Roofs Fail Because of a Lack of Attention To Detail
A lack of attention to detail can cause roofs to fail. Leakage can be caused by a missed connection, poor workmanship or a flawed design. Any leak can lead to a complete roof failure.
Commercial roofs, for example, are usually installed with a termination point within the parapet wall. This can lead to separation and leaking. Although I cannot give an exact number as the data is not available, I can tell you that this problem permeates the roofing industry. This one small moment of negligence, which is invisible from the outside will eventually lead to the roofing system failing. It is not clear when or who will pay.
Old Time Roofing installs parapet coping and extends the roofing membrane above the parapet wall. It is nearly impossible for water or other liquids to get in through this membrane. We go the extra mile to get the details right. This is because we have learned from painful experience, other’s mistakes, and our own mistakes that it’s the small things that matter that will beat water over the long-term.
A common problem in roofing is a poor grasp of the materials and failure to understand how they all fit together. This is bold-faced amateurism. It is not necessary to be certified to roofer. There is no guidebook that will show you how to do it well.
Only the hard-earned lessons from years of experience and trial and error can help you to understand the techniques and procedures that create a superior roofing system. That process has been a learning experience for us. We are able to see the devil in details. This experience informs us about what to look for when a roof meets a wall. We go the extra mile even when our competitors do not. They won’t, because they don’t have the same lessons as us.
It’s great that we have this experience, as roofing is a trade that can be made with errors. It’s the small things that only an expert can see that make the difference.
Do not spend too much on your roof. A cheaper roof will always end up costing you more in the long-term.
Roofs are not a product. It is a complex assembly that requires knowledge and craftsmanship. A well-constructed roofing system is made by adhering to the latest building codes and manufacturing specifications. This is too bad. Roofers don’t have the same knowledge. We offer uncommon knowledge. This is how we create great roofing systems.
This year, I witnessed a contractor incorrectly installing plywood on a job. I was able to spot the problem. He was using 1 1/2 inches. He was using a staple. This is a common practice, but the engineering specification required that you revert to the manufacturer’s instructions. These indicated that you should use 2 in 8 penny nails. To ensure that all manufacturer claims are honored, the plywood work was re-doned and proper installation procedures were used.
Josh’s house was being renovated a few years ago. The siding was being replaced. Josh noticed something was wrong when he went outside to inspect the work. There wasn’t butt joint flashing. He spoke with the installer who was 40 years old and revealed that he hadn’t done butt joint flashing before. He didn’t know he needed to comply with the manufacturer’s warranty. He didn’t bother to read the manual. Josh was 25 years old at the time.
Roofs can come in contact with many areas of your home. It is more than the tiles or shingles on the exterior. A roof that is properly constructed includes an insulation cover board, roofing membrane, insulation, structural deck, vapor retarder, and subsurface roof divider.
Roofers don’t have the knowledge to organize this complexity. Errors can occur when the ball is dropped and details are pushed to the side. From the outside, errors are invisible. They become visible when the system fails.
Uncommon Knowledge and experience are important.
This post was written by Ted Williams! Ted is the owner of A Old Time Roofing which offers the best roofers in Clearwater FL! Ted is a Master Elite Weather Stopper GAF Roofing Contractor, a double award winner of Best Steep-Slope Contractor from GAF and achiever of Master Elite Consumer Protection Excellence from GAF. He has been serving the Pinellas County area since 1978. Old Time Roofing has a tradition of quality workmanship, servicing residential and commercial properties.