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5 Storm Damage Tips for Your Roof

Friday, July 28th, 2017

Tornadoes and turbulent weather can cause serious storm damage to your home and your wallet. Your roof, siding and other areas of your home can be damaged by wind, heavy rain, hail and ice. If your home has experienced a severe storm, it’s important not to panic. Here is a step-by-step guide to explain what to do after a storm.

Protect Your Home
First, protect your home as much as possible. If you have active leaks due to storm damage, cover the roof with a tarp to provide emergency protection. Keep in mind that a tarp is only a temporary measure until you call in a roofing professional. You may see additional signs of damage near your property, such as fallen shingles or other roof materials. Inspect your siding for telltale dimples caused by hail. Don’t forget to check your car for damage, as well.

Contact a Roofing Professional
Although you might be tempted to assess or fix storm-related damage yourself, it’s best to leave this to a professional roofing company like Findlay Roofing. You’ll receive an accurate report of the damage and an estimate of what it will cost to repair any problems caused by the storm. Professional roofing companies can ensure that you don’t overlook a hidden problem invisible to the untrained eye. Beware of storm chasers, who try to cheat and scam homeowners. Storm chasers typically visit neighborhoods after an intense storm. They may tell you that you need your roof replaced, when in fact, it only requires repair.

Call Your Insurance Agent
Be sure to report the storm damage to your insurance company immediately. Contact your agent to discuss your policy and what will be covered. It’s a good idea to keep a copy of your insurance policy handy, along with the phone number to file a claim. Take an inventory of your household items, and make a list of belongings that were affected by the storm. Take photos of any damaged items, as some insurance companies may ask for them. Review your homeowner’s insurance policy carefully, and note your responsibilities. You’ll need to know your policy limits, deductible and how to file a claim.

Look for Additional Damage
If the exterior of your home has visible signs of storm damage, check the interior of your house, too. Your walls may show signs of water damage, including water stains or discolored areas on the ceiling. Have floors, furniture or appliances been affected by the storm? Keep a list of each item that requires repair.

Stay Safe
If your home is uninhabitable due to major damage, consider staying in a hotel or with a family member until repairs are completed. Some insurance policies provide reimbursement for living expenses if your property is deemed unsafe due to extensive damage.

If your roof has been damaged by a storm, have it repaired or replaced as soon as possible to minimize water damage. Call Findlay Roofing today for a free roof analysis.

Roof Insurance: How Does It Work?

Thursday, August 25th, 2016

When rooftops get damaged, it’s natural for homeowners to start wondering about their roof coverage and policies. After all, no one really talks about “roof insurance.” Is your roof covered? How much will you have to pay out of pocket? These are the questions, and we’ve got the answers:

Homeowners Insurance

Your roof should be covered under your homeowners policy. This is the same policy that covers your home if theft or fires occur. Homeowners policies cover both the belongings inside your home as well as the home structure itself. This includes your roof.

Sometimes people aren’t sure if they have homeowners insurance or not. Requirements for homeowners policies and what they cover vary from state to state or from agency to agency. However, chances are good that if you are paying a mortgage— you have a policy. Lenders typically require it. Homeowners policy payments are often bundled into your mortgage payments, which is why you may not be making a separate payment.

Take a look at your homeowners policy or visit your agency’s website to learn more about making a claim. It’s important to also talk to your roofing contractor about your policy and what is required.

Repair and Replacement

So, what exactly does homeowners insurance cover when it comes to your roof? Usually, you’ll have two choices: Repair and replacement. Which one your policy covers depends on several factors. Here are a few of the most important:

  • The Fine Print: As we mentioned, policies do vary a bit. The parts of your roof that are covered may be narrowly defined by your policy. This isn’t usually a major concern, but it always pays to read the small print.
  • Damage: Generally, immediate damage caused by external events will be covered by your homeowners policy. This refers to storm damage, events like house fires, and similar catastrophic problems. However, damage caused by old age or an issue that could have been prevented with changes or maintenance will not be covered. Inspectors will examine your roof before making this decision. This can be particularly complex when it comes to leaks, as this Florida redditor learned.
  • Age: The age of a roof can be important when it comes to coverage. For an older roof (say, older than 10 years) a policy may only cover repairs or part of the costs, while for a new roof the policy may cover the full cost or a replacement option. This is closely connected with the depreciated value of your roof.
  • Liability: If you are at fault for roof damage because of negligence or mistakes, your policy probably will not cover repairs.
  • Materials: This is another odd factor, because it can depend on location and fire hazards. Bottom line: Some materials may only have partial coverage or no coverage at all. Common materials (like shingles) will most likely be fully covered.

Photo Source: Flickr

Roofing 101: Warping Defined

Friday, June 3rd, 2016

The condition a home’s roof is in is crucial. Whether you are house-shopping in Alpharetta or hoping to maintain your property investment for the long term, it’s important to ensure that your roof stays in tip-top shape. If you notice warping or any other irregularities in the structure, be prepared to fix the problem or factor that cost into the home’s purchase price. In addition, if you have problems with your roof—like warping— use the following to identify and alleviate issues:

Defining Terms and Causes

Roofing is described as “warped” when there is visible sagging in parts of the structure. You may notice an unevenness in the shingles, blistering sections of the roof, or parts that seem to curl up from the ends. The causes of these distortions are various, but can often be traced to the technique used during installation. Common causes include:

  • Uneven Rafter Levels: If a roofer installs a roof deck without ensuring the rafters are even, warping often occurs. Poor spacing between roof deck panels can also lead to the same problem.
  • Underlayment Issues: Underlayment must be dry and flat for roofing to stay in place. Otherwise, wrinkling of the materials can create a warping effect.
  • Poor Ventilation: Without proper ventilation, moisture will accumulate in a home’s attic, where it will reach your roof deck and distort the materials underneath the roofing.
  • Water Damage: Plywood in a roof deck creates a warped effect when holes in the exterior allow water inside your home. Poor installation may also create movement in the plywood.
  • Multiple Shingle Layers. InterNACHI describes some of the effects multiple layers of roofing can have on a home. These include weaknesses in the overall structure. In addition, having several layers of shingles creates ventilation problems as well as structural issues.

Solutions for Warped Roofing

While a poorly installed roof can plague a home for years, professionals may be able to take care of the problem without doing a full replacement. Through a diagnosis (i.e., roof analysis), contractors can determine whether local repair is possible. In some cases, the removal of sections and installation of new shims and chips can fix most of the trouble. Warping caused by water damage is typically more problematic. This may require a costly solution.

Either way, damaged roofs do not go away on their own, as they threaten a home’s stability from the top down. Contact a professional to diagnose and correct any warped sections of your home’s roof as soon as you notice the issue.

Financing Your Roof: When a Loan Makes Sense

Thursday, March 24th, 2016

Are you considering a large roof project, but aren’t sure how you will pay for it? Home equity loans, lines of credit, personal loans, and other forms of borrowing are potential solutions– but how do you know that the project is worth taking out a new loan? Here are several cases in which getting a loan for the sake of your rooftop is worthwhile.

Your Rooftop Shows Signs of Serious Leaks or Damage

If you already have an estimate that details serious rooftop repairs and a recommendation to get the damage fixed ASAP, then consider taking out a loan if necessary. This is typically a cut-and-dried situation because serious roof damage will cause even bigger problems in the future— especially if the weather throws a few more storms your way.

Look at it this way: Suppose you have several significant leaks or signs that your underlayment is damaged. Repairs would cost around $10,000. That’s expensive— so you delay the repairs for several months (maybe you want to save up money). However, a number of rainstorms hit during those months, expanding the leaks. The weather does widespread water damage to your roofing structure. Your repairs are now estimated at $50,000. In this case, you lost a lot of money because you waited when you could have applied for a loan and arranged repairs immediately.

A New Roof Will Add Significant Value to Your Home

Generally, loan money that is used to improve home equity – your home’s innate market value – is considered loan money well spent. This is particularly true when it comes to new rooftops. Roofs are crucial to curbside appeal. For example, buyers tend to notice a house’s rooftop and its style first. New roofing can improve insulation and raise your home’s value in other areas. This is an important consideration if you are planning on selling your home or leveraging your equity in the future.

A New Roof Is Part of a Larger Renovation

Again, a large renovation will improve home equity and often requires significant rooftop work. If your loan is paying for a renovation like this – particularly one that adds an extra room to your house – then associated roof work is typically worth the cost. This may include expanding the roof, adding extra gables, installing additional gutters, and more.

Roof Improvements Will Help You Save Big in the Future

This is more difficult to judge, but certain roof projects will cut your future costs by enough to make a loan worthwhile. Lowering future costs will also increase home value. These projects can either be preventative projects (such as putting vents in your attic to control condensation), or proactive projects (like upgrading your insulation to lower your heating and cooling costs). Talk to roofing professionals about how much these projects can save you in the future. A loan just might be worthwhile when it comes to your situation.

Photo Source: Flickr

It’s Wintertime: Is Roof Repair Possible?

Monday, January 25th, 2016

In the heat of summer, and from early spring to fall— it’s common to see teams of roofers scattered through Cobb, feverishly reroofing and making repairs. Once winter comes, you won’t see the same sights, but that doesn’t mean winter roof repairs aren’t possible. Sure, it’s more dangerous to get on the roof in icy and snowy conditions. However, if your roof has sprung a leak, a reputable roofing professional will do what it takes to preserve your home.

Here’s how the contractor will assess the job:

  • Is it safe? If temperatures are below freezing, it won’t make sense to put crews at risk.
  • Is the weather ideal? Aside from safety, the proper installation of the roof depends on the temperature, too. For example, the shingles won’t seal until the weather warms to 50 to 70 degrees (depending on the shingle). Nail guns won’t work in below-freezing conditions, which means crews will need to hand-nail the roof (a process that can drive up the project’s cost).
  • Is it unnecessary? As a homeowner with an eye on budget, you’ll want to limit the amount of unnecessary work that’s done to your roof during winter. If your roof requires immediate repairs, by all means— go for it. Your roofing contractor should be able to implement a fix to carry you through to spring – or at least through to a spell of warmer weather.
  • Is it required? Repairing damaged underlayment and damaged shingles makes sense, especially because cold weather causes underlayment to break and shingles to crack. If you wait on these kinds of repairs, you’ll likely find conditions worsen in the spring. In addition, the repair will likely cost more because you waited.

Go ahead. Give winter roof repair the green light. If you need something fixed, don’t wait for the problem to worsen. Give the roofing experts at Findlay Roofing a call today. We’ll schedule an appointment that will get your roof back in good condition as quickly as possible.

Image Source: Flickr

Roofing 101: Pinpointing Exterior Roof Problems

Monday, January 4th, 2016

Whether shopping for a new property in Marietta or looking to maintain your home, taking a look at the house’s roof is a must. Many exterior roof problems are easily fixed if they’re identified early and repaired by experienced professionals. Here are seven common roof issues for you to pinpoint.

  1. Missing shingles. Storms can tear individual shingles off a roof. Likewise, shingles that were not installed properly may eventually peel away and disappear. Leaving waterproofing exposed to the elements may create a leak in your roof. Roofers can replace shingles one-by-one and address the issue that led to the missing ones in the first place.
  2. Rotting materials. Holes are usually a sign of rot, especially when the shingles are made of organic material. The problem begins when moisture gets into the mat at the base of the shingle as this leads to a deterioration of the materials.
  3. Damaged flashing. Roof flashing refers to the metal protection around a chimney or other object protruding from a home’s attic. Poor installation or dry materials can cause flashing to break down, which leaves a roof exposed to leaks and, eventually, mold.
  4. Algae stains. Some exterior roof problems are worse than they look. If there are black marks covering part of a roof, the problem is actually algae. In humid climates like Atlanta’s, algae collects in roof sections but will not threaten the integrity of the structure. A simple cleaning and adjustment in roof stripping will solve this problem.
  5. Buckling and curling shingles. Downward buckled shingles are typically related to felt that was not applied properly at installation. Shingles curling upward also have a felt issue— most likely in the under-saturation of the materials.
  6. Blistering shingles. Shingles that show blisters (also known as blotches or holes in the material) indicate an excess of moisture. Roofers who used too much plastic cement during installation may have contributed to this problem as well.
  7. Missing granules. New shingles shed a few granules as a matter of course, so do not be alarmed if you notice this happening after a roof installation. If your roof is over 15 years old and you start seeing granules turn up in your gutter and on the ground below, you are most likely in need of a new roof.

Most of these exterior roof problems can be handled quickly and inexpensively when identified early. Contact Findlay Roofing to let them do some preventive maintenance to protect your home.

Photo Source: Flickr

Professional Roofers and You: What to Expect on Roofing Day

Tuesday, December 8th, 2015

Feeling nervous about a big roofing project coming up? Here’s what to expect from the professional roofers, and how to ensure the whole process goes smoothly.

Preparation and Arrival

A little bit of preparation is very important for larger roofing projects. Roofing contractors will request that you move all vehicles out of your driveway/yard to clear up room. A lot of roofing also involves many new materials like stacks of shingles or lumber. You may want to clear a spot for these materials while the work is progressing. Often roofers will deliver these materials before starting the project, so expect a delivery a day or two ahead of schedule. This is a sign to examine your estimate and contract to refresh yourself on the details.

When roofing trucks first arrive, it’s important that you be there to greet them. This is likely to happen early in the morning – roofing contractors need the daylight for maximum visibility, and prefer to show up at dawn, especially if they can complete a project in a single full day. So set your alarm clock and prepare to say hi.

Upon arrival, the supervisor in charge of the project will probably ask a few questions, such as where your external power outlets are located. A quick circle of your house is advisable so the supervisor can see the landscape, the best way to access the roof, and more. After this first tour and discussion, the professional roofers can get on with what they do best!

Debris

In larger roofing projects, there is going to be a lot of trash. Reroofing and repairs involve tearing off many shingles and often the underlayment, along with other materials. This debris has to go somewhere, and it usually goes in a big pile in the front of your house. Unsightly, but roofers will take away all this junk when they are done. If there’s a specific spot that is ideal for this trash heap – or a spot where it really shouldn’t go, like a new flowerbed – you may want to mention it.

Noise

When people walk, work and nail on your roof, it creates a lot of noise. Keep this in mind for anyone who is going to be around, including house pets, children, and anyone trying to take a nap. Fortunately, as noted, professional roofers usually quit when the daylight fades, so you’ll still be able to get a good night’s sleep. Another important point to note: Roofers will take some extra time during multi-day projects to protect sensitive portions of the roof overnight.

Vibration

In addition to noise, roof work also causes vibrations that can be felt throughout the whole house. When preparing for a lot of roof work, you may want to take down anything delicate that can easily fall off walls or shelves when things get shaken up.

If you have any other questions or concerns about your roofing project, don’t hesitate to call the professionals at Findlay Roofing, today!

Photo Source: Flickr

Hail Roof Damage: Protecting Your Home from Storms

Tuesday, July 21st, 2015

Are you worried about thunderstorms and hail roof damage? Hail can damage your roof materials, but there are ways to give your home extra layers of protection.

Hail and its dangers

While not all thunderstorms produce hail, particularly powerful, large thunderstorms often come with hail showers. Hail only occurs when a thunderhead cloud reaches high enough. Then, through a process called convection cell updrafting, the water droplets the storm carries are frozen. If these frozen drops are carried high enough and for enough time, they develop into lumps of ice that grow thicker and thicker until their weight, plus gravity, pulls them down to the earth.

The smallest hailstones are only 0.2 inches in diameter, which isn’t enough to do much damage to the average house. However, in especially larger thunderstorms hailstones can grow much larger. Technically hail greater than 0.75 inches in diameter is regarded as being dangerous, but hail can grow as large as golf balls or in rare cases even larger. Keep in mind that hail can hit your house at as fast as 120 miles per hour in the right conditions.

Protecting your roof from hail

Two different parts of your roof are in danger from hail: the shingles or tiles on the top layer and the protective membrane or felt layer beneath. When it comes to traditional asphalt shingles, hail will rarely knock shingles to pieces — although it is possible to create small cracks and punctures in shingles which go unnoticed until months later when you discover water has been slowly seeping into the shingle material, destroying your shingles from the inside out.

Heavy hail can also hit the shingles hard to enough to start poking into the roof membrane beneath the shingles. This can create small cracks or holes in the membrane, which will eventually shorten the life of your roof and can also go unnoticed for long periods of time. Sometimes the damage is merely cosmetic, and other times it is more serious — the severity of the storm and the following months are both important factors.

If you live in an area where you deal with hailstorms, ask a roofing professional about the best materials to use for roof protection. A tough cover board with extra insulation and great rigidity can help resist hail damage, but this needs to be installed when the roof is first being built. Tougher membranes or additional layers may also help in subsequent projects.

Protecting your siding from hail

If you have shutters, close them during bad hailstorms to prevent damage to your windows. Closing blinds or curtains on the inside can protect your home if a window does shatter. After severe hailstorms, take a walk outside to look at your siding and windows for any signs of damage or sections that need to be replaced.

If your home has been damaged by hail or severe storms, contact the professionals at Findlay Roofing today.

Image Source: Flickr

Blistering Buckling Curling: 3 Signs Your Roof Isn’t Doing Well

Sunday, July 5th, 2015

The signs of a deteriorating roof are easy to spot: Blistering, buckling and curling are just a few of the indications that point to a declining roof. However, the causes are not always clear cut. In most cases, you’ll need a roofing expert to assess the roof and offer recommendations for solving the problem.

Blistering buckling curling

The signs of a deteriorating roof include:

  • Blistering. Most often a sign that moisture has built up inside the shingle, blistering shingles show signs of bubble or blisters on their surface. Blistering can be a natural aging process for roofs, but it’s also an indication that the attic isn’t properly ventilated, or that leaf and debris has built up on the roof. In regions of the country where exposure to the sun is high, blistering is also common.
  • Curling. Unfortunately, curling is a common problem in roofs. Easy to spot since curling shingles disrupts the uniform look of the roof, the cause is often improper storage of the shingles prior to installation. Alternatively, some additional causes of curling include improper installation, a very dry asphalt base, poor quality shingles and natural wear and tear. The problem with curling shingles is that they leave the structure underneath exposed to the elements, making the structure vulnerable to water damage.
  • Buckling. Similar to curling shingles, buckling shingles are caused by many of the same problems, such as poor ventilation and installation. However, shingles that buckle may also appear due to poor fastening during installation, using nails that are too long, or poor back coating.

Plan of Attack

The best plan of attack for preventing blistering, curling or buckling shingles involves hiring an expert contractor to install the roof and use high-quality shingles. In addition, hire a roofing contractor to regularly evaluate the roof’s condition and attic ventilation to ensure its health. Installing and then maintaining the ventilation system in the attic is a great way to keep the temperature down and prevent some these problems.

If you notice blistering, buckling or curling on the shingles of your roof, get expert help right away. Findlay Roofing is always happy to help our neighbors with roof replacement or roof repairs. Just give us a call today!

Image Source: Flickr

Popular Roofing Myths and the Truth About Roof Repair

Friday, March 13th, 2015

These roofing myths can cost you even more money if you need to make repairs. Learn the truth about your roof and avoid making mistakes the next time you need to deal with rooftop damage.

If the shingles or tiles are fine, the roof is fine

It can be easy for a homeowner to glance up at their roof and think that everything is fine if the shingles still look good and there are no obvious problems like moss or missing tiles. While this sort of obvious damage is an important clue, a rooftop’s health depends on much more than just appearance. Many leaks develop because of cracked or warped flashing, which is not noticeable unless you climb up and give your roof a much closer inspection.

Stains do not indicate the position of leaks

Such roofing myths state that if you see a water stain on your roof, you don’t really know where it’s coming from – water could have leaked in from anywhere. This isn’t exactly true, especially for roofing professionals. It is usually very simple to chart where the water dripped from and find the problem with a close inspection.

Roof repair is the same in every climate

It isn’t. Not only do different regions have different roofing regulations, but there are many roofing materials, flashing, guards and gutters designed to help deal with particular climates, like snowy regions or coastal areas that see a lot of wind and rain. Do not assume that there is a one-size-fits-all fix for your roof, or that a roof material will perform the same in every location.

Roof installations are DIY projects

Partly for the reasons already listed, and partly because of the experience necessary to properly install felt, flashing and roof structure materials, roof installations are not DIY projects. Repairing a section of shingles or a piece of bad flashing is fairly simple if you have some experience in roofing projects. Dealing with complex moisture problems or replacing structural materials should be left to the professionals.

Replacing a few damaged shingles is quick and easy

If you don’t have any roofing experience, don’t assume you can just climb up and nail down a few shingles for an easy repair. You have to consider the type of shingles you have, the underlayer, the effect on any nearby flashing, required sealants and more.

You can cover old shingles with a layer of new shingles

As the Chicago Tribune rightly points out, this is one of the most prolific and dangerous roofing myths. While it may be technically legal, it’s also a very bad idea to put a new layer of shingles over an old layer. You are just covering up the problem, and often making it worse.

The professionals at Findlay can help you navigate your roofing questions, give them a call today.

Image Source: Flickr