Most of us don’t give our roof much thought, but a professional roofer fields questions daily. When it comes to roof repairs and deciding when to install a whole new roof there’s a lot to learn. Until a leak or obvious damage shows up on your Madison WI area home, your roof is just there, doing its job.
Roofing professionals, in addition to providing high-end roofing systems and guaranteed installations, are educational resources. Consulting a trained, experienced roofer can head off unhappy surprises and big repair bills. Be assured, you are not alone when it comes to the lack of understanding and appreciation for what it takes to keep a quality roof over your head.
Answers From A Professional Roofer
There are four questions roofing contractors must answer every day:
- My roof is leaking – do I have to replace it or can it be repaired?
- Why can’t I do it myself?
- Why can’t I put new shingles right over the old ones?
- How much will a new roof cost?
The first, most obvious question isn’t as easy to respond to as you might think. A quick answer to do I need a new roof because I have a leak is: Maybe. That’s not very helpful. Consider:
Leaking roof options – when a leak appears inside a house it is easy for homeowners to panic. They envision ceiling collapses and structural damage. Thankfully neither is likely when a leak is caught in time. Depending upon the size and location of a leak, patches and repairs are often viable options. The key is an inspection by a trained professional who knows what to look for. And one who understands how to look beneath the obvious. Even if a new roof isn’t necessary making repairs is often a major job.
Less Obvious Roofing Concerns
Roofing is not a DIY project – roofing contractors in general do not have a reputation for reliability. So, homeowners often would rather take on a repair job themselves than hire somebody they don’t trust. Sims Exteriors & Remodeling has been serving Dane County for decades and has built a reputation for quality work – with a workmanship guarantee second to none. Its skilled craftsmen working with the best roofing systems in the business install reliable roofs and retain happy customers. Knowing a reliable contractor is the best option isn’t always enough. If you need convincing, consider:
- More harm than good – improperly nailed roofs result in ripples, lifted shingles and even more or bigger leaks. There’s also potential for serious injury from a fall from the roof. Taking on a serious project without the proper tools (and training how to use them) is another ingredient in a failed project. Replacing a shingle or two may be fine, but anything more is a job for an experienced crew.
- Is it legal? – does your municipality allow homeowners to do major roofing jobs or require a licensed, bonded contractor? How about inspections of the final result? Best to know before investing in materials.
- Future warranty claims – even if you invest in the best shingles available, manufacturer’s warranties almost never cover improper installation. Some put into print that the warranty is void if the roofing materials are not installed by a licensed contractor. Who stands behind the work if something goes wrong?
Professional Roofer Says – Resist The Urge To Cut Corner
Can I put a new roof right on top of the old one – trying to save time and materials with this shortcut is a really bad idea. What’s wrong with this plan? Consider:
- Shingles must be laid on a flat surface to work properly – if old shingles are lifted or curled it’s a guarantee of poor performance. Shingles all overlap so there’s never a really flat surface to work on.
- Shingle add weight – over 100 square feet of quality roofing you’ll add from 350 to 450 pound of weight on the roof. Anyone worried about structural damage beneath leaking shingles should consider these statistics carefully.
- No surprises – taking off the old materials allows for complete inspection of the underlayment and roof decking. If there’s a leak or potential for one this is when it will become obvious. And it’s the time to make cost-effective repairs. Serious problems building beneath existing shingles stay hidden if you slap a new roof over the top. When they do appear it is usually a costly surprise.
- More warranty concerns – placing roofing materials on an improperly prepared surface may void product warranties. It can also hinder a proper roof inspection down the road.
The Bottom Line Roofing Question – How Much?
No matter the answers to all the other possible questions a homeowner might have for a professional roofer, there’s on everybody asks. How much does a new roof cost? A quick answer: About as much as a new car! What? There are so many car models, features and extras you cannot say how much a new car costs. Correct. The same logic applies to a new roof and roof repairs. There are complete roofing systems from which to choose and dozens of shingle options. Steep roofs require more skill and take more time to install. Tearing out a complete roof and replacing it from the bottom up costs more than repairs. The overall square footage of the space makes a difference, too. In addition there are ventilation systems to evaluate.
Before worrying about a true bottom line, explore all the variables and options that fit your home’s roofing needs. When you’re ready for a team of professionals to evaluate your needs and outline the pros and cons of all the roofing options, call Sims Exteriors & Remodeling at 608-825-4500. Or email us. With more experience replacing and renewing roofs in the Madison area, we know how to do everything exactly right. A licensed professional roofer will walk you through every step in the process, and we’ll stand behind the work on your Madison WI area home.