roof damage

Roof Damage? Learn if You Need to Repair or Replace

Your home is one of your primary investments, so it’s up to you to protect it by making necessary updates and repairs.

Your roof plays a major role in the structural integrity of your home. Its condition also has a huge effect on your energy bills.

If you haven’t been paying attention to the condition of your roof, you need to inspect it for damage or deterioration. But after you do that, how do you know if it needs a full replacement or simple repairs? Making the wrong decision could be hard on the pocketbook.

When making any home improvements, educating yourself is always a smart move. That’s why we put together this guide on common types of roof damage and the best course of action.

Let’s find out if your roof needs a full replacement or smaller repairs.

When to Replace

Sometimes a roof can’t be saved with only minor repairs. The number of individual repairs would cost more and be more time-consuming than a full replacement.

Severe roof damage effects other elements of your home like the attic, ceilings, and walls. Replacing your roof when it’s in critical condition will add value to your home and also protect it from further damage.

Here are some warning signs.

Age

How old your roof is has a lot to do with your decision to replace. Most roofs last between 20 and 25 years. Keep in mind this depends on the severity of the weather where you live.

Previous repair work comes into play here too. Find out how many layers of shingles your roof has. Even if a new layer was installed at some point, if it’s over 20 years old, it’s probably better to replace.

Condition of the Shingles

When it comes to roof damage, shingles that have major buckling and curling indicate a need for replacement. A good way to determine this is to look at the slopes of the roof, especially those that get lots of direct sunlight.

Also look for shingles with missing granules or loose granules in your gutters. This is an indication that your shingles have done all they can and need replacing.

You’ll need to contact professional roofing services to help you out.

The Extent of Water Damage

Sometimes water damage is manageable with quick fixes. Other times it’s too late.

Check for water damage to the underside of your roof along with the supports in the attic. If you notice roof damage that goes far beyond a minor leak, it’s time for a replacement.

If you have water damage in many locations, it may be more cost-effective to replace the entire roof.

Roof Boards Failing

When you walk on your roof, do the shingles give a little or feel weak and spongy. This is caused by deteriorating support boards. Whether a result of water damage or just old age, this problem indicates a need for a roof replacement.

Check the inside of your attic for any light coming through from outside. Also, check the interior roof supports for deterioration.

Condition of Your Gutters

How are your gutters holding up? It’s essential to maintain high-quality gutters to avoid water damage and foundation issues. If your gutters need replacing, it may be easier to go ahead and have a new roof installed as well.

When to Repair

Deciding to make repairs depends heavily on the severity of the roof damage or deterioration. It’s possible that what seems like a major issue could be remedied very easily.

However, putting off small repairs almost always leads to more serious problems that require costly solutions.

Here are some conditions that warrant minor repairs.

Size of the Roof Damage

Consider the size of the damaged area. If you only have damage or deterioration in small, localized areas, repairs will suffice.

When compared to the size of the entire roof, if no more than about 30% of the roof is damaged, than repairing is the way to go.

Small Leaks

Is a small amount of rainwater getting into your attic during a storm? You may simply need some shingles replaced.

Sometimes the source of a roof leak is difficult to find. If you notice water damage on ceilings or walls, you’ll need to check to see if water is running from the source of the leak in the attic to a different area.

Although water damage inside your home is a serious issue, it could be coming from a minor leak.

Ventilation Issues

Have you noticed a sudden increase in your energy bills? You could have air escaping from your home by way of the roof. As serious as this may seem, a minor repair will fix any small ventilation issues.

An experienced roofer will determine if you have holes or splits in your roof.

Storm Damage

Roof damage from high winds, rain, snow, and hail are common but don’t always mean you need a full replacement. If you’ve had a major storm, look for things like missing shingles, leaks, or damage to exhaust pipes.

Hail poses the biggest threat to a roof. If you’ve had a major hail storm, call a professional to access what repairs need to be made.

Consider Your Options

When making your final decision whether to repair or replace, pay close attention to a few things. A full replacement may be more cost-effective in the long run. However, if you have a relatively young roof, minor repairs make more sense.

You should also consider how long you plan on staying in your current home. If you think you’ll be selling in the next few years, a full replacement adds value when trying to sell.

You also keep in mind that if you only repair some of the shingles, they will look mismatched. If you’re worried about the aesthetic appeal of your home, a full replacement is the way to go.

If you’ve weighed your options and are still unsure what the best plan of action is, Davis Contracting can help. We specialize in roofing repair and replacements in the Greenville area. Contact us today.

leaky roof

10 Signs of a Leaky Roof

In spite of fluctuations in the housing market over the past few decades, most economists maintain that owning a home is the most important way to build wealth.

Homeownership brings many benefits, such as the ability to build equity and reap tax breaks. But, it also brings new responsibilities. Rather than calling the landlord, the homeowner must replace the old AC or repair the leaky roof themselves.

A roof can last anywhere from 10 to 50 years, depending on what material it is made from, and how well it is maintained. If you’re wondering whether you have a leaky roof that needs replacing, here are 10 signs to look for.

The Obvious Signs

If you’re setting up a bucket in the kitchen to collect rainwater, then your roof has already been leaking for a long time. This leaking can lead to damage to your attic, ceiling, and rafters. It can also cause mold and mildew to grow, which can cause health problems.

So, while water dripping from the ceiling is a clear sign of a leaky roof, you should not wait until then to identify a leak. Rather, you should keep your eyes peeled for earlier warning signs.

Discoloration

Before water starts dripping from your ceiling, it will be absorbed into it. Absorbing significant amounts of water will lead to discoloration of your ceiling.

To see if there are water spots on your ceiling, take a flashlight and examine it closely. The water damage will look similar to coffee stains.

When checking for water spots, do not forget to check inside of closets, or in the basement. Also, always check the ceiling above tubs or appliances, as there are often pipes running there that go up to the roof.

Damage to Wood and Drywall

If leaking continues, it can move from affecting the ceiling to affecting the drywall in your home. This can threaten the structural integrity of your walls.

Check the seams between the walls and your ceiling to look for signs of warping. You may even see sections that are beginning to crumble into pieces or dust. In severe cases, full sections of drywall can even collapse.

Additionally, if you have wood beams contributing to the structure of your home, you may notice damage to these. Water damage can cause the wooden beams, studs, and joists to rot. If this damage persists, the wood will need to be replaced.

Mold and Mildew

When water leaks into your home, it can become trapped in confined spaces. As the water builds up, it creates humidity. In this environment, mold and mildew begin to grow.

If mold is growing in your home, it can cause respiratory problems for you and your family. To check for mold, look for black or dark patches that resemble a stain. Make sure to check damp areas like the attic or the basement to make sure that mold is not there.

Electrical Problems

If leaking persists for long enough, it can lead to damage to your home’s electrical system. Depending on the location of the leak, the water might affect the wires themselves or your electrical circuit box.

Most of your home’s wires are made of copper, and water degrades copper over time. If this damage persists, this can cause wires to break or short out. If the leaking water affects your home’s breaker box, this can throw off the electrical system for your entire home.

Storm Damage

If you have any reason to believe your roof may have been damaged, this is a sign that you should check for a potential leaky roof.

Storm damage can cause projectiles that dent your roof or can produce powerful winds that tear off shingles. If your area has been affected by a serious storm, you should inspect your roof afterward to ensure that there is no damage.

Look at Your Shingles

Whenever you inspect your roof, it is always important to pay attention to the shingles.

The most common type of shingles in the United States is asphalt. These are designed to direct rainwater away from your roof and to protect from wind damage. Over time, however, exposure to the elements will cause your shingles to wear away.

The shingles at the edge of the roof are often the first to experience damage. Watch to see if your shingles are curling, chipped, or broken. In some cases, a section of your roof may even be missing several shingles.

Pipe Boots

Most homes include pipes that run all the way up to the roof. If the pipes penetrate through the roof, this can lead to leaks and other problems.

To prevent damage from the elements, most pipes are fitted with coverings called pipe boots. These are usually made of rubber or lead and can last for 7-10 years. If you notice damage to one of these boots, you will need to have it replaced to avoid a leaky roof.

Check for Puddles

Before water starts dripping from your ceiling, it collects on your roof.

When you get up on your roof, look for places where water is collecting into puddles. This can be a sign that your roof is not effectively directing rainwater into gutters and off of the roof. If you see puddles on your roof, you should contact a professional to find out what is causing the problem.

Chimney Flashing

Brick chimneys are covered with what is called metal “flashing.” This material ensures that water will not run down the chimney and into your home.

Caulking or tarring a chimney is not a viable alternative to proper flashing. Check the seals to make sure they are flush with the chimney. If they are not, they will need to be resealed to prevent leaking.

Get Your Leaky Roof Fixed Today

If you have noticed one or more of these signs of a leaky roof, it may be time to call a professional. Trying to patch the problem yourself can lead to further damage and even more headaches.

To get a free roof inspection or estimate, contact us. We will help you determine if it is time to replace your roof!

residential roofing

7 Key Benefits of Hiring Residential Roofing Professionals

Attempting to repair or replace your roof yourself is a treacherous job if you’re not a trained professional — not to mention quite the dangerous task to take on.

And for what?

Just because there’s a YouTube video for every at-home task you could imagine, doesn’t mean you should attempt every single one. Especially the large projects.

Sure, there are plenty of DIY jobs you can complete at home, but roofing shouldn’t be one of them if you’re not familiar with residential roofing services.

Roofing requires a certain skill-set. Your home is generally the biggest purchase you’ll make in your lifetime, so why play around and risk damaging your home or harming yourself?

It’s no easy feat to repair a roof, so usually, it’s best to leave the work to the professionals. Today we’re taking a deep dive into the 7 benefits to hiring a residential roofing company.

1. You Protect Yourself And Your Safety

Is doing your own roof worth your life? Contacting a residential roofing contractor is a smart choice for numerous reasons, but your safety is the most vital.

A study on construction-related deaths reveals that falling from roofs make up 1/3 of all fall-related deaths in the construction field. The professionals are better equipped to deal with these situations.

Although falls related to roofing jobs are the largest cause of fatalities — getting electrocuted, burns, and other injuries are common as well.

This just goes to show you how dangerous roofing projects can be. And this risk doubles, if not triples when you try to do it yourself.

2. Saves You Time

Perhaps the most obvious perk to having professional residential roofing experts help you out is the amount of time you’ll save not having to endure the project yourself.

But you may not realize how long it can take to complete roofing repairs or a complete roof or shingle replacement if you don’t have expertise in that area.

For trained roofing specialists, they’re trained to be efficient and get the job done in a timely manner.

But, if you try to do the repairs yourself DIY-style and it goes array, you’ll end up having no choice but to contact a residential roofing contractor — which will take double the time it could have.

3. You Might Cause Further Damage

It’s said that roofing is one of the jobs you shouldn’t ever attempt at home. And there’s very good reason for this.

Let’s face it: you’re no expert at roofing. And you shouldn’t try to be to impress the wife or do it yourself just to save a few bucks. Especially when doing so almost always causes further damage.

If you spent a few weeks going through every DIY book and video attempting to repair the roof yourself, but then something goes array — you’re left in a serious bind.

You’ll then have no choice but to call in the professional roofing contractors. At which time, you may have caused further damage, which will cost you more money than it would have if you called in the beginning.

4. It’s More Cost-Effective And Saves You Money

You may be thinking: how is paying for a residential roofing contractor going to be cost-effective or save me any money?

First of all, you may purchase the wrong materials, costly materials that may or may not be the correct ones. Second of all, if it’s done properly the first time, you’ll save yourself loads of money in the long run.

Many roofing contractors actually get competitive and affordable prices on their materials, which lowers your overall cost of the entire project.

Plus, if you purchase all of the materials without the wholesale prices that roofers have access too, plus all the tools and equipment you’d have to buy to do the job, you’re looking at a pricey DIY job.

5. Residential Roofing Contractors Have The Expertise

Not only are roofing contractors licensed and trained before they go out on a job, they have extensive experience and knowledge. They’re trained for every aspect of the job, making them the best people for large and dangerous home repair work like residential roofing.

Roofers have one of the most dangerous jobs in the construction industry, but yet they keep going.

If roofers have this much danger in their jobs, can you imagine the type of danger your average-joe would face?

6. Roofers Can Find Issues You May Not Have Known Existed

Because trained professionals know what to look for, they’re more likely to pick up on problems that you might not have seen or even heard of.

Your roof is the very center of your home, so if something goes wrong with the roof, it can cause serious implications for the rest of your home. Wouldn’t you rather a professional find any issues and repair them, before they turn into a massive problem?

We have professionals in different industries for a reason — they are experts in what they do, so we should allow them to do the job they’re trained to do.

7. The Job Gets Completed Quickly

When you try and DIY any type of project, let alone a major project smack dab on the top of your bigger prized possession, it’s going to take some time.

Any reputable roofing contractor company will give you an idea of how long it’ll take to complete your job before they begin. But if you hire a decent company, they should be efficient and able to complete it in a timely manner.

Not to say it will be finished in a day, it all depends on your specific roof and what kind of damage or repairs they’re looking at, but it certainly will take a fraction of the amount of time it’ll take you to complete the entire job.

Final Thoughts: The Benefits Outweigh the Cons

No matter how you slice it, residential roofing contractors are experts in their field and should be contacted for any roofing repair or replacement.

Jeopardizing your safety is just plain silly when there are experts willing and ready to take the risks for you. Not only is it perilous to attempt such a job on your own, you’ll actually save money, time, and your sanity by investing in a high-quality repair.

But, you don’t want just any roofer. You should always ensure to do your research to find a reputable roofing contractor so you don’t end up with an unreliable roofer, or even worse — a scam artist.

If you’re in need of a roof repair or storm damage assistance, don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions you may have or to receive a free estimate.

roof replacement

Homeowner’s Guide to Choosing a Roof Replacement

Taking on a roof replacement is a hefty task. There are so many options to choose from when it comes to design and function. 

That’s because your roof has a lot of impact on the curb appeal of your home.

When replacing your roof, you must decide on a material based on its visual appeal, functionality, durability, and cost. This go-to guide will help you navigate that decision with ease. 

The Ultimate Guide to Roof Replacement

Let’s dive into the 5 most common types of roofing shingles you can choose from for your roof replacement. 

1. Asphalt

Asphalt shingles are arguably the most widely used roofing material out there.

Pros: 

They are relatively cheap and have a life expectancy of 20 to 50 years. Asphalt shingles are also easy to install, so they help keep your labor costs down in addition to material costs.

They come in a variety of colors, designs, and shapes, and are compliant with Energy Star standards. This means you can get a cool roof rebate.

Eco-minded consumers will also be happy to know that asphalt shingles can be recycled. 

Cons: 

Asphalt shingles don’t stand up to drastic weather changes well. They can handle consistently cold or consistently hot, but fast changes between extremes will cause the shingles to crack and decay. 

Extreme weather conditions such as hail or high winds will likely damage asphalt shingles as well.

So, if you live in an area prone to extreme weather, be sure to opt for extra thick asphalt shingles, or you may want to choose another more durable alternative. 

2. Wood

Wood shingles have mostly been replaced cheaper asphalt. However, some homeowners still prefer their aesthetic appeal. 

Pros:

Wood shingles look unique and achieve an old world quality perfect for the aesthetic of some homes. They are (obviously) made of organic materials, and are therefore eco-friendly. Additionally, they provide energy efficiency that can save you in heating and cooling costs. 

If you live in an area with frequent storms, good news. When it comes to hail and high winds, they are very durable. 

Cons:

Wood shingles are vulnerable to fire, rot, mold, and termites. They are also costly and difficult to install. 

They require a good bit of maintenance, which may not be something you have time for as a homeowner. 

3. Metal 

Metal roofing is a great option for homes with a steep pitch or no pitch at all. 

Pros: 

It can also be very long-lasting, and it’s perfect for rough weather conditions such as areas that get a lot of snowfall. 

Well-designed metal roofs with cooling elements can also qualify you for an Energy Star rebate. Plus, metal roofing is lightweight, durable — it’s fire, water, and rot-resistant.

In some cases, metal roofing can be applied over existing roofing, saving you the removal labor cost. 

Lastly, metal roofs come in many styles, accommodating nearly any architectural design. 

Cons:

Metal roofing is usually more expensive than the alternatives. 

It can also be noisy, since there is no “give” to absorb the sound of falling items such as acorns, branches, and rain. Metal roofing is susceptible to rust and may require repair. Luckily, this type of repair is usually covered under warranty.  

4. Ceramic Tile

Ceramic tiles are expensive. However, they have a certain Mediterranean/Spanish appeal that is hard to recreate with other materials. 

Pros: 

Tile shingles are extremely durable under a variety of weather conditions. When installed correctly, they can last up to 80 years. 

You can achieve a unique, decorative effect with the layering of ceramic tiles. They are fire, insect, and rot-resistant, in addition to being recyclable and eco-friendly.

Cons:

The installation of a ceramic tile roof is complicated, and requires a specific expertise. Ceramic tiles are heavy, meaning that not every home can support their weight. 

5. Slate

Slate is a natural rock that is one of the most long-lasting roofing options on the market, albeit an expensive one. 

Pros: 

Slate tiles last 80-100 years. They are also unique and expensive looking.

Finally, slate is great in snowy or rainy environments because of its low water absorption rate of 0.4%.

Cons: 

Slate is costly both in material and labor. 

These roofs are also very heavy, and will only work on houses with the foundation to support it. 

Costly, But Worth It

It’s no secret that a roof replacement can be costly.

The cost varies greatly based on the size of your home, the pitch (slope), removal costs, damage repair, material costs, labor costs, etc.

For a deeper dive into how to estimate the cost of your roof replacement, check out this post

With all that in mind, let’s focus on its monetary upsides for a moment. 

Did you know that a new roof can help bump up your resale value by an average of $12,000? That’s a good chunk of change. 

High-quality materials, the size of your roof, and additional benefits such as cooling features can bump that number up even more. 

Speaking of cooling features, your new roof can save you money in more ways than just resale value. Certain types of roofing shingles can shift the temperature of your house. This can save you hundreds annual on cooling and heating costs. 

With So Many Options, How Do You Choose?

So, when you’re choosing your roof, prioritize first by durability requirements based on weather, then by style, and lastly by cost. 

This will help you settle on a roof you that protects you, appeals to your aesthetic, and fits your budget. 

As far as style, consider the colors and materials that you like. Do they go with the color and style of your home exterior? Gray and brown tones match the majority of exteriors. However, lighter-colored tiles offer energy saving heat reflection

Also, decide if you want the roof replacement to make your house blend in or stand out. Do you want to embrace the architectural style of your home? Perhaps you want to modernize it? 

With this criteria, you’ll be well equipped to pick out a roof replacement that you’ll love. 

There You Have It!

We hope you found this roof replacement guide helpful! 

Questions? Don’t hesitate to contact us at Davis Contracting for all of your roofing, siding, and window needs. 

 

 

Cost of a New Roof

How to Estimate the Cost of a New Roof

So, you’re thinking about getting your roof replaced, but you have no clue how much money you need to budget.

If you’re scratching your head researching price estimates, don’t worry. Roof replacement costs can vary greatly, and the price you pay is determined by a number of different factors. 

However, it is important to have an estimate before your sign on. For one, you’ll want to know how much money you need to budget for the project. Also, you’ll want to be able to compare estimates from different companies. That way, you’ll be able to tell if a company is charging too much and trying to rip you off or if they’re charging too low and are possibly running some sort of a scam.  

Luckily, figuring out the cost of a new roof isn’t as hard as you may think. You just need to know what factors to take into consideration. Keep reading to find out what these are. 

Location, Location, Location

If you live in the South and you’re talking to your friend in New York who just got their roof replaced, you’re probably not getting the best estimate. This is because the cost of a new roof is largely affected by your geographical location. 

Those living in the deep South (think Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, and Louisiana) are going to pay a significantly lower fee than those living in the Northeast states. If anything, talk to friends in your state who’ve had their roof replaced to get a better idea of what you’ll end up paying. 

Size Matters 

Above everything else, the size of the roof is the largest cost factor. Obviously, the bigger the roof, the more you’ll pay.

But if you don’t know the exact size of your roof offhand, don’t worry. It’s pretty easy to figure out and you don’t have to climb on top of your roof with a tape measure. 

First, you need to understand how roofers set their prices. They charge per roofing square. An area that is 10 by 10 feet (or 100 square feet) is the equivalent of one roofing square. 

For example, the average home is around 30 squares, meaning its roof is 3,000 square feet. 

Now, we promised you wouldn’t have to climb your roof with a tape measure, but you will need one to figure out its size. You will use a tape measure to figure out the length and width of the inside of your home. If your home is irregularly shaped,  you can divide it into sections, find the area of each, and then add them together. 

Once you know the area of your home, you’ll need to figure out the pitch. We’ll talk about that in the next section. 

Pitch 

Pitch is another word for slope, and it’s another very important variable that can affect the cost of your roof. 

In order to measure the pitch, you’ll need to head up to your attic. Place the end of a ruler against the bottom of a roof rafter (also known as a roof beam), holding it at a perfectly horizontal level. Now, move a finger to the 12-inch mark. Measure vertically from this mark straight up to the underside of the rafter. That number will tell you the length the roof rises for every 12 inches it runs horizontally. 

And why is this number important? Well, if the number is 7 or greater, it means you have a high pitch/slope. This means that the roof isn’t walkable and that you’ll have to pay more, as extra safety equipment and harnesses will be required. 

Some roofing contractors will charge extra at starting at a 6:12 ratio, so be sure to talk to your contractor about their cut off. 

Material Costs 

The kind of material you choose will also greatly influence the cost of a new roof. 

Luckily, if you are replacing a roof, all of the previous shingles will be torn off. Therefore, depending on your budget, you can opt for a cheaper or more expensive material. Let’s look at the different materials you have to choose from:

Asphalt Shingles: The most common type of roofing material in America are asphalt shingles. Asphalt shingles are very cost-effective. They are also light and very easy to install for the average home handyman. 

Asphalt usually costs $120-$400 per 100 square feet. 

Wood Shake: Wood shake is a beautiful option, but also much more expensive than asphalt and is very high-maintenance. This is because it deteriorates fast, is prone to fire, and is susceptible to insects and mold. However, if you can afford it and can keep up with the maintenance, its looks are hard to beat. 

Wood shake roofs typically cost anywhere from $7,000 to $20,000 in total. 

Metal: If you’re intending to live in your current home for a long period of time, a metal roof is the way to go. They are hands down the most durable material available. 

Metal usually costs $500-$1800 per 100 square feet. Steel will be the cheapest, aluminum the next cheapest, and copper the most expensive. 

Tile: Many people choose tile because it is easily replaced if damaged. Also, you have the option with tile to choose your own shape and color. 

Tile prices range from $600- $4,000 per 100 square feet. You can expect to pay more if you choose to customize or if you opt for ceramic tiles. 

Slate: Slate is a great option for those looking for something very long-lasting with a slightly more appealing look than metal. 

Slate costs an average of $800- $4,000 per 100 square feet. 

Other Factors 

Location, size, pitch, and materials are the biggest factors you need to take into consideration when estimating the cost of a new roof. 

However, there are some other things to keep in mind, such as:

  • Removing the old roof tiles: Usually $3- $5 per square foot
  • Water or storm damage
  • Chimneys and Skylights: Roofers need to work around these, so it can increase the price
  • Labor Costs: Small, local companies can usually offer a better price because they charge less for overhead

Cost of a New Roof: Wrap Up

Once you have an idea of what you’re willing to spend, you’ll definitely want an estimate from the roofing company as well. 

Davis Construction is a licensed and insured roofing company that offers free estimates. Just fill out our contact form and we’ll get back to you with an estimate in no time.