Roof Installation Tips

Factors To Consider Before Selecting Roofing Material

THE STYLE OF YOUR HOME OR BUILDING

The architectural style of your home or commercial building may dictate what type of roofing materials need to be used. For example, while asphalt shingles are compatible with most styles of homes, tile roofing may be more suitable for the style of historic homes. The style of a commercial property is extremely important when selecting its roof covering. Some buildings may need a built-up roof, while metal roofs might suit the style of other commercial buildings.

THE ROOFING APPLICATION

Whether the new roof is being applied to a brand new structure, as a replacement roof, or as an addition to a home or building makes a big difference in your roofing material selection. With new roofs, you have more choices because you’re not limited to existing components, such as roof materials currently on the roof, the underlying roof structure composition, roof pitch, etc., as you are with replacement roofs. Adding an addition to a home or building also limits your roofing material choices because the roof addition needs to function and blend in with the existing roof structure to which it is being attached.

OWNERSHIP

Roofing is a cost that will give you a return on your investment if you’re staying in your home for most of your life, or remaining as the owner of a commercial building long term. If you’re not planning to own the property for at least 20 or more years, it might be best to install a roof with a shorter lifespan that is less costly.

STATE BUILDING CODES

Some states have building codes or other restrictions that may prevent you from installing a certain type of roofing. For instance, some states at risk for hurricanes, tornadoes, or forest fires may prohibit certain types of roof shingles.

MUNICIPALITY REQUIREMENTS AND RESIDENTIAL COMMUNITY COVENANTS

In addition to state building codes, many municipalities may have their own building requirements that dictate the types and grades of roofing that must be used. If you live in a private or gated community, you may need to adhere to building covenants that outline acceptable types of roofing shingles and roofing material restrictions.

Guide to Roofing Costs & Estimates

You may not think about your roof that much, but as soon as it needs repair it will be impossible to ignore. Even just one leak can cause significant damage to the rest of your home. By properly maintaining your roof and replacing it at the end of its lifespan, you will ensure it does its job of protecting all that lies underneath it. Plus, replacing your roof will increase your property’s value, since potential buyers will have the peace of mind knowing that they’re not going to need to take this project on themselves.

Choosing a Roofing Material

There are several roofing materials to choose from, which will significantly impact how much your roof will cost.

As a general rule of thumb, the more you spend upfront, the longer your roof will last. Depending on your current budget and the amount of time you intend on staying in your home will naturally sway you towards favouring budget or longevity. If you have a particular look in mind, this will sway you more towards style being an important consideration

Durability

Asphalt shingles will typically last anywhere from 15 to 30 years. Mileage will vary depending on many factors, including weather (the warmer the climate, the sooner they’ll need to be replaced) and pests. Depending on the last time the roof was replaced and how long you plan on staying in your home, if your home has asphalt shingles then it is most likely that you will need to replace them at some point.

Advantages of Asphalt Roofs

Perhaps the biggest advantages is that asphalt has lower shingle prices, which is why so many homeowners opt for this roofing material. Asphalt shingles are also highly versatile in their appearance and can be made to look like other materials like slate, wood or tile, and also come in a wide variety of colours, giving your home many customization options.

Metal Roof vs Shingles in Cold Climate – Which Should I Choose?

Although, Huntsville Alabama is known for its warm climate temperatures typically decline during the winter months. The average temperature in AL in January and February ranges between 30-40 degrees. While snowfall varies each year in Huntsville the winter often brings rainy condition. That’s why it’s important to make sure your home’s roof is in optimal condition. Therefore you’ll want to invest in quality roofing materials that can accommodate the weather.

Metal and shingle are the most common roofing materials that are presented to homeowners. These days metal isn’t only reserved for warehouses and industrial properties. A lot of our residential clients have some form of metal roofing. However, shingle roofs are traditional and you can find them on thousands of houses throughout Huntsville. Which material is able to best withstand the colder climate?

How Metal Roof Systems Perform In The Winter

The cold climate and its harsh elements can wear down on your roof decreasing its lifespan and performance. Fortunately, metal is a material that is ultra durable and is effective at withstanding the elements

Reduces Heating Costs

It’s no secret that residential home owners in the U.S spend so much more money heating than cooling during the summer months. Metal functions as an insulator preventing both cold or warm air from escaping. Thus results in significantly lowered energy bills. In fact, the surface temperature of a metal roof tends to stay warmer than the outside temperature while an asphalt shingle roof can be a few degrees cooler.

Less Susceptible to Snow and Ice Damage

Yea, snow, and ice can cause major structural damage to a roof which is why it’s considered to be an enemy to most type of roofing materials. However, a metal roof can provide much more protection. Snow m and doesn’t accumulate on a metal roof. Instead, it literally slides off preventing ice dams and damage to the gutters.

Residential Roofing Best Practices

Asphalt shingles, which cover 80 to 90% of residential roofs, have undergone much change in the last 20 to 30 years. Until the late 1970s, all asphalt shingles were manufactured from a heavy organic felt mat that had established a reputation for both strength and flexibility and generally outlasted their 15- to 20-year life expectancy.

Since their introduction in the late 1970s, fiberglass shingles have come to dominate the market, accounting for over 90% of shingles sold today. However, premature failure of some fiberglass shingles in the 1980s and 1990s tarnished the product’s reputation and spawned a number of lawsuits and resulted in a toughening of standards and a general improvement in fiberglass shingle quality.

Shingle styles have changed as well. The common three-tab shingles of the 1950s and 1960s are now joined by no-cutout shingles, multitab shingles, and laminated “architectural” shingles.

Asphalt Roof Shingle Quality

Shingle quality is often difficult to determine visually since it is based largely on hidden factors such as the strength of the reinforcing mat (organic felt or fiberglass), the strength and flexibility of the asphalt, and the amount and type of fillers used. In most cases, however, the guidelines outlined below can help to select shingles that perform as promised.

Organic Felt vs. Fiberglass Asphalt Shingles

Organic shingles are built around a thick inner mat made from wood fibers or recycled paper saturated with soft asphalt. Fiberglass shingles, on the other hand, use a lightweight nonwoven fiberglass held together with phenolic resin.

CHOOSING A CONTRACTOR: QUESTIONS TO ASK WHEN HIRING A ROOFING CONTRACTOR

There’s no more denying it or putting it off. There are water stains on the ceiling. You’ve found a few shingles in your yard. There are birds, squirrels or raccoons in your attic (or maybe all three, yikes!). Whatever the case may be, the signs are clear: it’s time for a new roof.

Where can I find the best, certified roofing contractors in my area?

Getting a new roof or a roof repair starts with finding the right roofing contractor for the job. You can find the best, certified roofers in your area by checking out our network of independent roofing contractors in the Owens Corning Roofing Contractor Network

Roofing companies and contractors in our Owens Corning Roofing Contractor Network are selected for their commitment to customer service, reliability, and professional craftsmanship. Additionally, they must meet high standards and satisfy strict requirements

But, Do I Really Need a Roofing Contractor?

Installing a new roof, or repairing an existing roof, is a big job and a big investment for your home. Working with a qualified and trusted roofer who understands roofing materials, safety, and building codes and requirements will ensure the job is done right. You’ll also have warranty options offering peace of mind that the roofing contractor will stand behind their work for years to come.

Okay. I Want to Hire a Roofing Contractor, But How Can I Tell Who Is Qualified and Who Isn’t?

Most homeowners start with a list of about two to five roofing contractors, and meet with about two to three, before making their final decision on who to hire for the job. Searching for qualified roofers online, or getting recommendations from friends and family, are two ways to get started on creating a shortlist of roofing contractors to consider, but may not give you all the information you need to tell who is qualified and who is not.

What to Expect From A Roof Inspection

Roof Inspection Safety Tips You Should Know

Have The Right Tools For Roof Inspection Safety

Using the right tools for a roof inspection is easy enough. But how about roof inspection safety? Sure these tools are optional, but one of them could easily just save you from a nasty fall from the roof. These tools make sure that you’re either firmly planted on the roof, safely get up to your roof or safely get off of your roof. These tools include:

  • Safety Boots. If you were to choose footwear with roof inspection safety in mind, you should choose shoes with rubber soles. Hiking boots or military boots come to mind here as these are made to provide unmatched traction on most surfaces. This is especially useful when your roof is slanting or it’s raining. 
  • A Safety Harness. Slips can sometimes be unavoidable. So having a second line of defense from falling off of your roof is a good investment. One other thing is to make sure that the harness is attached to a stable anchor point. Because you could still end up on the ground, no matter how good your harness is if the anchor point comes loose during the slip.
  • A Stable Ladder. Ladders are what can get you to your roof in the first place unless you have roof access through your attic. Make sure that your ladder is free from any loose parts or rusting components as it could end up failing while you’re climbing up or down.

Never Work Alone During a Roof Inspection

This is one job where having friends matters. A companion is not a second set of hands helping you plug up that hole in the roof, but also another safety net. Having someone back you up in case something wrong happens can be a lifesaver. They can grab you in case you slip, make an already stable ladder even more stable by bracing it into the ground as you climb, and even call for help if something goes wrong. Having a friend just makes your roof inspections safer.  

Avoid Inspections During Harsh Weather

It can be very tempting to go up on your roof during rain to seal up the leak that’s been dripping into your living room. However, many accidents happen during unstable weather. This is because not only is your visibility hampered, but your roof also becomes more slippery because of the rain. You could also get blown off of your roof because of strong winds or because of the debris flying around in strong winds. Regardless of the reason you want to go up on your roof in that weather, you should just wait out the storm and put a bucket under those leaks.

Consider the many risks workers are exposed to while on the roof:

  • Ladders – If your building doesn’t have interior stairs and a doorway to the roof, workers must use caution when using ladders. These can become unstable if they aren’t properly secured or tied off to the building, notes Brian Impellizeri, senior product manager with GAF, a roofing manufacturer.
  • Exterior Egress – Beyond ladders, staff should exercise situation awareness when accessing the roof via hatches, elevators, penthouse doors, scaffolding, or power equipment such as scissor lifts and aerial work platforms, says Brad Richardson, a certified safety professional and director of environmental health and safety for D. C. Taylor Company, a roofing contractor.
  • Skylights – While great for natural light, these fixtures can give way if too much weight is put on them. A worker may accidentally step on them or trip on the edges.
  • Parapet Walls – Buildings that have no barrier on the roof ledge pose an immediate risk and others may have walls that are too short to prevent someone from tumbling over.
  • Loose Debris – Tree branches, leaves, construction materials, and tools can all pose a tripping hazard. In windy conditions, they may also become flying debris.
  • Extreme Heat – A cool roof can be a hot place for workers surrounded by reflected heat. Roofing repairs and renovations are also a tiring activity and technicians are susceptible to something as simple as dehydration when performing tasks for hours under the sun, reminds Impellizeri.

Up On The Roof: Rules And Safety

On the roof. Those inspectors who do are usually trying to get up close and personal with any issues they believe are affecting the roof. It’s a personal decision, and it’s rare to see any home inspector walk roofs that are steeper than a 6-in-12 slope.

Staying off the Roof Keeps Home Inspectors Safe and Out of Trouble

Walking the roof can involve insurance and legal issues if the inspector has employees or permits the customer or realtor to climb onto the roof. Anyone could get hurt. OSHA (the federal job safety agency) rules clearly state that the home inspector is not to work at more than 6 feet off grade without a proper harness installed by a trained technician. Insurance companies support the criteria of OSHA, so in the event of an accident to a customer or realtor, it would be very unlikely that an insurer would pay a claim.

If They Don’t Go Up, How Do They Inspect?

Inspection from the ground using binoculars is very effective. The type and condition of the roof surface can largely be seen from the ground. A good pair of binoculars helps inspectors get a close look at details, such as the flashing around chimneys and the use of chimney crickets.

Inspecting the roof from a ladder is another effective way to judge its condition. Gutters, the life expectancy of the roof, number of layers, and condition and location of fasteners can all be seen from a ladder. Number of layers can also be assessed by examining the shingles on the rake edge. One of the newest and increasingly popular methods for inspecting a roof  is by drone.

Home inspectors simply need to make sure their report on the roof is accurate and clear, and they’ll have no need to walk a roof—even if they think the homeowner is expecting it.

Roof Safety Signs: What They Mean and What to Do

According to OSHA, safety signs are generally categorized in three types—danger signs, warning signs, and caution signs. When working on rooftops, roofers will usually encounter the following examples of roof safety signs and what they should do:

Danger Sign

When there is a roof safety danger sign, there are immediate hazardous conditions that will lead to serious injury and death if not avoided. Upon seeing this sign before any roofing work, avoid it at all costs.

Warning Sign

When there is a roof safety warning sign, there are existing life-threatening hazards that can lead to serious injury or death. Accessing roofs by permit means that only authorized personnel or trained employees can be on it. Warning signs represent a hazard level between danger and caution, needing specific precautionary measures to be taken.

Caution Sign

When there is a roof safety caution sign, there are minor hazard situations where a non-immediate or potential hazard or unsafe practice presents a lesser threat of employee injury. Roofers should be mindful of caution signs and apply necessary control measures in any roofing work.

Here are the key concerns you should search for:

Shingles

Look for misshapen shingles that are curling or blistering. Also, notice if there are any missing or broken shingles. All of these will need to be replaced.

Grit in the Gutters

If you find piles of grit that may be coming from your shingles, you may need to have all of your tiles replaced. The grit you see is supposed to protect your shingles from the sun’s strong rays. When it starts wearing off, your roofing may quickly become compromised.

Flashing

Notice if there are any rust spots or cracked caulking surrounding your flashing. Recaulk old caulk and replace worn flashing.

Rubber Boots

Around any puncture spots on your roof such as vent pipes, there’s a rubber piece to keep water from getting in. Over time, these can age and crack, meaning they need to be replaced.

Moss or Lichen

Notice any patches of moss or lichen that could indicate moisture accumulation and even rotting just under your roof. Don’t worry about black algae, though, that’s a cosmetic issue. You can have it washed off if you like.

Make note of the damage you notice on your roof. Then, you can make plans to continue to DIY or call in the professionals to help with any repairs. Remember, be safe and know your limits!

What You Must Know About Torch Down Roof Installation

How To: Choose a New Roof for Your House

If you’re choosing a new roof for your new or existing home, aesthetics are important, but so too are the material’s cost, weight, and installation requirements.

Whether you are building from scratch or choosing a new roof for your existing home, a wide range of materials are readily available and worthy of consideration. These include asphalt, wood, and composite shingles, as well as slate, concrete, and clay tiles. Style is an important factor, but it’s not the only one. Product cost, material weight, and installation requirements should also influence your selection

Roofing Terminology

Before we talk materials, let’s talk terminology. Roofers don’t usually use the measure “square feet.” Instead, they talk in squares. A square is their basic unit of measurement—one square is 100 square feet in area, the equivalent of a 10-foot by 10-foot square. The roof of a typical two-story, 2,000-square-foot house with a gable roof will consist of less than 1,500 square feet of roofing area, or about fifteen squares.

Cost of a New Roof

A number of considerations will affect the cost of a new roof. The price of the material is the starting point, but other factors also must be considered. One is the condition of the existing roof if you are remodeling a house—if old materials must be stripped off, and if the supporting structure needs repair, that will all cost money. The shape of the roof is another contributing factor. A gable roof with few or no breaks in its planes (like chimneys, vent pipes, or dormers) makes for a simple roofing job. A house with multiple chimneys, intersecting rooflines (the points of intersection are called valleys), turrets, skylights, or other elements will cost significantly more to roof.

Roofing Materials

Not every roofing material can be used on every roof. A flat roof or one with a low slope may demand a surface different from one with a steeper pitch. Materials like slate and tile are very heavy, so the structure of many homes is inadequate to carry the load. Consider the following options, then talk with your designer and get estimates for the job.

How to choose the best roofing system?

It’s one thing to have enough covering to protect you from the weather. But, it’s another thing to have a roofing system that you can rely on. A roofing system that leaks is something you would not want to happen, for sure. It can make a flood of damage and drains your savings.

When planning to build a new house or just needing to change your roof, consider some important factors. It’s wise to be prudent as this may save you time, effort, and financial resources.

Location. Consider your area. If you are living in a place prone to wildfires, opt for a material with the highest fire rating. Or, if your house is along a hurricane path, choose a roofing system that provides good wind resistance.

Longevity. You do not want to risk your life and limb on a ladder doing repairs for cracks and curled roof shingles, do you?

Quality vs. cost. In choosing the right roofing material, consider the quality over the cost. Although there are circumstances when cheaper materials have better quality.

If you are on a budget, asphalt shingles may appeal to you. It’s one of the most popular roofing materials among homeowners. It’s light and easy to install. It may last 30 years or more. The asphalt roofing shingles are composed of fiberglass sealed between asphalt and ceramic granules. However, this roofing material is vulnerable to high winds.

Meanwhile, if you are looking for a durable roof that can withstand wildfires, go for a metal roofing system. Many homeowners favor this type of roof due to its several benefits. Aside from its fire-resistant qualities, metal roofs are easy to install and long-lasting. The material is also lightweight and reflects heat from the sun. And because of its efficacy at reflecting the sun’s rays, you can significantly save energy on cooling bills. However, one of the handful drawbacks of a metal roofing is that it can be noisy during a rainstorm.

Guide To Choosing The Right Roof For Your Home

Does the roof of your home look worse for the wear due to the harsh weather conditions that may sometimes be experienced in Indianapolis? If you need to install a new roof, it’s important to know what kind of roof is best suited for your home—as well as how to choose the right materials, installation techniques, and roofing company that will best protect your new home investment.

There are many types of roofs, each with its own set of pros and cons, from asphalt and plastic polymer, slate, metal roof materials, and many more. In addition, there are also a number of different roof shingle types that you can choose from, which can further complicate the process for homeowners that aren’t too experienced in roofing projects.

Costs

Perhaps the most important factor in choosing between the types of roofs for your home improvement project is the cost of the materials and installation. Roofing materials and installation services vary widely in price, so it’s important to check the prices quoted by various reputable roofing companies to compare

Materials

Although there are many kinds of materials that can be used for your roof, not all are suitable for all homes. For instance, if you want to use heavy materials (for instance, tile or slate), make sure that your house can support the substantial weight of these materials, and that they’re suitable to your location’s particular weather and climate conditions.

Roof Shingle Types

There are many different roof shingle types ranging from wood or cedar shake shingles to metal shingles. The suitable type depends on your needs as well as the size and look of your home

Roofing Buying Guide

Some home repairs, you can put off indefinitely. A leaky roof is not one of them. Cracked, curled, or missing roof shingles demand immediate attention. If you neglect them, they can lead to severe water damage that can seriously drain your savings account.

At Consumer Reports, we test asphalt shingles because that’s what most folks have on their homes. Our test results show that not only does performance vary widely among brands, but also among different product lines from a single manufacturer.

Here’s how to assess whether it’s time to replace your old roof—from gauging the severity of leaks to determining when missing shingles are a problem—and what to look for when you shop for a new one. In this guide we walk you through the common roofing materials, how much they cost, and how long they’re expected to last.

Water Will Find a Way In

Water marks on a ceiling, or worse, dripping water, may have you worried that your whole roof is in tatters. But just because there’s a leak doesn’t mean your roof will require a massive amount of repairs. Sometimes stopping it is as simple as filling a crack with caulk, replacing a few shingles, or installing some flashing—a membrane or layer of metal that provides a mechanical barrier to redirect water at corners, crevices, gaps, and other spots vulnerable to leaking.

Looking for Leaks

It’s easiest to find a leak when it’s raining outside. Remember that water often accumulates at a spot that’s different from where it’s entering—it generally runs down the length of a rafter or stud and only drips once it reaches a low point

Roofing Calculator – Estimate your Roofing Costs

This comprehensive guide to roofing materials is all the research you need to evaluate the top choices for residential re-roofing and new construction projects in 2020

What to Expect: In this guide we’ll cover the following roofing options: asphalt shingles, wood shingles and shakes, metal roofing, concrete, clay, and fiber-cement tiles, natural and faux slate, and the new Tesla solar tiles that have so far proven to be more of vaporware than a real product.

For each residential roof type we cover the following topics:

An overview including how the roofing is made

Pros and cons including maintenance, repair, durability, options, home styles they work with and more

Cost for materials and installation

Choosing your roofing material/The “bottom line” summaries of each type

How to save money on a new roof

Types of Roofing Materials

These most common options cover more than 95 percent of residential roofs in the United States, so unless you’ve got something unusual in mind like solar tiles – oh, wait, we’ve included those – or a vegetative green roof, the options you’re considering are likely discussed here.

Asphalt shingles

More than 75 percent of all single-family homes in the US are roofed with asphalt shingles, though that number is slowly shrinking thanks to the more energy-efficient and durable metal roofing.