What’s up with those colorful roofs?

When a 2011 storm destroyed their black shingle roof, Carol and Ray Knoff of Vinton, Iowa, opted to replace it with a roof in vintage Victorian colors: a claylike red and gray.

Victorian homes typically had red slate roofs, which weathered gray over time, so the blend worked, says Carol Knoff.

“It took Vinton a while to like it,” she says, but the neighbors have since come around. The 1901 house is among several Victorians built when Vinton housed one of the world’s largest canneries.

Many homeowners these days are shunning monotone roofs of brown, black and gray and perking things up with color — blues, reds, purples, greens or combinations of those hues.

“A lot of people are going with roofs that stand out on their own,” says Kate Smith, a Newport, R.I.-based color consultant. “They want something different that expresses them and expresses their personality.” Which could be a tricky proposition, says Smith: “You want to stand out while still fitting into your neighborhood,” she says. She admits to being taken aback herself when colored roofs first came into vogue several years ago.

Exterior home color should always be used judiciously, she says. But it is even more crucial to use it correctly when you’re adding it to a large fixed feature, like a roof, that is not easily changed with a fresh coat of paint.“ Anything that’s permanent needs to blend,” she says. “You don’t want to have too many colors that aren’t working together.”

One trick for doing that, Smith says, is to select roof colors true to your home’s history and architecture, and in natural shades.

For instance, Victorian homes originally had colored roofs — reds, orange, purple and green were typical — because the color of the slate varied so much, she says. Homeowners wanting to restore that look should match those subtle tones.

“When you saw purple, it was not a bright Barney purple,” she says.Bright metal roofs — most often red or green — are better suited for farmhouse-style homes, or used over small structures such as porticos or bay windows. Steel blue is more European.

Colored roofs are also starting to crop up on “new American-style” homes, which Smith describes as combining popular styles and materials — perhaps, say, a stone and brick exterior with a copper roof.

The demand for colored roofs led DaVinci Roofscapes of Kansas City, Kan., to create faux slate and shake (wooden shingle) roofing in 49 colors “so homeowners can mix and match those if they want to get really creative,” says Wendy Bruch, the company’s marketing manager.

DaVinci’s palette is based on the naturally occurring colors seen on historically accurate roofs, she says. But custom colors are increasingly popular, too.“There can be some crazy things going on because we can create new colors,” Bruch says.

DaVinci has worked with customers to create colors ranging from a château blue for a French provincial-style house to a green that matched the color on a metal roof with weather-related damage.

Many customers appreciate help picking the right shades, Bruch says. “It can make it confusing for the homeowner when you have too many options,” she says.For Knoff, the risk of installing a colored roof was well worth taking.“We absolutely love it,” she says. “When you see our house, it really stands out. But Victorians are supposed to be homes that stand out.”

Marzsalek Diana (2014 March 28) What’s up with those colorful roofs? Retrieved on March 30 2014 From seattletimes.com

Sun Roof: Solar Panel Shingles Come Down in Price, Gain in Popularity

Solar shingles are photovoltaic cells designed to look like and integrate with conventional asphalt roof shingles. First commercially available in 2005, solar shingles were much more costly than traditional “bolt-on” photovoltaic panels, and thus were used mainly by those wanting to go solar but maintain a traditional roofline. But more recently solar shingles have become price-competitive with bolt-on panels, and are getting much more popular accordingly. Eco-conscious home and building owners might find solar shingles especially attractive when they are re-shingling anyway since the solar shingles also double as functional, protective and weatherproof roof shingles in their own right.

The biggest name in solar shingles is Dow’s Powerhouse line, which uses cutting edge Copper Indium Gallium Selenide solar cells (aka “thin-film” solar) to turn sunlight into electricity via a supplied inverter box. The Powerhouse shingles generate 12 watts per square foot and are “grid-tied,” meaning they’re designed for structures already connected to the power grid and can send excess power back to the grid. They are wireless, snap together and can be installed by regular roofing contractors just like (or alongside) conventional asphalt shingles (an electrician needs to set up the inverter box).

Dow reports that a typical residential cluster of 350 solar singles on a roof could slash one’s household electric bill by 40-60 percent. Such an installation can cost a homeowner over $20,000, but federal, state and local incentives can bring the cost to half that in some areas. Powerhouse shingles are currently available (from Dow-authorized contractors) in California, Colorado, Connecticut, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, North Carolina, Texas and Washington, D.C.

Another leader in solar shingles is building products manufacturer CertainTeed. The company’s Apollo line of grid-tied monocrystalline solar shingles and roofing tiles offers efficiency similar to larger “bolt-on” photovoltaic arrays at around the same price (and incentives similar to those for Dow may also apply) but with less bulk: Each Apollo tile is less than an inch thick and will integrate with, replace, or lay on top of existing asphalt roof shingles or tiles and generate 12 watts of power per square foot.

CertainTeed says a typical installation will save homeowners 40-70 percent on their electric bills. Their Apollo products are available across the U.S. but the company recommends using one of their authorized roofing contractors to make sure they are installed properly.

Now is an especially good time to go solar—shingles or otherwise—because costs have started to come down and the federal government is still offering 30 percent tax credits with no cap on the purchase of solar electricity equipment. Twenty-seven states and several cities offer additional incentives that can get pricing on solar gear and installations down even lower. For more information check out the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE), a free online resource provided by the North Carolina Solar Center and IREC with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy.

Scheer Roody (2013 April 2) Sun Roof: Solar Panel Shingles Come Down in Price, Gain in Popularity. Retrieved on March 4, 2014 from ScientificAmerican.com

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Emergency Roofing Tips For Philadelphia

Many homeowners purchase homes without knowing that the roof may eventually require replacement or maintenance. Homeowners must understand how to spot the most common roofing problems. This is a benefit because various procedures can be used reduce maintenance costs. In Philadelphia, major roofing issues should be tackled by a roof repair contractor.

Follow these roofing tips:

A leaky roof should never be repaired while it is raining. There will be no way to patch the leak fast, and the roof will be dangerous. Slipping off a roof is the main safety issue when it rains. When the rain stops, repairs can be tackled once the roof completely dries.

A project that involves removing an old roof requires proper prep. For example, the lawn must be cut short. A lawn that is properly cut makes it easier to locate nails that drop to the ground.

To ensure that a roofing project is handled efficiently, consider discussing roofing procedures with the best roofing contractor in the Philadelphia area. Friends can provide details about the best contractors who have completed roofing projects for them. Also, ask about the amount of clean-up that is needed after a project is completed and if the materials are covered by a warranty.

Hiring a professional in Pennsylvania to tackle roofing projects has benefits. However, never pay the entire cost in advance. Generally, roofing companies charge a 25% deposit, but nothing should be paid until the project is completed.

Although most homeowners have no issues inspecting a roof, hiring a professional is the best option. If there are issues, a professional can locate them without any risks. Homeowners who don’t have the proper training should not inspect a roof because the roof may collapse.

When hiring a professional roofing contractor, their credentials must be current. Mostly every state requires that roofers must have certain licenses. Because of this, do not avoid checking the licenses of any contractor. The licenses must be current and valid. Contractors must also have insurance and workers’ compensation.

The age of the roof does not determine if it needs replacing or not. Roofs generally have a warranty that covers 20 years of use. However, a roof requires proper maintenance. It should not have any debris. These
materials cause water to build on the roof, which can eventually lead to a leaky roof.

During projects when a roof requires replacement, consider using architectural shingles. These shingles are more durable, and they offer an aesthetic appeal. They also increase the value of a home.

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The Home Builders Guide To Modern Roofing Options

Adding new roofing can involve a considerable investment of money, time, and labor, but this pays off for most homeowners in the form of having long-term, problem-free protection from the elements over their heads. Putting in new roofing can also add a substantial amount of value to your home — more than 50 percent of your investment in many cases. The kind of roofing you choose for your house will depend on a number of factors, including climate and the geographic location of your home. If you’re considering new roofing, here are some of the best options available to you.


1. Composition

Composition is the most common type of roofing in the U.S. Tiles for this type of roofing are made by inserting fiberglass between an upper and lower layer of asphalt. These are effective at protecting your house from fire as well as the sun’s rays. The only small downside is that they need to be cleaned every so often to stay in good condition. On the other hand, this is one of the most inexpensive roofing options available and will continue to be popular because of it.

2. Concrete or clay tiles

You’re likely to be familiar with roofing made of red clay or concrete tiles if you’re from Florida or the Southwestern United States. Part of the reason for that is this type of roofing is best suited for dry, warm climates. They might not be suitable for colder areas of the country because they can be damaged by hail and are quite heavy. Also, these can attract moss in damp climates. Costs for this type of roofing are generally average compared to other options.

3. Slate

Slate roofing is most common in the eastern U.S. It is excellent for climates in which rain and snow are common because it is extremely durable and weatherproof. It’s also highly resistant to fire, making this the most durable type of roofing available to consumers. Unfortunately, it is expensive and also requires extensive amounts of skill and expertise to install.

4. Metal roofing

Metal roofing, while not as durable as slate roofing, offers many of its benefits for a lower price. Unlike some of the other options, metal is pretty reliable regardless of your geographic location. Like slate, metal roofing material is resistant to fire, and some types of this roofing can withstand hail and strong winds. These advantages, combined with its ability to keep in energetic and reasonable price make it no wonder that contracts with many a metal roof outlet are quickly increasing in number.

No matter what climate you live in or your budget, there’s always a roofing option available for you. And if your current roofing is less than adequate, it would be best if you get started on a new roofing project sooner rather than later, as leaks can become an issue that can lead to water damage. Building a new roof may seem like a significant task, but it’s one that will pay off in the long run.

Emanuel Erin (2014 January 23) The Home Builders Guide To Modern Roofing Options Retrieved on January 24, 2014 from Strategiesonline.net

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Gutters got you down? Try these repair tips!

During the Winter, rainstorms and wind can take a toll on anyone’s gutter system. Using a few proactive techniques and preventative measures, homeowners can avoid having to make a major roof repair that could cost thousands of dollars. The following tips are great for any buildings that have to deal with flooding and falling leaves:

Guards, screens, and covers keep a gutter system from clogging.

There are several types of guards, screens, and covers that provide protection from clogged gutters. Reverse curve style guards utilize a small opening that lets water through while pushing leaves over the edge of the roof. For people in climates with snow or freezing temperatures, nylon guards prevent ice build-up and avoid the warping or cracking other types of guards might experience. Mesh guards allows water to filter through while keeping leaves out; however, decomposing leaves, dirt, and other particles can clog the filters. Finally, foam gutter guards work much like mesh, letting water seep through without the plant matter.

A gutter cleaning service can stop damage before it happens

Unfortunately, even the best filters can clog if not maintained. There’s cause for hope, however: professional gutter services are a great resource for taking care of investments in roof protection. Bringing in professionals allows for efficient repairs that will extend the life of gutters and keeps drainage systems flowing smoothly. A professional cleaning saves homeowners in the long run.

Bi-annual gutter checks are essential

Never underestimate how many leaves can fall on a single Autumn day. Checking gutters at least twice annually makes refuse removal much more manageable, and helps home owners to catch small clogs before there is any damage to the gutters structure, like bends and tears in the metal. If damage is found, frequent gutter checks means a gutter cleaning service can take care of the problem for the homeowner before the issue becomes costly.


Finally, getting on a ladder isn’t without some inherent risk. When climbing a ladder, having another person to spot the climber can prevent serious injury. Making sure the ladder is on stable, preferably dry ground can prevent a hefty hospitable bill later on, not to mention damage to the roof. Responsible homeowners should be proactive about their safety, but also about their gutter’s health. Following these simple tips can help you save money and avoid an unnecessary roof repair.

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How to Hire a Contractor

The signs are there. The recent winds associated with the heavy thunderstorm tore loose several areas of shingles from your roof. You have been noticing that the corners of the shingles are starting to curl up. While cleaning out your gutters you notice that you are removing more shingle granules than leaves from the gutters. Problems are apparent. They continue to grow before your eyes. It appears that you cannot delay the inevitable. It is time to replace the roof on your home.

Replacing your roof can seem like a daunting task. The goal of replacing your roof system has a lot of tasks involved that need to be addressed in order to have a successful project. Without addressing these tasks, you can compromise your project and ultimately put your home at risk.

The first question that you need to ask yourself is “Should I replace my own roof system or should I contract with a professional contractor to complete my project?” This question may be simple to answer just by walking out your front door and looking up at your roof. Depending on your answers to the following questions you may be able to come to a decision very quickly.

  • Do you have a fear of heights?
  • Is your roof complex?
  • Do you have the proper equipment?
  • Do you understand how to address some of the complex details on the roof system?

Even if you feel comfortable with the complexity of your project and have access to the equipment that you need to complete your project, you may not be able to complete your own roof replacement project. Certain states may prohibit homeowners from replacing their own roof systems due to building code requirements. It is strongly recommended that you check with your local building code official to determine the requirements for building permits and licensing if you intend on replacing your own roof.

If you decide that it is best that you have a professional roofing contractor complete your roof replacement project instead of attempting the endeavor yourself, there are some key points that need to be addressed. By looking into these issues before you choose a contractor to complete your work you will increase your chances of having a successful and quality installation of your new roof system.

1. Insurance Coverage

Ask prospective contractors about their insurance coverage. A professional roofing contractor will carry sufficient insurance to protect your home as well as their equipment and employees who are involved in performing the work. Insurance coverage and limits may vary. The standard coverage includes General Liability, Automobile and Worker’s Compensation Insurance. It is recommended that you request a copy of their Certificate of Insurance before you sign a contract with the contractor for your project.

2. Contractor License

Request to see the company’s or individual’s contractor license if applicable. Some states require contractors to have a state contractor’s license or to be registered with the state as a home improvement contractor. In some states licensing is specific to the roofing trade. In other states, the requirement is limited to registering with the state as a home improvement contractor. Each state is unique and it is
recommended that you research the licensing requirement in your area. Most states and municipalities have information readily available on the internet.

3. Manufacturer’s Certifications

Many roofing manufacturers now require their authorized roofing installers to be certified in order for the product warranty and system warranty to be valid for the installation of a roof system. Request that the prospective contractors provide copies of their manufacturer certifications for their proposed system.

4. Manufacturer’s Warranty

Most roofing manufacturers will issue warranties for their products and sometimes for the full system being installed on a residence or building. It is recommended that prior to executing a contract with a professional roofing contractor that you request copies of the manufacturer warranty for the product and system being proposed. Review the warranty and confirm that the warranty provides adequate protection for the finished project as well as for the extended life of the product.

5. Building Permits

In most locations building permits will be required for the replacement of a roof system. In most situations, the contractor completing the project will be required to have a license or to be registered with the local municipality. The contractor may pull the permit on behalf of the homeowner prior to the start of the project. In addition, if applicable, the contractor will coordinate all building code inspections as a result of the permit process. It is best to ask the contractor if they are willing to pull the permit for the project.

By addressing these key elements of a project as part of the overall process of selecting a professional contractor and choosing a product to be installed on your roof, you will increase your chances of having a safe and successful installation of your new roof system.

Jurin Christopher (2013 December) How To Hire A Contractor. Retrieved on December 21, 2013 from About.com

Increase Your Home’s Value with a New Roof

Roofing, Siding, Windows and Doors, Decks, Stone Facing in Bristol Pennsylvania

Homeowners often look to bathroom or kitchen remodeling projects to boost a home’s value, but a new roof is another viable option. The exterior of the home is the first thing buyers see as they pull up for an open house. Depending on the roof type and local real estate values, a new roof may increase a home’s value from 15 to 40 percent. Several factors influence this percentage, however, which should be considered as owners select materials and a contractor.

Color Palette

Roof materials are not relegated to basic brown or black hues. Take a look at alternative colors that match the overall exterior decor. Try green, red or orange as a roofing color. Making a home stand out increases the chances of a rapid sale at a desired price.

Material Type

If a home is located in a more expensive real estate area, select high-end roofing materials, including ceramic or clay tiles. For most homes, owners select composite asphalt shingles. This budget-friendly material comes in several colors along with good durability for many years. Along with durability, these roofs have a long warranty that is a perk when selling the home. With the guarantee that the material is new and covered with a manufacturer’s warranty, a buyer has the
assurance of a sturdy rooftop.

Energy Benefits

If the new roof is installed by a quality contractor, it should have an insulating effect on the home. For example, the home remains cool in the summer and warm during the winter. Poorly constructed roofs allow drafts to whisk interior air away and cause high energy bills to compensate for the loss. Solar shingle materials are also available. Acting as miniature solar panels, contractors intersperse this roof material with regular shingle sections to lower energy bills with solar energy absorption.

Curb Appeal

The home’s overall style either draws buyers in or deflects them. Choose roof materials that have an interesting style, but with a timeless appearance. Bold angles and colors may turn some buyers off. Keep the contractor’s advertising sign handy for open houses. Stating that the roof is new with the associated contractor’s contact information, these small signs catch buyers’ eyes and remind them of the value topping the home.

Consider replacing the roof before listing a property. A clean and newly installed roof makes a statement before buyers open the door. It also reflects on the care of the entire structure, enticing buyers to place a bid immediately.

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If It’s Not Leaking, Why Does My Roof Need to Be Replaced?

A leaking roof is the most obvious sign that it’s time to replace your roof, but it’s hardly the only one. Many of these signs will eventually lead to a leaking roof, but identifying these problems early enough can prevent water damage and save you money for your roof replacement project. Sometimes this early intervention can also be the difference between repairing your roof and replacing your roof. You should consider part of this decision, however, the age of the roof, otherwise you may find roof repair a constant burden.

Signs of an Impending Leaking Roof

Missing or torn shingles expose the roof to water damage and rot, and make nearby shingles more susceptible to being blown away. Old shingles will curl, split and lose their waterproofing effectiveness. These weakened shingles are more likely to be blown away by wind gusts. Rusted or missing flashing can result in a leaking roof. Flashing is the metal that surrounds chimneys, skylights and vent pipes and often is found in the valleys where roof sections meet. Check gutters, downspouts and splash pans for evidence of decay or damage. Broken pieces of paint and scraps of roofing may be visible. Indoors, look for discolored plasterboard or cracked paint and peeling wallpaper.

Replace a Roof without Removing the Roof

You have two main roof replacement options: You can either remove the old roof or put a new roof down on top of the old one. Putting a new roof down on top of the old one is almost always cheaper but often doesn’t last as long—a typical situation where you get what you pay for. However, some considerations can make one choice better than the other. If you have more than two roofing layers already present, your roof can get heavy, cumbersome, and the sub-layers may end up rotting through to the point where your new roof is no longer stable. Pickett. M (2013) If It’s Not Leaking, Why Does My Roof Need to Be Replaced? DIYNetwork-A ROOF OVER YOUR HEAD: MATERIALS FOR THE ROOF. Retrieved November 22, 2013 From HomeAdvisor.com. Click contact us for more information Contact Us

A Roof Over Your Head: Materials For The Roof



Check out this information regarding the various types of materials that can be used to cover a roof, as well as which ones might be best for you.

“For choosing a roof, there’s a really wide variety of choices, from specialty roofing products, which include tile, slate, metal roofs,” says Brian Chambers, the roofing products manager for Owens Corning. “But most roofs today are fiberglass shingles. That makes up the majority of roofing products that are available.” Fiberglass shingles are made from a thin layer of fiberglass, which is surrounded and coated first in weather-grade asphalt and then in specially designed granules on the surface that give fire protection and color. Like shingles, tiles come in a wide variety of materials, all of which can be incorporated into a roofing system. There are many tile options — lightweight or standard weights and different designs, colors and finishes. And if clay, wood, asphalt and fiberglass don’t work for you, give concrete a try. Note: Concrete tile is a very popular product, in fact, and it comes in many shapes. And the colors and styles of concrete tiles are widening every day. Because concrete tiles are heavier than clay tiles or wood shingles, you’ll need to make sure that the frame of your roof can support them. Otherwise the added weight can damage the roof framing over time. Another popular roofing material that will help keep out the elements is metal, which has been around for a long time, especially in commercial markets (the new information, by the way, is in the residential market). There are different shapes and styles, and they look like any other type of roofing that you might see on the house down the street. Note: A metal roof is installed in much the same way a tile or shingle roof, in that it uses an underlayment. It’s a highly durable roofing and extremely windproof.

Which Roofing Material Is Best for My Roof?

The best roofing material for your roof could depend upon three factors: What style do you want for your roof? You really need to determine what look you’re going for and the style you want. Also consider how long you think you’ll be in the home, which will dictate the type of product you should use. If you
think about a lot of new construction (where perhaps 30 percent to 50 percent of the exterior that you see is roofline), it’s important to consider whether this look complements your entire exterior. And you should always think in terms of dollars per year — for example, if you use the thinnest and cheapest composition shingle roof in a “hail” area, you can’t expect to get too many years of life out of it. Note: A composition shingle is anything made from asphalt and a base material such as fiberglass, polyester or any other matte material that may be impregnated with asphalt — covered in a granular surface. The second factor should be cost. Composition shingles are the best value for the money, but tile roofs are extremely durable and offer an indefinite lifetime. They can be fragile and subject to breakage, however. Just make sure the material you choose fits within the budget you’ve allowed. The final factor to consider when choosing roofing materials is location. If you live in a heavy snowfall or rainfall area, the harsh conditions may dictate what kind of materials, as well as how steep a pitch, your roof should have. For example, snowfall areas should avoid clay tile because they can easily become damaged. You also want to avoid flat roofs, which can allow snow to accumulate and which, left unchecked, can seriously damage your home. In the Midwest and on the East Coast, you’ll tend to see steeper roofs than you will on the West Coast. That’s a matter of function as well as form since homeowners like to get the snow off their roofs as quickly as possible. Roofing in the South takes on a different flair than roofing on the West Coast, generally speaking, because of the rainfall amounts. Southerners are dealing with a much greater threat of heavy rain than their Western counterparts, and their roofs not only are designed to handle the rain but should also be designed to evacuate that rain from the surrounding property. Some of the roofing materials that work well in areas of heavy rainfall are concrete tiles and composition shingles. This is because they do a great job of evacuating the snow and rain from the roof.

DIYNetwork-A ROOF OVER YOUR HEAD: MATERIALS FOR THE ROOF. Retrieved November 04, 2013 From DIYNetwork. Click contact us for more information Contact Us


Know When It Is Time to Replace Your Roof

At some point, the exterior of all home roofs will need roofing services. Exposure to sun, temperatures and moisture will eventually wear on parts of the outside of your home. The roof is no exception, so homeowners should evaluate it on a regular basis. Anyone not able to inspect their roof should have someone inspect it for them.

Companies that provide roofing services can also do a roof evaluation for you. There are signs that indicate the need for roofing repair or total roof replacement. Check inside ceilings for any sign of water stains. The attic is another place that can show signs of roof deterioration. If only a few small areas exist, it is likely that roofing repair targeting those areas will take care of the problem.

If you detect multiple large spots, you should consider a total roof replacement. If you find damage signs, do not make any decisions before inspecting the exterior of the roof. Signs of wear include shingles that are missing or broken and loose or broken roofing tiles. If your roof has a shallow pitch versus a steep one, it will weather faster.

A steep pitch allows moisture to escape faster, so it decreases the speed of deterioration. Inspect the roof side that receives the most weather exposure and the edges that can break off from falling limbs. When roof replacement is imminent, consider new products on the market. Roofing services can recommend products that last longer, yet make your home more energy efficient.

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