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Often the condition of the boards is difficult to determine before the existing roofing is removed, especially if there is no attic access. The boards may be brittle, have excessive cracking, cupping, knots, splits, dry rot, or wide spaces between them. If the boards are in fair condition, but have widespread issues, we often recommend applying a “skin” of 1/2” sheathing directly over top of them. Areas that are rotten, wet or otherwise compromised are first removed and replaced with 3/4” plywood so all areas are structurally sound. Installing the “skin” adds strength and bypasses all of these problems creating a flat smooth nailing surface for the new roof materials. So long as wood that is actively rotting is not covered up, this practice is recommended by shingle manufacturers. It saves money in the form of labor, material, and disposal when compared to removing and replacing all of the decking. This procedure is much less likely to cause disruption to vaulted/cathedral ceilings that share the same rafters as the roof.