Why Roofing Is Important to Your Home
Roofing provides shelter from the elements and adds to the look of a house. Its design should consider climate conditions, maintenance requirements, and future expansion needs.
Flashing, sheet metal that covers joints and intersections of roof planes, such as around chimneys and in valleys, helps prevent leaks. It may be surfaced with aggregate, field-applied coatings, or factory-applied cap sheets.
There are many types of roofing materials. Some are designed to last a lifetime, while others are crafted to bring a specific aesthetic to your home and increase its resale value. Whatever type of roof you want, our team can help you choose the best material.
A primary factor in roofing material selection is the climate where your house is located. Different regions have unique weather conditions that require roofing products that can withstand certain levels of humidity, rain, and heat. The materials also need to meet minimum safety and strength requirements that will keep the structure of your house intact.
Wood shingles and shakes are popular roofing materials that offer a classic, rustic look to your home. These are primarily crafted from pine, red cedar, cypress, and redwood. Shingles are thin slabs of wood that are milled and cut into uniform thickness, while shakes are thicker wedge-shaped pieces with a rough texture. Both are relatively inexpensive, but they are not a good option in areas with heavy rainfall or wildfire risk.
Another roofing material is rolled roofing, which is essentially one large sheet that is nailed into place on the roof. This is typically used on flat or low-pitched roofs, and it is fairly easy to install. However, it is prone to damage because it can’t expand and contract as easily as individual shingles, leading to rips and tears.
Alternatively, you can use a single-ply membrane, which is a synthetic rubber and polymer that can be welded together to create a waterproof barrier. This is a great choice for commercial buildings because it can be installed quickly and has excellent UV resistance. There are several types of single-ply membranes, including neoprene, EPDM, PVC, and chlorinated polyethylene sheets.
Tile roofing is also a common option for residential homes. It can be made from clay, concrete, or terracotta and comes in a variety of colors and shapes. It is highly durable, with a lifespan of 60 to 150 years, and it can withstand high winds and temperature fluctuations.
If you’re planning to roof your home yourself, make sure you hire a qualified roofing professional. A roofing contractor should be credentialed by the manufacturer of your chosen roof product or approved by your homeowners insurer, and have a solid local reputation and plenty of local references. They should also have a physical office and be licensed and insured.
Before any shingles are applied, the roofing professional will install underlayment, which is a thin sheet of felt paper that serves to defend your house against water intrusion. It is fastened to the roof deck with close nails along the edge and spread out farther apart as they move toward the middle. The roofing professional will also install flashing, which is metal that wraps around chimneys and at the intersection of roof planes for protection against leaks. Flashing can also be installed to cover plumbing vents, which are needed to ventilate bathrooms and kitchens.
The roofing professional will also waterproof the valleys, which are areas where two slopes of the roof meet and form a “V” shape. A roofing professional will use a self-adhering material like IKO’s ice and water protector to help defend the roof from ice dams, wind-driven rain, and high winds that can drive water up between shingles.
The roof is the part of a house that takes the most abuse from weather, abrasive particles in rain and snow, sunlight and extreme temperature changes. It needs to be able to withstand the elements and still look good, year after year. A quality roof should be inspected regularly for damage and to prevent problems from arising. Some common maintenance tasks include trimming tree branches so they don’t hang over the roof, checking the caulking around chimneys and vent pipes for cracks and deterioration and inspecting the flashing (the material that seals the joints where different roofing planes meet) annually to ensure water doesn’t leak into the home.
Roofs can be constructed of a wide variety of materials, shapes and sizes for technical or aesthetic reasons. For example, some roofs made of cut turf (modern ones known as green roofs; traditional ones called sod roofs) use the soil and vegetation for insulating purposes. Other popular options include shingle roofs, tile roofs and metal roofs. All of these need to be maintained properly to keep them in top condition. Regular cleaning of gutters and the inspection of large accessories such as skylights, chimneys and vents are also important for proper roofing maintenance.
While some homeowners may look at roofing repairs as DIY projects, it’s important to remember that this is a project that requires a certain level of skill and knowledge. It’s best to leave the work to professionals who are certified, licensed, and insured. This will ensure that the job is done correctly and safely. Additionally, a professional will have access to tools and equipment that aren’t available to homeowners.
Roof maintenance and repair is an essential part of home ownership. Even minor damage can lead to major problems if left unchecked, so it’s important to address issues as soon as you notice them. Additionally, a well-maintained roof can add value to your property and make it more attractive to potential buyers.
In addition to repairing leaks, replacing damaged shingles, and addressing other damage, a professional can also install insulation to improve your home’s energy efficiency. This will save you money on heating and cooling costs while helping the environment.
A professional can also assess the condition of your roof and determine if it needs to be replaced. Replacing your roof is an extensive job that involves removing the existing shingles, installing new ones, and then blending them in with the old shingles at the ridges and valleys. This can be expensive, but it’s a necessary investment for those who want to keep their homes in good condition.
Some roofing repairs can be costly, but the cost of ignoring them is more expensive. For instance, a small leak can turn into an ice dam or cause severe water damage inside your home. Likewise, a shingle that is starting to show signs of wear and tear should be replaced right away before it’s too late.
Other common roofing repairs include repairing or replacing metal pipe collars, chimney flashing, and gutter guards. These components help vent household appliances like dryers and furnaces, so it’s important to maintain them. Pipe collars, for example, seal the area where a pipe penetrates your roof. If these seals deteriorate, they can allow water into the attic and cause damage to other parts of your home.