10 Environmentally Friendly Roofing Tips
The world today is more environmentally conscious than ever before and this has permeated into all aspects of society including roofing. If you would like to be as eco-friendly as possible with regards to making repairs or new construction, there are several ways to make your roof green. Here are some of the materials that you can use as well as some additions to your home that can make a noticeable difference.
1. Adding Solar panels
Solar technology has not yet quite reached the level where it can completely supply the power needs of a house all year round but are getting close. Solar panels positioned properly can help in taking care of some of the biggest drains of energy such as heating water, powering the air conditioner and more.
2. Adding Roof Overhangs
One of the greatest uses of energy in most households is cooling particularly in the warmer locations. Add roof overhangs to cut your energy use dramatically. Overhangs will help in cooling your home and blocking most of the direct sunlight coming through the windows.
3. Slate Roofs
Humanity has been using slate as a natural roofing material for centuries. A good number of slate roofs have been reported to last for over a Century and still look amazing. Reclaimed slate roofs are even greener than newer ones and you can expect similar durability from the stone.
4. Installing A Green Roof
If your building has a flat roof then a green roof is an amazing option. You can cover the entirety of your roof with plants and dirt creating a garden. This will give you great insulation and adds to the amount of green and oxygen in the area. As an additional bonus, buildings that have roof access get an additional recreational area.
5. Investing More Upfront
Some of the eco-friendly roof options such as slate roofs and solar panels will definitely cost more than regular asphalt shingles. The eco-friendly options will help the environment and save money in the end. Lower energy use and better efficiency means that you spend much less on utilities. Better materials have better longevity meaning that you will spend less on repairs and will not have to replace your roof too soon, which adds up to a lot of money in savings.
6. Getting A Light-Colored Roof
Most of the eco-friendly options come in a wide variety of colors. Consider getting the ones that are at the lighter end of the color spectrum or at least the reflective ones. This helps to reflect light away from the house, keeping it cooler and keeping the costs of cooling in your home lower.
7. Reinforced Rubber Shingles
Technically, they are recycled shingles but deserve an honorable mention. The reason for this is that a large number of them are made of recycled tires that otherwise would be headed for the landfill. The tires are reformed into attractive shingles through shredding and provide amazing insulation and durability.
8. Metal Roofs
Metal roofs are usually made out of various metals with aluminum alloys being the commonest choices. Roofs can be made out of anywhere from 50 to 85 percent recycled metal made into various shapes. Metal roofs last for decades and if you decide to get rid of the roof, the metal can easily be recycled.
9. Wood Shakes and Shingles
Unlike the oil used in some of the roofing materials, wood is a renewable resource meaning that you start enjoying environment conservation points right from the start. Add some more by using wood that has been harvested sustainably or even shingles and shakes made of reclaimed wood.
10. Recycled Shingles
Modern recycling and manufacturing processes can do wonders with old materials such as wood and plastic fiber. Recycling post-industrial and post-consumer waste keeps it away from the landfills while at the same time requiring less manufacturing energy. You don’t even have to sacrifice good looks since they recycled shingles look as amazing as those made of virgin materials.
Environmental conservation is the role of every human being on the planet. You can play your role in conserving the environment by choosing eco-friendly roofing options. Consider using the 10 eco-friendly options discussed in this article for your roof.
Roof Repair: Myth Vs Reality
When it comes to getting your roof fixed, you simply cannot afford to get it wrong. Plenty of misconceptions surround roof repair and most of them can lead to costly blunders. Prior to hiring a roofing contractor, it is important to ensure that you understand the difference between myth and reality with regards to fixing your roof.
Myth: The roof is fine since there is no visible damage.
Reality: While shingles may not deteriorate visibly or detach completely, they can still be damaged. While you may not see it, shingles actually do lose their seal as time goes by and become brittle due to the hot sun thus making the roof susceptible to corrosion, pests, mold, and leaks. If you delay in calling a roofing contractor until you have a gaping hole in the roof, a mold takeover, or an obvious leak, you will only be ensuring that damages will be extensive and expensive to repair.
Myth: You can do the roof repairs yourself.
Reality: Even if you do manage to locate the source of the leak and fix it, chances are that you will have to redo the fixing every few months. While it is possible to actually address the symptoms of the leak temporarily if you find the source, even the best materials bought from home improvement stores are not designed to provide a long-term solution. As a homeowner, having a professional to come perform necessary repairs is more economical.
Myth: You can save money by going with the lowest price.
Reality: Everything that seems too good to be true usually is. If you find a roofing contractor offering a significantly lower price than others, you should view this as a red flag. While the contractor’s quote may seem deceptively affordable in the short term, you should consider the corners being cut to facilitate slashed rates.
Myth: You can get a local handyman to fix your roof with materials bought from a local home improvement store.
Reality: Unlicensed roofing contracting is both unlawful and dangerous and makes you liable. Rarely do unlicensed roofing contractors ever carry the types of insurance mandated by law. This means that if case of injury on your property, you will be the one to foot the bill. Hiring a local handyman as opposed to an experienced and certified professional can transform a simple repair into a stressful and expensive nightmare.
Myth: You have to pay vast sums of money in advance for repairs to your roof.
Reality: Stable, successful roofing companies will sometimes ask for a reasonable up front deposit but will never ask for large advance payments. Unfortunately, may previous construction workers have become ‘roofers’ with nothing more than a hammer, a ladder, and a truck. Most of them do not have the financial muscle to pay workers up front or buy materials and it is why they insist on advance payments. Do not do it. Ensure that you always deal with an established, licensed, and reputable roofing contractor before making any kind of payment.
Myth: If a company claims to be a member of the Chamber of Commerce or the Better Business Bureau, they are definitely qualified.
Reality: Companies can renew membership with the Chamber of Commerce or the Better Business Bureau without actually underdoing investigation. Such organizations just conduct cursory assessments of the businesses of its members and often neglect to examine completed jobs or revisit previous clients. If your chosen roofing contractor belongs to either organization, check whether their membership is current and if any complaints have been lodged against them.
Myth: The lifetime warranty covers everything.
Reality: In the absence of regular upkeep, your roof’s warranty becomes void. Installation errors that your roofer commits can also void your warranty and is the reason why you need to find a contractor with quality products, proper certification, and a good track record.
When it comes to roof repair and roof maintenance, you should never take chances. Educating yourself is the first step to ensuring that repairs are done well and this article should provide a nice starting point for this education. Finally, don’t forget to consult a knowledgeable roofing contractor to help you protect your family and home, preserve your warranty, and extend the life of your roof.
Tips To Guide Homeowners When Choosing Roofing Contractors
When looking to replace or repair their roof, the greatest hurdle that homeowners have to face is choosing the right person for the job. In case the roof suffers damage for whatever reason, homeowners need to go back to normal quickly and conduct the necessary repairs. However, this does not imply just choosing the first contractor that knocks on their door.
Finding professional, honest, and trustworthy roofing contractors might sound hard but it is actually not the case. Here are some tips for finding reputable roofing contractors.
1. Local Referrals
When you select a contractor from your community, there is less risk of potential scams or issues. Local contractors are also probably more familiar with the local code regulations and rules and have a working relationship with area suppliers and crews.
2. Understanding Your Choices Of Materials
Roofing Contractors that fail to offer different shingle options are just not after your best interest. The color and style of shingles you choose can affect your home’s resale value. If it is the insurance company paying for the new roof, it could be the right time to upgrade to a style that will suit your taste.
3. Avoid Yielding To Pressure
Watch out for contractors that pressure you to sign contracts before the insurance company has provided estimates for the damage. Some of the contractors claim that they can work with any amount the insurance company settles upon but the homeowner should make sure that it is the proper amount. The contractor needs to examine the home thoroughly and check whether the insurance adjuster missed any damages.
4. Handling Your Own Claim
Contractors that say they can ‘handle your insurance claim’ or are ‘claim specialists’ could be breaking the law. In most states, it is illegal for a contractor to act on behalf of the homeowner when negotiating the insurance claim. Any contactor that can open the door to potential legal action does not act in your best interest and should be avoided.
5. Paying Your Deductible
Contractors that claim to handle repairs without having the homeowner pay the insurance deductible are endangering the homeowner and committing insurance fraud. The insurance deductible is the homeowner’s responsibility and the contractor should reflect that in the quote and not inflate the estimate to cover the deductible either partially or in full.
6. Checking For Proper Insurance and Licensing
Contractors need to provide insurance cover to all employees and subcontractors and should be ready to provide a copy of the insurance certificate for validation. Most states do require contractors to have licenses and you should ensure that the contractor provides a copy of their license for you to confirm their status online.
Contractors working without a safety or training program might not be ideal for the job and need to be avoided. Only choose a contractor that offers a safety or training program.
8. Getting an Extensive Warranty
Not all contractors can provide manufacturer warranties including coverage over the workmanship. In case a contractor installs a roof incorrectly, it could be months or even years before the damage starts showing and the insurance company won’t pay for it. If the contractor refuses to fix it or has gone out of business, you will have to pay for the mistake yourself.
9. Researching The Better Business Bureau Ratings
Some contractors show up just after the damage has occurred looking for work and it is always important to look them up on the BBB website to find out whether they have a good score. Avoid any contractor that does not exist on the BBB website.
10. Look For Manufacturer Designations
Manufacturer designations are regarded as a badge of honor since the contractor needs to pass certain requirements to be certified even though some manufacturers do have stringent requirements than others.
Roofing is an expensive investment and you should always strive to get it right the first time round to avoid costly repairs later on. It is therefore important to get good professionals to handle the roofing tasks properly. However, finding good roofing contractors is not easy if you do not know what to look out for. Follow the tips discussed in this article to help you find the best roofing contractor for your needs.