Mobile Home Roof Replacement or Major Repair

Manufactured home roof replacement

There comes a point when patches won’t do the job. That point may arrive slowly or, in the case of the recent hurricanes, it may come overnight. Then it is decision time.

With a wood/shingle roof conventional roofers may be able to repair and reshingle. Keep in mind the old shingles will have to be removed. Site built houses are overbuilt to where they are strong enough to hold two, or possibly three, layers of shingles. Mobile homes are not!

Metal roofs are hard.
I have also seen plans for “roof-overs”. Treated wood posts are placed alongside the home and used to support a wood and metal roof that completely covers the existing roof. It can be done in a way that looks nice and is very effective.Since a roof-over doesn’t effect the actual mobile home this is a project for which most any general contractor should be willing to bid.

I would caution everyone to think carefully before doing such a project.I know from painful personal experience it is EXTREMELY easy to drop more money into a mobile home repair than you can ever get back out of it. I did it several times before I learned my lesson.

I would never spend more than $4,000-5,000 without first checking prices for a replacement home; either new or used. There are situations, such as grandfathered lots, where replacement is not possible. It will come down to each individuals situation, but a replacement home may make more financial sense then pouring money into fixing the old one.

{ 20 comments… read them below }
This is a method I have used to patch old vent holes in a metal roof on the mobile I am currently renovating:
Using a medium gauge sheet metal (not aluminum coil stock!!) cut a patch 4-6″ larger than the hole. Clean the area thoroughly and apply a heavy coat of quality roof tar/cement. Place the patch metal over the opening and attach with neoprene washered sheet metal roofing screws. Finaly, coat the entire patched area with roofing tar. If the existing roof metal is so thin that the screws tear out, 1/8″ pop rivets can also be used.

Colin J
Here is one for you.
We have a 32 by 76 that needs roof repairs all over in a bad way. We have spotting on the ceiling after super heavy rain storms all over the home.
Problem is the insurance company doesn’t want to help us do the roof right and replace it with a complete added insulation roofover like this:
I received an estimate of about $9,000. to do this kind of roofover that will supposedly save us somewhere around 30% annually on heating/cooling costs.
My dad, who has been in commercial construction most of his life, but mostly on the concrete side of the house, seems to believe we can do this ourselves and with better results for less money.
He says we can build a roofover frame with 2/12′s covered with metal (he says even tin would work) that will add over R40 insulation value to the roof and a foot overhang that will keep water off the home. All for under $6,000 easily, he claims.
My argument, in spite of the costs savings, is that this seems like it might be a little heavy for the structure. An added rafter frame using 2×12′s over the entire home, even without all the insulation and planking just sounds super heavy to me.
Is he right? Am I just a worried about nothing?
Oh, and by the way, our place is paid for and we want to start making it as energy efficient as possible. Maybe add a tied in PV solar package in a year or two.
Thoughts on this roof idea?
The thing you have to remember with mobile homes is they have NO excess strength anywhere. Site built homes are always significantly overbuilt so you can get by with adding weight. The roofovers I have seen are built so none of the weight of the new roof is supported by the home. All the weight is resting on posts around the home.
IF you are that serious about energy efficiency it would probably be worth reading John T Krigger’s book “your Mobile Home”. It’s available on Amazon. You might also check your local library for an older edition. I thought it was actually better in terms of hard core energy saving suggestions.

Colin J
Thanks, Paul, I will look into that.
I am serious about keeping this bad boy, because even if I sink another 50K in it at this point, it would be cheaper than starting over with a new home.
I have entertained renting it out for approx. $700 a month (going rate around here for this type of residence) and building a steel building residence on the same acreage we have out here. I guess it would cost us about 80K to construct with friends, family and sweat equity.
Still, I don’t see beating the cost of repair, renovation, and upgrading of this almost 2000 sq. ft. Champion mobile home.
Thanks Again,

Last March my roof collapsed where there was no walls, it is a 1972 Detroiter. Basicly it is between my kitchen and my bedroom I have not done anything yet as my insurance says that it is Broadmore coverage? and they only pay if there is a quick storm? There was no storm because my friend was shoveling off the roof when the snow was piling up. I had planned on gutting the whole trailor and installing 2X6 studs. I have a vague estimate for 4ooo to repair the roof. Should I be looking to buy another Trailor?
Yes. I don’t think the numbers work for a repair.

We had a new roof put on the main trailer and the addition trailer. They cut rafters and spanned from the main trailer’s ridge to the exterior wall of the addition trailer. Before we had the new roof put on, the addition trailer was damaged and the ceiling leaking. The insulation was wet and pulled the metal roof down. We removed the trusses and the insulation and am considering pushing up the metal and screwing it to the wood rafters as far as we can go. Someone even suggested we take the metal out completely. Any suggestions?
All I can do is wish you well and hope the guys doing the work knew what they were doing.
The guys doing the exterior roof were experienced roofers. We are doing the interior ourselves and could use some suggestions. The insulation and trusses were wet and sagged so we removed them. We think we can push up the metal and screw it to the rafters above at least on the exterior wall end. We are thinking of gluing blue foam over the metal to stop the condensation. Any other ideas?

Hello, My name is James and we moved to the upper peninsula about 3 years ago. Long story short we bought a “fixer upper” that seemed to workout so far with the exception of the roof. At first I was not concerned but doing all the research it is looking like my place is not going to support the weight of lumber and shingles. I have 4 kids and do not make a lot of money. Other MH in the park have shingles on them is that because they were built to withstand the weight? Are my only options over a $1,000+ if I do it myself? Thanks.
Hi James,
Mobile homes that are delivered from the factory with shingled roofs are designed to handle the loads. My understanding is that site built houses can be te-shingled twice and still be OK. With mobile homes you should always take off the old shingles first.
I don’t know of any other choices.

What is on there now is just the metal from the factory. At first I was thinking “Just frame over the metal, lay some OSB, and shingle”. Now I feel stuck and I do not think my place can handle another UP winter. Lesson learned I guess…

Oh and I am sure I speak for all of us by saying thank you for all the tips and knowledge!!!
Maybe this article would help (not mine)

I have a 1963 VanDyeke moble home trailor I bought 9 yrs ago and the lady that owned it be for me took the back door off and another door on an built a room on there now it leaked the in side the ceiling we. Mad a little hole and it fell in. How do I repair it or replace it I on did and are limited to money can’t move

It had mold Groening so it had t9 come down the wood is wet I’m drying it out
Hi Linda,
I imagine the tar/caulk used to seal the addition to the house has dried out and cracked. Someone will have to get up on the roof and check it out. It is REALLY hard to tell where leaks are because the water comes through a crack, flows along layers in the ceiling, and may come out some distance from where the leak is.
Wait until the roof is really dry,(or use a hair dryer to dry it quickly) clean the area where you think it is leaking, and coat the area with roofing tar. Embed roofing mesh into the tar to give it more strength. It may take a couple of tries to get it right.

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