frequently asked questions

How do i know if i need a new roof?

You can usually look for cracks, peeling and any spots where the roof is leaking. If in doubt call a roofer for an inspection.

What are my options if I decide to reroof?

You have two basic options. You can choose a complete replacement of the roof system which involves a tear-off of the old roof, or a re-cover over the existing roof which involves only the installation of a new membrane and surfacing. If you've already had one recover over your original roof, check with a professional roofing contractor to see if your deck can support a second recover.

Why does a roof need ventilation?

Ventilation helps remove the heat that builds up during the summer months and helps reduce moisture buildup under your roof. This helps your roof and shingles last longer by preventing the rooting of the wood and curling or distortion of your shingles.

How can I recognize when a roof has problems?

All too often, roof problems are discovered after leaking or other serious damage occurs. Periodic (twice-a-year) inspections can often uncover cracked, warped, or missing shingles, loose seams and deteriorated flashings, excessive surface granules accumulating in the gutters or downspouts, and other visible signs of roof problems. Indoors, look for cracked paint, discolored plasterboard, and peeling wallpaper as signs of damaged roof areas.

My roof leaks. Do I need to have it totally replaced?

Not necessarily. Leaking can result because some flashings have come loose or because a section of the roof has been damaged. A roof failure, however, is generally irreversible and results from improper installation or choice of materials, or from the installation of a roof system inappropriate to the building.

How long can I expect my roof to last?

The condition and lifespan of your roof will depend on the type of roof you have, the effects of your local environment, and the maintenance which the roof has received. (Inquire about our new Mallard Maintenance Program) According to the American Society of Home Inspectors, asphalt shingles generally last 15-20 years; wood shingle/shakes, 10-40 years; clay/concrete tiles, 20+ years; slate, 30-100 years; metal roofing, 15-40+ years. Roofing product manufacturers offer a variety of warranties on their products. Take a close look at those warranties to see what responsibilities and financial obligations they will assume if their products fail to reach their expected lifetimes.

Things I should tell my roofing contractor prior to my new roof installation?

Tell the contractor if you have any leaks and where they are, if possible. Not all roof leaks are “roof leaks”. i.e Stucco cracks in the parapet walls are not in his scope of work and they can, and most often, leak. If you have a leak after having your new roof installed and it is found that the source of the leak is deemed to be something other than the roof that he installed, he will likely charge you a trip charge, and your leak will still not be fixed. This is very frustrating to both the homeowner and contractor.

What is the best roof for me?

There are many different roof types. Choosing the right one for you depends on many factors

  • What type of roof do you have now?
  • How much do you have to spend?
  • Where do you live?
  • Do you need an insulating factor?

This is best addressed with your roofing contractor. You should be sure to ask questions such as:

  • What types can I put on?
  • What’s the difference between them? How long will it last?
  • Does it have an insulation value, and if it does, what is it?
  • How long is my warranty?
  • What does it cover? Is it Your Warranty?
  • Is it a manufactures warranty?
  • Is a roof maintenance program included?
  • Who will cover my warranty if you go out of business?

I'm getting a new underlayment on my tile roof. should I replace the tiles?

This depends on how old your tile is. If you have really old tile, it is sometimes really hard to find tile to match. Roof tiles are like floor tiles- they make a style for a while, and then they discontinue it. This make it hard to find replacements. Keep in mind no matter how good the tile guys are they will break tile there is no way around this. There is some good news a lot of times it doesn’t cost much more to replace the tile as well. Reason is because the bid includes removing and replacing the tile so the replacement might as well be for the new tile so you will be looking at the cost of new tile and a disposal fee for the old.

Is a metal roof hot?

Metal reflects 70% of the sun's energy. This minimizes heat retention and as a result less heat is transferred into the building's structure. Metal roofing offers a similar effect on R-11 insulation on top of the roof during sunny day conditions.

Do I need to remove my existing roofing material?

One of the benefits of metal roofing is that it is lightweight, which allows it to be installed over existing roofing material. However, the answer to this question ultimately depends on your local building code requirements and the condition of your current roof's substructure.

How often should I have my gutters cleaned?

You should clean them at least twice a year. If you have many trees in the area of your home, you should clean them three to four times a year.

Should I worry about ice dams?

Ice dams occur when snow or ice on the roof melts and flows to the bottom of the roof; it then refreezes and causes the water behind it to build up. This water then will often find a way into your home underneath shingles and in cracks. This can lead to extensive water damage. You should be concerned about ice dams if you have a roof in a colder climate with a very low pitch or have an older poorly insulated home. If you think you have a problem, consult a local roofer for easy solutions.