Roof Ventilation

Proper roof ventilation allows air to circulate in and out of your home during all kinds of weather conditions; without it, moisture has no where to go which can cause many problems. Having proper ventilation has many benefits for you and your home, and is essential to having a healthy and long-lasting roof. Here are some benefits of proper roof ventilation:

1. Keeps energy costs down
2. Reduction of heat build-up in the summer
3. Eliminates trapped moisture that causes mold, mildew, wood rot, drywall damage, peeling paint and warped siding
4. Keeps roof decks cool in the winter to protect against ice dams
5. Extends the life of roof shingles
6. Keeps your attic cool and dry

Achieving Proper Roof Ventilation

To create a system which properly ventilates air throughout your home, you must consider the conditions in which you live and the air that comes in and out of your home. The mid-atlantic region gets snowfall in the winter that can cause roofing problems without a proper ventilation system. The region also has warm weather that if heat gets trapped, will cause energy bills to soar. The best choice for your roof depends on the size and shape of your roof, and the layout of surrounding trees, wires and other objects.

Moisture also builds up in your attic due to inside sources. Appliances such as washing machines and dish washers create moisture which can also damage your home if you don’t have proper ventilation. This means that no matter where you live, proper ventilation is important for you and your home.

Asphalt roofs tend to radiate heat into attic spaces, radiant barriers that can be installed in the roof rafters will help heat escape. Well-vented attics minimize the risk of ice dams that have the potential to clog roof drains and cause damage.

Top 10 Mistakes in purchasing new roof

It’s always best to shop around when you’re making such a big investment on your roof. But just looking for cheaper price is not a good way to shop. Look at the product details, warranties and about the future roof repair costs.

1. Shopping around for price

The price to install or repair a roof will vary depending on the stories, size and location of your home. Cost alone will not determine quality. Professionalism and quality workmanship should also weigh heavily on your decision. If you shop around for prices and notice that a company is well below the average, there may be a reason why.

What is the total price of the job? Does this include sales tax? When are the payments due? Does the price include removal of the old roof? Any hidden costs?

Check the insurance of every company doing work at your home. Because of the dangers inherent in working on the roof, company should carry both workers’ compensation and liability insurance. Since the cost of the insurance is high, some companies do not carry it. This practice is a shortcut some companies take to underbid the competition.

2. Basing your buying decision on the quickest to respond or because a company can "start right away".

A company that is too quick to respond may not have enough business.How long has this company been in business? You want to make sure that this company will still be around in case you have problems with your roof. There are roofing companies which carry extended warranties from manufacturers; this means that in case if the company is not in business, manufacturers will pay for all your work. So go for a company that has certified.

Number of years of roofing experience for installers? and the safety record.Make sure the company is licensed, bonded and insured in your area. Don’t hesitate to ask the roofing contractor for proof of insurance. In fact, insist on seeing copies of his liability coverage and worker's compensation certificates. Be sure the coverage runs through the duration of the job.

Does the company offer references of past work? Obtain customer references and check them. Ask about the company's stability, reputation, record on completing jobs on time and quality of work performed.

Check out all companies with your local Better Business Bureau(
Make sure you get a contract. Insist on a written proposal and examine it for complete descriptions of the work and specifications, including tasks the roofer will perform, types of materials, financial arrangements, and guarantees.

3. Getting a discount for signing the contract "tonight" or other high-pressure sales tactics.

This forces the homeowner to make a quick decision, so as not to miss the “unbeatable price.” No matter how good the price may seem, do not buy a roof from a company that asks you to make a decision before you are ready. Granted, recent hurricanes have caused uncertainty in building materials availability and pricing, however a reputable company will have relationships and access to quality products for 2 or more weeks from the time they provide you with a quote. There is an outside chance that a contractor may have a "sudden" opening in their work schedule and offer an incentive to keep their crews working, however the more reputable companies do not have a significant amount of discount or wiggle room in their cost. If they offer more than a 10% discount, one might question their margins in the first place. Additionally, some companies will more heavily incent their salespeople to get a contract signed the same day. The bottom line is, take your time when making any large purchase, such as a new roof. Does your homework, talk to references, and sign when you are comfortable that you've made the right choice.

4. Signing the deal because you like the sales person (or not signing it because you don't).

Although you may feel a certain comfort level with a sales person, it should not be your sole reason for making a purchase. A truly good sales person will know their products and the overall installation process very well, which should give you a level of confidence. However, the sales person is not the one who will be doing the roof repair or installation. Find out who will, and their experience. Ask for references and ask to see examples of similar installations. Be wary of a sales person who cannot provide real references from CURRENT customers.

5. A deal too good to be true probably is – check:

Have your contractor list the roofing manufacturers with which his firm has licensed or approved applicator agreements. Most materials require special application expertise in order to achieve a quality roof system that will last. Quality materials will be backed by a manufacturer’s warranty as well.

What is the warranty? Both quality materials and quality workmanship/installation should come with their own warranties. Ask what warranties are available for both.

In addition to the cost of labor and materials, ask if there are any hidden additional costs, such as old roof removal, dumpster rental, heavy equipment rental (e.g. a crane to lift heavy materials such as slate onto a high rooftop), and plywood replacement (for unknown/hidden rotten wood beneath old shingles).

A reputable company will be able to provide recent references in the general vicinity of your home, or for an installation similar to yours. Get the reference and actually make the call!

6. Purchasing the roof based on warranty alone.

The length of a roofing warranty should not be the primary criterion in the selection of a roofing product or system. The warranty does not necessarily provide assurance of satisfactory roofing performance. (source:

Make sure that the warranty covers all materials and workmanship. Some roof warranties require you to have at least semi-annual maintenance inspections. Look for manufacturers' warranties that provide full coverage for labor and materials.

According to a consumer advisory bulletin by the NRCA, consumers are wise to look for manufacturers who clearly and specifically state in accompanying literature and warranty verbiage what maintenance is not only recommended but also required during the projected service life of the roof and its warranty term.

There is a common misconception by roofing consumers that long-term warranties are all-inclusive insurance policies designed to cover virtually any roofing problem, regardless of the cause or circumstance. Roof warranties typically do not warrant that the roof system will not leak or is suitable for the project where it is installed. Even the most comprehensive manufacturer warranties that cover material and workmanship generally provide only that the manufacturer will repair leaks that result from specific causes enumerated in the warranty. A material-only warranty typically provides only that the manufacturer will provide replacement material. (source:

You can compare manufacturers’ warranties with the roofing materials guides published annually by the NRCA (National Roofing Contractors Association).

7. Using contractors with no office staff.

There is no shortage of contractors running one or two-man shops in any town. While they may be fine for smaller jobs, when you are making a large home improvement investment, beware of any contractor who you cannot get in touch with during normal business hours. A reputable company will have an office staff available to answer any scheduling, materials or billing questions you may have. If you call a contractor and consistently get an answering machine, know what you may be getting yourself into. If you have difficulty reaching them when you are going through the estimating process, where will they be if you have a problem?

8. Mistaking advertising for quality.

Look in any value-pack mailer, coupon clipper magazine or even radio and television and you'll see and hear many companies in your area vying for your business. While it may be impressive that they have the means to advertise in high-priced media, do not mistake advertising for quality. There is nothing wrong with finding a company through the media, but do as you would with any major purchase – do your homework. Compare pricing, check references, and check workmanship. A reputable contractor will provide you with access to all of the information you need to make an informed decision.

9. Having a friend do the work.

Having a friend -- one that is not a licensed roofing contractor working for a reputable roofing company –is wrought with uncertainty. Even if this person is "handy", have they ever installed a roofing system? Do they know what areas of a roof are most vulnerable and why? Do they know how to properly ventilate the roof? No to mention, any work done by an unlicensed contractor will not include a warranty. The cost of roofing repairs may be high and you don’t want to commit to such a major investment without a warranty.

10. Doing the work yourself.

Big box retailers will tell you that you can do it (and they can help!), but beware! Roofing in particular is tricky business. There are obvious safety issues, as well as structural installation issues that should only be performed by a licensed professional. Professional roofing contractors are trained to safely and efficiently repair or replace a roof. Novices can harm a roof with improper roofing techniques and severely injure themselves by falling off or even through a roof in need of repair of replacement. Homeowner maintenance should be confined to roof inspections in both the fall and spring to check for cracked or curling shingles, and to cleaning rain gutters filled with dead leaves and other debris. If you must see the roof for yourself, use a firmly braced or tied-off ladder equipped with rubber safety feet. Wear rubber-soled shoes and stay on the ladder (and off the roof) if possible.

What to expect before shingle roof replacement

You might have got information about roofing contractors through neighbors, friends, phone books, sign boards and search engines like Google, Yahoo. After you have found useful information you might try to reach the contractors to request service and most of the contractors will schedule appointments for the roof inspection and to give you an estimate. To give an estimate, a contractor will come to your house to inspect your roof. He’ll come up with a number that factor in the cost of materials and labor, including the cost of stripping and throwing away the old shingles. The estimate should include the cost of removal and disposal of the old roofing material. If not, ask about this to avoid surprises. There is a chance that there will be some unforeseen costs in the project, so it is good to avoid as many of these as possible. After the visit, they will send you a written contract. A contract from a roofing company should include a description of what is to be done, as well as when it is to be done and a schedule for payment. Having it all in writing can protect the homeowner later on. Be sure to shop around before settling on a specific contractor, as prices can vary considerably unless you have found a trust worthy roofing company.

Once you’ve chosen your roofing materials and your contractor, it’s time to set a date for the project to start. The roofing contractors suggest you available and rain free day to work on your project. The actual work of replacing the roof can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks, depending on the size of the roof. You should plan to have someone at home while the work is being done. If they have any questions or discover any additional problems with your roof, it helps that you are home to discuss things with them. If not leave a best contact number to reach you any time while doing the work to discuss such problems.

Before the workers arrive, it’s good to remove any items that may get in the way of their ladders. Only few roofing contractors remove tree branches that come in their way ask before they start working. Climbing on roofs can be dangerous, even for professionals, so it’s best to stay out of their way. First, the roofers rip out all the old roofing shingles and replace any rotted or damaged wood in the roof. Next they lay a base, and then they lay the shingles. Roof work is noisy. Expect to hear a lot of hammering as well as people running around all over your roof. It’s not really an invasive home repair. You won’t have workmen coming inside your house. As long as you don’t mind the noise, it’s not much of a hassle.

When the old shingles have been stripped, any unshingled portions of the roof should be covered with a tarp overnight to protect your home in case of rain or overnight storms.Once your new roof is completed, make sure the workers have cleaned up all the debris that has fallen. When a roof is replaced, the workers usually toss the pieces of the old roof onto the ground or into a dump truck as they’re working. Once the bulk of the old material is disposed of, responsible companies will clean up after themselves to ensure customer satisfaction. They usually have a magnetic broom that picks up all the nails and other materials that can be hazardous as well as unsightly. You may find a shingle or two in your yard after wards, which is perfectly normal.

When you have roof work done, you should never pay anything up front. You always pay after the job is completed. This is standard procedure. All reputable roofing companies operate this way.

Pay attention to the roofing estimate

Roofing estimate why is it a big deal. Do i need to wait until I get all my estimates? or Go ahead with the estimate that has all the specifications and is within my budget?Is cheapest estimate is best estimate? What is roofing estimate?

I have seen customers spending days to months, sometimes even years of time in getting roofing estimates from the contractors. I wonder why do they need that many estimates. Though they need an immediate service they wait to get all the estimates they have requested. I am not saying not to get estimates but get the estimates of 3 to 5 and select the estimates that best suits to your service.

Especially when are requesting for a roof repair, just don't waste your time in getting estimates and making your problem worse. Go for an estimate that is well written and contractor who has the proven, trusted service record.

Most of the customers concentrate on getting multiple estimates from the roofing contractors not on the roofing estimate specifications. They go for the estimate that is cheap, which is a biggest mistake. Since all roofing contractors may not be giving you an estimate for the same type of roofing materials, warranty. Check the specifications of the estimate and select an estimate that is providing you the best service within the budget.

Choosing the best option but not paying attention on the estimate is no different than signing up with the first service provider you find. Keep the following factors in mind when you obtain a roofing estimate. An estimate should be formal and should have the name service provider, tasks must be clearly written, roofing materials, warranty information. A few figures roughly sketched on a rough piece of paper is not an estimate.There are roofing contractors who provides you a computerized estimate with the diagrams and specification of work. Remember that those service providers who offer vague estimates often make use of this characteristic to increase the cost. On the other hand, a service provider who offers a specific roofing estimate is a much better bet.

The next factor that you should consider is whether the estimate clearly covers each and every task that you want to be done. There are many service providers over very low estimates by skipping major tasks. A roofing estimate that simply covers the cost of installing the tile but does not cover the cost of the tile is of no use whatsoever. Make sure each and every specific task that you wish to carry out is clearly specified in the estimate.If you want to make sure that you deal with the most affordable service provider, you should get estimates from various service providers. It is your right to get an estimate of the work to be done at zero cost. Hence, never pay anybody just to get an estimate of the work to be done. Dealing with such expensive professionals is not the smart way to proceed.

The advantage of using the web is that you can compare the various estimates you have received and determine whether it is indeed accurate and reliable.