Category Archives: Roofing

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The Advantages & Disadvantages of Asphalt Roof Shingles

residential asphalt shingle disadvantages
residential asphalt shingle disadvantages

What are the most common roof types used? The most used roofing material used in the US is asphalt roof shingles, and this is primarily because shingles are the most affordable option for most homeowners. There are many advantages to asphalt shingles including their affordability, installation, repair process, and style. At the same time, there are many disadvantages to shingles includes its vulnerability to weather damage, shorter life expectancy, lack of energy efficiency, and susceptibility to moss and mildew.

elmers roofing asphalt shingles

4 Advantages to Using Asphalt Roof Shingles

  • Affordable: Asphalt composite shingles are one of the most affordable roofing materials available. This cost affordable option makes it easy for homeowners on a budget to obtain a new roof without needing to break the bank. Affordability plays a huge roll in the decisions we make, especially as it relates to home projects. Therefore, choosing the most cost affordable option for a roof while at the same time ensuring you receive quality roofing material to get the job done can be a tough balance to hold. Asphalt composite shingles provide both quality and affordability, helping you to achieve that balance.
  • Easy-to-Install: Asphalt composite shingles are much easier to handle because they come in smaller and lighter pieces as compared to long sheets of metal or heavy pieces of slate. This helps to reduce labor cost when having a professional install your roofing. Installation also goes a lot faster when easier-to-handle material is being used. This allows you to have time in your day to do other things besides being home to make sure your roofing installation goes right.
  • Easy to Replace: With asphalt roofing shingles coming in lighter and smaller pieces, they are far easier to replace. This can save you money in the long run-in case a shingle ever gets damaged. Paying for the repair of a single shingle is far more cost effective than, for example, paying for an entire sheet of metal.
  • Fit Any Style: Asphalt shingles come in a variety of styles and colors that you can choose to fit your home’s style. Because of the flexibility of asphalt shingles, it can fit any unique shape of your home. Having asphalt composite shingles does not mean you have to compromise on the aesthetic appeal of your home. Asphalt composite shingles offer you the opportunity to customize the aesthetic appeal of your home by choosing a variety of colors and texture.
asphalt roof shingles disadvantages
Photo credit: Toronto Roofing

4 Disadvantages to Using Asphalt Roof Shingles

  • Vulnerable to Wind Damage: Because of the material of asphalt composite shingles, if not installed correctly they are vulnerable to wind damage and could be ripped off your roof by high winds. Cracking and damage can also be caused by large hail and/or extreme heat or cold weather. It may be of value to you to schedule an inspection after a major storm just to ensure no roof damage was done. You can also visibly inspect your roof yourself for roof damage.
  • Shorter Life Expectancy: Because of the material of Asphalt Composite Shingles, its overall life expectancy is 15-30 years before a replacement would be needed. Given that most mortgages are either a 15-year or 30-year mortgage, this runs parallel to the expected life expectancy of an asphalt composite roof allowing you to enjoy the full benefit of your roofing materials.
  • Not Energy Efficient: Asphalt composite shingles is not as energy efficient as compared to metal roofing. Although, you will get some energy efficiency with brand new shingles, it is not known for being energy efficient.
  • Mold & Mildew Issue: If you live in a home that is covered in shade, then your roof could be susceptible to mold and mildew. Asphalt composite shingles can absorb moisture more easily compared to other environments, which can lead to a buildup of mold and mildew especially if there is not enough direct sunlight to dry up the moisture that can sit on your roof shingle.

Overall, asphalt composite shingles make a great option for affordability, style, and installation. If you are looking for a cost affordable option, then Elmer’s Roofing is for you! Want to learn more about roofing, check out our blogs covering a variety of topics as it relates to roofing so that you are informed about your roof as well.

Now that you’ve read this blog. Are you in the market for a new roof or have a roof repair needing fixed? Check out Elmer’s roofing for a free roofing consultation to see what we can do for you!

How Long Does An Asphalt Roof Last?

how to make your asphalt roof last longer
how to make your asphalt roof last longer

An asphalt roof can last approximately between 22-25 years, giving you 80-85% of its life expectancy. The life expectancy of an Asphalt roof is determined by these 4 factors: extreme weather, poor attic ventilation, tree branch damage, and improper roof repair. Any or all of these factors can greatly impact how long an asphalt roof lasts.

In this blog, we will discuss 4 things you can do to improve the longevity of your asphalt roof, 5 common things that can ruin your asphalt roof, and finally, 4 signs that indicate you should replace your roof. Asphalt shingle roofs became popular in the US in the 1900s and have maintained their popularity as the most common roofing material used because of their durability, affordability, and aesthetic appeal. So knowing how to care for and extend the longevity of your asphalt roof becomes even more important. 

How to Help Your Roof Last Longer?

You can help your roof last longer by doing these 4 IMPORTANT THINGS which are ensuring proper roof installation, ensuring proper attic ventilation, keeping the gutters clean, and scheduling yearly roof inspections. These four things cover the larger majority of reasons roofs have to be replaced sooner than desirable for most homeowners.

1. Ensure Proper Roof Installation

Proper roof installation is the first and most important piece towards increasing the longevity of your roof life and avoiding premature roof failure. Therefore it is important you utilize professional roof installers who have years of experience to validate their expertise. Do your homework! Proper installation also prevents your home from experiencing roof leaks and improper attic ventilation. This leads to the next thing you can do to increase the longevity of your roof.  

2. Maintain Proper Attic Ventilation 

Your attic ventilation is key to preventing moisture buildup under the surface of your roof shingles, thus helping to prolong its life. When air that is generated in your home rises from appliance usage or other factors, that air needs a place to escape. Otherwise, it builds up moisture in the attic which begins to breed mold and decay in your roofing. You can ensure proper attic ventilation by checking to see if you have an attic vent on your roof.

3. Keep Roof Gutters Clean

Keeping your gutters clear of debris allows rainwater to drain properly. If water builds up in your gutters, it increases the chances of the water build-up getting underneath your roof and damaging its shingles. Also, installing gutter guards will prevent debris from clogging up your gutters and save you the trouble of getting up on a ladder and cleaning out your gutters throughout the years.

4. Schedule Yearly Roof Inspections 

It is easy to forget about scheduling yearly roof inspections until you feel that constant leak on your head from the roof, by then, it could be too late. Yearly inspections from a trained professional will help you to identify and address roofing problems early on before they become worse. It takes work to remember, but it pays off in the long run. Catching a potential roof failure early can mean the difference between an affordable roofing repair and a more costly roof replacement.  

5 Common Things That Can Ruin Your Asphalt Shingle Roof 

The 4 COMMON THINGS that can ruin your asphalt shingle roof are extreme weather, poor attic ventilation, tree branch damage, and improper roof repair. 

1. Extreme Weather 

Extreme weather can do damage to your roof. Extreme winds could blow off shingles, heavy rain could cause moisture under the shingles if they were not installed properly, and large hail could potentially be damaging. Although weather damage is rare on roofs because roofs are designed to withstand harsh weather, after a large storm it would be good to do a visual check of your roof just to be safe. 

2. Poor Ventilation

Poor attic ventilation can lead to water buildup under your roof shingles, leading to water damage and leaks into your home. It is imperative to ensure your attic has proper ventilation for natural airflow to avoid moister build-up?

3. Tree Debris 

Have any large trees near your roof whose branches extend over part of your house? Tree branches can easily break off and puncture your roof shingles or drag them off your roof. If you have any looming trees, just keep an eye on them especially, during times of high winds and other harsh weather conditions. Consider trimming overhanging branches yourself or hiring a professional to decrease the possibility of tree-related damage to your roof.  

4. Improper Roof Repair 

Having a “can-do” attitude is great, but for some things, it is important to have a professional who knows what they are doing. Doing roof repairs yourself without the proper training and safety equipment could lead to unintended roof damage. Roof repair requires a lot of details that professionals are trained in that most typical homeowners do not have. Therefore, if you are not professional trained to repair your roof, let a professional do it. 

how long does an asphalt roof last

4 Signs That Indicate You May Need To Replace Your Roof

4 SIGNS that indicate you need to replace your roof are visibly curling or missing shingles, a sagging ceiling, your roof is beyond its life expectancy and leaks occur inside your home from the ceiling.  

1. Visible Curling or Missing Shingles 

This type of sign is something you can physically inspect yourself just by looking up at your roof. If you see shingles curling or missing, then there’s a good chance some type of damage has occurred that will require a roof replacement or partial replacement. A professional evaluation would be good to properly diagnose the issue. 

2. Sagging Ceiling 

If you notice your ceiling is sagging, there’s a good chance you may be having significant roofing issues. Sagging ceilings can also be an indicator of sitting water or snow on the roof that has compromised the integrity of your shingles that may be close to causing your roof to cave in. Call a professional to look at it. 

3. Your Roof is Beyond its Life Expectancy 

If your roof has exceeded its life expectancy, there is a good chance that your roof will need to be replaced. At that point, you certainly would benefit from having a professional look at your roof to give the final verdict.

4. Leaks

If you are experiencing leaks from the ceiling inside of your home, that is a strong indicator that your roof’s shingles have been compromised by water damage. Have a professional examine your roof soon to prevent further damage from happening. 

There you have it, ways to identify your roof may potentially need replacing as well as ways to extend the lifespan of your roofing. These are all things you can do yourselves, therefore putting you in the driver’s seat. Stay tuned for more blogs that will provide you valuable information as you make decisions regarding your roofing needs.

Are Amish Roofers Cheaper?

are amish roofers cheaper
amish roofer pickup truck

Are Amish Roofers Cheaper?

You already know that when hiring a residential roofer to replace the roof on your home, you should acquire multiple roof quotes to compare pricing. If you have gone through the process, or you have started to think about it, then you may wonder “are Amish Roofers cheaper?” We go over this and look into why Amish Roofers are cheaper but also why that shouldn’t alarm you when you go to sign the contract.

Are Amish Roofers cheaper?

Yes, Amish Roofers are cheaper, and while there are different variables that go into a residential roof replacement, an Amish Roofer will normally be cheaper than the average residential roofing contractor. While they are cheaper they also will provide you with a better experience and even do significantly better work than the normal residential roofing contractor. Less equipment, trucks, and insurance are some of the things that play into why an Amish Roofer is cheaper.

Why Are Amish Roofers Cheaper?

amish roofers that work hard

Owner-Operated

Many Amish Roofing businesses are owner-operated. This is of great advantage to you and affects many aspects of the project you want to be done. If you hire an owner-operated residential roofing business, you can enjoy a significantly lower price due to less overhead. With only a few employees, this requires fewer trucks and fewer tools to complete the job.

An owner-operated business with only a few employees means less money that is spent on insurance. All of these savings get passed on to you and that is why Amish Roofers are cheaper to hire.

Hard Working

Amish Roofers were generally raised on the family farm where they were taught how to work hard from morning to dark. With many summers being spent in the fields working through the hot days without modern farm equipment, replacing your house roof on a hot day is just another day as an Amish Roofer.

With that background in mind, there is no wonder an Amish Roofer can replace your residential roof for cheaper than a lot of your normal residential roofing contractors. While being known for your ability to work hard doesn’t mean that you do quality roofing work, so while you are searching for a roofing contractor don’t automatically fall for the Amish Roofer line. Do your research.

Well Trained

Still wondering why Amish Roofers tend to be cheaper than other residential roofing contractors?

Like we mentioned earlier, many Amish grow up working on farms. This gives them a great advantage when it comes to working. Often times by the age of 15 or 16 they have built odd things around the farm and are used to working with construction tools. They have also become acquainted with the ability to problem-solve and fix different issues they encounter throughout the day. This is extremely helpful and will potentially save you a lot of money because roofers encounter different things on each roof.

Amish Roofers are easy to train and are usually well-trained because of their background on the farm. This means you are getting a better quality roof while also getting it for cheaper. Well-trained roofers mean they will be able to work more efficiently while still giving you the quality you deserve.

Why Hire an Amish Roofer

quality amish roofers

Quality Work

When looking for a residential roofing contractor to replace the roof of your home, it is very important that you hire a residential roofer that is known for their quality work. When you hire an Amish Roofer there is a very good chance that there are known to do quality roofing work. This doesn’t excuse you from doing your own research. Look at their Google reviews or their reviews page on their website to see what everyone else is saying about these Amish Roofers. You should also look them up on Angie’s List to see if they have a profile there.

While being known for high-quality workmanship, Amish Roofer’s are also able to do a lot of roofing projects for cheaper than most roofing contractors.

hard working amish roofers

Honest Workmanship

Hiring an Amish Roofer to do your residential roof, gives you the peace of mind that you are partnering with a roofing contractor that is founded on honest workmanship. It is a part of the Amish lifestyle to operate their businesses and lives with honesty at the forefront.

For us at Elmer’s Roofing, this means that our “New Roof No Mess Guarantee” is truly a guarantee and when we say we don’t consider the job complete until you are 100% satisfied, we are committed to it.

While we do understand that in the world we live in, false promises are made by people and businesses each and every day, you need to find a business you feel you can trust. We hope that what our past customers have said about us will help you to be able to trust us as a business.

Less Hassle

When you hire an owner-operated Amish Roofer to do your residential roof, you get the opportunity to work directly with the owner of the business. This is considerably less hassle for you. When the owner of the business comes to your home to check on the job, orders the materials for the job, and communicates directly with or even works alongside his crew that puts a new roof on your home, this can save you a lot of money and hassle. After the job is completed you also will get a bill that the owner of the business compiled specifically for you and your project instead of someone that sits in the office and only knows you as a name on a paper.

So are Amish Roofers cheaper? Yes, they are but don’t sound the alarm because you get the chance to work with an honest roofing crew that cares about your home and your property. Like we have said before, do your research before you sign any contracts.

Why Is My Roof Leaking?

Why is my roof leaking?
Why is my roof leaking?

One of the aspects of the home people most commonly take for granted is their roof. The fact that you take your roof for granted is not even really thought of until in the middle of a rainstorm, and you see a brown water spot forming on your ceiling. Now you have a problem.

For the common home and homeowner, roof leaks are normally caused by damaged or improperly installed shingles. Shingles most commonly become damaged from Hail, Wind, Extreme Temperatures, and people walking on your roof. Other causes for roof leaks can be an improperly sealed roof, i.e. bad roof vents and flashing.

Homeowners rarely think about their roof leaking until it leaks one time, then you quickly realize the importance of a professionally installed and maintained roof.

What are the Common Causes of a Leaking Roof

While damaged shingles headline the most common causes of a leaking roof, other problems like damaged flashing, poorly sealed skylights, and bad weather can also cause problems for you and your roof. Following this, we will go over each one of these problems.

Compromised Shingles

new roof signs curling shingle residential roofer elmer's roofing
Photo Credit: inchcalculator.com

Compromised shingles are one of the main reasons your roof will leak. By saying compromised, we mean the shingle was not properly installed or has deteriorated over time. Let’s talk about shingles being properly installed first.

The biggest mistake homeowners make is hiring some random roofing contractor to install the roof on their home. While we realize many homeowners have limited knowledge about shingles, roofs, and flashing. This doesn’t mean you can’t do your own research about reputable roofing contractors in your area. You can also ask your neighbors and friends about whom they would recommend as a residential roofer for their home.

You should be very skeptical of the roofing contractor that comes knocking on your door asking if you want your roof checked. A majority of the time these guys are bad news and are just out looking for an easy dollar. Storm chasers will usually show up at your home after a big storm, that involves hail, has passed through your area.

While the concern about your roof after a hailstorm is valid and definitely something you should think about, it would be in your best interest to call a roofing company that you have worked with, in the past.

The lifetime of an asphalt shingled roof is 10-15 years. This lifespan may be longer or shorter than this, depending on a few different factors.

Are there trees that hang over your roof? Do you properly maintain your roof? What is the weather like at your home? Each one of these scenarios and more can affect the lifespan of your roof greatly.

Friendly Tip: Don’t walk on your roof more than you have to, this can damage your shingles.

Damaged Flashing

Flashing is a thin piece of metal that is used to direct water away from critical spots. Mostly used by a vertical object sticking out of the roof like a dormer, wall, or chimney. This flashing is bent in the middle and installed half on the dormer and half on the roof, helping to seal any openings there. Flashing is also used in the valleys of your roof to help with proper water runoff.

Damaged flashing causing a leaking roof can happen because of a couple of different reasons. Poorly installed flashing or poorly repaired flashing are two of the main reasons flashing will start to leak. Since flashing is such a thin piece of metal, it needs to be properly installed otherwise it will crack and let water in.

Damaged flashing can also happen because of humans or animals stepping on or catching their foot on a piece of flashing. This may bend or even break the flashing causing it to leak water.

Weather can also be a big reason why your roof flashing is leaking. If your shingles are not properly installed around your flashing, heavy rain and winter storms can cause moisture to pool up around the flashing causing your flashing to break down and crack.

Friendly Tip: Don’t try to fix cracked or bent flashing yourself, get a professional.

If you are suspicious of leaking flashing, get a professional roofing contractor to come to your home and inspect your roof.

Weather

It is proven in history that people without roofs over their homes, don’t feel like they are secure or safe in their home.

A roof adds security that we often take for granted. When this security is taken away or even breached, we soon can start to feel helpless or uneasy. As humans, we need a warm, dry place to rest our heads and relax. The roof is an important part of this.

The weather does play a significant role in if your roof leaks or not. When there is a leaking roof, oftentimes the weather had a part to play. Severe weather can damage your shingles and flashing to the point where they need to be replaced or your roof is going to only leak worse.

Hailstorms have caused major damage to roofs over the years. Usually, a hailstorm is accompanied by high winds, this combination can cause your roof to be severely damaged to the point where you may have to replace your roof instead of just repairing it. This is where the age of your roof and the quality of the materials installed are sure to make a big difference.

You will also soon find out how “professional” your previous roofer actually was. Like we have said before, a professionally installed roof can be the difference of thousands of dollars in the long run.

Friendly Tip: Don’t hire “storm chasers” to check your roof. This is the term for “roofers” that knock on your door wanting to check your roof after a big storm.

Poorly Sealed Roof Valleys

The “valley” in a roof is where two different roof sections come together at a low point. This is a place where water will run down and if installed properly, will drain down into the spouting or other roof section. These spots on the roofs are highly volatile spots, in large part due to the amount of water that will flow through here.

Due to the high-water traffic here, the valley of the roof can often be a problem spot for roof leaks. The valley is also susceptible to damage if people are walking on it. It can be very easy to catch a shingle on your foot, and then you are dealing with a broken or messed up shingle that needs to be replaced.

While a valley in a roof may be more aesthetically appealing, it will be more susceptible to broken shingles or flashing which will lead to leaks in the roof.

Improperly Installed Roof Vents & Skylights

While skylights are nice for letting in natural light, they can so often be the reason why your roof is leaking. Whenever you interrupt a nice stretch of shingles with something like a skylight or a vent, you have to be sure that your roof is still properly sealed. Too often skylights aren’t installed properly, leading to a leak in the roof which can be a very expensive fix.

This is also another place where flashing is needed, it is just one more place for your flashing to become compromised over years of wear and tear. This is a big reason why skylights have to be replaced after years of use.

Roof vents are one of those things that you can’t get away from having to be installed. With the roof boots that are made nowadays, they can remain leak-free unless not installed properly. This is just another reason why your home’s roof shouldn’t be worked on by someone you don’t trust. Hire a roofing contractor with a good reputation.

properly sealed roof vents and skylight

Cracked Chimney

If your roof is leaking in the vicinity of your chimney, then chances are you either have a cracked chimney or you are dealing with flashing that has become broken or deteriorated. A roof inspection from a professional roofer is a must, he can tell you what needs to be fixed and possibly fix it while he is there.

The roof inspection will also tell you if you need to get a chimney expert out to fix your cracked chimney.

Cheap Roofing Materials

Cheap roofing materials aren’t worth it! Just ask your neighbor who is having problems with his roof after only replacing it a couple of years ago. Any reputable professional roofer will tell you that your upfront cost may be more, it is worth it in the long run. While any shingles and flashing can become damaged, cheaper materials often wear down and break easier than the shingles we use.

high quality roofing materials

This is exactly why we use GAF shingles. While they might be more expensive upfront, the high-quality materials can’t be compared to. When it comes to roofing materials make sure your roofing contractor knows that you want reliable, proven materials to be installed on your roof.

This can be the difference of you needing a new roof in 5-10 years instead of 15-20 years like the normal person. Remember the roof on your home is security to you, no one wants a leaking roof and especially not a new roof.

What to Do if Your Roof is Leaking

If your roof is leaking, don’t hesitate. Call a reputable roofing expert that you can trust. Get them to come to your home and do a roof inspection. Preferably, this would be done by a roofing contractor you or someone you trust has used before.

Don’t procrastinate fixing a leaking roof. The leak is only going to get bigger and cause more damage to your home.

Friendly Tip: Don’t hire someone you don’t trust.

When you are looking for a roofing contractor to do work on your home, do your research. Look up their reviews on Google and Angie’s List or check out their website to see what they are all about.

A Clean Roofer?

clean roofer, elmer's roofing
get a clean roofer residential roofing replacement roofer
Photo Credit: Equipter

What’s the top complaint about roofers? Well, it’s not the price. It’s not even the quality of work (even though there should be more complaints about that!).

No, it’s about the mess left behind when the roofing job is done.

All too many roofers seem to forget that what they leave behind says a lot about what they put on their customer’s house.  Tar paper in bushes, nails in the yard or driveway, pieces of shingles and metal in garden beds or ponds… these all add up to an unhappy customer.  They also mean that the roofer could not possibly have been as careful as he should have been on the installation of the roof itself.  After all, if he doesn’t care about what you CAN see, how much do you think he cares about what you can’t see under the shingles.

We learned a long time ago that cleanup is every bit as important as the work we do on the roof.  We train our teams to do the best possible job installing. Naturally, we also train them to do the best possible job of clean up.

We don’t want to ever get that phone call that says a child or pet got a nail in his foot. With that in mind, we go over your property the same as we would at our own homes.

Here’s a tip for how you can find out how good a job a roofer does: Ask for references, and then ask that customer what they found in their bushes, plants, and gardens after the job was done. If you’re really serious, find out where they are about to do some work, and go by when the job is done and ask that customer the same question.  (That way the roofer is not filtering out the problem jobs.)

Sure, everyone makes a mistake once in a while. It is impossible to guarantee that every nail, every scrap of paper, and every tiny piece of metal is cleaned up, but it is possible to guarantee that in the rare event of a mistake you will get back within 24 hours and make sure it is done right.

clean roofer, elmer's roofing

If you already have chosen a roofer, be sure to do this: Before they leave at the end of the job, make them go around your property with you and carefully inspect every bush, every garden, and every pond for any sign of left trash. Don’t let them leave until they have taken care of everything and if you find more later, make them come back to take care of it. Many will resist coming back because that’s a costly trip, but don’t give up. It’s your yard and your safety. Make them care as much as you do.

Is My Roof Ready For Winter?

winter roofing residential roofer clean roofer residential replacement roofing
winter roofing residential roofer clean roofer residential replacement roofing
Photo Credit: redfin.com

Old man winter can become too “oh man” winter when an old or damaged roof can’t compete with the cold, wet seasonal climate. While a new roof can be a significant investment, being proactive about replacing or fixing your roof can save you from expensive home repairs due to leaks and mold, especially when paired with the cost of the roof itself.

Why are the winter months so hard on your roof you might ask? Snow and ice, that is the problem! When these heavy elements accumulate on your roof, it can lead to water leaks because of the added weight each brings with it.

Instead of waiting for a problem to develop, evaluate the condition of your roof and replace or repair it before it gets worse than it is.

olympus digital camera
Photo Credit: Prugar

Look for cracked, broken, or curled shingles as these are warning signs of an aging roof. Be sure you are ready because we are!

bad shingles worn out shingles residential roofer roof replacement roofing contractor
Photo credit: Nachi

When cleaning the leaves out of your gutters, watch for granular (small stones that adhere to the surface of roof shingles to protect them from weather) because they indicate a wearing roof. Clear gutters can not only prevent heavy fall debris from damaging your gutter and your roof but help reduce the formation of icicles and ice dams.

attic roof insulation to prevent leaks
Photo Credit: BuildingScience

Proper insulation and ventilation in your attic can also minimize the damaging effects of winter weather.

While we provided a few of the telltale indicators above, only an expert can spot all the signs of an aging or deteriorating roof. Don’t let the winter get the best of your roof this year! 

Contact Elmer’s Roofing for a free estimate. We’ll help you evaluate the quality of your roof, identify problem areas, tell you when it should be replaced, and offer an affordable solution. We will answer your question, is my roof ready for winter?

When you plan ahead and replace or repair your roof before winter, you can avoid the headache of fixing leaks this year and for many seasons to come.

⛈ Spring Means Roof Leaks…

roof leaks clean roofer residential roofer elmer's roofing

Hey friends,

Yes, it is safe to say a vast majority of us are ready to say goodbye to old man winter and hello to the spring weather. We understand that with the excitement of warmer weather and bright sunshine in the air, your roof, and its condition is the furthest thing from your mind. That is, of course, until your roof starts leaking.

As the warmer temperatures arrive, rain usually comes with it. Rain means a significant increase in the chances that your roof will leak.

During the winter, high winds and cold weather can greatly affect the integrity of your roof. Lifted shingles, broken “flashings”, and poorly sealed vents are just the beginning of how water can start to leak into your home.

The Good NewsRoof leaks, if caught right away, can usually be fixed easily and at an affordable cost. They do need to be recognized and taken care of right away because you don’t need to give water much time to cause a big mess.

The Bad NewsIf you wait to do anything about a leak in your roof you are pretty much asking for a big mess. The water you could have to replace water-damaged wood, walls, or ceilings. Trust us, this is no fun for you or for anyone involved. It can also put quite a hurting on your wallet.

roof leaks clean roofer residential roofer elmer's roofing
Photo Credit: familyhandyman.com

We didn’t mean to scare you or make you paranoid about your roof leaking, we just want to inform you that it is a serious problem and should not be taken lightly. If you aren’t sure about what to look for to see if your roof is leaking then you are in luck because we compiled a list below to give you the information you need to identify a leak before it gets out of hand and costs you thousands of dollars.

Here are some common roof leaks signs to look for:

  • Discoloration on your ceiling or walls (that’s where water has already started to soak into the ceiling material, so there’s more damage than you think) – especially watch bathrooms where special vent pipes go through the roof and can be a source of leaking
  • Light fixtures that mysteriously blow out periodically (that’s where water is leaking in and causing a short – NOT GOOD!)
  • Lifting shingles on the roof (we can fix them relatively easily if you catch them early)
  • Sagging parts of the roof, especially along the leading edge above the gutters or in “valleys” (the places where two roof lines meet to channel water down to the gutter)
  • Missing shingles (that’s an easy one)
  • Metal flashing around the outside base of chimneys that is bent or pulled away from the chimney, allowing water to get behind it (this is typically caused by ice expanding outward)

If you see any of these signs, don’t wait to give us a call. Any of these can be signs of growing damage that will increase in cost to repair. Like a bad disease, catch them early and fix them, and you can save yourself a lot of heartache and money!

Enjoy your spring but keep your eyes open for potential roof problems. That way you won’t ruin your spring with expensive roof leak repairs.

Can I Get a Winter Roof Replacement?

winter roofers roof replacement in winter clean roofer residential roofer

If the weather outside is frightful, do you know a contractor to make your roof delightful?

At Elmer’s Roofing, we are not your fair-weather roofers. We have the experience to work in cold temperatures through most of the winter and provide quality, affordable roofing solutions to residents of Lancaster, Chester, York, Harrisburg, and Lebanon Counties in Pennsylvania.

It all starts with a free consultation; we’ll tell you how much it will cost to replace your roof and when you need to do it. Some materials should not be used in low temperatures, we’ll discuss your options and explain how weather, like rain or snow, play into the process. We’re here to help you select the right materials for this winter roof replacement.

Our materials are reliable and installed the way manufacturers intended. We don’t cut corners and leave your property as clean as we found it, regardless of the temperature outside.

When you work with Elmer’s Roofing, you can rest assured that your roof will stand up to nature’s elements, like high wind, rain, and snow. The finished product will not only protect your home or business, it will add curb appeal as well. All this goodness also comes with a 7-year No-Leak guarantee. Let us provide you with a worry-free experience and get you ready for winter roof replacement.

If you run out of time in the spring, summer, or fall to replace your roof, there’s no time like the winter to get the job done right with Elmer’s Roofing. Let professionals get you ready for winter and save you money before it gets worst!

Do I Need a New Roof?

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Not sure if you need a new roof? Here are some things to look for:

 
It’s not always easy to tell if you need a new roof.  Sometimes a really bad-looking roof doesn’t need to be replaced at all.  Sometimes one that seems to look good is already a disaster.  So how can you tell the difference?
 
Fact is, you can’t absolutely tell the difference without climbing around your attic, scrambling across the roof, and knowing what you’re looking for.  For instance, I have seen roofs where entire sections lift in the rain and cause terrible leaking damage that is completely invisible from the yard or even from a quick look in the attic.  But there are many things that you can see pretty easily that are sure signs of current or imminent trouble. 

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Curling shingles – shingles that look like the edges are starting to “curl” or lift are a sign of serious wear that is either already allowing water into your attic or is about to start doing so.  Curling shingles are just waiting for the right storm to hit either to take a flight into another county or to just allow water into your attic to cause damage to your insulation, roof plywood, or the things you have stored in the attic. They need to be replaced.

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Photo Credit: InchCalculator

Cracking or broken shingles – this is a sign of brittleness, which is unpleasant. It is usually caused either by age or by excessive heat created by inadequate ventilation in the attic.  You see, your attic needs to “breathe” in order to cool down your shingles, which are being beaten daily by the sun.  Most people don’t realize that a shingle roof can burn your hand even on a sunny winter day, because it soaks up so much energy from the sun.  Brittle shingles will disappear to another yard on a windy day and leave your roof open to rain and other damage.  They need to be replaced, and your attic ventilation needs to be addressed.

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Photo Credit: Askwetandforget

Dark streaks – this is actually NOT a big problem.  Those streaks are just algae.  While they look terrible, they are not harming your roof.  You have three choices to solve this:  1) ignore it, 2) have a professional wash it (never power wash or scrub a shingle roof), or 3) install zinc strips along with the ridge vent (these strips leach zinc when it rains, which kills the algae for years).
 
Lifting shingles – this is usually only visible on windy days, so most people don’t notice them until after they have blown away.  The adhesive that holds shingles down can only hold so much, so if shingles were not installed with the proper overlap, wind can easily stress them to the point that they lift and no longer hold to one another properly.  In some cases where the problem is isolated to a small area, a roofer may be able to re-adhere those shingles and you are good to go.  If the entire roof was installed without proper overlap, it may require a replacement.  Sadly, this often occurs on younger roofs that should not have needed either repairs or replacement for a long time.  It was often the laziness or lack of skill of the roofer that caused this, but don’t expect too many roofers to stand behind this problem because it usually occurs soon after the “warranty” runs out.
 
Granular in your gutters – “granular” is the small stones that are adhered to the surface of a roofing shingle to protect it from the weather.  It also gives grip for anyone climbing onto the roof.  If you start to find lots of these small stones in your gutters, your roof is wearing quickly.  Without granular, your roof cannot protect your home as required.  It is also a sign that shingles are starting to get brittle, which we discussed above.   These shingles are going to need to be replaced before long, so start planning for that cost now.
 
These are certainly not all the things you could look for, but they are by far the most common things a homeowner notices which means it’s time to call a competent roofer.
 
Then it’s just a matter of figuring out which roofer is going to give you the best roof at a fair price,… but that’s a post for another day.

Free Roof Inspections

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Have Elmer’s Roofing give you free roof inspection when you notice wear or leaks, before more damage occurs.

As spring arrives, you may notice that the extreme winter took a toll on your roof. All winters are hard on roofs and the evidence will show up in the spring this year as the snow and ice begin to thaw. You may notice cracked shingles or even leaks.

At the first sign of damage, it is in your best interest to consult an honest, professional roofer to assess your roof. Waiting to repair or replace a damaged roof can be more costly and could result in damage to your home’s interior. When it comes to your roof, an ounce of prevention could save you both money and headaches.

If you notice any of these issues with your roof, please schedule your free roof inspection right away!

Dark, “Dirty-Looking” Areas on Your Roof

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Possible cause: Loss of granules due to age of shingles

Missing, Cracked, or Curled Shingles

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Possible cause: Shingles have reached the end of their useful life

Leakage in Attic After Ice Build-Up

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Possible cause: Inadequate shingle underlayment allows water from ice dams to leak into attic

Elmer’s Roofing offers free roof inspection, so if you have questions about your roof, this is a risk-free way to get the answers you need. And it isn’t all doom and gloom if you do need to repair or replace your roof. First, you are in great hands with Elmer’s Roofing. From the communication of options to the quality of workmanship, you will be pleased. If you do need a new roof installed, Elmer’s offers a great selection of roofing shingles styles and colors as well as start to finish service including the cleanest roof installation you have ever seen!