Top Green Roofing Tips for Your Property

Green roofing has become really popular in recent years due to its environmentally friendly nature. Some folks decide to change portions of their existing roofs to green roofing, but the problem is, they often underestimate the volume of work required.

There are many benefits to having a green roof, but there are also time and money considerations which need to be carefully thought through. We have put together these green roofing tips to help you make the best decision for your property.

Benefits of Green Roofing

There are many benefits to opting for a green roof, which include:

  • Increased roof lifespan
  • Reduced energy use, as your house, will remain cooler in the summer months
  • Reduced risk of flooding and water damage, as a green roof absorbs rainwater
  • Added value to the home
  • Improved aesthetic appeal of your property

Things to Remember

There are many things to consider when changing part of your existing roof to a green roof. We will take a closer look at these below.

Think about the Logistics

We often say on this page that every roof is different, and this fact is very true regarding the installation of green roofing. The right materials will be determined by the type of roof you have, the existing drainage, as well as the climate and exposure to the elements. Think very carefully about all these elements before starting.

Let’s Talk about Drainage

As mentioned above, there are many factors that you have to consider when choosing to invest in a green roof. One of the critical areas is drainage, which can cause many issues if you get it wrong. The plants have to work alongside the drainage systems. If you don’t have adequate drainage, then the green roof will not be able to sustain itself, which could lead to the plants dying off.

DIY Tips

If you decide to install green roofing by yourself, then the first thing you need to determine is if you have the right tools for the job.

Then you need to ensure that the roof is strong enough to handle the extra weight. You have to be 100 percent clear on this before diving in. The green material will weigh between 60 and 150kg before you add any water or snow to it, so you are asking your roof to do a lot of extra work. If you are not sure about how this will all work at this stage, then it would be a good idea to get a professional opinion on it.

Depending on the type of job you are developing, you will need:

  • Insulation
  • Waterproof liners
  • Root membranes
  • Gravel
  • Wood chips
  • Compost and plants!

Time and Money

Whether you decide to do it yourself or hire a roofing contractor, installing a green roof will have to be viewed as a long-term investment. As you can see, it can be quite a tremendous job, so it is well worth considering whether you can do the job properly yourself. Either way, a roofing contractor will be able to help with installations or advice.

Tips for Fixing a Roof Leak Quickly and Effectively

There is nothing worse than noticing a damp ceiling or hearing the sound of water dripping where it shouldn’t be. For homeowners all around the country, a leaking roof is probably one of the most undesirable things that they may face. Staying on top of your roof maintenance is essential whether you have a new build or an old house.

In the case of minor leaks, you can usually take care of the problem yourself. So we have put together a few tips to fix a roof leak before it becomes a bigger problem.

How Do Leaks Occur?

There are lots of reasons why your roof might leak. These include:

First Things First

Before you get out the tools, it is crucial that you find the exact location of the leak. This can sometimes be a lot easier than it sounds. Start by making a visual inspection of the roof and attic for any visible signs of damage. If you can’t find a definite point, then you will need to enlist the help of a friend.

One person will use a hose to spray water onto the roof, while another person stays in the attic with a flashlight to see where the leak is coming from. Once you have found it, you will know precisely where you need to do the work.

Replace and Repair Shingles

If you discover that damaged or missing shingles are the reason for the leak, then you should replace them as soon as possible. This will help you maintain the structural integrity of the roof and also keep the inside of your house dry.

Before you get started, make sure that you purchase the correct type of shingles and that you have the right kind of equipment to do the job.

A Quick Fix

If you don’t have the right shingles or enough time to do a thorough job, pop down to your local hardware shop to get a 12-by-12 sheet of galvanized metal flashing, which you can use a temporary cover for the hole. You can slip the sheet under the damaged shingles, and that should keep you dry until you’re able to do a more thorough job.

Fix Other Issues Quickly

If you notice any damage to flashing, gutters, and dormer walls, you should fix these as soon as possible. Problems with flashing and guttering can lead to ice dams during in the winter or poor drainage of water after storms. This all puts pressure on the shingles, so take care of your maintenance throughout the year.

If there is any rotten, cracked, or missing siding on your walls, you should either replace these or caulk the affected area.

No Time to Do It Yourself

If you are busy or you think the job is too much for you, then you should hire a roofing contractor. They will have a lot of experience and will be able to get the job done quickly so that you can focus on your daily life.

How to Prevent Roof Leaks from Melting Snow in 4 Easy Steps

We rely on our roofs to protect us from many different kinds of weather, which are often difficult to predict. Storms and heavy snowfall can put our roofing under extra pressure. The good news is that if you keep up to date with your maintenance, then your roof should hold fast. Unfortunately, there may be times when, despite your best efforts, water can get into the house.

One of the trickiest times of the year is when there is heavy snowfall. The snow will put a lot of pressure on the roof structure, but it is when it melts that the problems can start. So, with that in mind, we have put together this short article on how to prevent roof leaks from melting snow in four easy steps.

Be Proactive

If you have a large amount of snow on your roof, and the forecast is predicting that more is on its way, then you should try to make sure that the snow is removed from the roof as soon as possible. This is because the weight can put pressure on the roof structure and potentially cause a lot of damage. Removing the snow as quickly as possible also helps to reduce the chances of ice dams forming on your roof, which are the number one source of leaks during the winter months.

Use appropriate tools, such as roof rakes or shovels. There are many different kinds of these tools on the market, so speak to a professional before going ahead with the purchase.

Know Your Roof—In and Out

It is vital that you make regular inspections of your roof to see if there are any broken or loose shingles. If any areas are damaged, they need to be repaired or replaced as soon as possible. You will also need to make sure that the insulation and ventilation in the attic are working well and that there are no “weak” spots in the structure. Again, if you notice any problems, they should be addressed as soon as possible.

Regular Maintenance of Flashing and Guttering

No matter what time of year it is, you should always make sure that your flashing and guttering are in perfect working order and free of any debris such as leaves. Blocked gutters make it much easier for ice dams to form. This is the last thing you want because the meltwater will not be able to drain away from the house, and if it refreezes, there will only be one way for any other water to go. If the water works its way back onto the roof, it can get under the shingles and lead to leaks and potential roof collapse.

Speak to a Roofing Contractor

If you live in an area where you see a lot of snow, it makes sense to speak with a local roofing contractor about the different methods to keep the water from getting in the house. PVC rubber membranes under your shingles offer excellent protection against ice dam runoff.

In some cases, you may have to look at the insulation and ventilation systems of your house, as these can help to control the temperature of your roof and reduce the formation of ice dams. Either way, an experienced roofing contractor will be able to provide you with invaluable advice, which saves you any unwanted leaks.

5 Common Roofing Mistakes You Should Avoid at All Costs

Making sure that your roof does its job is a necessary expense for any homeowner. Some folks may decide to do the job themselves, while others choose to bring in the professionals. Both options have their pros and cons, but they share one thing in common: If the job is done poorly, there will be problems further down the line.

The roof is the first line of defense against the elements and helps to get us all dry and warm. Therefore, it is essential that you take a quick look at these five common roofing mistakes you should avoid at all costs.

Choosing the Wrong Materials

Inexperienced contractors and DIYers may not have the right expertise when it comes to choosing the right types of materials for the job. This is because not all roofs are created equal and will be exposed to different kinds of conditions.

The slope of your roof and the natural environment will determine which shingles are best suited to your roof. Opting for the cheapest option can have disastrous consequences.

Poorly Installed Flashing

Flashing helps to move water away from areas of the roof such as chimneys and vents. You should ensure that the flashing is working correctly before beginning any new shingle installation. Any damaged flashing will need to be replaced or repaired before continuing with the project. Failure to do so can lead to problems later on.

Incorrect Use of Nails

Using too few or too many nails can have a significant impact on the longevity of your roofing. Some less-than-honest contractors might try to cut some corners by using fewer nails than the job requires. Failure to properly secure the shingles can lead to them becoming loose, which can expose your roof to the elements.

Each shingle needs about four nails, and this will be clearly indicated on a nail strip on each shingle. If you are going to do the job yourself, make sure that you are familiar with the optimal nailing conditions for your roof and the type of shingle you are using.

Poor Shingle Alignment

The shingles need to be correctly aligned to work properly. They should be installed in straight lines, and you should continuously check throughout the project. If you notice any uneven areas, then the shingles should be realigned before moving on.

Not only does an uneven line look bad, but it can also void the manufacturer’s warranty. If you are hiring a contractor, ask to see some example of their previous work before signing up with them.

Overestimating Your Skills

Many people take care of their home maintenance to save themselves some money. However, if you don’t understand the demands of the task at hand, then your efforts can end up costing you more money in the long run.

Taking care of your roof can be a very tricky job, so you should clearly understand the demands of the task before you get started. You will also need the right equipment and materials, as well as the know-how on how to do the job safely. Be honest with yourself during the planning stage, and if you don’t think you have the necessary skill set or the time to do the job properly, do yourself a favor and call in the professionals.

Top 5 Environmentally Friendly Roofing Options

Not a day goes by without news of the adverse effects of global warming. These days, folks are highly conscious of what changes they need to make to help reduce their impact and their carbon footprints. Unsurprisingly, you can start making a difference from the comfort of your home by looking at the ways you use energy sources and manage waste.

Most people have heard about reducing pollution and enrolling in energy-saving programs, but one area that people might not have focused on is the roof of their house. So, if you are planning on replacing your existing shingles, then these five environmentally friendly roofing options might be ideal for you.

1. Metal Roofs

If you are looking for a long-lasting and cost-effective option, metal roofs could be the best way to go for you. They last much longer than most other materials, and they are much better for your wallet as well. Unlike other roofing options, metal roofs do not absorb any heat, meaning you could save a considerable amount of money on energy costs.

2. Reflective Coating

A very cost-effective solution is a reflective coating, which can be used on a variety of materials. If your existing shingles are in good condition, then you could apply the reflective coating yourself or bring in a professional to do it for you. As with other materials, the coating will help to get heat out of your house, reducing the need for air conditioning.

3. Cool Roofs

Cool roofs are becoming more popular for the environmentally-conscious homeowner. The “cool” tiles use a combination of white glue and gravel to reflect the sun’s rays away from the house. This is an attractive option during the summer, as it means your home will be naturally much cooler, reducing the need to turn on the AC. The obvious advantage here is that you use less electricity as a result, so it’s good for the environment and your bank account as well.

4. Green Roofs

This is one that the kids might love and one that will literally get stuff growing. Green roofs involve installing a membrane on the roof, which soil can then be added to. From there, you can get creative, as it is possible to plant trees, plants, flowers, or a nice green lawn to practice your putting on!

Green roofs can require high maintenance, but they absorb heat and moisture, keeping your home at a dry and cozy temperature throughout the summer.

5. Wood

While we are talking about nature, wood is an excellent option if you are looking for a durable material which can be easily recycled. They have lots of advantages that help to justify the initial outlay; they are energy efficient while also looking great no matter what the weather throws at them. Wooden shingles tend to last longer than traditional shingle materials and can be made of recycled materials, making them an excellent all-around option.

3 Ways to Avoid Roofing Scams

Your home is one of the most substantial investments you will ever make, so most of us are happy to spend money to make it look good or to add value to the property. Regular maintenance of interiors and exteriors is absolutely essential to keep the home cozy, dry, and warm. Some folks like to take care of the maintenance and decorating themselves, while others will hire companies to take care of it.

Unfortunately for those who choose to call in the experts, there are a large number of dishonest traders and scams doing the rounds. Roofing scams are one area that often sees homeowners ending up out of pocket. So we have put together this quick guide to help you identify common roofing scams so that you don’t end up as another victim of these con artists.

If It Sounds Too Good to Be True…

Scammers usually manage to hook their victims with their amazing quotes and quick turnaround times. However, once work starts, all manner of additional charges are added to the bill, and when the work is completed, you are presented with a bill significantly higher than the original quote.

This trick is as old as time, but budget-conscious homeowners still fall for the promise of low costs. Reputable contractors will give you a detailed quotation and workflow before starting work, as well as remaining very open about any areas of the project that may incur additional costs. If a contractor is unwilling to do this, then walk away.

That Was One Hell of a Storm

You have probably heard of “storm chasers” who have made quite a business out of preying on homeowners’ fears. These people typically show up after a storm and manage to persuade homeowners that they have suffered storm damage to their roof. They will then get out an insurance form and get straight to work for a reasonable price.

This may sound good, but the problem is that these guys have done the same thing to lots of people in the area, and they are aiming to get as many jobs done as possible in as short a time as possible. They achieve this by using cheaper materials and doing a poor job, which never lasts. When it comes to taking them up on their guarantee, they will be long gone.

The easiest solution to this issue is to go for a local contractor who comes highly recommended, instead of someone who shows up on your doorstep one day.

Where Do I Sign?

In some cases, the scammers will offer to do the work without a contract. This may seem like you are saving time, but the lack of a contract means you have no legal recourse if the contractor does work that doesn’t meet your requirements. For example, you may have paid more for expensive materials, but upon closer inspection, you can see that they have used cheaper alternatives.

The lack of a contract can also lead to the frequent occurrence of disappearing workmen. If the contractor has taken a down payment, then it is possible they might show up for a day or two before never being seen again, leaving a big hole in your roof and your pocket.

That is why you should always insist upon a contract that sets out the work schedule and the terms of payment. If you are dealing with a trustworthy roofing contractor, then this shouldn’t be a problem at all.

Getting It Right: How to Choose a Local Roofing Contractor

Having work done on your roof is rarely a cheap or easy job. Therefore, it is crucial that you find the right person for the job. Getting it wrong can end up being a very costly mistake indeed.

There are several things which you should consider before letting a roofing contractor anywhere near your roof. Here are a few tips to help you to know how to choose a local roofing contractor.

Shop Around

Never go for the first option you find and certainly don’t take up any door-to-door sales calls. Aim to find around two to three different contractors who you would like to quote you for any work that needs doing.

Take plenty of time to do your homework and see if the business has a proven track record in the type of project you need completing. Also, it is well worth checking their business credentials by seeing if they hold all the appropriate state licenses and insurance.

Go Local

Choosing an established local company with a proven track record is always a solid strategy. Try and look for recommendations from friends and family, especially people that have had work done previously – it may even be possible to view some of the work they have done in person.

Do an internet search of local companies and check out reviews from other customers. Finding a local contractor will give you peace of mind should you need any follow-up work done while under warranty.

Don’t Just Go For The Cheapest

Price is an important consideration, but it shouldn’t be the only one. A legitimate roofing contractor will have insurance and good quality material costs to cover so their price will reflect that. Besides, you get what you pay for. The last thing you want is to have to spend extra money and time on regular repairs because of poor workmanship or substandard building materials.

Make sure that the contractors you get quotes from offer guarantees on the materials that they use.

Make Sure All Your Questions Are Answered

Once you have some people in mind, ask them over to quote for the work needed. You should have a list of questions ready regarding materials, length of the project, insurance, procedures regarding delays, and the terms of payment.

If the contractor is evasive or doesn’t satisfactorily answer you, then it would be best to look elsewhere.

Get It All in Writing

Once you have found a contractor that you like, make sure that you have everything agreed to put down in writing. This will help you to avoid any misunderstandings or conflicts later on, should there be any problems or delays with the work.

Avoid any contractors that expect to be paid in advance or don’t have the appropriate insurance – as you will have no protection should anything go wrong.

Keep the Channels of Communication Open

You should be able to reach the contractor during their working hours easily, but if you find that they are hard to get hold of or don’t take the time to answer any queries you have, then it is probably best to look elsewhere.

Any established business will understand that looking after their customers is as important as the work itself. So even if they are super busy, they should always find a spare five minutes to discuss your concerns or queries.

Offering First Class Protection: Top 5 Roofing Services That Roofing Contractors Perform

When you hear the term roofing contractor, it is easy to imagine that the only service they provide is roofing installations. While this is a major part of their service, it is far from the only thing that they do. In fact, many roofing contractors offer a variety of services and skills which help to protect your house from the elements and any accidents that may happen.

In this post, we will take a closer look at some of the other areas experienced roofing contractors specialize in. You may even be surprised by some of the top 5 roofing services that roofing contractors perform.

Installations

As you would expect from the name of the trade, installing roofs is the primary service offered by roofing contractors. There are a wide variety of projects which may be undertaken such as new builds or remodeling of existing houses.

A trusted roofing contractor will provide a range of options and work alongside the owner of the property to ensure that the project is a resounding success. They should be able to offer a variety of top-quality materials and finishes, such as asphalt shingles or roof tiles. They should provide detailed estimates, workflows, and guarantees before they start any work.

Repairs and Maintenance

The exteriors of houses are subject to the ravages of mother nature throughout the year, and they work hard to keep your family safe and warm inside. Obviously, over time the surfaces will be subject to wear and tear and will need some TLC to ensure they continue to do their job.

Snow, rain, and sun can all affect the structural integrity of the roofing materials, especially if you are living in an older house. Roofing contractors should offer generous guarantees on the products they use. They should also be able to provide simple and effective solutions should any areas of the roof need to be patched or if you decide that you need an update to the existing materials.

Emergency Repairs

There will be times when nature makes her presence felt, and this can have unfortunate consequences for your roof, gutters, and walls. If your house has sustained damage during a storm, then you will want to get the damage taken care of as soon as possible.

Hail strikes can leave gaping holes in the roof, and fallen tree branches can cause a large amount of damage to numerous parts of the structure. In all cases, you will want to know that there is someone on hand to take immediate action.

Many roofing contractors will have a specialized service whereby they can provide prompt repairs, while also helping to liaise with your insurance companies. Both services will help counter the initial shock of finding the damage.

Guttering

Guttering systems are an integral part of your exterior, so they need to be regularly checked to ensure that they are in full working order. A fully functioning guttering system protects your exterior surfaces and helps to prevent cracks to walls, which can lead to water getting into the house.

Many roofing contractors will offer a range of guttering services from installation, repairs, or thorough cleaning. All are designed to keep your exteriors protected and your interiors dry.

Siding

In addition to the roof and guttering, some contractors will offer siding services. Siding works alongside roofing materials and guttering as vital protection for the exterior of the house. There are a variety of different materials available which can help protect the walls of the house from the elements.

Siding also adds aesthetic appeal to your house and can really turn heads. Services include installation and repairs.

 

5 End of Summer Home To Do List

Your home needs you. While you’re relaxing and having fun, your house is working hard to keep you safe and comfy. But in return, it needs a little TLC from you. Summer is the perfect time to take care of the following 5 essential tasks on your home maintenance honey-do list.

1. Get your roof in shape

 

The bright midsummer sunshine is wonderful, but not when you can spy it twinkling merrily through the holes in your roof. Roof holes mean leaks, and leaks mean the looming possibility of serious water damage in your home’s near future … not to mention the negative effect that mold and mildew can have on your family’s health. So take action now and get your roof in shape – repaired or, if necessary, replaced — before the cold and snowy season (yes, we’re talking winter) comes around once more.

2. Install energy-saving windows and entry doors

 

Have brand new energy-saving windows and entry doors installed this summer and you’ll reduce your carbon footprint and save on HVAC bills all year round. Obviously, you will find it more comfortable to tackle this type of project in July than in January when your hands will be freezing. Equally important, though, is the fact that installation in warmer temperatures will also permit your caulk to adhere properly, sealing up air leaks and making your new windows or doors even more energy-efficient, in summers and winters to come.

3. Update your driveway

 

Is your concrete driveway showing signs of wear, such as cracking, pitting, or spalling? Or don’t you have a drive at all? Summer is the ideal time to install or resurface a driveway (not to mention a concrete parking pad, patio, sidewalk, or garden path). Why? Well, concrete needs the right weather conditions to cure properly. (Curing refers to a process of controlling the water content after installation, which strengthens the concrete and avoids cracks due to shrinkage.) A stretch of several dry days with the temperature above 50 degrees is just right.

4. Repair or replace your garage door

 

After months of routinely opening your garage door only twice a day as you drive to and from work, suddenly these days you seem to need to get into the garage all the time – working on summer projects, taking out bicycles and kiddie pools, or hauling out the lawn mower and other garden equipment. If you notice that the opener is not working as smoothly as it should … or the whole door is becoming sun faded and worn … consider repair or replacement. Besides the fact that this will make the garage more convenient and safer to open right now, a new insulated garage door can help you cut heating costs when all that’s left of this summer are happy memories.

5. Un-invite insect and rodent “guests.”

 

While you are happily entertaining friends at a gala summery barbecue, your home may be forced to host visitors of the less welcome variety. Insect and rodent pests such as termites, cockroaches, and mice will damage property and may even carry disease. Others, like bed bugs, are just plain annoying. And no, generally these critters will not die off even when the temperature drops. They are happily living inside your house, remember? Effective pest control treatments often require airing the house out afterward – which tends to be an awful lot pleasanter in balmy weather than in a blizzard.