Yes. It is standard that insurance companies will ask you to get two or three estimates.
Your insurance company will send out an adjuster to evaluate the damage to your property. He will write a full scope of damage with an estimate to repair your home. This amount is called the replacement cost value (RCV), and is the amount the insurance company is willing to pay. If another contractor comes in and estimates your project to be higher or lower, the insurance company will adjust the payment accordingly.
Unfortunately, that is not true. The manufacturer’s warranty is a bit deceiving. The 30 year manufacturer warranty (or 25, 40, or lifetime) is against manufacturer’s defects. Most new roof systems are designed to provide useful services ranging from 15, 20 even 25 years. Some roof system types such as slate and metal systems can last longer.
Actual roof system life span is determined by a number of factors, including local climactic and environmental conditions, proper building and roof system design, quality and suitability, proper application and adequate roof maintenance. Therefore, a 30 year shingle will most likely not last 30 years. We have seen 30 year shingles need to be replaced after 10 years due to severe climactic and environmental conditions. Roofing product manufacturers offer a variety of warranties on their products. Take a close look at those warranties to see what responsibilities and financial obligations manufacturers will assume if their products fail to reach their expected lives.
Leaks can be tough to spot because water wants to find the path of least resistance and can travel for a while before finally showing up through your ceiling. You can try going into your attic or crawl space with a flashlight the next time it rains and try to trace it, but your most accurate answer will come from having a professional come out to find it and give you a quote.
Clearly written proposals that are detailed and broken down into separate line items are a good sign that the contractor is being thorough and has prepared an accurate estimate. The following is a partial list of items your estimate or proposal should include:
- The type of roof covering, manufacturer and color
- Materials to be included in the work, e.g., underlayment, ice dam protection membrane
- Scope of work to be done
- Removal or replacement of existing roof
- Flashing work, e.g., existing flashings to be replaced or re-used, adding new flashing, flashing metal type
- Ventilation work, e.g., adding new vents
- Who is responsible for repairing/replacing exterior landscape or interior finishes that are damaged during the course of the work
- Installation method
- Approximate starting and completion dates
- Payment procedures
- Length of warranty and what is covered, e.g., workmanship, water leakage
New Roof on Top of Old Shingles
You should never install new shingles over the old shingle roof system.
Your roof system will not be eligible for a warranty if you do not remove the existing shingle roof system before installing the new system. Installing over the old shingles can also cause unusual shapes to form in your new roof system and the roof system will not look smooth and level.
Rot, Moisture, and Accelerated Roof Aging
If the old roof system is not removed it will not be possible to inspect the plywood deck sheathing for rot or deterioration that can become a much larger problem in the future. Moisture from the previous roof system can be trapped under the new system and the increased surface temperatures from having two layers of shingles can accelerate roof aging.
Most work should not be done yourself. Professional roofing contractors are trained to safely and efficiently repair or replace roof systems. You can damage your roof system by using improper roofing techniques and severely injure yourself by falling off or through the roof. Maintenance performed by home and building owners should be confined to inspecting roof systems during the fall and spring to check for cracked or curling shingles and cleaning gutters filled with dead leaves and other debris. If you must inspect your roof system yourself, use a firmly braced or tied-off ladder equipped with rubber safety feet. Wear rubber-soled shoes and stay on the ladder (and off the roof system), if possible.
You may be able to see severe hail strikes from the ground, but most often hail damage is not visible to the untrained eye. If you’ve experienced hail in your area, call Your Roofing Service to schedule a professional inspection.
Older roofing shingles and wood shakes typically have a 15- to 30-year lifespan depending on the shingles’ quality, the location and tree cover of your home, and how well the roof was installed originally. Direct sunlight, weather/wind, and poor roof deck ventilation are rough on Bay Area roofs.
Though the CertainTeed and GAF shingles we use today have lifetime warranties, they didn’t a decade ago. We tell our customers that 12 years is a good rule of thumb to go by. At that point, check for these warning signs:
- Curling shingles
- Loss of the asphalt granulation (looks like bald spots)
- Evidence of leaking on your ceilings
- Cracked or discolored interior drywall (painted or wallpapered)
- Decaying shingles
- Missing shingles
- Visible cracks
- Wind damage
- Broken or damaged shingles
- Rusted or missing flashing
If a residential roof is over 15 years old, we recommend you call us out for a look. Sometimes damage isn’t visible to the untrained eye on the ground, and catching it early can avoid expensive interior repairs in the future.
A leaking roof is a bad thing. However, it doesn’t necessarily warrant a complete roof replacement. How much repair and work needs to be done on your roof depends on the level of damage caused by leaking. Talking to a professional is the best way to know whether only minor repair OR a full roof replacement is necessary.
There are many problems that can lead to roof leaking, which is why it’s important to inspect your roof periodically and check for common warning signs. You can perform this inspection yourself, but it is a good idea to hire a professional at least once a year to check for any serious roof problems.