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Low Pitch Metal Roof Leaking

A lot of homeowners are phasing out their asphalt shingles with metal roofing in the country. Not only does metal roofing rarely break, dent, or crack, but it also has a longer lifespan than your conventional asphalt shingles. Although quite rare, metal roofing can still leak when it’s exposed to a variety of different elements of the weather.

One of the main causes of leaks on metal roofing is the improper installation of mountings and sealants. In most cases, leaks on metal roofing can be easily remedied. However, this does not necessarily mean that this is the sole cause of leaks on your roof.

But before we get into what are some preventive measures that we can do, we have to identify why your metal roof is leaking in the first place.

Why Is It Leaking?

Water damage and leaking are the main causes of damage to your roof. The last thing that you want when your roof is leaking is when mildews, molds, and rusting will form on your roof. In some extreme cases, your roof will warp and sad which is a clear indicator that you will need to replace your roof.

Fluctuating Temperature

Compared to non-metal materials like slate tiles, clay, concrete, or even wooden shingles, metal roofing has a higher thermal expansion coefficient. This means that every time that it is exposed to warm weather, it’s bound to expand. Although it won’t expand more than a few centimeters, this will still create gaps in the nails that are being affixed. Moreover, this can also stress out the sealants that are used on the gaps.

Botched-up Installation  

Even a professional can make mistakes from time to time. Since there are numerous ways to install a roof and rivet in the nails and the adhesives of your roof, there’s bound to be some man-made errors and mistakes that can cause leaks to form on your roof. The best way to remove these leaks is to hire a licensed roofer who specialized in metal roofing.

Preventive Measures

When your roof gets to the point were the damage is irreparable and permanent, the best course of action is to replace your roof. Since the process of replacing your roof can be stressful and time-consuming, it’s recommended that you shouldn’t get to this point. Preventing problems from happening is better than having to remedy and repair the problem.

Installing At The Right Time

Most roofing contractors would suggest installing materials and applying sealants during warmer seasons. Naturally, metal is known for expanding and receding when exposed to fluctuating temperatures. When a metal roof expands and recedes in certain conditions, this can lead to roofing cement and sealants stretching out and causing leaks to form. The best course of action is to hire a licensed and qualified roofing contractor that can seal back these damages.

Additionally, sealants that are exposed to colder weather conditions won’t be able to activate as quickly as sealants in warmer conditions. In fact, some sealants will usually more than a few weeks to activate in colder weather.

Impact-resistant Roofing

Although quite rare, hailstorms can also cause punctures on metal roofing. Compared to shingles that are more vulnerable to impacts and hailstorms, metal roofing is more resistant to the effects of impacts. This, however, does not guarantee that your roof is already immune to damages from hailstorms. One of the best ways to mitigate damages on your roof and your home is to find roofing materials that are impact-resistant. Shingles and metal roofing with a UL 2218 standard are quite resistant to the effects of impacts.

It’s also recommended that you install snow guards if your home is situated in colder parts of the country. Since roofs are susceptible to shifts in weight which can cause leaks to form, having snow guards can help equalize the weight on your roof.

The Right Contractor

Lastly, it’s paramount that we have the right roofing contractor for the job. Most data have shown that leaks that do form on metal roofing are caused by the improper installation of nails, seals, and other mountings of your roof. Having a seasoned and experienced contractor can ensure that any future damages to your roof are mitigated.  

If you’re new to the industry, you can start out by asking questions and doing your own research on the services that a roofing contractor can offer. It’s highly recommended that you don’t hire the first contractor that offers a deal to you; knowing your contractor should be a priority over anything else. After you have contacted a dozen contractors, you will now have a bigger picture of the industry and you will be able to plan on your roof’s installation or replacement.

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What Is An Eave On A Roof

You might notice that most residential homes will have an extra gap that’s protruding out from the roof. An eave is simply the lower edge of a roof that projects beyond the face of the wall. While it might look like a part of a roof that does not serve any purpose other than being aesthetic, eaves play an integral role in keeping your roof and your home’s foundations dry.

Historically, the word itself springs from an Old English ‘efes’ which translates to the word border in the standard English language that we know today. But before anything else, what are eaves and what is its primary function?

What Are Eaves?

Eaves evolved into one of the most common words that we know today – eavesdrop, which was coined from the sound that raindrops make when it passes through the eaves onto the ground. It is also said that one can only hear the sound when he or she happens to be standing too close to the house itself, hearing other private conversations as well.

Aside from its beauty, eaves also serve a practical function as it serves as the intersection point of your roof and attic. This means that it provides a place for insulation just as long as it does not hinder other parts of the roof from doing its purpose. Furthermore, it has a crucial role as it protects the foundation of the overall structure which means that it keeps the moist and cold temperature away from your entire home as it serves between the barrier between your walls and overhangs. It also serves as extra protection for windows as it casts its shadows over it during the changing weather helps maintain the internal balance of your home.

How Is It Built?

It is very important that your home is built with symmetry and that is why the dimensions of your eave should be in proportions with the pitch of the roof. Though roofs are built to be strong to protect you from external factors such as rain and debris, it is just as important to consider the maximum weight that it can support because this determines the way your home system is built.

In general, the steepness of the roof usually requires a narrower eave and vice versa while retaining height of 45% angle to maximize the amount of heat and water that is blocked while allowing sunlight to penetrate your home. If you happen to live in an area wherein it constantly snows, this also works well for you because it allows heat to enter your home without compromising on the eaves’ functionality.

Is it Necessary?

Aside from the aforementioned reasons above, eaves can also be a foundation for a channel to be installed along the sides. This can help lessen the extra weight that tends to accumulate on the roof during the rainy season as it guides where the water should flow and hence encourage proper drainage.

It can, in turn, prevent leaks on the wall since water is now contained in the channels instead of dripping out on the sides where moisture can reside and cause your home materials to decay.  With the water that is properly disposed of, it saves your lawn from turning into mud.

Most homeowners who use a gutter usually store the rainwater to their tanks which helps them reduce their usual consumption which can be beneficial as it serves as a wise financial and environmental investment. The water can be used to flush toilets, water the plants and clean your cars without worrying about the bills.

However, not all houses are built with eaves and that is why some homeowners opt for awnings to provide an extra layer of shade.

Types of Eaves

If you’re not familiar with housing, an eave can come in three different forms: it can be closed, open or boxed. A close eave usually has no roof overhang or side extensions to it while an open eave has the opposite and oftentimes allows its roof beams and brackets to be seen. The third one, which is a boxed-eave, is commonly enclosed with a soffit which is its horizontal underside.

Though it is not necessary, a lot of homeowners go the extra mile by widening their respective eaves so that they can place decorative brackets either in classical style or modern touch to it. With the wide array of designs to choose from, your options can seem limitless at this point.

Either way, this is a sure way to catch anyone’s attention Make sure to reach out to your local roofing contractors to see which type of eaves work best with your home’s current condition. In addition, it also pays to understand how these changes – whether for decorative or practical purposes – may affect the home you’ve always envisioned.

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Ponding On A Flat Roof

Flat roofs are getting increasingly popular among homes and commercial establishments in urban areas. Compared to gable shaped roofs, flat roofs have a unique set of characteristics and a more modernist approach to roofing. However, flat roofs are also vulnerable to ponding, which can be caused by a multitude of different reasons. In most cases, building owners will just let this be, but in the long-run, this could pose serious problems to your flat roof.

But before we get into how we can remedy the issue of ponding on our roof, we have to discuss the effects of ponding. By doing so, we will be able to root out the problem.

Long-term Effects

Sure, a little puddle of rain on your flat rooftop won’t hurt, but in the long run, you’ll be facing with problems. These are the long term effects of ponding on your roof.

Leaks

One of the main causes of damages to roofs is in the form of leaks. If left unattended, leaks could become a major problem for roofs since it will create a wider corridor for water to enter in. Moreover, leaks can lead to several other problems which can also erode the foundations of your home as soon as it seeps inside your roof’s interiors.

Growing Vegetation

One of the more serious tell-tale forms of damages to your roof is growing vegetation. No, we’re not talking about green eco-friendly roofs; we’re talking about harmful fungal and organic growths. Water and moisture are the main catalysts in the growth of molds, mildews, and mosses on your roof which can accelerate the rotting process of wooden beams and other supporting structures on your roof. These organic growths can compromise the integrity of your roof, especially when left unchecked.

If you see mosses, molds, or any form of rotting on your support beams, you should contact your local roofing contractor as soon as possible.

Accumulated Weight

Home and building owners should never ignore water that’s ponding on a roof. Not only will this shorten the lifespan of your roof, but it will accumulate as additional weight. In most cases, the support for flat roofing will be able to take on around 600 – 1000 pounds; anything more than that can place stress on your roof’s supporting structures.

These roofing problems can ultimately lead to a shortened lifespan of your roof. Once the damages to your roof have reached to the point of permanent and irreparable damage, the only best course of action is to replace your roof. Replacing a roof can be an investment that will set you back time-wise and financially. Not only are you spending a week on average in installing a new roof, but you’re also going to be spending thousands of dollars on new materials. It’s best not to get to this point while your roof is still in good condition.

Fixing And Preventing Ponding

Now that we know what are the long-term effects of water damage from ponding on our flat roofs, we have to make the necessary preparations in mitigating any forms of damages. As to what we have discussed previously, prevention is better than getting to the point of permanent damage on your roofs.

Fixing The Lowest Point

Normally, water will always flow towards the lowest part of your roof. This is usually called the ‘low spot’ by most roofing contractors when they’re working on flat roofs. Water will usually pond in this certain area.

You can have a roofing contractor fill up the depression with rolled-up asphalt roofing. First, you’ll need to dry out the puddle before applying a thin sheet of roofing cement. Then, place the asphalt roofing on the center of the low spot while pressing it firmly.

If you’re not up for the task, you can always ask a roofing professional to plaster your roof for you. The roofer will have the necessary tools to fill the low spot and adhere to the slope of your roof.

Fixing Your Drainage System

Another cause of water ponding on your roof is that the drainage system or your gutter system has been clogged. You can have a roofing specialist look into your drainage system. It’s best to keep a constant eye on your drainage pipes year-round to reduce damages from leaks and ponding.

If there are trees near your roof, it’s recommended that you keep the foliage of these trees at a distance from your roof since dead leaves, branches, and other debris could clog up your drainage system.

Adjusting The Pitch

Normally, flat roofs are installed with at least a pitch of 0.5/12 or 1/12 just to make sure that the water will flow towards one direction of the roof. There are some cases that contractors don’t put this into account and would install a roof without a pitch. If this is the case, then there is a serious problem and you should contact your roofing contractor as soon as possible.  

However, there is a remedy to this problem and most contractors will offer the solution of having tapered insulation to provide a slope to your flat roof. These aren’t the cheapest solution, but this will help you save money in the long run when you won’t need to replace your roof.

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Questions To Ask Your Roofer

In almost every case, we hire professionals because we don’t necessarily have the proper skills, training, and equipment to do something that’s difficult. Although there are some parts of your roof that you can maintain and repair by yourself, fixing a roof should be left to seasoned experts and professionals. Additionally, a roofing contractor will have the right tools and safety equipment to ensure that your roof will be in good condition once it is installed and repaired.

Since you’re looking for a roofing company that can offer its services, the first rational thing to do is to ask questions. If you’re new to the roofing industry, you’ll need to first paint a picture of how much each material will be, how these contractors will operate, and the average cost for each service.

Most homeowners will jump to the first deal that’s offered to them, but this can easily backfire if they are not aware of the quotes and skills of the contractors. What are some questions that we have to ask our roofers? First, we have to look at the key skills that we have to look at in a roofing contractor.

Hiring The Right Contractor

If you’re new to the roofing industry, you’ll be surprised at how stressful and time-consuming installing a roof can be. Logically, if you don’t have any base knowledge in a certain industry, we have to ask questions first. In the same analogy, when we are interviewing someone for a job, we have to ask the right questions. Numerous homeowners will hire the first contractor that offers their services without doing any background research and investigation first. In reality, we have to always make sure that the person working on our roof is licensed and qualified.

It doesn’t hurt to contact some previous clients of the contractor first so see the product of their projects. If a contractor has long-term clients and workers, this is a good sign that they have been regularly working with clients for years.

Questions That You Should Ask

These are the questions that you should be asking your contractor. It might seem like a lot of questions, but you have to remember that they will be working on your home.

How Long Have You Been Working As A Roofer?

If a roofing company has been around for more than 10 years, then it’s a good sign that they have clients that have been commissioning their services for decades. Likewise, this will also mean that the roofers for that company have the necessary skills and experience that they have accumulated for years.

Will I Be Insured?

Even though a roofer might have decades of experience in the industry, this does not guarantee that they will not make any mistakes. It’s paramount that you will be ensured that any man-made errors and future damages to your roof that might be caused by a botched-up installation will be covered by insurance. One thing that you can do is to contact the insurance firm that’s connected with the company and what this will cover

Do You Have A Portfolio?

Aside from contacting the previous clients of the roofer, you’ll also need to look at their previous works. This will give you a good understanding of what they specialize in and what type of materials they usually work with.

What Are The Tools That You Use?

A professional roofer should be equipped with a complete set of tools that are needed for your roof. They should have the following tools for the job:

  1. Caulking Tool
  2. Measuring Tape
  3. Roofing Nail Gun
  4. Air Compressor
  5. Tin Snips
  6. Roofing Hammer
  7. Extending Ladder
  8. Broom
  9. Truck
  10. Roofing boots and shoes
  11. Other tools

Additionally, a roofer must have the necessary safety equipment to make sure that they are safe from any potential hazards on the roof. The last thing that you want is an injured worker on your roof.

Work Ethic And Professionalism

It might be true that the project that a roofer will finish will speak for itself, but you will also have to look into the attitude of the roofer when they are operating. Are they punctual and on time? Are they following your instructions? In almost every profession in any industry, integrity and professionalism are needed in building rapport with the client. It’s only professional that they will respect your time and effort. Installing and replacing a roof can be a huge investment and it’s only appropriate that you also have a qualified roofer that is also committed.

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The Right Roofing Contract Terms and Conditions

Finding a contractor with a good reputation is easy: ask a few friends and a name is sure to pop up right away. While it is only fair not to discredit these recommendations, it is just as important to get to know who you are working with and what contract you enter in. This is very important as it protects you and the other parties involved should anything goes wrong with the project and with its output.

Looking For A Good Contractor?

Materials

Any legal document can be daunting for most of us but when it comes to roofing installation or maintenance, the materials to be used should be highly considered as it determines not just the cost but its durability as well. Make sure that every material is jotted down in the contract as this also allows you to look into complementary renovations in the future.

Project Timeline

Once the materials are ready, it is now the appropriate time to look into the timeline of the project’s duration. This ensures that the crew is bound to follow a specific schedule which includes the number of hours the crew should render in a day (their logged time in and out) and other concerns such as working beyond a certain time. In addition, this also ensures that a special consideration shall be laid out in case of a delay to prevent unnecessary misunderstanding between the parties.

Cost and Payment Plans

If there is one thing that is sure to fuel a transactional fire, it’s one thing – added expenses. These costs can be due to events that are beyond anyone’s control such as an emergency, an accident or simply a miscalculation of the costs. This can be frustrating as it begs the question of whose shoulder should be held liable. Fortunately, most homeowners and other clients can save themselves the dilemma by clearly stipulating it in the contract. These serve as a guide on the next step should a crisis arise during the project.

Plan B – Changes

Sometimes, a perfectly laid out plan can seem like a nightmare once a simple thing that needs to be changed leads to a domino effect which in turn can lead to a maze of confusion.  Unforeseen damage to the roof may require a different level of care, materials or may ultimately change the time frame that it needs for the roof to be up and functioning. These cases can definitely make us fret but change is not a bad thing either as long as clients are fully aware of the necessary deviations from the original plan with the least impact on the projected timeline.

Warranty

Though professionals work with the utmost care, a few debris here and there may inevitably fall to the ground from time to time and affect the beauty of your garden or the clean cuts of your lawn. The property damage does not ever compensate for the sturdiness of your roof and this is precisely why a good warranty should be found in the contract as there are always steps on how to deal with these damages.

Home Access

It is quite understandable that most homeowners do not feel comfortable with letting anyone inside their homes for security measures. However, the crew should be allowed access with entry limitations. It is then relevant to keep the crew oriented on the areas where they are allowed to pass to avoid trespassing.

Accreditation

What use is a highly detailed contract if the contractor he or she is unlicensed? It is true that a piece of ID does not equate to one’s skills but it is always better to be working with someone that is highly credible in their field of work as it ensures a quality outcome. Furthermore, each state has its own legal guidelines so it is highly recommended to check it out to see whether or not the contractor is in compliance with the said regulatory principles.

The inconvenience of going through a contract with its seemingly endless definitions of legal terms and conditions may be overwhelming for a lot of clients who have no experience in it but this is quite significant as it saves and prevents you from the long-term nuisance that may be more difficult to handle. It is always suggested to go through the contract twice or more to ensure that each term is well understood and as with any other documents – don’t forget to read the fine print before signing.

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