Winter Is Here: 4 Steps To Protect Your Metal Roof

Winter is finally here. If you haven’t already winterized your metal roofing, it’s time to take care of that. Winter weather can wreak havoc on your roof. Before you start hanging up your holiday decorations, take the time to winterize the roof. Taking a few precautionary measures will help avoid wintertime roofing emergencies. Here are four simple steps you can take to get your roof ready for winter.

Do a Visual Inspection

The best way to keep track of your roof is to conduct a visual inspection from the ground. Looking at the roof from the ground will give you the opportunity to get a clear view of the entire surface. If you live in a region that experiences heavy snow fall, you should take care of the visual inspection before the first snowfall of the season. For your metal roof, you’re going to be looking for signs of rust, dents, mold, or algae growth. If you see any of these signs, you need to contact your roofing contractor as soon as possible.

Clean the Gutters

You might not think that your rain gutters would have anything to do with winterizing your roof, but they do. If fact, your rain gutters are among the first line of defense for your roof. Before the winter rains and snow arrive, make sure your gutters are clean and in good repair.

Use a whisk broom to sweep away the debris. Next, use your garden hose to wash your gutters. Rinse until the water runs clean through the downspouts. Clean water means that all the dirt, mud and debris is gone. Finally, check for damage. If you see any cracks in your gutters, dry the area. Apply a layer of waterproof caulking around the damaged area. Place a piece of heavy-duty aluminum foil over the caulking and seal the area with an additional layer of waterproof caulking.

Prune Those Trees

If you have mature trees in your yard, and they are growing near your home, you need to prune the top branches before winter arrives – especially the branches that are resting on your roof. Branches that are resting against your home can cause extensive damage to your roof, especially during a wind storm. They also provide easy access to rodents, which can damage your roofing and get into your home.

Call the Professionals

Now that you’re winterizing your roof, you should call the professionals. They can take care of any last-minute repairs that will need to be made. Leaving your roof in disrepair through the winter can leave you with costlier repairs to deal with later.

Don’t hang up your holiday lights until you winterize your roof. Use the tips provided here to protect your roof from winter damage. Be sure to talk to your roofing contractor about other ways to protect your metal roof during the winter. 

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Three Tips For A Leak-Free Holiday Season This Year

For a lot of people, home is where the holidays matter the most. Your home’s roof is one of the most important things that you need to make sure to care for during the winter months if you want to remain stress-free during the holiday season and into spring. As long as your roof is sound and not in need of immediate replacement, focus on avoiding any problems with leaks during the cold winter months. Here are 3 tips for a leak-free season.

1.) Keep Santa, his sleigh, those reindeer, and your own boots off the roof.

It’s mighty tempting to put Santa and his sleigh or some cheerful little reindeer on your roof to decorate for the holidays, but that’s also a great way to damage your roof. While there are plenty of items marketed for roof decoration, your roof really isn’t set up for them. The extra weight alone of some items can put unnecessary strain on your roof.

Walking around on your roof while you try to position and stabilize your ornamentation can also rub the granules off the shingles and lessen their effectiveness. You may also accidentally pull up shingles by attaching the ornamentation the wrong way, especially if a good winter wind comes along and tugs at everything. Screwing bolts to secure the ornaments means literally putting a hole in your roof, which can later lead to leaks. 

Instead, stick to ornamentation, like lights, that can be attached to your gutters with clips (never nails) and keep the heavier ornaments or figures that need to be secured with cords or bolts on the ground where they’re safer to work with and can’t damage your roof.

2.) Do a little advance holiday shopping and buy yourself a practical gift you can really use.

If you don’t own a telescoping roof rake, you should. These can help you remove snow from your roof, especially along the edges as the snow starts to slide down. You don’t want to scrape the roof totally clean when you use one (again, to protect the granules on your shingles from damage), but reducing a thick pile-up down to 2-3 inches will help keep your gutters and drains clear of ice as the snow melts and refreezes.

3.) Have a roofing contractor take a quick peek at your roof if you are seeing any signs of leakage.

If you weren’t having any problems with leaking prior to the winter season, sudden wet spots or dripping anywhere under your roof and into an attic or other space (like the corners of our rooms where walls meet) is a case for concern. It could be an easy repair, like fixing or replacing flashing along the seams of your roof that’s gotten tugged loose by weather. That could prevent you from a much bigger problem come spring

Also, keep in mind that if your roof does experience a major problem this winter, roofing companies are able to do inspections, repairs, and even full replacements during winter. It could be necessary to protect your investment and keep the holidays bright.

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3 Characteristics That Make Metal Roofing a Superior Choice for Harsh Winters

Although the roofing material that you use can have a big effect on your energy usage during the hot summer months based on whether it retains or reflects the sun’s heat, you may not know that it can also have a big impact in winter and that this can actually be more important than the summer impact when you live in a cold climate. If you have long harsh winters in your area but you don’t have long hot summers, your roof’s winter characteristics may be one of the most important things about it. Here are three characteristics of metal roofing that make it a good choice in areas that have harsh winters.

Metal roofing can self-clean

Because metal roofing doesn’t grab onto snow and ice like asphalt shingling, which is more textured, the snow can easily slide off of a metal roof and eliminate the need for snow removal. This means you won’t have to worry about snow piling up on your house and caving the roof in after a big blizzard, even if you live in the North near Canada.

This slipperiness also means that you could have snow dumped on you when you’re walking under the eaves of your roof, so if you’re worried about large amounts of snow engulfing you when this happens, you can easily have snow guards installed. Snow guards, depending on their design, generally either retain snow so you can choose when it comes down or break up large sheets of snow into smaller quantities before it falls to the ground.

Metal roofing can reduce ice dam leaks

If you’ve ever had an asphalt roof in the winter, you may know that it’s prone to ice dam leaks. These are caused by snow building up on the roof, insulating the roof so that any heat that escapes from the house is trapped with the bottom layer of snow. This layer then melts, and the water that’s held in place by the rest of the snow and ice can more easily find its way up under your shingles because it has nowhere else to go. Metal roofing is less prone to this because the snow slides off the roof rather than staying there and trapping in heat.

Metal roofing is more likely to hold up to wind

Metal roofing has been rated as one of the most wind-safe types of roofing. It’s still possible for strong winds to rip a metal panel off your roof, but it’s much less likely. You can make it even less likely by using strong, wind-safe fasteners like rink shank roofing nails, which make it even less likely for your roofing to part company with your roof deck. Whether your wind comes in the form of a winter storm or as a summer thunderstorm or even hurricane, metal roofing can be more reliable and less vulnerable than asphalt.

These characteristics show that metal roofing can be great in the wintertime as well as in the summertime. Year-round benefits can add up to a major advantage if you switch to metal at your next roof replacement.

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Hire A Roofing Contractor For These Jobs In Advance Of Putting Your Home On The Market

In advance of listing your home on the market, hiring a roofing contractor for some work can lead to favorable results. Although there is an up-front cost to this work, it may help you sell your home for more money, as well as encourage quicker offers once your property is up for sale. Prospective buyers are often leery about roof issues, so having a contractor complete the following jobs prior to your home going up for sale can make people confident in submitting an offer. Beyond tasks such as replacing a worn-out roof, here are some jobs that your roofer can do for you.

Install New Gutters

If the gutters along the edge of the roof are in poor shape, they’re apt to be noticed by a prospective buyer or a home inspector. This could cause a buyer to avoid making an offer, or to offer less money than your listing price. You can avoid such complications by having your roofing contractor install new gutters. Even from the ground, it’s easy to tell that a home has new gutters. They’ll be devoid of mildew and plant matter, as well as dents, and will be securely fastened to the house. As an extra incentive to buyers, have the contractor install gutter screens. These valuable devices keep leaves out of your gutters, eliminating the need for annual cleanings. This is something that many buyers will view favorably.

Check The Insulation Level

The better insulated an attic is, the less heat will escape from the home during the winter months. When you’re selling your home, it’s ideal to have your roofing contractor check the insulation level and add insulation, if needed. You can count on a home inspector assessing the insulation level and reporting back to the prospective buyer, so ensuring that the attic has the right amount of insulation will be good news for those considering your home.

Monitor Air Flow Through Vents

There are a number of vents that allow the air to flow between your attic and the exterior of your home. It’s a good idea to have your contractor inspect these vents to ensure that the air is allowed to flow properly. In some cases, birds can build nests around the vents, which impedes the flow of air. It’s better to address such an issue proactively, rather than have it be discovered during a home inspection and then scramble to get the work done. When a home inspector sees that your vents are in proper shape, it can be a sign that you’re meticulous about maintaining even the small things in your home.

For more information and assistance with repairing your roof, contact contractors in your area or visit websites like http://www.rainydayexteriors.com to get in contact with professionals.

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Putting Christmas Lights around Your Home? Clean Algae off Your Asphalt Roof First

If you are planning to put up Christmas lights, you should consider cleaning your asphalt roof to remove algae first. Your lights will draw people’s eyes up, and they will see your roof. If you have a lot of lights hanging, people may notice them during the day. Your lights will look even more beautiful if they are hanging off a clean roof. Below are some tips on how you can get rid of algae so you can have a beautiful home this Christmas.

Clean Algae

If you have black streaks on your roof, you have algae growing on it. This is often caused by water sitting on the roof after it rains. Algae spores from nearby roofs can also be spread to your roof by the wind, and, once the spores get on your roof, they will start to grow.

Before you start cleaning your roof, make sure it is not under warranty. If it is, you can void the warranty if you clean the roof on your own. The warranty papers may state you must have a professional clean your roof.

If you don’t have a warranty, then one of the best ways you can remove the algae is by using a pressure washer. You should use a wand that is approximately at a 35-degree angle. Attach the wand and put a cleaning solution made to remove algae for asphalt roofs into the pressure washer. A 50/50 mixture of bleach and water works well too.

It is important that you pressure wash at an angle as applying direct pressure on the shingles can damage them.

Wear shoes that have non-slip, soft soles so you do not slip and so the shoes will not damage the shingles. Climb up on the roof and start at the highest point on your roof. Set the pressure washer on the lowest setting and start washing downward in the direction of the shingles. Wash a section at a time until the entire roof is clean. If you have stubborn areas, you can hold the wand a little closer to see if the algae will peel off.

Prevent Algae from Coming Back

You cannot 100% prevent algae from coming back, but there are some things you can do to help prevent it. First, trim any tree branches that hang over your roof. This allows more sunlight to shine on the roof to dry it quicker after it rains.

Use a leaf blower to remove debris from the roof. Leaves and other debris sitting on the roof can obstruct airflow and hold in moisture. Keep your gutters clean so water will drain from the roof.

A roofing contractor like Allen Roofing & Construction Inc can give you more information about cleaning your asphalt shingles and, if the algae damage is extensive, can advise you on repairs or replacement.

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Small Siding Problems Could Indicate Larger House Issues

Have you noticed warping or cracks in your home’s siding lately? If so, have a siding or roofing contractor (roofing contractors often work on siding as well) to take a look at what’s happening. It’s always possible the cause is something minor, but many times, those small siding problems are symptoms of a larger problem with your home.

Shifting Foundation and Soil

Possibly the scariest scenario is that the cracks, warping, and other siding damage are due to the foundation of the house shifting because there is something wrong with it or because the soil around it is unstable. This is not something you can ignore; the longer you let it go, the worse it can become. If you suspect the foundation or soil is to blame — look for doors that are not closing properly or that no longer fit well inside the frame, for example — get foundation contractors and a landscape engineer out to your house quickly.

Aggressive Critters

Sometimes the house is fine, but your animal neighbors are not. Tiny holes in siding due to the house settling can serve as entry points for mice looking for shelter; larger creatures can gnaw on the siding to enlarge the hole. Bats, rats, raccoons, and more can set up nests inside the gap between the siding and the rest of the house, and their movements while in that gap can make the siding shift and crack more. You need to have a pest control company that works with outside animal pests take care of this situation, and then have the siding replaced by reputable contractors.

Defective Installation

It is possible that the siding is beginning to crack and warp because it just wasn’t installed properly or because the materials were defective, and unless you’ve noticed evidence indicating the problem is related to the foundation, soil, or animals, this is a fairly likely explanation for any damage. But you need to check out not only the siding but any other work that company or contractor has done before. Defective materials and installation can be a one-time issue, but sometimes it’s not. If the same company that installed your siding also installed your roof, trim, or other features, have another roofing contractor take a look at the work to see if he or she can spot anything out of the ordinary.

If you’re not sure where to start, contact a contractor who works with siding, like one from CNY Roofing Co, and have him or her take a look. Also go around your home looking for problems with doors, for example. With that information in hand, you’ll have a better idea of what to do next.

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3 Flashing Mistakes That Could Damage Your Roofing System

Flashing is one of the most important components of your roofing system. It is responsible for creating a barrier that prevents water from leaking through the roof. Unfortunately, mistakes made during the installation and upkeep of the roof can cause the flashing to be less than effective. Here are some of the most common mistakes that can occur with your roof’s flashing. 

Improperly Securing the Flashing

One of the most vulnerable spots on your roof is the point at which the flashing ends. If the flashing is not properly secured, it can start to rise and allow in water. If you live in a rainy area, this could prove to be especially problematic.  

Before securing the flashing, you have to ensure that the seams are properly aligned. The single-ply flashing can then be securely welded to the surface or glued. If not, the flashing could lead to blow-offs. You could even face municipal fines because there are building codes that dictate how well the flashing has to be secured.  

Re-Using Flashing

In an effort to save money, some homeowners attempt to reuse some parts of the roofing system. Although there are some parts that you might be able to reuse, the flashing should not be.  

During the removal of other parts of the roofing, the flashing is typically rolled down to remove it. When the flashing is rolled down, it often becomes misshapen. As a result, if you reuse it, you will have trouble with attempting to secure it. The problem could even make it difficult to place the shingles in place.  

The misshapen flashing is also more likely to blow off, which could mean water flooding into your home during a storm. Always replace the flashing to avoid this issue.  

Using Single-Piece Flashing in the Wrong Places

Single-piece flashing seems like an easier method of covering areas of your roof, but it can sometimes create bigger problems. For instance, whenever one part of the flashing raises due to high winds, the whole piece is left vulnerable. Instead of replacing or repairing a small panel of flashing, you have to take care of the entire single-piece.  

Single-piece flashing also does not allow for water to drain from the roof the same way as other flashing methods, such as step flashing. When water accumulates on a single-piece flashing roof, the water tends to pool up near the point where the roof meets the wall, which pushes water into your home. 

To avoid these mistakes and many more, work with a roofing contractor from a company like Pyramid Roofing Inc.

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How Hail Can Damage Your Roof, And What You Can Do About It

When you hear hail hitting your roof, it’s not okay to assume your roof can easily handle it. Hail can definitely damage a roof. It can also damage anything else on the roof. You should know a little about how hail works, and what you can do about it before, or after, it hits your roof.

What Determines the Damage Caused by Hail?

An average hailstorm may not cause you any roof damage at all. It depends on several factors that come with the hail.

  • Wind speed and direction
  • Hail size and density
  • Natural barriers, landscape features, and other tall objects
  • Roofing material and age

For example, small, pebble-sized pieces of hail falling gently on your shingles may not do much of anything. Hail of the same size driving into your roof because of gale force winds can do a lot more damage. Keep in mind that hailstones have irregular shapes, sharp edges, and can become as large as a baseball.

How to Tell if You Have Hail Damage

You may already have hail damage and don’t know it. This is a dangerous situation, as your roof is already weakened. Unfortunately, it’s not always easy to tell if hail is the cause of your roof damage or not. It can cause

  • missing shingles,
  • dents,
  • patternless damage,
  • or broken shingles.

These can also represent signs of damage from other sources. However, it’s important to know if it’s from hail or not, especially if you plan to file an insurance claim. You can also check online for images or videos of hail damage.

Check around for signs of hail damage around the home itself. Look for stripped trees, damaged outside furniture, and any other signs of damage. These can indicate that any roof damage you see is, in fact, from hail.

What You Can Do to Protect Your Roof from Hail Damage

Knowing the factors that contribute to damage can give you ideas on how to mitigate possible hail damage.

Keep your roof in good shape – Always make sure you have your roof inspected, repaired, and maintained by a professional.

Speak to your insurance company – Insurance companies have many ideas on how to deal with hail damage. Speak to yours and see what they suggest. Of course, if you just experienced a hailstorm, you should call them immediately to report it.

Update your roof cover – Some roofing materials handle hail better than others. You should consider impact-resistant roofing materials if you’re in an area prone to hailstorms.

Call your roofing handyman – Call a local roofing professional and ask their opinion. A professional roofer can help you figure out if you have hail damage on your roof. They can also help you figure out what you can do about it going forward.

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How to Easily Spot Hail Damage on Your Roof After a Storm

If a hail storm has just come through your area, one of the first things you need to do when it is safe enough for you to go outside is check your roof for hail damage. If your roof has hail damage, you will want to file a claim with your homeowner’s insurance company right away so that they can process your claim and fix your roof. Here is what you need to look for to determine whether your roof actually has hail damage before you contact your insurance company.

#1: Black Spots on Your Roof

If you have shingles on your roof, one of the signs that they have been damaged are round black spots dotting your entire roof. These spots will look round because the hail hit the shingle hard enough to wear away the top layer of the shingles and expose the bottom layer of your shingles. It will kind of look like your roof has chickenpox all over it.

#2: Worn-Off Granules

Hail is really strong and can cause all different types of damage to your roof. One of the things that hail does is rub granules off of your roof tiles. This accelerates the wear process of the tiles on your roof and shortens the overall life of your roof. Once the granules are gone, the top layer of protection is gone from your roof and other damage will soon follow. This can be one of the hardest signs of hail damage to spot, but it is also one of the most important things to look for because it can accelerate normal wear and tear damage to your roof that your insurance company will not cover.

To see whether the granules are worn out, you may need to get up on your roof. Look at the tiles and see whether you can see loose granules. Also, take a peek inside of your gutters. If the hail storm loosened the granules on your roof, you should see lots of granules washed off and in your gutters as well.

#3: Soft Spots

Finally, if you get up on your roof and inspect it, be sure to touch the tile and see how it feels. When you touch the shingles on your roof, you may be able to feel the indention on some of your shingles. When you touch the roof, the shingles may also feel soft and like a sponge.  

If you spot the three signs of wear on your roof following a hail storm, the most likely culprit for the damage that you see is the storm that just passed. When you spot one or more of the signs of hail damage above, it is a smart idea to file a homeowner’s insurance claim so that your roof can be repaired. If you fail to file a claim, the damage could accelerate normal wear and tear and end up costing you even more when the roof needs to be repaired, with the cost coming out of your pocket. 

Visit sites like http://www.denverroofing.net/ to find roofing contractors near you. 

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Worried About Your New Skylight Leaking? Know How To Prevent It

If you have an interior room in the middle of your home without any windows, a skylight is a wonderful way to bring natural light into a room that wouldn’t ordinarily be able to get it. Unfortunately, many homeowners still shy away from skylights because they have once had a history of leaking. Skylights have come a long way from how they used to be, with there being many ways to prevent leaks from occurring. Here is how you can do it.

Install A Rubber Membrane Underlayment Around The Skylight

A rubber membrane underlayment is a way that you can install an additional protective barrier around the skylight, which will help prevent leaks. The rubber membrane is essentially a thick layer of rubber that is cut into thin strips to be used just like flashing. It’s installed around your skylight, and its sole purpose is to act as a waterproofing measure. You can always use a rubber membrane underlayment with additional materials, such as metal flashing, for improved protection from leaks.

Install A Raised Window Casing To Improve Drainage

It’s common for water to get stuck around a skylight’s window casing edges. The solution to this problem is to have a roofing contractor install the skylight in a way where the window casing is raised off the roof. This can help create an area for water to run off the side by using a slope that causes the water to drain much easier.

Keep in mind that a raised window casing will require more interior work to drywall around that larger area, but it could be worth it if the improved drainage helps prevent those leaks from occurring.

Install Flashing In Steps Around The Skylight

Step flashing is a method that requires installing the flashing similar to shingles. Each piece of flashing is overlapped as it is installed on the casing of the window. When used with the rubber membrane underlayment, it provides a lot of protection from water leaks.

While these are only three ideas to prevent leaking, a roofing contractor can provide you with more assistance with ensuring that your new skylight won’t leak. Consider scheduling a consultation with a local roofing contractor, such as those found at DiRoma Roofing, to find out your options. They can give you a price to install the skylight, as well as go over additional options for water proofing to choose from. 

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About Me

Hi, my name is Craig, and this blog is for anyone who needs to know about roofers and roofing. When I needed a new roof on my office building, I wasn't sure what type of roof I needed. I wanted a roof that would be energy efficient, but I also wanted to stay within my business budget. Before choosing the roofing materials, I talked with several roofing contractors and other business owners about the different kinds of roofing materials that are available. After doing extensive research, I selected a roof that wouldn't cause the electric bill to be sky high, and it was also one that I could afford. If you have questions about the various types of roofs and you're not sure which kind to choose, I hope that my blog helps to make your decision easier.

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