Installation errors give rise to many problems, from cracks to water leakage, which ultimately leads to costly repairs. These issues are entirely preventable, you just have to have to follow a proper Roofing installation procedure and deploy the roofing material correctly.
The following are some common mistakes during roof installation that must be avoided, followed by tips on how to avoid them. So, let’s get into it.
Common Roofing Mistakes by Homeowners
1. DIYing The Roof Project
When it comes to roof repair or even replacement, homeowners, in order to save money, take the job into their hands. Little do they know; they are leaving flaws and faults in the structure that transforms into huge problems later. The repairs end up costing more than the cost of the installation that they have avoided by DIYing the project.
It wouldn’t be wrong to state that this is easily the most common mistake homeowners do under the wrongful impression of keeping finances minimum. Even though the job calls for truly professional skills, that doesn’t mean you cannot pull off some tasks yourself.
For instance, you can easily inspect the area and deal with the deteriorated tiles or shingles with the little skills you have. For the complete installation, however, we highly recommend hiring an experienced roofing contractor.
2. Selecting the Contractor with No Research
When you’re in a hurry, you tend to go with the immediate option you come across, which creates problems, during and even after the installation. That’s because newbie contractors are inexperienced with the equipment, and the installation techniques. Letting them handle your roofing project would be a mammoth mistake.
Not to forget, many contractors are uninsured, which means that the company won’t take responsibility for the loss of your property. For instance, if a worker gets injured or damages your property, you will have to pay for the expenses without the insurance. That is exactly why you should never hire a contractor that fails to show valid insurance.
The same goes for the company’s license certification as well. Reliable contractors will always have a license since they will have nothing to hide. Fraudulent service providers, on the other hand, will prefer to stay under the radar. Even if the contractor has a sound reputation but doesn’t have a license, you should never sign up for such a deal. Who knows when and where the company’s shortcomings might surface? It is too big of a risk to take, especially for a huge project like a roofing installation.
3. Not Taking Multiple Price Quotes
After devising a list of reputable companies near you, the next step is to get an estimate of the price. Some companies charge extra for the estimation, but many, including the most reliable ones, will offer free estimates. This is how they build up trust between their customers.
An estimate not only includes the price quotes but also the material’s list and the timeframe of the project. For this, the contractor will send their workers to your property for a quick inspection of the area. They will take notes to create an outline of the project and will give you an estimation accordingly.
Some companies offer remote services, where they ask for the area’s dimensions to give an estimate without visiting the property physically. In our opinion, this is a flawed system, which doesn’t create a precise figure.
Once you have gathered multiple price quotes from various reputable companies, it is time to compare their pros and cons. After weighing down the advantages and the shortcomings, you will know which one suits your needs and the budget the best.
4. Ignoring the weather and climate
Since a roof is exposed to the external environment, taking the climate into consideration is a huge part of any roofing project. Everything from the material to any structure you are planning to put up there should be finalized after understanding the climate of the area. For instance, some materials that are good are deflecting moisture, whereas some others have the ability to resist heat and moss.
If you have been living in the area for a long, you would know what type of climate the area has. But if you have just moved to a new location, it wouldn’t hurt to research first. Even though most of the contractors make climate-wise decisions, but if you want to input your wishes, you should educate yourself before hiring them.
Weather, which is a short-term phenomenon, changes drastically and can hinder your roof installation. In the worst-case scenario, it can even damage the property and put your whole project at stake. You wouldn’t want that, would you? So, check the forecasts for the weather and set the time frame accordingly. If there’s a hurricane, snowfall, hailstorm, or heavy rainfall predicted, it is best to put a stop to the project until the danger passes.
Common Roofing Installation Mistakes by Contractors
The errors aren’t always caused by homeowners, whereas the service providers also play a huge role here. The following are some common mistakes made by contractors:
5. Incorrectly Nailing shingles
Shingles are attached to the roof with nails, where the number of which depends on the surface’s slope — the steeper it gets, the more the nails will be used to hook the material in place. In general, six nails are enough to keep them fastened to the surface (only for the less-steep area).
The contractors sometimes forget to put more nails in the steeper area, which ends up loosening the shingles around the edges. That is why the outermost shingles loosen up faster than on the inner side of the roof.
Incorrectly or loosely nailed shingles eventually cause creaks and weaken the inner surface. So, in no time, the surface will start to leak and will become home to moss and other species that thrive in damp areas.
Isn’t it surprising that something so simple can create a chain reaction of much bigger problems? You should therefore cross check whether all the singles are perfectly nailed to the surface. Give an extra scan to the ones out in the corners.
Faulty Installation of Flashing
Some areas on the roof are more prone to moisture damage— skylights, chimneys, vents —which is why flashing is installed to divert the water away from them. It is the material, which is often thinner and resistant to water so that it can effectively do its job.
You can expect what happens when the flashing is incorrectly installed or wears out over time — water leakage. That is why it is critical to install this system properly to avoid expensive and unplanned repairs.
Harsh weather usually rips off the flashing from the surface, which puts the vulnerable structures at a humongous risk. Therefore, we highly recommend replacing the old flashing, even though it looks perfectly fine on the outside.
6. Layering Old Material
Contractors often persuade homeowners into layering the roof with new material rather than resurfacing to save money and time. It does sound a good deal, especially when you consider the reduced cost, but it actually isn’t. When you cover the worn-out surface with the fresh material, you are just changing the outlook of the surface, and not dealing with the root problem — the cracked and faulty surface.
A process of such kind will only open a pandora box of problems that will cost double the money you saved initially. Does it sound intriguing now? We bet it does not. So, why gamble when you can get a new roof by replacing the broken and damaged areas? Therefore, make sure your old surface is completely replaced and not layered in any part of the roof.
7. Incorrect Slope Installation
Good drainage relies on the overall balance of the slope. The sloop should gradually decrease in the outward direction with the middle of the roof and the ridges as the highest points. Adequate steepness would mean that the water will drain perfectly, which will ultimately reduce the risks of leakage.
The installation task, however, is tricky, and not every installer can pull it off successfully. Therefore, you should always go with the experienced contractors and discuss them with details of the project, especially if slop reconstruction is involved.
The airflow patterns and humidity levels are different for different types of roofs and attics. Not enough venting would eventually give birth to molds and moisture build-ups that will eat the structure from inside out. Ask the contractor to inspect the attic thoroughly and install vents as per necessity.
Every error, no matter how petite, can turn into a persistent and massive problem in the future. It is therefore essential to avoid these aforementioned mistakes at all costs, or you will face troublesome issues otherwise.
Whether you are a homeowner or a contractor, our list consists of all the common mistakes and errors that must be avoided. You may never know when a simple precaution might end up saving you a good deal of money.