Here at Renovations Roofing and Remodeling, Inc., we are not strangers to having to fix some other contractor’s poorly installed roof.
When you are a homeowner, you expect a new roof to last a number of years. Actually, with some maintenance, it should last beyond 15-20 years. However, it takes the right set of skills, the right people, and the right technique to get the longevity you expect from your roof.
If a contractor cuts corners to make it under the low bid he gave you, your new roof could fail pretty quickly. A new roof is so much more than new shingles. We pride ourselves on our good record and on using the most up-to-date, reliable materials.
Top Roofing Mistakes
There are 4 main ways a contractor could jinx a new roof.
If your roof is improperly installed, you can basically kiss it goodbye. Not to mention all that material and the labor hours you paid for. You could use the highest-end shingle on the market. However, if it’s not installed correctly, the roof can fail.
For a roofing contractor, it is about more than knowing how to install a roof. It is about knowing specific products from specific manufacturers. We have experience with the products we like to use because they work well, and we use them again and again. We know they are reliable.
Cheap or Inadequate Materials
This is what happens when you choose the cheapest bid. You may have received multiple bids and are considering the lowest big. However, consider what a company has to do to get in under a low bid. They have to cut corners somewhere.
A new roof isn’t cheap. Competent workers are not cheap and good materials are not cheap. It may be the roofing contractor you are considering is skimping on the stuff you don’t see: edge metal, sealants, leak barriers, etc.
Trust me. Contractors know how to skimp on stuff. If you are talking to the right company, you will know it, because they will be able to justify why they can’t offer you a low bid. They use the proper amounts of the most reliable roofing material they know of.
Remember: the goal is a sound roof that will last a long time.
We talk a lot about improper ventilation and it’s a big one. Not only will a good roofing contractor be able to maintain proper balance in your attic’s ventilation system, he can probably fix it if it’s not right.
You need a combination of intake, which the cool air entering from under your eaves, and exhaust, which is hot, moist air exiting from some sort of vent near the top of your roof.
Improper ventilation results in your house retaining moisture in the summer months and ice dams in the winter. If you pick a contractor who doesn’t know his attic ventilation – even if the roof is installed correctly – your new roof will fail sooner than later.
Inadequate Joint Protection
Unfortunately, there are contractors who think that flashing isn’t necessary. Flashing is that silver material you see wrapped around your chimney that runs underneath the shingles. It should be installed in all the joints of your roof, which are most vulnerable to leaks.
If you get a contractor who is cutting corners by caulking around a chimney instead of using flashing, you are in trouble. Every chimney needs step flashing and counter flashing. So does a skylight or a wall.
We realize this takes extra skill and labor time and we build it into all of our jobs. Take away flashing and you have a leak and a ruined roof waiting to happen.
These four roofing mistakes are easily avoided by choosing the right contractor and making sure you know about all the steps and materials going into your new roof.
Renovations Roofing and Remodeling, Inc. would be more than happy to answer all your questions. If you live in the Southeast Michigan area, please give us a call.