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3 Common Mistakes Made by Roofers

April 24, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 106

Many roofers knowingly make 3 major mistakes when shingling, mostly just to save a few hours of labor. It's not that they don't know the proper installation techniques, it's that they don't care.

Moisture barriers- A properly installed roof starts with the paper that goes on before the shingles. At all eaves and valleys there should be a self adhering paper called Ice and water shield. This paper sticks to the wood decking to prevent ice and water (hence the name) from advancing up the roof from Ice melting above the gutter line and actually advancing up the roof and under the shingles. This is actually the only time water can go "uphill". The ice melts as the inside heat advances through the roof. The ice at the gutter then forms a dam and prevents the water from following gravities laws.

Ice and water sticks to the roof decking and prevents any water that gets under the shingles from getting to the wood decking. On less steep roof there should be 2 courses (rows) of Ice and water shield as there is less of an incline to advance up the roof. On more steep roofs, 1 course (row) is recommended. After Ice and Water shield is applied than the rest of the roof should have a 30lb weighted felt as a moisture barrier. Ice and water shield should be used in all valleys and around chimneys that penetrate the surface of the roof.

Re-using old flashing- A second common mistake that roofers made is re-using the existing flashing on the roof. Flashing is the metal that protects any walls or chimneys or any other object that penetrates from the inside of the house. Many roofers take this shortcut because it usually requires extra preparation like removing siding from the walls to affix the metal directly to the wall and extending onto the previously papered roof surface. It allows the water to run off a wall onto the shingles without it seeping under the roof.

Improper nailing- The third most common mistake, and by far the most egregious, is improper nailing. Today's shingles actually consist of two shingles matted together at the midpoint of the shingle, running lengthwise. This creates the three dimensional look of the shingle. There is a one inch overlap where it MUST be nailed, to prevent the lower half of the shingle from blowing off. If wind gets under the bottom of the shingle and the shingle is nailed too high, then the wind can tear the shingle off the roof. 96% of shingle blow-offs occur because of improper nailing. Even if the shingle doesn't separate at the seam, it can still tear the single upper layer of shingle.

This is, like I said, the most egregious mistake because this just stems from laziness. It comes from the shinglers not caring. The shingler feels that if he just slaps the nail anywhere on the shingle then they can shingle faster, thus make more money.

The total savings to the home owner, taking time and material into consideration, for these mistakes is approximately $400 - $500 dollars. When investing a minimum of $3000- $5000 for a roof, $400 dollars is pretty minor when it can save you thousands of dollars in additional interior repairs a year or two down the line.

Source: EzineArticles
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