I like to think of myself as a very handy person - I've done rough framing, run my own phone lines, installed new outlets.... but when it comes to roofs, I am a bit overwhelmed. It is when I finally stop and admit I am a young woman and in over my head ;)
I have a flat roof with a good slope, installed in 1997 (I just bought this, my first home). At some point, the gravel was scrapped off and an elastomeric membrane was installed by a DIY previous homeowner.
Last winter I had a 2 inch crack which I patched with tar/roof cement. Surprisingly, this was in the middle of the roof, not at flashing or an edge.
There are signs of two other such previous repairs (maybe - the elastomeric membrane in two places is brighter/looks newer).
This same evil previous DIY homeowner installed a kitchen vent hood and skylight with no flashing or tar. So I slathered those up good too, which got me through last winter.
Now I have been bringing out folks to do estimates on getting some real flashing put on the vent and skylight, as well as a proper chimney cap on an unused old chimney (the original kitchen had a wood burning stove).
The first estimate guy said he thinks I need a new roof if I am getting cracks in the middle. Is this a true statement in general?
If I do do a new roof, I really really like not having gravel for ease of inspection and repair. But the options are overwhelming. Can anyone enlighten me or point me to a good reference of the cost and durability of my various options? Googling has overwhelmed me even more, and I'm finding it hard to find an objective reference.
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