Spokane Roof Replacement – 4 Layer Tear Off, New Plywood, CertainTeed Landmark Granite Grey

With four layers of roofing that had to be torn off (1 layer of wood shake and 3 layers of asphalt shingles) and all new plywood (7/16″ OSB) since it was skip-sheeted underneath, this home was quite the project!

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Coeur D’Alene Roof Replacement – Single layer tear off, CertainTeed Landmark in Weather Wood

This house had some issues with moderate granule loss and blown off shingles and was nearing the end of its life. Some birds had also decided to peck away at the ridge cap, creating little holes that could allow water to seep in. The new shingles installed on the house were Landmark in Weather Wood color.

Vaughn
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North Idaho Roofer Reveals Insider Information That Contractors Use To Take Advantage of Homeowners

KOOTENAI COUNTY – Every year hundreds of homeowners get frustrated by their roofing contractors. It happens so much that there are entire websites dedicated to consumer’s complaints about the roofers they hired.

The most common complaint is that their roofer made “mistakes” on the estimate, and the job ended up costing far more than they first agreed to.

Here’s why it happens…

The #1 job of a roofing estimator is to sell roofs. Most companies give free estimates, so they need to win as many of those jobs as possible to avoid losing money.

That means when you call a roofer out to your home, he’s going to do everything in his power to get you to buy a new roof from him.

This leads many companies to give as low of a price as possible to make it easy for you to choose them.

But many times this means leaving things out of his bid that must be done to complete the job right – fixing bad plywood, replacing old rusty flashings, not skimping on materials, etc.

This allows them to keep the price low and win the job, then come back and charge you more for the “extra” work that will inevitably need to get done.

Or worse, they won’t raise the price and will cut corners and do a cruddy job, leaving you with a mess to deal with in 5 years.

The best way to avoid getting taken advantage of by unscrupulous contractors is to read the 2015 Guide to Roof Pricing in the Inland Northwest. In this guide you’ll discover…

  • A simple formula to calculate how much your new roof will cost – without having to call a roofer!
  • What to look for in a legit bid – so you don’t get fooled by that “good deal” that turns sour in the end.
  • Where contractors could hide those “extra” charges on your project – before you sign the contract!
  • Why bids can vary so much in price – often by thousands of dollars…
  • And much more.

To get your FREE copy of the 2015 Guide to Roof Pricing in the Inland Northwest just enter your name and email address in the box below.

Fill in the form now and it will be rushed to your inbox right away.

Our First Bad Review!

At New Heights Roofing we believe in transparency and showing all our cards up front so you know who/what you’re dealing with. Part of this is showing our bad reviews as well as our good ones.

Well we got our first bad review so I figured I’d share what it was and also our response. He found us through HomeAdvisor, but also left the review on Angie’s List. Here it is:

Review by Scott S. in Coeur d Alene, ID
Project: Install or Replace an Asphalt Shingle Roof
Comments: When my wife and I sat and talked with Jesse at New Heights Roofing on when the start date would be for our roof, he quoted us a start date around the 10th of June and stated that his brother Josh would contact us before then, to go over everything with us. We paid the $500 deposit to Jesse (which was cashed on June 1st) so we could get scheduled and “on the books” for the time frame he had quoted us. As June 10th came closer and we still had not heard a word from anyone at New Height Roofing, I reached out to Jesse via email to find out what was going on (client should not have to be the one asking for updates) and basically all I received in return was an email from Amy Moore that stated our roof project was not going to start until the 15th. Someone should have explained why there was a delay instead of having a random person we had not heard of and/or been dealing with, simply send a receipt for our deposit and then state that our start date was now pushed almost a week out. When Josh did show up to do the tear off, he explained that some people had quit recently or had some legal problems, so I was doing my best to be sympathetic to the owner and the remaining crew. The next thing I know, Josh is explaining to me (then me to my wife) that ALL of our roof deck has to be ripped out. That we should have been made aware of this prior to him coming out and that he hated being the one to tell me or any other client that type of info because it should have been listed in the quote/price that we agreed and signed upon. So now we were looking at $3,100 extra … which is extreme since the contract we signed states that “7. No Hidden Charges – We guarantee you won’t be caught by surprise when the final bill comes. We won’t ding you with charges you didn’t expect or bill you for extras you didn’t approve. The price you see is the price you pay.” … this certainly does not seem to be true. The worst part about this situation is that Josh didn’t even make me aware of the problem until AFTER he had already ripped some of the boards off the roof. At that point, I was quite upset because 1. What was the purpose of the roof audit and the guarantee if it can quickly be brushed aside when someone sees something on the start day of the project? 2. When some of the old roof decking was already on my lawn and/or in the dump bin, what choice do I have to complain while I am staring at a gaping hole in my roof? This forced my wife and I to downgrade to lesser quality material (it wasn’t like we had an option here .. we were literally forced due to the price increase and the apparent disregard to the guarantee in the contract). We had to “bite the bullet” and decide on something quickly since we literally had an open roof staring at us, thus we downgraded. What is probably worse than all the fiasco to that point, is the ongoing lack of communication on what is getting done with the roof. I spoke with the owner last Friday (June 26th) about if he was going to finish up that day and I was told (remember I had to ask HIM) that the soffit vents we not in stock at Home Depot so they had to be ordered. I made the comment of saying 1. Someone did not think it would be prudent to order them and or pick up the product at the start of the project, knowing that they were needed? 2. No other Home Depot store in the area (isn’t there like 4-5 of them?) didn’t have them in stock either? He told me that no Home Depot had them in stock, so they needed to be ordered and would be coming in today July 1st. Here I sit, July 6th … it has been about 3 weeks since our simple little roof of about 1600 sq ft was started and our project is still not done and the crew are somewhere else working on another project or two and probably putting those clients through the same aggravation, and I am still (the client) the one needing to follow up with New Heights Roofing.
Our Response:
First and foremost I really am very sorry that you feel the experience you had was anything less than pleasant or that you were treated unfairly through the re-roofing process.

I would like to break your concerns down into its 3 elements and deal with them one at a time.

1. It sounds like you feel the start date should have been set in stone. As was explained to you when you sat down with Jesse the first time, roofing is a very difficult business to draw hard lines when it comes to scheduling. Our schedule often gets changed by circumstances out of our control, such as weather and how the previous jobs go (and if we run into any unforeseen work that needs to be done). Although I readily admit that we are not perfect we do the best we can to let our clients know before-hand that these things can and most likely will happen. This is also why we let you know that we would start work as much as a week and a half early or late. We made several attempts to contact you before June 10, I am sorry you didn’t get any of our messages. I do understand that this can be frustrating and apologize that it happened to you.

2. It also sounds that you feel you were not sufficiently warned about the possibility of your roof decking being in poor condition. As a roofing professional I also wish that I could see under the shingles and flashing on every roof that I do work on so that I knew exactly what I was getting myself into on each and every job. But that is not the case. The best that we can do is give our clients a warning that it may happen. Sometimes it does, other times the plywood deck is in great shape and no work needs to be done. We can never know until we tear into the roof and inspect the sheathing directly.

I would also like to talk about what hidden charges are and what they are not. A hidden charge would simply be a charge that was known by the roofer before he started the work and not disclosed to the homeowners. When we say “7. No Hidden Charges – We guarantee you won’t be caught by surprise when the final bill comes. We won’t ding you with charges you didn’t expect or bill you for extras you didn’t approve. The price you see is the price you pay.” Obviously we are not stating that we can see all of the possible/unforeseen problems that we may run into on a given job. Every roof is different.

By “no hidden charges” we are stating that we will not charge you for items that should already be included in a standard re-roof or charge extra for upgrades that you did not approve i.e. charge you for a more expensive shingle because “The ones that you wanted were out of stock” etc… The other thing that this states is that we will warn you if we do run into an unforeseen problem with your roof right away rather than choosing to disclose those problems at the end of the job with the final bill so you won’t be surprised when it comes. Every thing you see on your bill will be disclosed up front or as soon as we find the issue as you stated Josh did when he found the decking issue on your home. Per your feedback we have changed the wording to make that more clear for our future clients.

3. Last of all it sounds as if you are unhappy that your roof project took longer than expected. To be quite honest so are we. It is always painful to have a job drag out longer than expected especially when it is due to finding major problems with a clients roof. Our commitment to always do the job right and never cut corners can delay a project. If we ever have the option to save a little time by cutting corners and do a lousy job, reusing defective plywood, not ventilating the home properly or any other thing comes up we have only one policy “if a job is worth doing its worth doing right” and for us that means even if it takes us a little longer.

Before I wrap up, I would like to apologize for something that was our fault and could have been avoided. We couldn’t wrap up the job on time because we were waiting on some parts we needed that should have been ordered when the job was started. That was our mistake and I apologize things fall through the cracks sometimes. However we did seal everything up and let you know there would be no problems if it were to rain anytime before the parts came in. Your roof was 98% done and in no danger of leaking.

I truly am sorry that we could not make you happy I wish you the best of luck!

I hate it that someone has had a bad experience with my company, but we are definitely not perfect so it’s bound to happen.
Thanks for reading,
Tyson

Coeur D’ Alene Roof Replacement – Single Layer Tear Off, Chimney Reflash and Sheeting replacement, CertainTeed Landmark in Georgetown Grey

When this homeowner saw shingles coming off their roof, they contacted us to see what could be done. Unfortunately, this roof was past its life and desperately needed replacing. The tree in front of the home was hanging over and causing issues with debris. There was also an extensive moss problem and some rusting of metal.

Cross
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How To Hire A Roofing Contractor Without Losing Your Shorts

So you need roof work done. The first and most important thing to learn when getting your roof repaired or replaced is how to hire a roofing contractor that will do the job the way you want it, on time, and on budget.

If you look in the phone book or do a quick online search, you’ll first notice that there are no shortage of roofing companies out there. So how do you find the best contractor for you?

First you need to lay out your expectations. What do you want out of your roofing contractor?

  • Do you want him to show up on time, be courteous, and polite? Or do you just want someone to do the work regardless of attitude?
  • Do you want someone to do exactly as they said and what’s best for you? Or is it OK if they just use their judgement in the moment and change things as they please?
  • When it comes to workmanship, do you want the best quality, good quality, or average quality work done on your home?
  • Are you looking for someone to slap a roof on as cheaply as possible or do you want your contractor to take their time and install it the right way?
  • Would you like the contractor to give you a guaranteed price or are you OK with an estimate that could change by the time it’s finished?
  • How long do you expect their workmanship warranty to be? Would you like a 100% lifetime guarantee or are you OK with a 2-10 year warranty?
  • Do you want your whole roof to be 100% guaranteed for life or are you fine with a warranty that only covers a few things for a little while?

Your answers to these questions will determine how hard you’ll have to look to find a contractor that will do what you want. Obviously it’s going to be very easy to find a contractor that will do average work, with an average product, backed up by an average warranty.

Finding a highly skilled and competent contractor that delivers excellence in everything will be a bit tougher. But don’t worry, if that’s what you want you can find them, it just may take a little looking!

How To Screen Roofing Contractors

Here is a list of the best questions you can ask a contractor when you first get himjjj on the phone to see if he’s a serious candidate or just another average roofer.

  1. Are you licensed (by both the state and city) to work in my area?
  2. Are you bonded according to state laws? (In Idaho roofers need a $6,000 bond)
  3. How much are you insured for? ($1,000,000 minimum)
  4. Do you carry workman’s compensation insurance on all your workers?
  5. Can you provide proof of all this at our first meeting?
  6. Can you bring a list of references with phone number of the last 10 jobs you’ve done? (Get the most recent, not the ones cherry picked by the company)

After you get off the phone you’ll likely have a meeting set in place for him to come take a look at your roof. Check for the following things at your first meeting to see if this contractor is a serious candidate.

  • Did they show up on time (or preferably 5 min early)?
  • Did he bring the documents you asked for? (from above)
  • Did he check in your attic to determine sheathing type? (to avoid extra costs after the roof project starts)
  • When he came into your home did he wear boot covers to avoid tracking dirt on your carpets? (This will show you how much he cares about your property)
  • How long was he there? (if he was in and out fast, there’s a good chance he missed some things that will be added into the price later)
  • Did he give you an on-the-spot 1-page estimate? (A quickly sketched 1-page bid or estimate usually does not have enough information in it to know what you’re getting for your money, plus, it’s subject to change)
  • Did he provide any pictures to show you what’s going on up on your roof? (to prove what he’s saying is true)

If you don’t get any red flags from your contractor at this point there’s a really good chance he’s a good candidate to hire.

If you’d like to see how we do things, give us a call at 1-855-766-3278 and we’ll come out and do our Roof Performance Audit for you so you can see exactly what needs to happen to ensure a smooth roofing project.

What You Need To Know About Roof Warranties

When it comes to replacing your roof, you’ve got a lot of things to think about so it’s important to pay the most attention to the things that matter. Roof warranties are one of those things. In most cases, roof warranties are not what they seem and aren’t as good as they may sound. If you get stuck with a bad warranty you could be shelling out a lot of money to repair or replace your roof in the near future if something goes wrong.

The most important thing you need to know about roof warranties is that you actually need TWO of them! If a roofing contractor says “You get a lifetime warranty with your new roof” or “We’ll install a lifetime shingle” be very careful, you may be being misled. If he doesn’t have anything on his contract (in writing) about a workmanship warranty, don’t hire him! That’s a disaster waiting to happen…

You see…the warranty on your shingles is only half of the equation. If anything is found to be defective in the way it was installed, the shingle warranty will not cover it. You must get a workmanship warranty along with the manufacturer warranty to be sure all your bases are covered.

And even then…your warranty may not be that great…

The Fine Print In Shingle Warranties

What you may not realize about a “lifetime” shingle warranty is that they are very limited. First of all, if you have a problem with the shingle in the first 10 years they will only pay for the materials to replace the roof, and the labor to install it. Tear off and disposal is not covered.

Even worse, if you have a problem when the roof is 10 years and 1 day old, the roof warranty will only cover 80% of the material cost, no labor, no tear off, and no disposal. Plus it’s pro-rated down from there 2% per year until it bottoms out at 20% coverage.

To make matters worse, a lot of companies have in their warranties that they will only cover “material defects that result in a leak.” So even if you have missing granules, cracks in the shingles, the color changes, or some other defect, they will cover nothing because it’s not leaking.

As you can see, a “lifetime” shingle warranty is not very impressive.

The Fine Print in Workmanship Warranties

Workmanship warranties are by nature much looser and open to interpretation. Most roofing companies will give you a 1-page estimate that states “10-year workmanship warranty.” The problem with this is that it doesn’t state what is covered. If you have a problem you’ll be at the mercy of the contractor and what they decide they are willing to fix for free.

Here’s a few things that you can bet won’t be covered: Any wall flashings, chimney flashings or other flashings that were re-used that failed. Another one is plastic vents or rubber pipe flashings that crack and are letting water in. Those would be considered “normal wear” items that are worn out.

If you go with a contractor that doesn’t explain exactly what you get with your warranties when you hire them to reroof your home – you better hope that you never have a problem, because the likelihood of anyone fixing it for free is very small.

What’s The Solution?

Because warranties are full of fine print and are inherently hard to understand (on purpose I’m sure), we’ve decided to offer a simple guarantee to our clients that’s unheard of in the roofing world. Quite simply put, with every new roof we install…

“We 100% guarantee that your new roof will have no defects and never leak – for life!”

If you ever have a problem with a shingle defect, no problem we’ll get it fixed (regardless of it leaking or not!). If there is ever a defect in the workmanship we’ve got your back. No matter what, you’re covered 100%

Not only that, but if we install something wrong and your roof leaks, we’ll even pay to fix the interior of your home!

Hands down it’s the simplest, and best, roof warranty in the industry. No fine print to catch you in the end, and no confusing legal mumbo-jumbo to try to trick you into thinking it’s better than it is. And yes, we put it in writing for you to keep in your records.

To get your new roof installed with a 100% Guarantee, call us at 1-855-766-3278 and we’ll take you through our proven Roof Replacement Process.

 

 

How to Ensure You Only Have To Pay For Your Roof ONCE

Replacing the roof on your home should be a one-time deal. To ensure you don’t have any problems you need to find an excellent contractor that will install high quality roofing materials. If you get these two things down you’re almost guaranteed to get a new roof that will last for many years…problem free.

Like you saw in our last letter, the entire roof system is made up of many different parts. Each of these parts works together to form a weather-proof barrier between your home and the outside. If poor quality materials are used during any part, it could create a kink in the system and allow water into your home.

But where do you start? Like anything that you have limited experience with, it can be overwhelming to even think about all there is to learn. So I’m going to break it down as simple as I can. In this short guide I’ll explain which parts of the roof are most critical, and which material is best in that area. I’ll start with the highest priority products first, then work down from there.

#1 Priority – Best Shingles

The shingles on your home will take the brunt of the abuse from the weather. The sun beats down on them every day, the rain and wind work to erode them constantly. Choosing a poor quality shingle will shave years of life off your new roof, and could even give you problems in the near future.

Some shingles are backed by very limited warranties that will only cover you if a roof leak occurs. If the color changes and looks terrible, the shingle cracks, or even if granules fall off, you won’t be covered unless there’s a leak.

Some shingle manufacturers have drastically reduced the weight of their shingles, lowering the amount of asphalt and granules in it to save on shipping and production costs. Other shingles are still heavy, but made with cheaper quality asphalt and fiberglass which will wear out faster in the weather.

The reason we use CertainTeed is because they don’t have any of these problems – their shingles are made of the highest quality materials and backed with an excellent warranty.

#2 Priority – Best Flashings

Faulty flashings are the most common cause of roof leaks, that’s why they come in as the second highest priority, and it could even be argued that they are more important than the shingles themselves. There are several different types of flashings on the roof, the most critical to get right are wall flashings, pipe flashings, and valley flashings.

Wall Flashings

Wall flashings are put in place wherever the shingles run into a wall. These flashings must go up the wall 2″ and extend on the roof 3″. Wall flashings should be painted by the factory to prevent rust and most importantly – MUST be replaced when you get your roof replaced (and a layer of ice & water shield installed behind them). If they are leaking already and your roof reuses them – they will leak even worse because of all the additional nail holes in them. This is one of the most common ways brand new roofs still leak.

Pipe Flashings

Pipe flashings go around each pipe sticking out of your roof. The most common pipe flashings have a steel base with a rubber gasket that seals around the pipe. The problem with these, even though they are very common, is that they start to crack and will let water run into your attic in about 15 years, some as early as 10 years. The best solution to this is to get pipe flashings that are made entirely of metal – no rubber to crack and leak. These metal flashings are usually made of lead and should be painted to match the roof. As long as no one is up there sanding them they are perfectly safe and won’t harm the environment.

Valley Flashing

Valley flashing is critical to ensure a long roof life. The scary part is that the building code doesn’t even require metal to be put in valleys, so as you can imagine a lot of roofers don’t use it.

Here’s why it’s important: A valley is where two roof sides meet together – the flat pieces of plywood meet and make a sharp corner (and in some cases don’t meet all that well). When a piece of shingle is laid across the valley, an air pocket will be created between the shingle and the plywood (since the shingle will be rounded). If someone were to step in the valley or something sharp or heavy were to hit it, it would break the shingle and allow all that water to pour into the home.

Installing a layer of metal under the shingle will make it impossible for this to happen. It will provide a strong support under the shingles so they can’t be broken, plus if anything does happen to the shingle, water will run down the valley metal and off the roof instead of into the home. This is so important since valleys are where all the water gathers and runs, a small hole can create huge problems.

#3 Priority – Best Ventilation

Ventilation is a critical part of the roof system. A roof lacking adequate ventilation will build up heat and moisture in the attic and can lead to mold, damaged or delaminating plywood, and shingles breaking down faster than they should – plus a higher A.C. bill in the summer. There are basically two types of venting – Roof louvers (or roof cans) and Ridge Vent.

Overall ridge vent is a better looking solution, since you can barely see it and you won’t have roof louvers sticking up all over the place. If you get ridge vent, make sure you get one with an external baffle, this will help pull the hot air out of your attic when there’s wind. Without the external baffle a ridge vent’s effectiveness gets reduced 50% if there’s a breeze.

If you have to go with the roof louvers though, it’s best to get metal roof vents, not plastic! Plastic will break down in the sun and can crack and even shatter after only 10-15 years. If this happens a lot of water can get into your home fast, usually without you even knowing about it. Metal vents will solve this problem.

#4 Priority – Best Underlayments (aka felt paper)

Underlayments go down over the plywood and under the shingles. They act as a layer of back up protection after the roof is on, and temporary protection during the install. Like all products, there are all different qualities of underlayments that range in price from cheap to very expensive. And like most things, you get what you pay for. We’ve found the best value of underlayments to be in the mid price range. These are still a very high quality, but not the high cost of the most expensive.

There are two types of underlayments you need on your roof: Ice & water shield and normal underlayment.

Ice & water shield is a super-thick felt paper with a sticky backside that will adhere to the plywood below. This should be installed in all high leak risk areas like your eaves, valleys, and behind all flashings. Going cheap here could end up giving you problems down the road during a big ice dam or other severe weather. CertainTeed’s WinterGuard is a very high quality ice & water shield that is thicker and sticks better than the alternatives. Plus it comes with a warranty.

Regular underlayment goes everywhere else on the roof. The traditional stuff is an organic felt paper that can wrinkle and create bumps in the shingles installed over it if it gets wet. A high quality synthetic underlayment like Diamond Deck solves this problem and will provide excellent back up protection.

With WinterGuard and DiamondDeck alone on a roof you could go over 6 months with no leaks. With shingles and flashings over top this creates an almost invincible roof system that will assuredly keep water out of your home.

#6 Priority – Best Plywood

Plywood is the most common material used for roof decking. While the newer OSB fiber board is much cheaper, it’s also quite a bit weaker. If you’re starting fresh I highly recommend using at least 1/2″ CDX plywood with plywood clips for the roof deck. An alternative would be to move up to a 5/8″ OSB, but I don’t suggest using a 7/16″ OSB for a normal roof deck. Sure it may be cheap, but it’s not very tough stuff.

The one application where using 7/16″ OSB makes sense is if your roof deck is skip sheathing or ship-lap. You can lay a 7/16″ OSB right over top of it to create a strong and flat roof deck to nail the shingles to. This will save money and there are no drawbacks.

Summary

Once again, the materials you choose to be installed on your roof matter greatly, and getting them all right is important to ensure you don’t have to deal with your roof again for a very long time. My goal is to give you the information you need to make a decision about your roof that you can be happy with for a very long time.

What Makes Up A Roof?

The roof over your head is the main thing that keeps the weather out of your home. It’s easy to take it for granted and never think about what your roof actually is. But then you have a problem and all of a sudden it’s on the top of your mind. Which brings up the question…How does my roof keep the water out? How does it work?

The way your roof keeps water out is by systems of redundancy. There are many different systems that make up a roof and each one has a back up, just in case the first one fails. In order to make sure your roof won’t have problems in the future, when you get it replaced you must make sure your contractor installs each system the right way, using the right materials.

Since all the systems in a roof work together to keep the weather out of your home, they must be properly in place. Just one small flaw in the system can make your roof leak, even if it’s brand new.

Here are the systems on your roof and what you need to know about each of them:

Underlayments

This is also called felt paper and is the first thing to be installed on a roof. It goes right over the plywood. There are two types of underlayments: ice & water shield and regular felt paper (or even better, synthetic felt). Ice shield must be installed in all the areas that are potential leak threats. It forms the back-up protection that will keep water out should the top layer fail. These are places like the eaves, valleys, side walls, chimneys, skylights, and around pipe flashings. Then regular felt paper or synthetic underlayment should be installed everywhere else.

Flashings

Flashings are all the areas of the roof where shingles meet something else. Such as a wall, a pipe, a chimney, or a skylight. Since these spots on a roof are the most common areas we see leak, it is critical these are installed right. Things like installing one piece of step flashing and using metal flashings around pipes are very important. Drip edge metal that goes around the perimeter of the roof is also part of the flashing system.

Shingle

This is the top layer of the roof that you can see – the thing most people think of when you mention a roof. The shingles are what give the roof it’s color and looks. Along with the shingles you see there are 2 other types too: starter and ridge cap. The starter goes along the perimeter of the roof (underneath) to help keep water out at all the edges. The ridge cap goes along the peaks and hips of a roof to cover the lines where different sides of a roof meet.

Ventilation

The ventilation system is probably the least appreciated and the most commonly overlooked system of a roof. However, it is critical that the ventilation is working as it should to prevent problems from cropping up in the near future. A lack of ventilation will cause heat and moisture to build up in your attic – damaging plywood, making mold grow, and shortening the lifespan of the shingles.

The Roof System

As you can see the roof over your head is more than just shingles, it’s several different parts that all work together. Here’s a couple examples of how the systems back each other up:

Valleys are the troughs in the roof where two sides meet and all the water gathers together as it runs down the roof. If someone steps in the valley or there is damage in some way Since there is so much water flowing in these areas it’s critical to get them right. The best way to ensure a valley doesn’t leak is to lay 3 layers in every valley – first, a layer of ice & water shield; second, a layer of galvanized metal; third, the shingles over top of it all. This will make them nice and strong and guarantee you don’t have any problems.

Because wall flashings & chimney flashings are the most common areas we see leaks these must be installed with care. To make sure there are no leaks behind your flashings, a layer of ice & water shield should be installed first, and in such a way that will prevent water from getting into the home with that alone. Then the metal flashings installed over top, so if there’s ever a problem with one system, the other will back it up and keep water out.

 

 

How To Protect Yourself From Future Roof Leaks

When replacing or repairing the roof on your home, the most critical part of the project is choosing which roofing contractor to hire. Which materials, understanding the warranties, the process used, are all great things to know and understand before hiring, but by far the most important is WHO is working on your home.

If you’ve never dealt with a bad contractor before, then you may not know what can happen. Unfortunately, however, most homeowner’s who have had even just 1 or 2 projects completed by contractors probably have some stories to tell. Stories that aren’t great.

Even if the project seems to go off without a hitch, here’s some of the things that can happen if your contractor isn’t top-notch…

Roof Leaks Outside Warranty Coverage

It’s common practice for roofing contractors to offer anywhere from a 2-15 year workmanship warranty with a new roof. Obviously, the longer the warranty, the higher the chance of getting someone back to your home (free of charge) if there’s a problem.

However, did you know that some of your roof may not be covered by either the workmanship or the manufacturer warranty?

For example, wall flashings and chimney flashings are the most common area that we see leaking. After all, if something is going to leak it’s going to be at a seam where water runs, not out in the middle of the roof somewhere. If your contractor doesn’t say in writing that he is going to replace all the wall flashings, he’s not going to.

This means that he will reuse your old flashing, which may already be leaking into walls where it won’t show up on the inside of the home. The worst part is, if you do find a leak in the future that’s due to the flashing, it won’t be covered by any warranty. The contractor won’t cover it because it wasn’t part of the workmanship (since he reused it). This means you’ll be paying out of pocket for a problem that should have been solved when the roof was redone in the first place.

That brings me to the next problem that may show up…

Unable To Contact When There’s a Problem

As we’ve discussed earlier, a roofing contractor is on his best behavior before you hire him and give him money. After that, you’re committed and he knows that, so customer service may suffer slightly during the job.

After the job, however, is an entirely different story. At this point you’ve lost all leverage because you’ve paid in full and in the contractor’s mind – The job is done and over with.

If you have a leak in the future you may be surprised to find it’s extremely difficult to get ahold of them and have them send someone out to diagnose the leak. They know they’ll be working for free so your leaking home will be their lowest priority, even though it’s an urgent matter!

Then if you do get a representative to come out, you’ll likely experience the blame game where the contractor will try to avoid doing any work for free, and look for ways to charge you or pass the blame to another source (such as the manufacturer, the old flashings that were reused, etc). The last thing you’ll see is them willing to pay for the interior damage caused by the leak, which technically is probably their fault anyway.

How To Protect Yourself From Future Problems

One of the most reliable ways to protect yourself from this sort of treatment in the future is to cover all your bases and do your due diligence during the hiring process.

Read as many customer reviews as you can about the company, noting the ones where there was warranty work or where a homeowner had a problem – how was it handled?

Be sure to read our guides on avoiding hidden costs and how to compare roofing bids. These will help you see if anything was left out in their bid and if you could get surprised in the future.

Ask the contractor what their workmanship warranty covers. Is it limited? Does it cover any leak that happens? What are the loopholes?

To make it easy for our clients, we offer a 100% Lifetime No-Leak Guarantee with our new roof installs. If there’s a leak, we’ll fix it (and pay for the damage it caused). If there’s a problem with the shingle, we’ll do the leg work to get it fixed by the manufacturer. We are focused on building relationships with our clients, not just having a transaction.