Need a new roof? Thinking about tackling your roof replacement yourself? Think again! There are major reasons–from safety to roof performance–to leave installing new shingles to the pros.
Roof shingles are just one of those things that eventually need to be replaced. Even with today’s highly engineered roofing materials, you’ll find the average life span of an asphalt roof is typically only about 35 years. When the time comes to replace your roof, many avid do-it-yourselfers tend to take the “how hard can it be” approach and tackle their own roof replacement. But if you’re considering that route, make sure you think it all the way through before grabbing the nail gun–roofing installation/replacement gone wrong can have some serious repercussions for your health and the safety of your home.
The National Center for Health Statistics reports that between 2008 and 2009 (the last year for which statistics are available), some 890,000 people went to the emergency room for fall-related injuries. The simple truth is that getting up on the roof to replace your shingles is dangerous. Especially if you have a multi-story home or a steep roof, you’re putting yourself at risk for a major fall if you try to handle your own roof installation. Professional roofing contractors are both trained and experienced, and they have the know-how to handle the heights safely. If you’re still not worried about the safety risks, remember, that you’ll be doing a lot more than just walking around on the roof: tearing off the old shingles, rolling out new felt, handling the new shingles and nail gun, etc., are all hard jobs that can easily throw your balance off. And just a momentary shift in balance can mean you’re headed to the ER with a broken leg or worse!
Beyond the safety aspects, it’s also important to keep quality in mind. Your roof is what protects your whole house from the adverse effects of water damage caused by precipitation, so it’s particularly critical that this project be done right. Roofing installation has many steps, from putting down the felt underlayment to actually nailing down the shingles themselves. Add in ridge vents and installing flashing around chimneys and vent stacks, and it’s easy to get overwhelmed fast. Each step has to be done correctly and at the right point in the process or you risk making a mistake that could lead to water penetrating your home.
With do-it-yourself projects like painting or gardening, typically the worst side effect of a mistake or incorrect approach is aesthetic (dripped paint or dead bushes, for example). However, when roof installation isn’t done right, it can mean water leaking into your home. And with water comes possible structural concerns as well as mold and its related health issues.
So it’s just not worth it. Instead of trying to be a weekend warrior with your roof, call in the pros instead. You’ll reap the benefit of safety for your home as well as yourself by letting professional roofers handle the project. Roofing contractors have the training and tools to get the job done right, so don’t hesitate to call them in for your roof replacement today.
Roof Replacement - With Asbestos Present
When it comes time to do repair work on your roof, you have two options. You can either call a roofing contractor to do the work for you or you can do the repairs on your own. Making this decision depends on how much time, money and experience you may have. While there is no right or wrong answer, you should take some time to consider your decision so you won't make a mistake that you will later regret.
One reason that people usually try to do their own roofing repairs is to save expenses. This is completely understandable as roofing jobs aren't notorious for being cheap. Of course, we have all heard the stories of people who try to do their own work and end up spending more money in the long run. That is certainly a possibility, so it's important to weigh all of the reasons that you think you might be able to do as good of a job as a professional.
A common problem with roofing repairs is that people tend to ignore them. Of course, if you are ignoring a problem, you don't have to deal with it at all. However, as with most household problems, the longer you let them go, the more severe they become. If you have a leak in your home or see water damage on the ceiling, it's time to do something about it now. You don't want to wait until the leak gets worse or until the whole ceiling is damaged. However, this is what most people do.
Now that you know that you must tackle this job, you need to see where the problem actually is coming from. If you are going to try to tackle this job on your own, then it's time to do some investigating. The roof cavity is the best place to start. Check for signs of a leak, water stains, mold or moisture damage. Oftentimes, this may be in an attic area or around a chimney.
If you don't see any damage there, it's time to get the ladder out and check out the roof itself. You should check for missing tiles, damaged tiles or any other signs of unusual wear or deterioration on the surface of the roof. If there is a tile missing or damaged, it needs to be replaced immediately. Any damage needs to be taken care of right away and not left.
There are many reasons that people hire professional people to do their roofing work. First of all, some people are not comfortable climbing up on the roof and doing work up there. Much of this can depend on how high your roof is. Many of the older houses in the United States are two or even three stories high, making the roof very hard to reach. Also, how much of a slope does the roof have? The more sloped it is, the more difficult it will be to work up there.
Professionals are called professionals for a very good reason. They are skilled at their given profession, which in this case would be roofing. They know what needs to be done to fix a roof properly and they also have the tools and equipment to do the work. Also, a professional roofer is used to working on roofs. Their chances of falling and hurting themselves are much less than if you attempt to try it. There are many accidents each year by people who are not in good health attempting to climb on roofs to do the job themselves.
When choosing a professional, however, don't be too hasty in making your decision. As in any profession, there are going to be variations on roofing companies. While some will be more expensive, some will cost less, but this doesn't mean that they are going to do a good job. On the other hand, you must use good discretion and ask questions to make sure you are getting what you pay for.
A professional roofer should come to your property and take a look before giving you an estimate. Once the estimate is done, you should receive a copy of an invoice that lists each cost separately. This is important for when you compare various contractors. You want to make sure that the estimates you are receiving are for the same work and materials.
Once you decide on a professional roofer, make an appointment for them to come and do the work. You will receive an invoice that is probably payable within a month's time. If you have questions about the work or don't understand, don't hesitate to give them a call. They will mostly likely want to help you because they want to know that you are going to recommend them to your friends and family. As a homeowner, you will have a feeling of satisfaction to know that your roof is fixed and your home is in tip-top shape once again.
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