If your roof has a leak, you’ll be doing yourself a huge favor by contacting a professional right away to repair or replace your roofing system. You most certainly need to get the work done before the next storm hits. Ideally, your roofer should be able to make short work of patching up simple roofing ailments–jobs that can be done quickly and with as little disruption as possible to your usual schedule.
However, a full-on roof repair or replacement project involves a more complex process than you may originally have thought. Roof repairs often require more than just sealing gaps, just as roof replacements involve more than simply tearing away your old shingles and nailing down some new ones. These days, reliable roofing involves the use of innovative material technology and a systematic approach aimed at protecting your most important investment—your home.
Repairing or replacing your roof often requires a major financial commitment. That’s why understanding the process from start to finish can be highly beneficial to you as a homeowner. From questions about roof inspections to identifying some installation pitfalls to watch out for, you need to familiarize yourself with a lot of information to ensure a successful upgrade without costly surprises along the way.
How Important Is It to Follow a Proper Roofing Process?
The integrity and performance of your roofing system rely heavily on three important factors: the quality of materials used, the design and construction, and proper installation. You should know how to balance these three factors to guarantee a successful roofing project. Omit or fail to consider any of these factors, and the function and safety of your roof will be compromised.
Some homeowners make the mistake of purchasing high-quality materials, only to entrust the installation to an amateur, or worse, take the DIY route in an attempt to save a few dollars on labor. Doing so can lead you to spend even more money down the line due to costly mistakes or mismatched products. For that reason, you need to make sure you work with a professional team when it comes to roof work.
The Ideal Roofing Process
As a homeowner, you need to remember that judging the status of your roofing project is a balancing act: if your roofing work is taking too long to finish, this may be a sign that your contractor has taken on too many customers at once and that you aren’t a priority. However, a project that is completed too quickly might be an indication of shoddy workmanship.
By familiarizing yourself with the necessary steps and knowing what to expect before the project begins, you’ll gain a better understanding of the quality of work to expect. Keep in mind that no two roofing projects are exactly the same, but you should expect your roofer to follow the same general rules and procedures.
First, your contractor will perform a complete and in-depth analysis of your entire roofing system. Before tearing the old shingles down, your roofing components need to be inspected, along with the sheathing and other related components. During the inspection, the team should look for damaged plywood, weakening materials, as well as broken attachments. Evaluation results, as well as an estimate for the job, should be presented for your approval before the contractor starts securing permits for your project. The actual repair or installation process will begin soon after.
Before the roofing team starts to remove your old shingles, they should take precautionary measures to protect your home and prepare the work area. They will use a tarp to cover your valuable assets and move any outdoor furniture away from the scene. After that, the crew will start tearing down your old shingles and then repair or install the roof deck, underlayment, and other roof components. To reinforce your roof’s protection, they will apply caulk and waterproof the materials. Once the work is finished, it will also be the company’s responsibility to clean up after themselves and return all your valuables to rights. Lastly, they will make sure everything was done correctly before wrapping up the project.
Dealing With a Reputable Roofing Contractor
The roofing process doesn’t stop once the actual work is completed. Beyond the steps mentioned above, a good roofer will also take the time to minimize the noise and disturbance to your neighborhood, as well as provide the necessary tools to keep your exterior, interior and adjacent properties safe from any damage during construction. Responsible contractors will make sure to leave your home even cleaner than before the work started and will provide warranties for your complete peace of mind.
If you still haven’t found the right contractor yet for your project, don’t worry. Take your time and research all possible options. Remember, your choice of roofer will play a vital role in the success of your project. Do your homework to make sure you hire someone who will provide quality services.
Start by asking for recommendations from your neighbors and family members, especially those who may have had their roof repaired or replaced recently. When researching, you may encounter roofers from outside the state, but for your own good, it’s always better to hire a local contractor. Not only are they your best choice in terms of proximity; you can also be confident that they are familiar with the local building codes and permits necessary to complete your project.
Once you’ve compiled a list of potential roofers, verify legitimacy by asking for business permits, licensing and insurance policies. Also, ask for a list of references so you can get a glimpse of the actual quality of their work. Don’t forget to ask about manufacturer certifications—certified roofers can give you access to industry-leading products, materials, and warranties, as well as ensure high-quality workmanship every time.
Earl Johnston is the owner of Earl W. Johnston Roofing, one of the most trusted roofing companies in South Florida. He started his own roofing company in 1986 with a commitment to providing top-quality workmanship to all his customers. He has learned so much about the roofing industry and remains today, nearly 30 years later, committed to the same standards along with the entire staff at Earl W. Johnston Roofing.