A new roof or roof repairs can be an interesting, if not difficult thing to tackle for new homeowners. It can be confusing, but getting the right contractors to work on your project is extremely important because many things can go wrong, even when working with professionals.
If you have a roofing contractor coming to a job site at your house or business to repair your roof or work on your project, here are some red flags you should watch out for, both before and after the project is done:
(Rushed) Roofing Contracts
Many "fly by the night" roofing companies have a way of way of getting your signature on a contract before you have time to think about what you're agreeing to. These are not real professionals.
These companies may claim you need to go with them, even when insurance is paying for a repair. Be aware, these services can come with a lot of pressure. If a company pressuring you into a contract before you, the homeowner, are ready, walk away.
Lifted Ridge Shingles (Especially Replacement Ones)
When a roofing contractor does a poor job installing the ridge shingles on your roof or roofs, sometimes one side doesn't seal as well as the other. High winds can pick these up and blow them right off. The right roofer will make sure these are centered and installed properly.
Professionals should install these correctly, but if your independent contractors don't, your roof may not last.
Are Your Ridge Shingles Off-Centered?
Just like your ridge shingles being lifted, if they're off-centered, it often means your contractors did not take the important step of installing the shingles properly while roofing. One side may be lifted or may not seal properly. Any professional can make mistakes, but this is a bad one to make.
Roof Repair: Missing or Broken Shingles
Missing Shingles–even a few shingles–after an entire roof replacement or a roof repair can be a really big deal. It often means the shingles weren't sealed properly but can be a sign of a lot of different problems, roof damage among them.
Your Contractor Neglected the Flashing
Flashing is what helps keep water from seeping through your roof. If it's not installed correctly, or if it's missing altogether, you're going to have problems. Cheap contractors and roofing companies alike look at this as a strategy to save money, eventually passing that cost onto homeowners.
Homeowners Beware of Shingles that are Curling or Buckling
If you hire an independent roofing contractor or a professional company, and your shingles end up curling or buckling, it could be that they were installed incorrectly or that they were not the right type of shingle for your roof.
Businesses and homeowners can search out estimates from multiple contractors and make sure they're trusted and guarantee their work. Your neighbors may also be a good source of information about the best contractors.
Visible Nails Coming Out
This means that they weren't driven in all the way, or that they're the wrong size. They can also back out over time, which will cause your shingles to loosen and eventually blow off. Either way, this is not good. Replacement nails and shingles will be necessary.
Roofers Leave Gaps in the Roofing Materials
This is a sure indication of poor craftsmanship from your roofing contractor. Roofers should never leave gaps in the roofing material on site, no matter how small. As a homeowner, you can think of this as a catastrophic failure.
Not Enough Space in The Keyway Lines
Similarly, if your independent roofing contractors leave too much space between keyway lines, it can make it easier for water to seep under your asphalt shingles and soak into your roof. Keyway lines are the lines between the edges of your shingles and guide water runoff. Keyway lines that are far apart will force more water into the open on top of the most protected part of the asphalt shingles, leaving your roof safer.
Damaged Drip Edge or Gutter
The drip edge helps keep water from running down the sides of your home or business, and if your roofing contractors don't install it properly, it's not there, or if it's damaged, you're going to have problems.
To any laymen homeowners, a leaking roof is the most obvious sign that something's wrong with your roof. If you see water coming in, it might be time to call a different roofer. There are any number of reasons a roof leak could crop up:
Faulty installation, missing or damaged flashing, gaps in the roofing materials... the list goes on.
But if you see water coming in, your day is about to get worse (imagine the water stains). A leaky roof problem is nothing to scoff at.
Indents (Even Holes) or Sagging Roof
An indent is a sign that the roofer didn't do a good job of sealing up the hole where a vent pipe goes. In really bad jobs, some roofing contractors will even just cover up vent holes with underlayment and then asphalt shingles. Homeowners should take note: this is a huge red flag after hiring a roofing contractor.
As a homeowner, do you even really know what you're looking at? Do you know what a cheap roof installation looks like and will get you?
You get what you pay for.
How to Look for the Right Roofer?
Home services like roofing and other project-based work can be daunting and even dangerous, and you don't want to be out for emergency repairs. If you're a business or homeowner in the market for a contractor, there are a few key things you can do to ensure you're getting the best possible roofer for the job:
- Ideally, work with a contractor or company with a great rating with the better business bureau (BBB).
- Get a roof inspection and multiple estimates from different roofing contractors before hiring. This will help you get an idea of what a fair price is for the job, but remember, it may not be the same as the final cost.
- Request references from each contractor. Quality contractors should be able to provide you with a list of past clients who can vouch for their work and hand out their project referrals.
- Make sure the roofing contractor is properly licensed and has insurance. This protects you in the event that something goes wrong during the roofing job.
- Read online reviews. This can give you an idea of what other people's experiences have been like with a particular professional contractor.
- Get a written estimate. This will help you compare apples to apples when you're looking at different bids from contractors.
- Quality Professionals will give you warranties.
A quality roof is a big investment, and you want to make sure you're getting the best possible contractor for the project. By following these tips, you can be sure you're hiring a roofer who will do a quality job and leave your roof looking great.
If you are in the market for a roofing contractor, please consider Homestead Roofing. So you can be sure you're getting the best possible value for your roofing project. Contact us today to learn more!