Saturday, January 21, 2012

Four Common Roofing Problems

Did you know that roofs can be one of the major problems you’ll have to deal with as a homeowner? And sometimes, rather than save on costs on home maintenance, you will end up spending more. Here are four common roofing problems and its causes.

Common Roofing Problem #1: Installation Issues
Problems concerning to structure and installation may occur because of lack of proper planning. That’s why, before roof installation, a clear plan must be at hand. It should detail the positions and angles of the shingles, the location of the drains, the slopes, and a whole lot more.

Another thing to consider is the roofing materials to be used as not all of them will be best for your home. For example, if you want a fire-proof roof, you need something metal such as steel. The problem with them is they can be pretty expensive. On the other hand, you can have your home properly insulated with eco-roofs, but they can also be prone to fire and easy deterioration. You can make use of solar panels, but they may not be effective if you are living in a region that does not get a lot of sunlight. Clay roofs are not good for those houses with weak structures.

You can also make mistakes when installing roofs, even if you have a plan with you. This is true if you're dealing with more complex roofs such as metals and architectural shingles. A faulty installation dramatically increases the likelihood of problems and reduces a roof system’s life expectancy. What you can do then is to ask help from roofing professionals, those who are really trained to install and even repair roofs. Most of roofing companies selling roofing supplies can also provide free or discounted installation to their clients.

Common Roofing Problem #2: Improper Maintenance
Just because you already have a roof, doesn’t mean your house is completely safe. Not all roofs last for a long time. Besides, depending on the region you are in and the manner of installation, you may have to alter, repair, or completely change your roofing.

Make it a habit to regularly observe the condition of your roof, usually during spring or summer where cold weather and too much rain don’t get in your way from going up the roof. If there are leaks, make sure that you can immediately cover them up. You also have to determine the general condition of your roof. It may need replacing. Contact reputable roofing contractors to inspect and repair your roof if necessary.

When doing roof maintenance, using materials that are not intended for application on particular roof types can result in permanent damage to the roof. “One of the most common problems we see with metal roofs is improper repair. People go up with caulking and plastic roof cement and improper materials that are in no way intended for that purpose,” a roofing expert said. “You can make a small problem worse through that improper repair.”

However, this problem isn’t exclusive to metal roofs. “On a built-up or modified roof, that five-gallon bucket of plastic cement can solve a lot of problems. But if I take that five-gallon bucket of plastic cement up on a single-ply membrane, I may actually damage the membrane itself,” another roofing professional added. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for proper use and take note of repair products with a shelf life.

Common Roofing Problem #3: Roof Leaks and Moisture
 “With any roof – no matter what type – if you’ve got roof leaks, then you’ve got a problem,” explains Charles Praeger, executive director, Metal Building Manufacturers Association (MBMA), Cleveland. Leaks happen for a number of reasons. Built-up roofs (BUR) may experience leaks due to flashing details that weren’t fastened correctly during installation. “The problems an owner is typically going to have [with a BUR system] is that 95 percent of leaks occur at flashing details – anywhere the membrane itself is terminated or interrupted,” a contracting expert from Wayne, NJ explains. Additionally, hot bituminous and torch-applied modified bitumen roofs may experience leaks when a proper moisture barrier is not installed underneath a coping cap on parapet walls, according to Avoiding Common Roof Installation Mistakes, a CD-Rom produced by the Center for the Advancement of Roofing Excellence (C.A.R.E. Ltd.).

Also, the improper installation of flashing can be a source of leaks on torch-applied modified bitumen roofs. Inadequate head laps and backwater laps are another mod bit installation problem that can allow moisture infiltration. “Water can get under the membrane if the field of roof is installed so that water flows against the lap. The consequences of backwater laps are leaks and blisters, which can lead to roof failure,” C.A.R.E. explains. With cold-applied modified bitumens, improper storage of materials can result in moisture infiltration built into the roofing system, and under-application of adhesive can result in poor lamination and roof leaks.

Leaks can result when single-ply membrane roofs are installed with poor seams. “You’ve got to have good seams with single-ply, because if you don’t, you don’t have much. The membranes themselves will hold water. You’ve got to have the seams either glued or heat-welded properly,” Harriman explains.

Common Roofing Problem #4: Blow-offs, Tenting, Reduced Wind Uplift Resistance, and Billowing
Roofs can withstand strong rains, but they can easily be affected with hail, strong winds, and tornados. If your area is devastated by any of these natural calamities, make it a point to check your roof as soon as the weather turns okay. It is part of proper maintenance. You have to see to it that your roofs will offer the same kind of protection or security you hope to get from them.

Leaks are not the only problem that can result from improperly installed flashing. Hot bituminous roofs where flashing is poorly attached may experience open seams and laps and ultimately causes blow-offs, reduced puncture resistance, and code issues. Poor gravel embedment and the use of an inadequate number of fasteners in the base sheet during application of both hot bituminous and torch-applied mod bit roof systems can also have similar consequences.

Wind uplift resistance can be reduced greatly if seams are not cured adequately on cold-applied mod bit systems. C.A.R.E. notes, “Seams made with cold adhesives do not have good integrity until the adhesive has cured. If the seams are exposed to wind and rain before they are properly cured, moisture can infiltrate the roof system or wind uplift can damage the roof membrane.”

Can you think of any other common roofing problems? Do you have any suggestions in addressing these problems? Please share with us your thoughts!

*By your friends from Top View Roofing in Oklahoma*

Top View Roofing have over a hundred years of combined experience in the construction industry and provide all customers with individually tailored roofing services that are competitively priced and backed by the finest materials and workmanship in the business. Over 100 years of roots in the Midwest! Call us today: 888 602 HAIL (4245)


  1. Hello! Thank you for sharing your thoughts about roofer in your area. I am glad to stop by your site and know more about roofer. Keep it up! This is a good read. I will be looking forward to visit your page again and for your other posts as well.
    An all round competent roofer From the UK would be capable of carrying out most domestic roofing projects. These would include built up flat roof systems and pitched roofing works including natural slating and concrete and clay roof tiling. Also he would need a good and applicable knowledge of lead work to weather proof areas such as chimneys and abutments. There is not any UK legislation in place that requires a roofer to have a license to trade. Although it is beneficial if he belongs to a recognized trade organization. Most roofers of good repute should come with an abundance of valid references, and proof of workman's comp.
    Having a solid, perfectly installed and great looking roof can greatly change the appearance and how your look at your home. If you are in need of a new roof or repair, Budget Exteriors will have a representative visit your Tewksbury, MA home and inspect your current roof and attic space (when possible).

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  2. Whether you can see them or not, roofing problems can be difficult to solve and may be associated with significant expense. Some of the most common roofing problems undermine the structure and function of your roof and may result in the premature failure of your roofing system.

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