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Learning Some of the Roofing Lingo

A-One Construction Learn Some of the Roofing Lingo

When it comes to building a new home or hiring a professional to install a new roof, it can feel like you are in a new world. Roofing contractors appear to have their own language and it can be confusing to understand projects. Since your property is involved, you need to be aware of all that is going on. Below are some of the most commonly used terms to help you stay in the know.

Learning Some of the Roofing Lingo

  • Deck: The surface installed over the supporting framing members to which the roofing is applied (not like a deck/patio).
  • Rakes: The vertical edges of gable-style roofing
  • Eaves: The lowest, horizontal edge of a sloped roof which extends beyond the exterior wall.
  • Flashing: Pieces of metal used to prevent water seepage into a building. These are placed around intersections or projections like pipes, vents, walls, dormers, and chimneys.
  • Step flashing: The flashing application method used where vertical surfaces meet sloping planes. Individual pieces extend on the roof place to the vertical surface. These are overlapped and stepped up as shingles are applied.
  • Drip edge: A non-corrosive metal lip to keep shingles off the roof deck at the edges. Extends shingles out over the eaves and rakes.
  • Underlayment: Layer of asphalt-saturated felt (or tar paper) that is laid on a bare deck before the shingles are installed. It provides additional protection for the deck.
  • Valley: The internal angle that is formed when the two sloping roof planes meet to provide water runoff.
  • Ice dam: The thawing and refreezing of melted snow form a dam at the lower edge of the roof. This can force water under the roofing and cause leaks.
  • Ice-and-water shield: A thin, self-adhering membrane made of rubberized asphalt that is applied before underlayment but over the drip edge. It helps to mitigate potential leaks from an ice dam.
  • Ridge: The uppermost horizontal external angle that forms where the two sloping roof planes intersect.
  • Sheathing: The exterior-grade boards used as roof deck material.

Up on the Roof

Now that you know the lingo, you can understand exactly what roofers are doing when they are on the roof.

  • Preparation: The old shingles are removed first, then decking is swept as clean as possible. Any loose sheathing is reattached and all sheathing is inspected before any new shingles are placed down.
  • Barrier placement: A drip edge is installed at the eaves. Ice-and-water membrane is applied over this and metal flashing as well as the ice-and-water membrane is applied to valleys and protrusions. Felt underlayment is applied to the entire roof, with each strip overlapping the previous layer. A drip edge applied to the rakes will be applied over the ice-and-water membrane and underlayment.
  • Shingle placement: Starter shingles are placed along the eaves. They extend past the ice-and-water membrane, fascia, drip edge, and underlayment. Shingles are applied in overlapping rows. Metal step flashing is applied with shingles at joints where the roof meets a wall or chimney.
  • Finishing: The roof is finished using special pieces for capping the ridge. One final pass is made across the roof to ensure each nail is sealed with a professional-strength sealant.

 

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Things Your Roof is Trying to Tell You

Things-Your-Roof-is-Trying-to-Tell-You

The roof is more than just protection. It is an investment and adds value to the building. The elements can take their toll on the roof. This means you need to protect it so it can continue to protect you. Your roof can handle a lot but you have to pay attention to it. Without regular inspections, you can miss important things that your roof is trying to tell you.  To avoid serious damage and costly repairs, there are certain things to look for.

Things Your Roof is Trying to Tell You

  • Water spots: Water spots on the ceiling are a common sign that something is wrong. The unsightly discoloration in the ceiling indicates a leak or mold. Moisture that has leaked through the roof into the attic can cause mold and serious damage to the roofing structure. Have a professional come in to further inspect what is causing this so it can be repaired right away.
  • Water damage on exterior walls: Watermarks on the wall are often overlooked. They are often mistaken for slider issues. Water damage indicates that the step flashing is loose or rusted. This will most likely be the culprit if water damage appears right after heavy rain.
  • Excess granules: Excess granules from the shingles can end up in the gutters. When this happens, it is time to replace the roof. The granules protect the roof from UV rays, so once they shed, the end of the roof life is near. Without granules, the roof is prone to cracking and decay which needs to be addressed immediately.
  • Cupping shingles: Shingles that are beginning to cup are a sign of ventilation issues. This indicates that the roof needs to be re-shingled. Cupped shingles can easily be blown away by winds leaving an exposed roof. These need to be replaced right away to prevent serious damage.
  • Black stains: Black stains on the roof indicates that you have an algae problem. Algae can spread quickly which makes it a serious problem. It can also dislodge the granules and leave your roof exposed. Algae also attract moss to the roof which can also weaken the shingles. Placing zinc strips around the roof ridge releases a fungicide that kills algae. You can also mop your roof with a bleach mixture to kill algae and moss.

Conclusion

These are a few common signs your roof is trying to tell you it needs attention. With annual inspections you can identify most problems before they become serious. Call us today if you have any questions about roof inspections or any signs that your roof has given you lately.

 

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The History of Metal Roofing

Metal Roof

Since the 19th century, metal roofing has been a popular choice in building and architecture. Before this time, only lead and copper were used for roofing. Copper was most commonly used for more elaborate roofing, and lead used primarily as a protective flashing material. These metals were used to cover the surfaces when standard materials like wood, slate, and tile were not appropriate for the roof pitch or shape.

The History of Metal Roofing

Copper roofing with standing seams was used on more notable pieces of architecture such as the Christ Church in Philadelphia. Flat-seamed copper was also ideal for covering domes and cupolas. At the start of metal roofing, all copper sheeting was imported from England but at the end of the 18th century, facilities developed in America to roll sheet metal.

Sheet iron was the first metal to be produced in rolling factories and was manufactured first by Robert Morris, a Revolutionary War financier. His New Jersey mill was responsible for producing the roof used for his mansion as well as the replacement roof for Princeton’s Nassau Hall which was destroyed in 1802 by fire. Not long after, sheet metal became one of the most popular materials for roofing.  Iron needed to be corrugated to be used for roofing. This process was patented in England in 1829. Corrugation stiffened the metal so that it had a greater span over lighter frameworks. These corrugated iron sheets also reduced the amount of time needed for installation which also meant lower labor costs.

The next metal to be incorporated into roofing was zinc, in France in 1837. Galvanizing zinc was done to protect the base metal from rust at first, but by the 1850s this zinc was used for post offices and customhouses, trains sheds, and factories. One of the first metal roofs in the South was installed in 1857 on the U.S. Mint in New Orleans. The Mint roofing was designed to be fireproof with galvanized, corrugated iron sheets. In Canada, the metal roofing was tinplate iron and eventually, this became used in the United States as well. Thomas Jefferson was an early advocate for tin roofing installing it on “Monticello” and later the Arch Street Meetinghouse was covered with tin shingles laid in a herringbone pattern. Tin plating was often confused with the terne plate, which was iron that was dipped in an alloy of lead and tin. It is unclear how often terne plating was actually used as documentation over time confuses the two materials.

Conclusion

Tin became one of the most common roofing materials as rolling mills become more established, thanks to its lightweight and low-cost traits. Zinc was also used throughout this time as a less expensive alternative for the lead. However, the advantages of zinc were controversial so it never ended up being widely used across the country. This left tin to be the most commonly used metal in roofing.

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How to Extend The Life Of The Roof?

Increasing-the-Lifespan-of-Your-Commercial-Roof

Roofing is important to the protection and integrity of a building and poor installation or maintenance can result in expensive damages. Even worse is neglect, and if you do not properly care for and maintain your roof, it will fall apart before its time. When it comes to getting the most from your roof, there are a few tips to remember when it comes to maintenance.

How to Extend The Life Of The Roof?

  • Understand typical damage: It is a good idea to know what your system is made from and how it can be damaged. Damage occurs in all types of conditions so you need to know what you are looking for ahead of time. There are three main causes for any damage that you will come across during an inspection.
  • Contractor error: Roofers that carelessly damage roofing during installation is more common than you think. There are two types of roofer damage you may find. Dynamic damage occurs when a roofer actively damages the roof such as dropping a tool that causes a puncture and static damage is caused by excessive pressure that causes damage below the roofing.
  • Seasonal factors: Storms and freeze-thaw cycles can damage roofing directly or as a result of expansion and contraction cycles. Over time, without proper inspections and maintenance, weather can damage the interior and exterior of your roofing system.
  • Wear and tear: Even though there are some durable roofing materials available today, eventually very roof succumbs to wear and tear.
  • Inspections: Ideally, you need to be inspecting your roof at least once or twice a year so as to properly identify weak spots and potential damage. The earlier these problems are identified and fixed, the less dangerous and expensive the damage will be.
  • Know your materials: Roofing emergencies can happen and you don’t want to find yourself without spare materials the day water comes gushing through your roof. Make sure you know how to repair the materials for your roofing system. Depending on the material, you should have the appropriate repair products on hand to use such as:
  • Plastic roofing cement: this is most often required during wet weather. The chemicals in the cement allow the plastic roofing to adhere to a surface creating a quick seal to a damaged area.
  • Self-adhering roofing tape: There are a number of tapes to choose from so do some research and get what fits best. Make sure you get one that has a decent shelf life because you will likely not use the whole roll at once.
  • Duct tape: This can be helpful in a pinch so long as it is high-quality. Before application, make sure the surface is dry and remember that this fix is only temporary and the damage will need to be looked over by a professional first chance you get.
  • Polyurethane caulk: This can only be sued when water leaks at penetration in the roof and is applied as a seal around the jack and the pipe.
  • Avoid Common Mistakes: Knowing what materials are safe for your roofing system is the best way to avoid mistakes and damage. One of the most common errors made is with seals. Many people overheat the seas or patch which creates a bigger problem as too much heat disrupts the integrity of the roofing membrane.

Conclusion

Knowing your roofing system, performing regular inspections and maintenance can help you avoid serious and expensive repairs or damage. While roofing materials will naturally wear with time, you can get the most from your roof be understanding what it is made from and what it needs. The more you know about your roof, the longer it will last, and the better your building will be protected.

 

 

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What Type Of Roof To Build For Your Shipping Container Tiny Home?

Choosing-a-Roof-for-Your-Shipping-Container-Home

 

The standard flat roofing a container comes with can serve most people and saves money, but adding a sloped roof will save you even more in the long run. Hot air rises so most of the heat from your home will be lost through the roof, which makes proper insulation and roofing the best option for saving. Slopes also ensure that water is directed away from the surface to prevent water damage. When choosing a roof for your shipping container home, there are a few styles to consider.

What Type Of Roof To Build For Your Shipping Container Tiny Home?

  • Shed: Shed style roofing is slightly sloped and is very cheap and quick to build. This style is popular because it can be easily fitted with solar panels to increase energy savings. Installing shed style roofing involves welding right-angled steel plates across the length of the container on both sides. On each side, a wooden beam is attached to the steel plates and trusses are screwed into the beams. Steel bars are attached for structural support across the trusses. You can use shingles, or steel sheets to cover the roof. The trusses of the roof must hang over the container to allow for adequate ventilation.
  • Gable: Gable style roofing is similar to that of traditional homes with its distinguished triangular shape. This sloped style provides great water drainage which prevents leaks and extends the roof life. Installation is similar to that of a shed style roof and will also require the help of a structural engineer. As with the shed roof, you will need to make sure the roof has adequate ventilation and you can use shingles, or steel sheets to cover the roof.
  • Flat: Containers already have flat roofing and for most people this is adequate. It is important to remember that while this may be a cheaper option, it does leave your roof at risk for water pooling.

Conclusion

You will need to enlist the expertise of a structural engineer to help calculate load-bearing weights for your roof. The load-bearing weight is the total weight the roof can hold without collapsing. They will provide the calculations for you and ensure that these are met for safety purposes. The weight will differ across locations as each area will have different weather challenges and exposures.

 

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Increasing the Lifespan of Your Commercial Roof

Increasing-the-Lifespan-of-Your-Commercial-Roof

Any commercial roof is susceptible to damage from the elements and natural wear and tear. With the right amount of care and attention, you can get a long lifespan out of your commercial roof. Every roof is different so depending on the materials used, the installation quality, and maintenance you will get different lifespans. To get the most out of your commercial roof follow the tips below.

Increasing the Lifespan of Your Commercial Roof

1. Material

Often budget is the only thing considered when it comes to choosing material, but this is a mistake. Remember that cheap materials will not last as long. You want to select a material that works best for your budget as well as climate, lifespan, location, and purpose. Built-up roofing is ideal for flat roofing but is not great in areas with heavy rainfall, showing that you need to consider all factors before choosing.

2. Ventilation

Having optimal airflow will help your commercial roofing remain cool during the summer and warmer in the winter. Having good ventilation can prevent moisture from collecting and seeping into the roof structure. Any moisture that gets into a roof causes mold and damage that can be expensive to repair. Mold can get into the interior of the building or the structure, causing even further damage.

3. Design

You want a roof design that compliments the type of business you have and one that can face any challenges of your location. You need to size structural members properly, consider possible penetration details, and select the right roof type. Design impacts the overall lifespan of a roof and is as important as the foundation when it comes to the structural integrity of the building.

4. Maintenance

How well you take care of your roof has a huge impact on how long it will last. Even if you have the most durable materials and the best installation, poor upkeep can destroy any roof. You should be inspecting and repairing any damage to your commercial roofing regularly, at least once a year. Small leaks can develop into serious damage so it is important to stay on top of inspections, maintenance, and repairs.

5. Lifespan

The more durable the roof is, the longer it will last. Metal roofing usually lasts the longest which is close to 50 years. Spray-foam roofing can last just as long as providing upkeep is regularly maintained. Built-up roofing lasts close to 25 years, while rubber roofing and EPDM will last between 10 and 40 years depending on upkeep. You need to remember that warranties only guarantee up to 25 years at max.

6. Warranty

Warranties are designed to cover material defects and workmanship. Make sure you always read the fine print when it comes to warranty information in order to fully protect your investment.

 

 

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What Do Customers Want From Their Roofers?

What-Do-Customers-Want-From-Their-Roofers

The success of a roofer depends on the satisfaction of their customers. To satisfy customers, a roofer needs to know exactly what their clients want and need. This involves getting detailed accounts from the customers as well as having a broader sense of the industry trends. Knowing what to offer your customers, will help keep you ahead of the competition. When it comes to knowing what customers want from their roofers, homeowners have identified three top responses; education, budget help, and value pricing.

What Do Customers Want From Their Roofers?

  • Quotes and Research: the majority of homeowners do not conduct any research before getting a roofing project done. 33 percent have admitted not doing any research at all though. This means that educating your customers is an important task for any roofer that wants to be successful. Do not assume that they are aware of all the facts involved with roofing projects, and be prepared to educate them so they can make informed decisions regarding their investment. This ensures you earn their trust and their business.
  • Budgeting: Considering that minimal research is done, it is also safe to assume that little budgeting has been done either. 75 percent of homeowners do not budget for roofing projects and end up requesting and accepting quotes that are too high. In some cases, a person needs an immediate solution so a budget may not be an issue, but when there is time for a restoration project, customers need to be educated about potential costs so as not to waste time or money. To gain a competitive advantage start offering rebates and discounts as well as consider offering financing.
  • Value pricing: One of the top reasons a roofer is ultimately selected is the pricing. Along with having personal references, customers prefer contractors with value pricing. Praise from previous customers as well as a solid online presence with reviews and ratings boost your reputation. Being able to provide these top-rated services at an affordable price only solidifies your position. Many homeowners only get one quote before starting a project, so you need your quote to make an impression every time. Be clear and precise with your pricing, breaking down all elements involved with the roofing process.

Conclusion

Staying ahead of your competitors is an on-going task and there is no one way to guarantee success. A solid reputation, great follow-through, timely responses, honesty, and affordable pricing are sure to keep you at the top of any list and each satisfied customer only brings continued success.

 

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The Enemies Of Commercial Roofing

Commercial-Roofing-Enemies

Just like residential roofing, commercial roofing can be easily damaged by the numerous elements that it is exposed to. The weather can weaken your roof which puts your building at risk. It is important to maintain your commercial roofing in order to prevent expensive damage and problems. Regular inspections and routine maintenance can help you spot damage before it is too late. It also helps to know what can potentially cause damage to your roof so you can be prepared.

The Enemies Of Commercial Roofing

Neglect and weather can damage your roof over time, significantly reducing its lifespan. You cannot control the weather but you can ensure you prepare your roof and regularly inspect it for damage. Understanding what can potentially damage your roof can help you be prepared and take necessary precautions to prevent these elements from destroying your roof and your investment.

  • Heat: Prolonged exposure to extreme heat and sun can cause more damage to your roof than any other factor. The heat causes expansion and contraction which stresses the seams and fasteners in your roofing. This weakens the structure of the and causes damage. If your roof has asphalt to help with waterproofing, the heat can dry this out, reducing its protection and increasing your risk for water damage.
  • Wind: High winds and storms can damage the roof. Not only can heavy winds throw objects like trees or heavy debris against the roof causing denting, cracks, and tears, but winds can rip roofing materials away. This leaves your roofing membrane exposed which is an increased risk of more serious damage.
  • Rain: Rain can cost you a lot of money, if you have not installed waterproofing and if you are not regularly performing inspections. Pooled water ages your roof quickly and causes deterioration. Water can seep through any deteriorated seams causing structural damage and internal leaks. Debris is common with rain which can collect in the drains and gutters causing clogs, Any clogs prevent water from flowing away from the roof and rainwater can pool on the surface.

Conclusion

You need to know these top commercial roofing enemies. You also need to know that they can easily be dealt with. Depending on the climate in your area, prepare your roof ahead of time. Invest in waterproofing for wet areas and sun protection where it is very sunny. With prevention and routine maintenance, you can keep your roof safe and prolong its life and value.

 

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Fire Resistant Roofing

Fire-Resistant-Roofing

 

In light of the recent devastation caused by wildfires over the last few years, the roofing industry has placed great importance on fire-resistant roofing. You should consider fire resistance when considering re-roofing options no matter where you live. Wind can sweep embers from neighborhood to neighborhood in seconds. Entire neighborhoods have been destroyed when the predominant roofing material was wood shakes, which is nothing more than a tinderbox on the roof. With the danger of wind-blown embers, fire-resistant roofing options are readily available today and you have a number of options to consider.

Fire Resistant Roofing

Metal Tiles are made of a material that does not ignite. They are made with fire-resistant barriers with a Class A protection. Most metal roofs are made of steel, copper, zinc, and alloys that are best for the dry environments and those prone to wildfires. Metal tiles are also non-corrosive and can even be designed to look like cedar shake or other more-attractive materials if you have the budget to do so. Slate is indestructible but expensive. Selective contractors have the skills to install it so you need to hire a qualified engineer or contractor to look at the load-bearing of your roofing structure before it can be installed. Slate requires braces or beams to be installed on your roof to hold the additional weight of the material on top of your building.

Concrete and Clay are common on both commercial and residential properties. Residential homes typically use clay over concrete tiles because the material is heavy, durable, and fireproof. The style can be designed to fit any architecture (Spanish, Southwest, or Mission) depending on your preference. The resistance to fire of roofing materials is based on a series of tests that are defined by a fire rating. We can help you find the right fire-resistant roofing option to match your style and budget. Roof fire ratings refer to how your roof performs in a fire on the exterior of your property. The rating is determined by a set of fire tests in a simulated fire. The three rating categories you need to know are listed below.

Class A Roofing Materials

Class A roofing can withstand severe exposure to fire and has the highest rating. It is recommended in areas where wildfires are common and include the following materials.

  • Concrete or clay roof tiles
  • Fiberglass asphalt composition
  • Shingles
  • Metal roofs

Class B Roofing Materials

Class B refers to any type of roof that can withstand moderate exposure to fire. Some areas ban the use of Class B roofing materials and blow, for safety reasons so be sure to check this with local authorities before making a roofing decision.

Class C Roofing Materials

Class C roofing materials are only able to survive light fire damage and include:

  • Wood shakes and shingles
  • Plywood
  • Particleboard

The difference between Class A and B roofing is how well they perform in the fire-resistance testing. One test measures how much a fire spreads on the tested material within 10 minutes. Class A roofs spread the fire 2 feet less than Class B roofs do as they are typically non-combustible. Class B are combustible materials that have been treated with chemicals to make them more fire retardant but these chemicals pose a risk.

Conclusion

The resistance to fire of roofing materials is rated based on a series of tests that are defined by a fire rating. If you are concerned about choosing fire-resistant materials, knowing the roof fire ratings can make all the difference. Call us today and we can discuss all the options with you so that you know exactly what materials fall under which class. We will help you find the right fire-resistant roofing to keep your building safe at a price you can afford.

 

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Is there a Connection Between Ponding Water and HVAC Units?

Is-there-a-Connection-Between-Ponding-Water-and-HVAC-Units

Having more than one HVAC unit on your roof increases your risk of ponding water. Flat commercial roofing is known for having ponding issues, especially when multiple HVAC units are positioned on the roof. Many people do not realize that the HVAC units themselves could be contributing to the ponding problem along with a lack of drainage on the flat roof. Roof top units like HVAC units, skylights, and cooling towers can cause ponding if they are not protected by crickets. Crickets are triangle-shaped structures that are designed to divert water away and without them, water can accumulate. HVAC units also regularly produce condensation which additionally should drain away but cannot if there is no cricket, this does not happen.

Is there a Connection Between Ponding Water and HVAC Units?

The weight of the HVAC unit also contributes to the problem of deck deflection. The presence of any low spots around the unit as a result of poor or aging insulation can damage the roof membrane. The structure of HVAC units can also pose as obstacles that trap debris and accumulated debris interferes with water flow into the gutters causes ponding. Rooftop HVAC units are ideal because it keeps these bulky items out of sight but with the risk of ponding water being high, there are things you should know to effectively prevent this from happening. You first need to make sure that no interior damage or structural damage has occurred before repairing any low spots. Then, make sure all gutters and downspouts are cleared of debris so water can flow without interference.

Keeping Your Roof Dry

Once the flow of water has been corrected and there is a minimal risk for ponding, you need to look for ways to prevent future ponding. The best way to avoid low spots is to fix smaller problems before they turn into larger ones. When there is any rain, be sure to schedule inspections right away to check for ponding. The sooner you find and address issues, the fewer problems you will have in the long run.

Conclusion

Having your HVAC units on the roof keeps the noisy and unsightly equipment out of the way, but they can contribute to low spots and accumulating water. Ponding water causes serious damage to the interior and exterior of your roof and building but can be prevented with proper maintenance and regular inspections. If you have a rooftop HVAC unit, be sure to inspect the surface regularly and take care of all repairs right away. Preventative care is the best way to keep your roof dry and free of ponding-related damage.

 

 

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