All Roofs Are Not Created Equal

 Buyer Beware

You may or may not have given it much thought, but your roof is the most important element of your home besides the foundation. It takes the brunt of all the elements Shreveport Bossier is known for. These elements include hail, wind, limbs, and sometimes ice. We live in a cross section for weather where salt water air from the gulf meets cool air from the west. This takes its toll on our roofs, and often times home owners do not realize the damage being done to their home before it's too late. Slow deterioration often destroys the rafters, decking, insulation, fascia, and even creates black mold, which can be deadly.

To make sure your property is maintained you need to inspect your roof once a year, or have us inspect it for free. Keep leaves raked off the roof, and trees trimmed back. If you have a hail and/or wind occurrence call for an immediate inspection to prevent any water damage from the interior. Often times it will take a while to manifest inside the house, while doing its damage to your attic and insulation.

If it is time for you to get a new roof you need to make yourself as educated as possible with local construction. If you call five companies you will get dramatically different prices with details such as "Squares of roofing for X amount of dollars." They often do not specify what materials they use, or what method they intend to use.

We believe there is only one right way to build a roof.

  1. Strip to the deck. The main reason is to inspect the decking for rot. No matter what a roofer says they cannot feel out rot by walking over a roofed deck. They have to physically see it, and replace it. Nails are also designed to penetrate to a certain degree, and extra layers prevent this, which could lead to blow offs. Multiple layers of felt and roofing can also trap moisture in, unnecessarily causing rot. Attics cannot properly radiate heat/ventilate if multiple layers are on top of the roof; remember turbines and ridge vent are added ventilation, much of the heat radiates through the roof system. Multiple layers effectively traps heat inside, which will cause solar damage to the shingles, increased electricity costs, and overall roof failure. I have seen roofs in our area with not only double layers of felt, but double layers of shingles.
  2. Storm Guard the valleys. Shreveport is usually boiling hot during the summer, and this causes metal valleys to bend, which pull the shingles away from the valley. Storm Guard is a composite material that is practically impermeable, and most importantly it expands and contracts with your roof, forming with the valley instead of away from it. It comes in sheets and is wider than metal used for valleys, giving your roof double the protection.
  3. Use American Steel Nails 1 1/4. I can't tell you how many times I've been on a local roof and found nails and shingles just falling off of it. Many roofers will use cheap Chinese made 1/2 nails that do not penetrate the decking enough to properly adhere the shingles. The cost saving "for them" that they sell as a cost saving to "you" is just one small corner that adds up to a profit for them, within the confines of their bid.
  4. Hand Nailing vs Nail Guns. This is a big debate in the roofing community. In Shreveport Bossier the weather changes so dramatically during the day, not just the year. It can be 40 in the morning and 88 in the day, and this will change the pressure of the nail gun, which can lead to over nailing or under nailing. This means the nail can go through the shingle, causing it to not adhere, or not far down enough, causing it to puncture through the shingle. Ask a roofing company how they intend to mitigate this problem if they use nail guns. It can be done right, but we take no chances on it, choosing instead to hand nail 100% of our roofs. Under or over nailing is one of those problems that often manifests years down the road, outside of most worksmanship warranties.
  5. Use Standard Shingles or Higher. Everyone knows the old saying "you get what you pay for" and it's very true in this case. We prefer to use Certainteed shingles manufactured right here in Shreveport. They are known nationally as the standard residential roofing material, and have proven themselves over the years.
  6. Use Licensed and Insured Contractors. If you hire an unlicensed contractor and an accident happens then you may be liable for the damages. These contractors can always present a low bid since they don't have the over head of license and insurance. Roofing is a fairly dangerous trade and it is not worth the risk to you to hire such men; there is a reason they aren't licensed. You should always ask for proof of License and Insurance from all contractors.

I may sound like we invented this method, but we didn't. Engineers at shingle manufacturers did, and not following these directions could void the warranty on the materials you have installed. It isn't that hard to do things by the book and not skip steps. If you have an insurance claim in the future they could even deny it claiming that a "flaw in construction" caused the damage vs an "occurrence."

Insurance claims pay for the deck to be stripped, and the reasons I gave are why. Often times a roofing contractor will charge the full amount of a claim, to include the removal of felt, and still not remove the felt. Often times insurance companies do not pay enough for claims to be done the right way, due to unlicensed contractors short cutting the process, bringing prices down to their level, which consequently brings building standards down. You should always insist you be paid fairly to replace your roof, or you will end up with enough money to pay an unlicensed contractor to short cut your property, then pay for it to be repaired down the road.

It is up to you to properly maintain your home, ensure that your contractor is licensed and insured, and is bidding and building to engineering standards. There are good contractors in Shreveport Bossier, but you have to use good judgement when finding them, and can only do so by asking them pointed questions about their plans. A roof is something you should do once every 20-25 years, so make sure the process is not short cutted because in the end you will pay for it. 

Contact us if you need any help or have any questions.

Our First Blog

We want to welcome you to our new website and thank you for stopping by to see all that we have to offer. We are proud to serve our area with quality roof installations, and have many of your neighbors as satisfied customers. If you have a roofing need, don't hesitate to contact us for an honest assessment of your roof's potential, and what we can do to resolve any issues it may have.

We would love to hear from you, so tell us what you think, provide feedback about our company so that we can grow and continue to learn what our customers need and want in a roofing company. We listen to our customer's needs, and we believe that helps us rise above our competition.

Please come back to our site and see what new and exciting news we have, and we hope to hear from you soon.