.


When it comes to home remodeling or light/heavy repairs, the roof comes first – and that’s non-negotiable. No matter how quality all other projects are, unless the roof’s in top shape, there is a 90% possibility they’ll end up ruined – everything from your delicate wall paint to the drywall installations. On that note, there are a few things you want to be careful about:

The types of materials to choose for the roof

Your options vary between wood shake, asphalt composition shingles, metal roofing, rubber slate or “faux” slate and slate roofing. Each of these materials comes at a certain price and serves a unique purpose. The best thing to do is consult with a professional before saying yes to a particular material.

Removing shingles or the roofing over them

In life and roof placement, there’s always some kind of choice you need to make. When it comes to this scenario, you want to be smart about either removing shingles or the roofing over them. Things to consider are weight issues, telegraphing that relates to the aesthetics of your roof and the concern regarding waste reduction and saving your energy while doubling the effect of work. I understand this may sound a bit vague and out there but the point is, if you are doing the job yourself without having had any training before – things can get rough. A large team of professional roofers can have the work done in hours, instead of days.

The best roofing season

Depending on your situation, any season has to work (if things are urgent), but, if you can choose, always opt for the time frame from late spring to early fall. Luckily for all of us living in Sydney, the weather is pretty great for most part of the year, so there’s not much drama there. All the partially installed areas are supposed to be perfectly dry before you install the covering layers.

The right tools

The equipment plays a huge role in successful roof replacements, so make sure you are covered. You’ll need everything from roofing shingles, roof deck protective covering, leak barriers and starter strips to solar ridge vents and a crane. Although I am running the risk of sounding a bit amateurish for singling out JUST ONE piece of material/tool you need to make sure you have, I have to stress how important it is to have a high-quality, reliable crane around. As this particular piece of equipment is very expensive to own, you can rely on the best crane hire Sydney and enjoy the benefit of renting it at a very affordable price.

Are there any usual signs your roof needs replacing?

Apart from the evident problem with leaks and mildew (and the fact your roof was installed when the first settlers came), you’ll know your roof needs replacing when your shingles are curling, falling apart or missing. Another obvious sign is if you find pieces of shingle in the gutters or you notice light coming through the roof boards when you are in the attic. Do watch out for these signs, okay? It’s better you take care of things sooner than later.

Are solar panels the answer?

If your roof is strong enough to hold them – they may just be. In my experience, if you’ve done everything you can to improve the efficiency of your current roof and things are just not adding up, solar panels could be the answer to your energy bill reduction and your roof troubles. However, do know that the amount of energy you use is the parameter for the amount of solar energy you need.  So, before you start drawing up blueprints, do the necessary calculations. The two solar technologies that make sense are photovoltaic and a solar thermal investment (talk to an expert about both to find out which one fits in with your lifestyle and expectations). If you decide to do this, make sure you choose a trustworthy installer who knows what they are doing, okay? Solar panels are a huge commitment and a lifestyle change.