Home-Buyers Guide to Roofing

It’s no secret Colorado is a great place to live, and those just moving to the state are still coming in record numbers. If you’re looking to buy a home in the Colorado Springs area, do not neglect to inspect the roof of your potential new home. Don’t know what to look for? Well, we’ve put together a few things to keep your eyes on when shopping around for a new pad:

Check the Gutters

2740-4841263Your real estate agent will not likely let you up onto the roof to check these things out yourself, but you can ask them or the previous homeowners about a house’s drain systems. Be sure to ask about any previous damage or repairs to the gutters and downspouts, and get a feel for when the last time maintenance was done on the roof and its accessories. If the shingles look stripped or the gutters are harboring a lot of grains, then it might be a sign you’re dealing with an older roof or one that has not seen its fair share of maintenance.

Keep Looking

From there, take a look for yourself from the ground at the situation above your future home. You can check out the roof’s slope, any damaged, worn, recently replaced or completely missing shingles. If you notice anything abnormal be sure to tell your realtor about them so they may be fixed or negotiated when making an offer on the home, if you choose to do so.

Look at the ventilation

If ventilation is lacking or you’re looking at moving into an older home, be sure to see whether there’s any signs of warped roof sections or leaks. Plus, improper ventilation will kill your wallet in energy costs over time, since it’ll limit moisture indoors and winter snow’s ability to melt and drain off the roof in a timely manner.

Size up the plumbing

This has to do with potential leaks. The last thing any new homeowner wants is to deal with a roof leaking months or even days after moving into a new home.  Plumbing vents and flashings are common places for leaks, and if you’re uncomfortable getting up on the roof to inspect it, call a professional. At Prime Roofing, we’ll offer a fast, friendly service inspection to make sure your home is not at risk for any damages or emergencies.

Want a Skylight? Consider These Things

Skylights are great features that add often underrated value to a home, and we don’t have to be headed toward the summer months to consider or install them. They add natural light from above, adding vibrancy and sometimes a little ventilation to a room. Plus, skylights are built to last and withstand breakage, keeping your home’s structural integrity stronger than ever.

If you’re considering adding a skly light to your new home or adding one where you currently live, consider the following:

Materials

Choosing experts in the roofing business like those at Prime Roofing can help choose the very best, high-quality building materials with which to build your new skylight. Plus the added peace of mind offered by the right contractor can eliminate any fear homeowners have about cutting into their existing roof. We’ll also help you decide which kind of skylight is best for you. That is we’ll take you through various designs and help you choose between shapes and available ventilation options.

Size

Larger skylights will obviously have a higher chance for malfunction or leaks, but when installed correctly can add a much-appreciated flood of natural light to a space. If you want to avoid utilizing extra trusses to support your skylight, consider one that’s built to fit in standard roof panels.

Type

There are a few key variations to choose from when picking a skylight option for your home, and one is deciding whether your light will include a vent, operated electronically or manually, or a fixed one that does not move. Now, understand a fixed skylight is completely safe from leaks and are one hundred percent sealed. That’s not the case for vented sky lights, through the ventilation does have its advantages, especially when placed in a kitchen or bathroom space. However, new technology and improvements introduced after years of innovation make current skylights with vents less and less likely to leak. The only real difference between the two at this point is price: fixed skylights are the cheaper option, and the price increases as you add features.

Second to consider is how much moisture will build up in the skylight’s general area and how that moisture will be mitigated to prevent build-up or mold. This is where expert installation by certified technicians comes in, and our team at Prime Roofing is ready to assist you with your newest skylight addition. We’re also happy to offer tips and tricks for regular home maintenance for your skylight and roofing options year-round.

Last, consider where your skylight is going and how much sunlight it will be exposed to on a regular basis. South and west-facing skylights will not only let in more light, but also absorb more heat than those facing north or east. The slope also affects this. Low slopes will make a room hotter in the summer. The prime slope for a skylight as far as energy efficiency goes is about 10 degrees above our latitude – about 39.7 degrees north of the equator in Colorado.

Call Prime Roofing today with any questions about skylights, roofing materials, maintenance or repairs today!

Steps before Solar-Things for Homeowners to Consider

Reports say Colorado Springs is the 18th best place in America to get solar panels, based on how much financial payback could come from them. With over 300 days of sunshine per year in Colorado, we see the positives in investing in solar energy, both for the environment, and for your return on investment. However, there are a few caveats to consider when thinking about putting solar panels on the roof of your home.

First, it’s still a fairly expensive investment for many. Because it’s popularity has reached a bit of a plateau after skyrocketing in the marketplace a few years ago, the technology behind solar panels and demand for them has not yet brought the price down to a favorable range for most consumers. Plus, the up-front cost of a complete system installation might be too much for some homeowners who want to save money. But don’t worry, those savings will come eventually – it’s proven, after all!

Installation timelines can also be an unexpected source of spending. It’s all up to the solar panel installation contractor as to the timeline of your installation, and is known to take anywhere from weeks to months. But, the latter could mean doubling your initial installment bill and leaving you with a further break-even point on your energy investment.

Plus, you’ll want to be smart about where you place your panels on your home’s roof. Roofs facing the south will see more sunlight than those facing the north, and a lower pitch tends to draw more solar energy toward a rooftop. If your home is already in a prime location and agrees with the needs of solar panels, they may be the perfect investment for you. But, if your roof is too steep to install panels and does not face a good direction to absorb plenty of sunlight each day, you may want to hold off on this eco-friendly energy solution.

Solar panels themselves also tend to pose a heavy threat to your structure if it’s not optimized or your home is older. Solar panels are not incredibly heavy per se, but definitely add a level of hazard during installation and would require a professional’s eye to determine whether installing them was safe for your family and home itself on a logistical level.

SureNail Technology

The difference between a good shingle and a great shingle is having SureNail® Technology. With SureNail® Technology, strength and durability are built into every Duration® Series shingle, thanks to the unique fabric strip in the nailing area.

International Roofing Expo

The International Roofing Expo….where you can find the newest products and trends, discover the latest technology advances, access the best networking opportunities, take advantage of skill-perfecting education, and enjoy talking shop with your peers—all under one enormous roof! Talk about roofing conventions—this is the pinnacle.  Everything you always wanted to know about roofing and then some.  IRE brings the roofing industry together to create a synergy par excellence.  It’s safe to say that no where else do you find the sheer enormity of information and opportunity as is presented at the IRE in Las Vegas.

Do you find at times in your career that you just need a boost, a sharpening, a shot of energy?  The IRE will give you all that.  Make your reservation and feel good, knowing that you’re doing you, your business, and your clients a favor.  Just the atmosphere will recharge you!  This is the place to explore, investigate, sample, evaluate, and connect.  Here you can take it all in, check it all out, and come back home with new inspiration and insight.  There’s nothing like a big convention of roofers to invigorate and motivate fellow roofers.

The massive showroom floor at the annual International Roofing Expo is a veritable showcase of innovations, advances, equipment, services, products, practices, and suppliers.  Glean from the industry’s leading experts.  Acquire practical information for implementation in your business.  Learn key trade practices for expanding your business, growing your client list, and improving your bottom line.  Personal interaction with everyone who’s anyone in roofing is available with the next handshake.  Get in on the best roofing show the industry and the nation have to offer and your own roofing efficiency and excellence will mature.  Attend this convention to enhance your company’s productivity and profitability.   Make your reservation today for The International Roofing Expo being presented February 26-28, 2014 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas.  Register now at www.theroofingexpo.com.   See you there!

11 Things You Need to Know to Pass Your Home Inspection

“According to industry experts, there are at least 33 physical problems that will come under scrutiny during a home inspection when your home is for sale. Here are 11 you should know about if you’re planning to put your home up for sale.”

Homebuyers Want to Know Your Home Inside and Out

While homebuyers are as individual as the homes they plan on purchasing, one thing they share is a desire to ensure that the home they will call their own is as good beneath the surface as it appears to be. Will the roof end up leaking? Is the wiring safe? What about the plumbing? These, and others, are the questions that the buyers looking at your home will seek professional help to answer.

According to industry experts, there are at least 33 physical problems that will come under scrutiny during a home inspection. We’ve identified the 11 most common of these and, if not identified and dealt with, any of these 11 items could cost you dearly in terms of repair.

In most cases, you can make a reasonable pre-inspection yourself if you know what you’re looking for. And knowing what you’re looking for can help you prevent little problems from growing into costly and unmanageable ones.

11 Things You Need to Know to Pass Your Home Inspection

1. Defective Plumbing

Defective plumbing can manifest itself in two different ways: leaking, and clogging. A visual inspection can detect leaking, and an inspector will gauge water pressure by turning on all faucets in the highest bathroom and then flushing the toilet. If you hear the sound of running water, it indicates that the pipes are undersized. If the water appears dirty when first turned on at the faucet, this is a good indication that the pipes are rusting, which can result in severe water quality problems.

2. Damp or Wet Basement

An inspector will check your walls for a powdery white mineral deposit a few inches off the floor, and will look to see if you feel secure enough to store things right on your basement floor. A mildew odor is almost impossible to eliminate, and an inspector will certainly be conscious of it.

It could cost you $200-$1,000 to seal a crack in or around your basement foundation depending on severity and location. Adding a sump pump and pit could run you around $750 – $1,000, and complete waterproofing (of an average 3 bedroom home) could amount to $5,000-$15,000. You will have to weigh these figures into the calculation of what price you want to net on your home.

3. Inadequate Wiring & Electrical

Your home should have a minimum of 100 amps service, and this should be clearly marked. Wire should be copper or aluminum. Home inspectors will look at octopus plugs as indicative of inadequate circuits and a potential fire hazard.

4. Poor Heating & Cooling Systems

Insufficient insulation, and an inadequate or a poorly functioning heating system, are the most common causes of poor heating. While an adequately clean furnace, without rust on the heat exchanger, usually has life left in it, an inspector will be asking and checking to see if your furnace is over its typical life span of 15-25 yrs. For a forced air gas system, a heat exchanger will come under particular scrutiny since one that is cracked can emit deadly carbon monoxide into the home. These heat exchangers must be replaced if damaged -they cannot be repaired.

5. Roofing Problems

Water leakage through the roof can occur for a variety of reasons such as physical deterioration of the asphalt shingles (e.g. curling or splitting), or mechanical damage from a wind storm. When gutters leak and downspouts allow water to run down and through the exterior walls, this external problem becomes a major internal one.

6. Damp Attic Spaces

Aside from basement dampness, problems with ventilation, insulation and vapor barriers can cause water, moisture, mould and mildew to form in the attic. This can lead to premature wear of the roof, structure and building materials. The cost to fix this damage could easily run over $2,500.

7. Rotting Wood

This can occur in many places (door or window frames, trim, siding, decks and fences). The building inspector will sometimes probe the wood to see if this is present – especially when wood has been freshly painted.

8. Masonry Work

Re-bricking can be costly, but, left unattended, these repairs can cause problems with water and moisture penetration into the home which in turn could lead to a chimney being clogged by fallen bricks or even a chimney which falls onto the roof. It can be costly to rebuild a chimney or to have it repainted.

9. Unsafe or Over-fused Electrical Circuit

A fire hazard is created when more amperage is drawn on the circuit than was intended. 15 amp circuits are the most common in a typical home, with larger service for large appliances such as stoves and dryers. It can cost several hundred dollars to replace your fuse panel with a circuit panel.

10. Adequate Security Features

More than a purchased security system, an inspector will look for the basic safety features that will protect your home such as proper locks on windows and patio doors, dead bolts on the doors, smoke and even carbon monoxide detectors in every bedroom and on every level. Even though pricing will vary, these components will add to your costs. Before purchasing or installing, you should check with your local experts.

11. Structural/Foundation Problems

An inspector will certainly investigate the underlying footing and foundation of your home as structural integrity is fundamental to your home.

When you put your home on the market, you don’t want any unpleasant surprises that could cost you the sale of your home. By having an understanding of these 11 problem areas as you walk through your home, you’ll be arming yourself against future disappointment.

OSHA changes the rules

” Here we go again!” a residential contractor recently complained to me, and I couldn’t really disagree with him. On June 16th, 2011, The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) will be enacting yet another new residential fall protection compliance directive – STD 03-11-001. An STD is a written directive meant to instruct local OSHA Area Compliance officers in how to evaluate and cite a possible violation of an established standard found in 29 Code of Federal Regulations.

In no way does it change either the language or intent of any standard. In particular, this is a new compliance guideline for officers for safety and health reference while inspecting construction sites where single -family homes and multi-family dwellings are being built. This guideline will eliminate (or cancel) any previous compliance guidelines and require all contractors performing residential construction to comply in full with 29 CFR, Part 1926.50(b)(13), the residential fall protection standard, which, in turn, requires compliance with 1926.502(k), the construction fall protection written program.

What does all of this alphabet soup mean for roofing contractors? In short, it means that in most cases guardrails, safety nets or personal fall arrest systems must be used on residential job-sites.

Why the change? At the start of this most recent building boom, the residential building community complained to OSHA that they needed more “compliance flexibility” than the Fall Protection Standard (1926.500) permitted. In response, OSHA published a compliance directive (STD 3.1) in 1995. STD 3.1 permitted employers performing certain residential operations to use “alternate procedures” such as slide guards to protect their workers from falling., instead of complying with the standard fall protection procedures stipulates in Subpart M. OSHA made a few changes to STD 3.1 and issued STD 3-0.1A as a temporary fall protection instruction in 1999. It was eventually re-designated as STD 03-00-001.3.

In this period, inspections were lax and enforcement was lenient, with 50 percent to 60 percent penalty reductions common. The existing fall protection compliance directive, which has been followed for almost 13 years, has apparently done little to reduce fall fatality rates or clear up the confusion in the residential constructions industry. OSHA obviously felt there was a need for a course change.

How to Know When You Need a New Roof

A roof serves to protect a home from the elements; unfortunately, roofs don’t last forever. Numerous varieties of roofs are available from which to choose, but shingled roofs are the most common type of roofing installed on private homes. Shingled roofs have an average lifespan of approximately 20 years. Most roofing issues can be repaired by a professional, and if the problem is not remedied within a reasonable time frame it can get to the point that a new roof will become a necessity.

  1. Examine your roof for signs of buckling. Buckling occurs when a roof is not properly ventilated or installed, or when new shingles are laid without removing the old ones. Buckling in several areas of your home’s roof is a sign that it may need to be replaced.
  2. Check the ground around the perimeter of your home for shingles or pieces of shingles that may have blown off your roof. Excessive loss of shingles may indicate a new roof is in order.
  3. Note any sagging in any of the ceilings of your home. Sagging ceilings are indicative of water damage caused by roof leaks. Check your attic for sagging as well, since this is often the first area of the home in which water damage becomes apparent.
  4. Check any spots of discoloration on your roof, determining whether or not they are caused by moss or algae growth on the roof shingles. Moss and algae should be slick to the touch and are the common result of trapped moisture in your roof. A roof that is not properly resistant to moisture may be prone to leaks.
  5. Check your roof for rotting shingles. Rotting shingles contain holes or show signs of substantial deterioration. If the shingles on your roof that you can see have begun to rot, there is a high chance that the rot is occurring in areas you cannot see as well. A rotting roof should be replaced before further damage can occur.
  6. Consider the age of your roof and the cost of repairs. If your roof is more than 20 years old, the cost of repeated roof repairs can rapidly surpass the price of a new roof. In such a case, opting for a roof replacement may be the most financially sound option.
  7. Think about your plans for the future. If those plans include selling your home, you may consider replacing an aging roof even if it does not show any current signs of deterioration. A new roof is an attractive feature for buyers and increases your property value
  8. Get the roof inspected. The only sure way to know if you need a roof replacement is to have the roof inspected by a professional. Find a roofing company in your area that offers free estimates for roof damage. A roofer can tell you whether any damage he finds can be easily repaired or if a new roof is a better option.

Read more: How to Know When You Need a New Roof | eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/how_5548484_need-new-roof.html#ixzz1Enj3XSUM

High Temperature Underlayment

Grace Ice and Water Shield HT (High Temperature) is the newest addition to the company’s line of self-adhered underlayments. Grace Ice and Water Shield HT delivers premium in-place performance in high temperature applications where 240 degrees Fahrenheit thermal resistance is required. It is composed of two waterproofing materials – an innovative and proprietary rubberized asphalt adhesive combined with a high performance polymetric film with UV barriers that provide maximum protection. The rubberized asphalt surface is backed with a foldless release paper that protects its adhesive quality. For more information, visit www.graceconstruction.com.

Recycling Roof Shingles

The available space for landfills continues to decrease and Asphalt Roof Shingles generate about 11 million tons of waste each year in the U.S.  Re-roofing projects account for about 10 million tons of this waste with the other 1 million being generated from manufacturing scrap.  There are now recycling options for asphalt shingles (composition shingles) which includes composition, processing, shingle quantities, and products produced with with recycled asphalt roofing shingles.

Here is a list of products that shingle scrap can be utilized for:

  1. Pothole Patch
  2. New Roofing Material
  3. Fuel Oil
  4. Road/Ground Cover
  5. Cold Patch for sidewalks, utility cuts, ramps, bridges, parking lots, etc.
  6. Asphalt Pavement

Prime Roofing focuses on taking care of the enviroment and is involved in recycling shingles – please visit our services page if you are interested in roof repair or re-roofing your home:  http://www.primeroofingweb.com/services.php