Archive for March, 2010

A Look At Some Of The New Roofing Shingle Options For Your Minnesota Home

March 30, 2010

Roofing Shingle Options For Your Minnesota Home

The sky is the limit when it comes to types of roofing shingles, roof styles and materials for designing a distinctive roof for your home.  Traditional asphalt-shingled roofs continue to be the most popular in the United States, but many other new roof styles and types are gaining popularity.  Here are some general tips and factors to consider when deciding what roofing shingles and roof styles will be best for your home:

  • Consider the life-cycle cost of the roofing material you are thinking about: Some roofing shingle materials are very expensive but require less maintenance and have a longer life expectancy than others.  For example, asphalt roofs will generally last 20 years while more pricey roofs, like metal ones, will last about 50 years with low maintenance.
  • Consider the current and potential value of your home and think about how long you plan to stay in your home.
  • Consider your roof’s age when calculating whether certain roofing shingle materials would be too costly of an option.

Asphalt Shingles are currently the most common roofing shingles used in the United States; they come with the most options and choices.  These roofing shingles are relatively inexpensive when compared to other options, but they generally require the most maintenance.

Concrete Roof Tiles have some really fantastic advantages over other types of roofing shingles, such as long warranties and natural noise insulation.  The contemporary finished look of concrete roof tiles makes a trendy, polished statement.

Wood Shingles and Shake Roofing are becoming roofing shingles of the past.  With too many risks, including flammability, these roofs will soon be part of our history.

Eco-Shake Roofing is affordable and great for the environment, plus it lasts long and requires no maintenance.

Rubber Roofing is commonly installed on flat roofs, where water may sit.  Rubber roofs are known for their simple installation.

Metal Roofing is one of the strongest roofing materials available and often comes with a 50-year warranty.  Metal roof styles are vast, so you will have a great selection to choose from.

When it’s time to think about roofing your home, contact a local roofing contractor who can help educate you on the best roofing shingles and roof style choices in your area.


What are Architectural Roofing Shingles?

March 25, 2010

What are Architectural Roofing Shingles?

In recent years, enhancements to the dimensional shingle have resulted in a new generation of high-quality asphalt roofing products with distinctive, often dramatic, appearances.  With these advancements came a new name: architectural roofing shingles.  Also known as laminated or dimensional shingles, architectural roofing shingles are among the highest quality roofing products made.

Traditionally, they are composed of a heavy fiber glass mat base and ceramic-coated mineral granules that are tightly embedded in carefully refined, water-resistant asphalt.  Recently, however, a new product has surfaced on the market, synthetic slate.  Synthetic slate is an innovative roofing product that simulates the appearance, texture and contours of traditional natural slate.  It is a carefully engineered polymer composite roofing product that is formulated for beauty, durability and handling.

Architectural roofing shingles provide a stunning three-dimensional appearance.  Some of the most attractive architectural roofing shingles simulate cedar wood shakes.  These shingles are quite thick with random slots similar to real shakes.  Another unique architectural shingle design imitates the look of slate without the weight issues that normally accompany those materials.  These architectural roofing shingles do not require any additional roof support as slate would.

The products’ random colors and textures better accent steep roof planes, turrets, and gables features of roofs.  Many product lines offer hip and ridge pieces that highlight a roof’s many sections and complement the shingle.  

Because of their extra thickness, architectural roofing shingles weigh considerably more than conventional asphalt-based shingles and have longer warranties.  Weights run up to about 480 pounds per square (100 square feet of roof area) and can carry up to a lifetime warranty.

Besides offering a surplus of good looks, most asphalt architectural shingle products have a design feature that helps prevent a common aesthetic problem: black streaks caused by algae. This is commonly seen on roofing shingles in areas with high humidity and rainfall totals.  Algae-resistant shingles are coated with copper or zinc granules, which leach over time, inhibiting algae growth.

Because of their greater thickness, architectural shingles have better wind tear-off resistance.  Some are rated at 120 miles per hour.  They are also highly fire resistant especially if they have a heavy granulated top coat.  A heavy layer of top coat granules provides the highest fire rating of Class A.

Checks with your local roofing contractor to learn what the best kind of roofing shingles are best for you.

What Are The Benefits From a Built-up Roofing System?

March 23, 2010

The Benefits from a Built-up Roofing System

  • System Longevity
    Each ply of a Built-Up Roofing system contains a mat of glass fiber reinforcement while most single-ply systems contain no reinforcement at all.  When multiple plies are combined and positioned between layers of water-resistant asphalt, the result is a longer lasting roof.
  • Easy and economical to maintain.  And if necessary, can be repaired with conventional, time-proven materials, resulting in extended service life.
  • Product and material improvements have enhanced an already high-quality system.
  • Limited Roof Movement
    All roofs expand and contract, especially in the cold weather states.  A Single-ply roof typically responds by elongating its infrastructure.  Over time single-ply systems can lose their elasticity, resulting in buckling, ridges and splits.  A Built-Up Roof, however, dramatically limits movement with a high tensile strength in excess of the recommended 200 lbs./ Fracturing is essentially all but eliminated, and the Built-Up Roof will last longer.  A larger critical mass enables the roof to tolerate surface punishment
  • Superior Water Resistance
    It’s simple, multiple layers of reinforcement offer more protection thus reducing the risk for leaks, whereas, a single-ply membrane only offers one chance at preventing a leak.  Additionally, nothing compares to asphalt when it comes to making a roof water resistant.  Asphalt is the glue that holds a Built-Up Roof together.  It seals and protects the entire roof, delivering up to five times greater water-resistant thickness.
  • Easier Installation
    In the case of hot Built-Up Roofs, the multiple plies get joined/fused together using hot-mopped asphalt to create a monolithic barrier.  Every inch is firmly and completely adhered over the entire roof area, without the need for ballast or fasteners.  Single-ply systems require ballast or fasteners because they are generally laid loose.  But ballast (such as stones) increases structural load and can be blown off by strong winds.  Fasteners can also create less stress points and additional opportunities for moisture leakage.

What Are The Major Types of Single-Ply Roofing Systems For Commercial Properties?

March 18, 2010

TPO, EPDM, and PVC Are The Three Major Types of Single-Ply Membranes

Single-Ply membranes have been around for over 20 years.  The biggest advantages to these single-ply roofing systems are is that they are light weight per square foot.  This makes them an ideal choice for retro-fitting over an existing roof system.  This allows for quicker installation, less disruptions to the building owner, and most importantly, cost savings.  Many single-ply membranes are white and provide superior reflectivity, which in turn helps to reduce A/C costs during summer months.  These roof coatings are very versatile and can be applied on a large variety of roof systems.  Extremely durable & easily installed by authorized contractors without disruption to daily operations, the roofing system is also leak-proof, energy-efficient, chemical & fire resistant, resistant to high winds, & virtually maintenance-free.

The importance of roof coatings cannot be ignored if you want to avoid the complications of roof repair.  Select only quality products for roof repairing will assure you of the best results and minimize future repair costs to your property. 

Commercial roofing systems have improved in durability and longevity through years of trial and error from almost every major manufacturer in the industry.  Thanks to their efforts, the leading commercial roofing manufacturers are producing better products, even for old concepts.  That’s why flat roof systems are being used on everything from laundry mats to shopping malls and banks.  The biggest concern for architects and commercial builders is selecting the right system and finding a qualified roofing contractor to install it properly.

EPDM Single – Ply Roofing System
PVC Single – Ply Roofing System
TPO Single – Ply Roofing System

Your Roof’s Ventilation System Could Be Costing You Money

March 11, 2010

Letting Moisture Out Of Your House Is Important Too!

Just as keeping moisture from coming into your home is important, letting moisture out of your home is equally important. You may not realize it, but your home houses a lot of moisture.  Air conditioners, humidity and moisture in the air are consistently rising and needs to escape through your home.  This is where attic and roof ventilation comes into play.  Moisture that accumulates in your home or on your roof must be properly ventilated.  Without proper ventilation, mold, mildew, and fungus will grow and wood will rot.

Your roof ventilation system is composed of two parts: intake and exhaust vents.  These vents allow air to flow in your roof and allow air to leave through the vents.  This is the most important aspect of keeping your home’s moisture level at a healthy balance.  If there is a problem with your ventilation system, your home is vulnerable to serious damage.

It is always best to hire a professional roofing contractor who can advise you on the best types of vents that are suitable for your home.  Just as there are many different types of roofs, there are many different types of vents that are best suited for each roof.  A roofing contractor will explain to you the different types of ventilation systems and help you choose the vents that are best for your needs.

You may need to hire a roofing contractor if you notice that you are not getting enough ventilation through the vents.  If you do not feel any ventilation at all, you may discover that your energy bills skyrocket and structural damage to your roof may occur as mold, mildew, and fungus will grow rapidly.  Without proper ventilation, moisture will continue to wreak havoc on your roof. If there is a problem with your ventilation system, you must have it repaired immediately by an experienced roofer.

The Proper Insulation and Ventilation For Your Home

March 9, 2010

Insulation and Ventilation For Your Home

Insulation and ventilation work together to keep your home comfortable.  Adequate ventilation creates a positive flow of air that allows a house to breathe and helps prevent moisture from damaging your attic and walls year-round.  Because warm air rises, vents are placed in the soffits or low on the rooftop to let fresh air in, and along the ridge of the roof, or in the gables to let the warm air escape.  Ventilation is especially needed in unused attics where insulation has been added to keep heat from leaking out of the rooms below in winter months.

Ventilation Recommendations:

1. Natural or static ventilation systems consist of simple vent or covered openings in your attic.  Many experts agree that externally baffled ridge vents combined with vented soffits are the most effective method for ventilating an attic.

2. Many codes require a ventilation area equal to at least one three-hundredth of the attic floor area. Ideally, 50% of the required ventilating area should be provided by vents located in the upper portion of your attic, while the remaining 50% should be provided by eave vents.  Baffles at the soffits are necessary to protect insulation from airflow due to wind.  Air movement through the material will reduce the effective thermal resistance.

Ventilation Systems: Protect your roof from premature deterioration by providing effective ventilation
Insulation: With the price of energy rising, insulation is one of the most important items for your home or building.

Choosing who installs it, is as critical as choosing the right products for your home.  Contact your local roofing professional to advise you on how to help increase the value of your home while keeping maintenance costs low.