roofing FAQ

Do you have a roofing question? We probably have the answer. 

As one of the premier roofing companies in the Northern, VA area, we understand your concerns when it comes to replacing your roof, repairing your roof, and simply navigating the home exterior remodeling industry. 

That is why we put together this article that contains some of the most frequently asked roofing questions, or call it a “Roofing FAQ.” 

The 7 Most Frequently Asked Roofing Questions 

1. What are the signs my roof has problems? 

Perhaps the most common question we get (and any roofing company for that matter), is the question about knowing when a home’s roof has issues. 

The simple answer is that the signs are obvious, the complicated answer is that the roof issues signs aren’t so obvious. 

At first glance, you can see common roofing issues such as: 

  • Missing shingles
  • Water stains inside of the home
  • Exposed roof components that look out of place

However, there are also times where you might not see apparent roof issues such as rotting plywood, pipe collar cracks, or leaks. In this case, you have options, which lead to our next question. 

2. I have a roof leak, what do I do?

Perhaps you do your springtime maintenance and notice a few missing shingles or one morning you wake up and the bathroom ceiling has a leak stain. 

In the case of a roofing leak, you have options. Sometimes people ask if they need a new roof because of a leak, and the answer is always it depends. 

Factors such as the age of your current roof, the current warranty (if there is one), and the scop of your roof leak will ultimately determine the next steps. In either case, the first step is to always get the issue inspected by a roofing company… an honest roofing company. 

Depending on the damage on your roof causing the leak – a few missing shingles or a serious problem – will then determine your appropriate actions:

  1. Sometimes a simple roof repair is an answer
  2. Calling insurance to see if your roof qualifies for a replacement 
  3. A new roof

3. How much does a new roof cost?

In the event that it makes sense to move forward with a brand new roof, you have a few options, but the most common question we get is, “How much will a new roof cost?”

The answer varies depending on a few factors. One, the size of your roof will ultimately determine how much a new roof costs first and foremost. Roofs are measured by what is called “A Square” and this means 100 square feet. 

Pricing is done per square, which includes tearing off the existing shingles, laying the new garment, followed by the asphalt shingles. The cost per square is determined by the type of shingles a homeowner selects. 

In our complete roof pricing guide here, we share that shingle prices per square include: 

  • Three Tab Shingles – $380 per square
  • Archinetcutual Shingles – $400 to $425 per square

Using these numbers, an average size home at about 20 square would run a homeowner anywhere from $7600 to $800. 

While this is just an estimate and assumes there are no extras needed (like replacing plywood, fixing flashing, etc) the price is determined by the size of your roof! A townhome is much cheaper than $7600 just like a larger home with a hip roof will be more. 

4. Do new roofs have warranties? 

Whether you just got a new roof or perhaps you have a roof that is a few years old and you are still covered by a warranty, most roofs do have warranties. 

Similar to roofing prices, roofing warranties vary depending on the company that roofs your home and the type of shingles you select. 

For example, the Landmark Pro Archinetcutral shingles (the best) come with a 15-year 110 mph wind-resistance warranty in addition to a 50-year limited transferable warranty against manufacturing defects. 

That being said, product warranties are determined by the shingle supply company like Certainteed or Ownes Corning. The labor warranty depends on the shingle installer, but for example, here at Top Dog Home Pro, we offer a lifetime labor warranty. 

Always do your due diligence when it comes to a roof warranty before getting a new roof! You can read in full detail how roof warranties work here!

5. What are the different types of asphalt shingles? 

The most common roofing material is asphalt shingles, which happens to also be the most durable and affordable. But not all asphalt shingles are created equally. 

Asphalt shingle technology has increased tenfold over the years and shingles from 2005 pale in comparison to asphalt shingles in 2021. That being said the most common type of asphalt shingles are your common “Three Tab Shingles.” 

Three-tab shingles are hardy, affordable, and very common. However, they don’t look or perform as well as the super-durable architectural shingles. 

Architectural shingles give the look of cedar shingles, however, hold up as asphalt shingles do. They also are more durable because they are thicker. Shingles come in a variety of colors. 

>> Read all about our shingles here!

6. How long will it take to replace my roof? 

One day. 

A good company can replace a single-family home’s roof in one day. This includes removing the old roof shingles and underlayment, followed by replacing both with new underlayment and shingles, followed by a thorough clean up! 

7. What should you ask your roofing contractor before hiring?

Perhaps the best question we get, and the one you should ask the most before ever selecting a roofing company to install your new roof, is the right hiring questions! 

Making informed purchasing decisions is vital, especially when its an item like your roof, which we recongize is not a small investment. Anything costing a few thousand dollars is a large investment for most households. 

That is why we put together this quick “Hiring a Roofing Contractor Checklist:” 

Hiring a Roofing Contractor Checklist: 

  • Is your company insured?
  • Is your company licensed?
  • Are you certified by the shingle manufacturer? (We are a certified Certainteed Shingle Master for example) 
  • Is your roofing company a BBB Accredited Business?
  • Do you have references and reviews? 
  • What does your roofing warranty look like? 

Final Word

When it comes to your roof, the investment is large, but so is the actual roof, however, the return on investment is also worth it! It is said that in the resale process a new roof can have over an 80% return on investment!

That is why we take roof replacements and new roof consumer knowledge seriously by promoting the concept of an informed buyer. We want our customers to know EVERYTHING about their home’s roof before getting one.

So if you found this article helpful let us know! If you have a question about your roof we didn’t answer, feel free to submit your question here and we can add it!

roofing shingles

Looking for information on roofing shingles?

When it comes to your home’s roof, there is a very high likelihood that your roof has shingles. 

Asphalt shingles to be specific. 

And while there is a chance your roof has metal components, such as dormers or a porch area with metal, the roofing shingles you see on your home are almost always asphalt shingles (or sometimes cedar shake). 

Regardless, chances are you were searching for roofing shingles today to learn about the best ones? Or perhaps you were looking for the average cost of roofing shingles. Either way, here at Top Dog Home Pro, we got you covered, literally and figuratively! 

Today we will explore the following when it pertains to your roof’s shingles:

  1. What are asphalt shingles?
  2. What type and quality of roofing shingles are there?
  3. How much do roofing shingles typically cost?
  4. Roofing Repair vs Replacement

First, what are asphalt shingles?

Asphalt shingles happen to be the most commonly used form of roofing material in the states, more common than sheet metal or wood shingles. 

While the main component of asphalt shingles is of course asphalt, according to Guardian Roofs, they consist of either a fiberglass or felt paper base coated with a waterproof later of asphalt and topped with ceramic granules.

This creates a durable, waterproof, and lightweight shingle that can stand most elements mother nature has to offer such as wind, ice, snow, rain, and hail. Of course, like anything these days, there are different types of asphalt shingles. 

Types of Roofing Shingles

Asphalt roofing shingles have evolved immensely over the past 20 years. Chances are if you have a roof that is from the ’90s or even still hanging on from the ’80s, the asphalt shingles you had then are nothing compared to what is offered today!

The two types of asphalt shingles are: 

  1. Three Tab Shingles
  2. Architectural Shingles

As you can see in the photo below, on the left the three-tab shingle is designed to look like three individual shingles, however, it is all one piece. These roofing shingles are flat, light-weight and the most economical when priced. 

On the right, the architectural shingles are thicker because of an extra layer of asphalt, but they are also sturdier and give a more unique/modern look. Architectural are a bit more expensive as we will soon cover, however, they last longer and have better warranty options because they are higher in quality. 

roofing shingles

That is not to say that if you elect to use three-tab roofing shingles you won’t have a healthy new roof, it’s just that more and more homeowners are looking at the long-term rewards of architectural shingles when they replace their roofs! 

Of course, costs matter but so does quality! 

How to know when the roofing shingles need to be replaced:

There are obvious signs that can indicate whether or not you need to replace your roof’s shingles. Let’s start with the super obvious signs!

  1. You have missing shingles, and it is obvious based on exposed underlayment or even exposed plywood. Urgency, ASAP!
  2. You notice that your shingles are curled or perhaps giving a “Buckled” look
  3. Your shingles are over 15 years old
  4. You notice lots of asphalt granules in your gutter downspout collectors

While these are some of the more obvious signs that you might need your roofing singles replaced, there other less common ones you might not be able to see. Perhaps your ridge vent is missing some shingles or your plywood is warped in some areas. 

In that case, if you don’t want to get on your roof (which we recommend NEVER getting on your roof) you can always reach out to have us take a look!

How much do new roofing shingles cost?

The cost for a new roof, roof repair, or new roofing shingles can vary. In this article here, we walk you through step by step how to gauge the cost of roofing shingles and a new roof. 

That being said, below you will find a quick view of how much roofing shingles cost per square, which is 100 square feet of shingles! For an accurate price, you can “Build” your roof here. 

roofing shingle costs

The price for roofing shingles varies depending on the quality of the shingle and the amount required for your home. 

For example, a standard 3-tab shingle installed by Top Dog Home Pro is $380 a square, whereas our architectural pro series roofing shingles by Certainteed run $425 per square installed. 

In the table below you will find rough estimates for replacing the shingles on a roof based on the approximate size of the home: 

3 TabArchitectural ShinglesPro Series
Townhome380040004250
Single-Family760080008500
Large Single-Family152001600017000

While these are average prices based on a normal roof replacement, there are other factors that can contribute to a roof replacement such as the condition of the plywood, layers of existing shingles, and any other possible issues that might exist. 

The best recommendation is to look further than just the price but to also look at the roofing warranty as well. While you might save upfront on 3 tab shingles, the warranty isn’t as good when compared to an architectural shingle!

>> Read about our Roofing Warranties here! We explain the entire process transparently and help you weigh the pros and cons of each shingle type!

Roof Replacement vs Roofing Repairs:

There is a saying in the personal finance world that when it comes to our finances, each situation should be treated personally, hence the emphasis on ‘Personal’ finance. The same can be said for your roof. 

While there are metrics that can determine whether an entire roof replacement is more suitable for your home, or perhaps a simple repair, the best thing to do is to first start with a roof inspection. 

Once you have your roof inspected by a certified roofing specialist/contractor, you should weigh your options. It’s vital to weigh all of your options:

  • Is there a possibility for an insurance claim?
  • How old is your roof?
  • Will the repair last, or is a new roof the better long term option?
  • Will a roof repair cost more than just replacing the entire roof?

Typically, if it is something simple like replacing a few shingles, checking out a possible leak, or replacing a section of a ridge vent, a roofing repair is a good option. 

However, when the amount of roofing shingles needing to be replaced reaches a certain threshold, or the repair costs are starting to get to 50% of the cost of a new roof, a roof replacement is usually a better option. 

For example, if a new roof would cost you $7,000, but the repairs cost $3,5000, it’s better to simply replace the roof. 

A new roof has a high return on investment for resale purposes and the new asphalt roofing shingles have amazing technology that makes it hardy and looks better!

Final Word on Roof Shingles –

Roofing shingles are not something we often think about until we have to. Perhaps you wake up to find a few shingles in your yard after a wind storm or you see a bare spot on the backside of your roof. 

There is also the chance that one day you notice that your home’s roof just looks very old. Either way, replacing your roofing shingles is something that should be viewed as an investment. 

So like any investment, it’s best to do your due diligence and get as much information on your end before moving forward with a contractor. 


Top Dog Home Pro proudly serves all of Northern Virginia and specializes in helping homeowners in Woodbridge, Fairfax, Lorton, Springfield, and many more with their roof!