You’re a homeowner and determined your home’s roof needs fixing or needs to be improved with a replacement roof. You’re all set to get moving. What’s the optimal way to get a high quality roofer who will accomplish a good job? What could you look for in a roof contractor or contractor to obtain this work? Severance
When homeowners choose to repair a roof or replace that roof with asphalt during the cold winter months, they’re often plagued by worries that their family will freeze before the job is completed. In the same vein, those starting a roofing job in the sweltering summer months worry that they’ll be facing heat stroke. These concerns are perfectly normal and common among many homeowners looking for roofing fixes or roof replacement contractors.
SeveranceFlat roofs are often the most susceptible to hail damage. In fact most types of flat roof do not even come with a hail rating. This either means that the material has not been tested, or that it wont hold up long under hail storms. This does not mean that there aren't flat systems that hold up admirably.To show the differences in roofing materials, I am going to compare three common flat roof systems. One is rubber roofing. This stuff is usually around a half inch or more thick and instead of being adhered to the roof, it is mechanically fastened with screws. This requires a further layer of insulation to complete the roof system. My Denver roofing company found hundreds of large diameter hail impacts because of the soft rubber material in one example. However, there were no leaks on this building. PVC roofs do not hold up as well from hailstorms because they are so brittle. You actually want a slightly flexible material if that material is not very strong. In once case, our roofing contractors in Denver found impacts that looked like shattered glass. Hail can go right through thin PVC. This immediately causes leaks and water damage. So make sure you use thick, impact resistant PVC in hail regions.Rubberized asphalt is a construction system that performs well under hail conditions. Rubber is mixed in with the asphalt to increase the life and elasticity of asphalt. Asphalt's main weakness is that it dries and cracks over time, so this attempts to combat this. It will not completely protect underlying fiber glass roofing, mainly because of how thin it is. However they generally do protect from hail pretty well. My roofing contractors in Denverrecommends gravel surfacing to be added to the bitumen or rubber for maximum weather protection. Gravel is very strong compared to other built up roofs. A rock will always be harder than ice. The rocks absorb the energy from the hail instead of having the fragile roofing material do the job. Generally a well built gravel built up roof never has any problems with hail damage. Other strong roofs include metal roofs, which may dent but rarely need to be replaced. Coated acrylic foam roofs are actually some of the toughest roofing materials out there. High density foam will absorb and dissipate pretty much any hail stone. To really get a strong roof, you could substitute river rocks for gravel on any of the built up roofs. This results in a much heavier but basically impervious roof.
Understanding Your Roof Replacement EstimateFollowing any major hailstorm in the United States, homeowners in the affected area are hit with another storm; hundreds of roofing contractors! It can be very confusing for homeowners to know how to navigate through all the flyers and brochures and decide on which contractor to hire. Unfortunately there are some scam artists out there as well that put the homeowner on high alert in making their decision. This article will make the process of choosing the right contractor a much easier task.Eliminate Imposters QuicklyWith a little detective work, you can quickly figure out which companies to avoid like the plague. The obvious initial thought is to Google the company name, but for a scam artist looking to run away with your insurance proceeds, this method is not likely to be very effective. You may find a website, and not much else. If they have scammed other homeowners in another city, they likely did it under a completely different business name, and possibly even under another personal name.The next place to look is on the Better Business Bureau website. There you can see if they have any prior complaints, and whether or not those complaints were resolved. In some cases you will also be able to see when the entity was created, though this date is taken from the information the contractor sends to BBB, so further research is needed. In order to find the actual business creation date, you will need to do a business entity search on your state's secretary of state office website. Some states will allow you to search for this information, showing you the date the business was started, as well as the local entity creation. There are reputable contractors that will open a new office in your city following a major storm. But if the business itself was not created until shortly after the storm date, it gives you an idea that this might be a scam artist. Obviously if a Google search and a BBB search both result in no information about the company, you have good reason to believe you should eliminate that company. Once you have eliminated the potential scam artists, it's time to do further research on the companies you like.Knowing What You're GettingChecking references is a common suggestion when it comes time to choose a contractor, and this is a great suggestion. However, this should not be the only method used. It is unlikely that any contractor is going to hand out references that will give them a bad review. Still, by calling a few of the references you can get an idea of what kind of work they do.Another important factor to consider is the detail of the proposed work. If the contractor is vague in their work description, ask for a detailed breakdown. As you compare multiple contractors, you can see which one is offering the highest quality product.Be sure to ask about the workmanship warranty offered. You will want to be sure to get at least a 2-year warranty on workmanship. Most issues in workmanship will show up almost immediately following the installation, or the first time the roof is exposed to extreme weather conditions. Extended warranties are often offered by the contractor; in some cases at no additional charge, and others for a fee. If you want the peace of mind, you may be interested in an extended warranty, but it is not necessary. Any issues you experience with your roof beyond the first couple years are not likely to be a result of poor workmanship, but rather caused by failed materials or external damages.Interview Contractors Rather Than Comparing BidsThe insurance company is covering the cost of the repairs anyway, so the price is irrelevant. If you hope to have your deductible covered, or possibly even make money off the claim, think again. That would be insurance fraud, and you could end up getting into some serious trouble for doing so! Beware of contractors who try to lure you in by offering to pay your deductible, give you free upgrades, advertising credits, etc. If they can't earn your business because of the quality of work they do, they probably aren't worth your time. Plus, it is better to pay a little more now, than a lot later because of shoddy work. Be sure to ask the contractor their experience in dealing with insurance claims. If they have little or no experience handling claims, you're probably better off to cross them off your list. A professional insurance restoration contractor will be able to assist you with the claim process, get you the most money (and therefore the highest quality repairs), and get the claim approved. Professional insurance restoration contractors will use Xactimate software for their estimates, and some may even have licensed adjusters on staff.SummaryDon't be in a hurry to choose a contractor following storm damage to your home. Take your time to research several companies, interview them, and make your own educated decision from there. You will be glad you did when your property has been restored with top quality craftsmanship, while your neighbor complains about all the issues they have had with their project and the contractor that covered their deductible and gave them free upgrades!