Replacing Your Roof? Here's How Long It Might Take

Lydia Schapiro
Written by Lydia Schapiro
Reviewed by Ami Feller
Updated February 25, 2022
front of brown suburban house
Photo: Sharon / Adobe Stock


  • Roof replacement typically takes one to 12 days

  • Various factors impact the timeline of a roof replacement 

  • DIY roof replacement is possible, but not recommended

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Your roof shields your house from the elements, so replacing it when necessary is crucial. You may assume replacing your roof will be a drawn-out process, but it doesn’t need to take too long—it could take as little as one day. But the specific timeline of a roof replacement depends on unique circumstances. 

Let's dive into the various factors that could impact your roof replacement timeline, so you can plan ahead and put your mind at ease.

What to Expect When Replacing Your Roof

The process for replacing your roof will vary depending on the specific roofing service you use and your contractor.

Generally, replacing a roof will be a similar process for every home. You'll likely have an initial meeting with your contractor, who will take measurements and inspect areas of your home and roof.

You may have another meeting to finalize the roof design and specific roof materials. Finally, you'll wrap up a contract. After you've both looked it over and agreed, you'll sign it, and the project will begin.

What Affects How Long a Roof Replacement Takes?

Several factors will influence the timeline of your roof replacement. 

Roof Accessibility 

Roof accessibility—which is the ability for a contractor to access your roof—will be a significant factor in how long it takes to replace your roof. For instance, if you have lots of landscaping, bushes, or fences around your house, your roof is harder to access than a house without it. Additionally, it may be harder to access your roof if you live on a street with densely packed houses. 

“Pitch and height also greatly impact how long the roof project can take,” says Ami Feller, owner of Roofer Chicks in New Braunfels, TX. “On steep roofs, the workers will need to use special safety equipment and will generally work slower in order to be safe. Also, carpentry can add time to a roof project. If there’s a lot of rotted decking, fascia, or siding, these repairs will require additional time and money.”

Roof Materials

You can choose from a few different roofing materials. The type you pick will impact how long it takes to replace your roof. 

The most common roofing materials are asphalt, wood, slate, concrete, metal, and tile. Here's how long it generally take to replace roofing based on materials:

  • Asphalt: 1–3 days

  • Wood: 2–8 days

  • Slate: 6–7 days

  • Concrete: 8–9 

  • Metal: 7–14 days

  • Tile: 6–12 days

Home Size

A general rule of thumb is that the larger your home, the longer it takes to replace its roof. However, this may not always prove true, particularly if you have a roof with an extensive surface area. 

It can take as little as a day with small homes, while larger homes usually take several days. 

Replacement Method 

Your roof replacement timeline will also depend on which method your contractor uses. Two common methods are tear off and overlay. The roofing materials typically influence which way is best.

Tear-off method involves—you guessed it—tearing off and replacing the damaged areas on your roof. 

Overlaying is when your contractor installs new shingles directly on top of damaged areas. This method usually costs less and is quicker than the tear-off method. The downside of the overlay process is that it may cover up problems instead of fixing them. It could also void your manufacturer warranty.


You should plan a roof replacement project around the weather—avoid doing it when you expect rain, snow, or extremely hot or cold temperatures. Your contractor will likely push back the project if the day arrives and it's, for instance, hailing. Rain will also pause the job. Homes with shingle roofs are particularly susceptible to extreme weather. 

DIY vs. Hiring a Professional

handyman working on roof repair

Replacing a roof yourself poses a risk for serious injury since you could slip and fall while working on the roof or climbing a ladder. The project gets riskier if you're handling heavy equipment. That's why it's generally better not to go the DIY route, but instead, hire a professional roofer. to do the job for you.

If you opt to replace your roof yourself, you'll save some money in labor costs. However, if you improperly install your roof, you'll likely have to pay the price in repairs later.

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