Your roof is one of the most critical parts of your home. After all, it is the part that forms a shield over your head (and the contents of your home) to create a cozy, comfortable interior environment. Unfortunately, a number of myths have developed about repairing or installing a roof. Some of these myths are especially dangerous, as you could well be making an expensive mistake if you follow their “wisdom.”
Myth #1: If there is only one layer of shingles on the roof, there is no need to remove the old shingles before installing new ones. Although the building codes in most cities permit this practice, it is never the best course of action for two important reasons. First, not tearing off the old shingles means that you (or your roofer) will not be able to examine the decking for damage. If a problem exists and it is merely covered up by new shingles, the issue will worsen, potentially resulting in a costly repair. Second, shingles are engineered to lie smoothly on the roof to give the best appearance and the maximum protection. It is much more difficult to achieve this level of smoothness when installing new shingles over old.
Myth #2: I can replace damaged or missing shingles (or completely re-roof my house) myself. It is true that some people handle such tasks themselves, but these people typically have some professional experience in roofing or construction. Keep in mind that whether you are installing a new roof or replacing a few shingles that blew off, even a single nail placed in the wrong position can cause a leak. In addition, you need to be knowledgeable about flashings, cements and felts. You should also be aware that if you make a mistake when installing new shingles, you risk having the manufacturer invalidate the warranty.
Myth #3: If the shingles look fine from ground level and/or there are no leaks apparent inside the house, the shingles must be fine. Often, by the time a homeowner notices obvious problems, such as missing shingles or interior leaks, extensive damage has already been done. Water can penetrate to or even beneath the roof deck and start rotting rafters long before an interior leak develops. Furthermore, from the ground, it is difficult (if not impossible) for the average homeowner to tell whether any shingles have cracked or been “degranulated,” what condition the flashing is in or whether the shingles have remained sealed properly.
Having a roofing contractor conduct regular inspections can help you spot problems early, and having an experienced contractor handle your repairs and installation can save you from costly mistakes. A reputable roofer will never recommend unnecessary repairs or installation techniques, and he will explain why it is important for you to follow his recommendations. Find a contractor you can trust — and then trust him.
If you need a roofing contractor in the greater Austin or Central Texas area, contact the professionals at Alpha Roofing. We offer a wide range of roofing and siding services for commercial roofing and residential roofing. With more than 35 years in the business, you can be assured that you will receive quality work at reasonable rates. You can request a free quote by using our online form, or you can call (512) 777-1086 to speak with one of our friendly, experienced representatives.