How To Tell If Your Roof Was Installed Correctly

Read On To See If Your Roofing Contractor Installed Your Roof Correctly. If They Didn’t You Need To Call US!


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Was Your Roof Correctly Installed?

Installing a new roof is among the most expensive aspects of building and home repairs. It’s therefore unsurprising that you want the result to be perfect, after spending a good amount on it. Unfortunately, poor workmanship is a common occurrence. A badly done or repaired roof doesn’t just look bad, it also opens you up to a host of other issues. These are expensive to fix, can severely damage your home, and can significantly affect the value of your home.

Fortunately, you can identify a poorly done roof even without being a roofing contractor yourself.

correctly installed asphalt shingle roof system

How To Inspect A Roof Job

Some signs will tell you if you are on the receiving end of a poorly done roof. Here is what to check after a roof installation:

1. Drip Edge Flashing

This is a common site for shortcuts with contractors. Drip edge flashing should be installed on all roofs as its purpose is to prevent water damage to your home. It also guards against pest infestation in the attic.

While roof flashing is a requirement for roofs with roof shingles, many homeowners are not able to determine whether or not the flashing has been installed correctly or not.

To tell if you have one, look at the eaves and gables of your shingle roof. A drip edge is a metal flashing between the underlayment and the shingles. When it’s properly installed, it carries away water from the home. It also ensures that gutters function properly. A good roof will have a drip edge installed before shingles are laid.

2. The Roof Looks Uneven

Even without assessing the technical aspects of a roof, a visual inspection can bring some issues to your attention. Once it’s complete, the entire roof should look completely uniform from end to end.

Uneven spots on the roof are often indicative of poor workmanship. For example, if you have a roof that sags in some points or asphalt shingles that do not bear the same color, the job was probably not done as well as it should have.

Your roof should also be done using the same materials throughout. Differently colored shingles or materials mean your contractor may have run out of your preferred materials and opted to fill in with whatever they had.

Similarly, your shingles should be symmetrical. This means they should align vertically by their slots or horizontally across the roof. Unsymmetrical shingles leave cracks that can let water in and your home or commercial property. Rooflines are supposed to be straight. A dip or a curve midway suggests a problematic framing or roof decking that should have been replaced or just plain bad workmanship.

3. Improper Shingle Nailing

Wrong nailing techniques are another sign of an incorrectly installed roof. Some of the main mistakes made with the nailing include:

Overdriven Nails – Overdriven nails are nails beaten too deep into the shingles and roof decking. As a result, they look buried or sunken. This usually happens when too much force is used when nailing shingles in place.

Using Nails That Rust – Because the roof is exposed to different elements, contractors need to use nails that are corrosion resistant. Nails that are unlikely to rust include those made from stainless steel and galvanized steel.

Nails In The Wrong Location – Nails should be fitted properly, so they are not left exposed. Exposed nails are unsightly, and they begin backing out of shingles over time.

Manufacturers also always provide installation instructions. Failing to follow this signifies a lack of attention to detail and a rushed job.

4. Shingle Overhang

The end of a roof’s overhang should overhang off your roof with 0.5 and 0.75 inches with the drip installed.

When there is too much overhang, your roof becomes susceptible to sagging, blowing off in high winds, and cracking. On the other hand, too little overhang and water might be directed into the fascia boards.

5. Reusing Old Flashing

Reputable contractors use new flashing material during roof replacement. There are numerous types of flashing that can protect your roof from water. These include

  • Counter flashing
  • Step flashing
  • Apron flashing around the chimney
  • Head flashing

Some contractors will reuse old flashing during a roof replacement. However, with time, you begin to notice water stains in the ceiling or walls. In many cases, these leaks originate from the areas around skylights and chimneys.

Roof flashing is designed to be used once. When you replace the roof or carry out extensive repair work on it, it’s advisable to get new flashing. Some old flashing might look good on the face of it, and you might be tempted to reuse it. However, they might have small holes that are difficult to spot or existing corrosion that will deteriorate before your roof system does, leading to leaks.

This aside, flashing should be placed under shingles, not over them. When its placed above the shingles, its water-resistant qualities are minimized. If the flashing is done incorrectly on a roof with caulking, re-caulking has to be done often to prevent leaks.

On the other hand, pipe flashing can malfunction if installed too close to its corners. These nails will come loose with time, allowing water to flow under the edge and leak inside the nails’ holes.

6. Incorrect Attachment Of Materials

A common roofing mistake relates to attaching materials using the wrong nails. Another is not using sufficient amounts of materials. Some contractors skimp on materials or purchase the wrong, often cheaper type of nails to maximize their profits.

Using the wrong nails or an insufficient amount of nails will eventually lead to damage and can actually void your roof warranty from the manufacturer. This damage is preventable by opting to have a reputable roofer work on it.

Reputable, licensed, and accredited roofers will always follow local and state building codes and deliver top-notch quality.

7. Rotted Decking

You cannot add new, better-quality materials to a roof with structural problems. It might look okay and even work properly, but this will only be for a short period.

Instead, your roofer should remove all old underlayment material before installing a new one. Stripping the old underlayment completely means the contractor can assess the condition of your deck. If, for example, you have some rotting underneath, this wood will not be able to hold shingles firmly in place. Likewise, if a deck is moist from water damage or is generally damaged, it will not hold up for long without breaking.

Think of roof decking as your roof’s foundation. If it is structurally compromised, everything else built on it will be problematic as well. An experienced contractor will carry out the necessary roof repairs or decking replacements before doing anything else.

How To Avoid A Badly Done Roof

Unfortunately, most of the indicators of an improperly installed roof are noticeable after the fact. Some will be noticeable immediately after the job is done, while others will take years, which can be rather costly.

You can increase your chances of getting a good job by hiring the right contractor. Some of the qualities to look out for when hiring include:

Licensure and Registration – It’s a requirement for roofers to have a roofing license from regulatory bodies. This will tell you that they have the technical know-how to work on your roof. Accreditation from different bodies is also ideal.

Experience – If you pay the big bucks to have your roof done, you want the project handled by an experienced residential & commercial roofing contractor. Over the years, roofers have learned to work with different materials, handy on-the-job tricks, and perfected their art. These are benefits you want to work in your favor.

Insurance – Ensure that your chosen contractor has adequate insurance. This should include general business liability and property protection. These should state the limits and minimum amounts covered.

Should anything go wrong during the construction, like property damage, you need to know that you would be compensated.

Communication – You need to work with a contractor that listens and communicates effectively. In the initial stages, good listening skills tell you that you have been heard and your vision for the roofing project understood.

This aside, you will need a contractor that updates you on the progress, explains things in a transparent manner, and so on.

Reputation – A good reputation comes from years of great service. While it’s no guarantee, you have higher chances of getting good services from a company with a good reputation than the reverse. So ask around and read reviews to find out what former customers are saying about different roofers and try to find the best roofer in Denver.

Have a Roofing Project?

If you have a pending roofing project, we understand your need to get the best man for the job. This aptly describes us as you can tell by reading our raving reviews. With significant experience under our belt, we have learned what works and what doesn’t.

Our assurance is to use the best materials and couple them with superior artistry to give you a beautiful roof that will serve you well over the years. Call today for a free roof consultation.