Roofing Style Guide: Spotlight On Riverside

Here at Professional Roofers, we couldn’t be happier to live in the town we live in: the amazing city of Toronto. While we are based in the west end, and serve the GTA at large, we are fond of crossing the Don River once in a while and exploring the chilled out east end neighbourhoods towards Leslieville and The Beaches.  

If you’ve been following our roofing style guides, then you’ve caught a glimpse of architectural style – roofing and otherwise – all over the city! Today on the Professional Roofers blog, we’re going to take a look at the charming area of Riverside; a small neighbourhood just east of the river (as the name suggests) between Eastern and Gerrard.

Like many other neighbourhoods in Toronto, Riverside’s style resists any easy classification – it’s all over the place! Like many areas in the east near downtown, there are not too many freestanding, fully-detached houses. This close to downtown, real estate is dear and the slim, sexy Victorian row houses certainly make the most of little space.

Taking a walk down Dundas street, you will notice many Victorian facades, some of which have been reconstructed with rich wood and some of which look like they have literally been there since the Victorian era, with chipped paint and lots of wear. Down some of the side streets you can find fully detached houses, but they are modest, cottage-like houses, as opposed to the ornate mansions of Rosedale, which we profiled recently.

The different colours and styles of the homes in Riverside make it a joy to visit, and we always relish the opportunity of working on houses in the east. The area comprises quite a diverse mix of modern architecture and older “historical houses.” The historic Victorian style houses often have their original, detailed bargeboard – similar to houses in Cabbagetown – of the kind that is almost extinct. We will always let you know if we think your roof needs a total overhaul, but we also take a certain pleasure in preserving the handy work and vintage aura of quality 20th century craftsmanship.

Riverdale House

Some of these older houses, however, have not been updated for a long time; to ensure your attic is ventilated properly, you may need to install an attic exhaust ventilator or a couple of rotary turbines to prevent mold in the summer and ice dams in the winter. Lack of ventilation creates huge problems, especially in old houses. If you are building a roof from scratch we always recommend installing ridge vents, and failing that, lots of smaller vents just to be certain.

If you want to check out an atypical Riverside street, try Boulton on for size. Some of the houses look like ancient English cottages, complete with shingled roofs, while some of the lots have been cleared and used as the foundation for super slick modern townhouses with nice, sturdy flat roofs.

We’re here to help, so give us a call whether you live in the west or the east, whether you have a modern flat roof or a historical Victorian pitched frame – we’ve seen it all and we are always pleased to offer assistance. Take a stroll in the east and enjoy the eclectic style, and check back next month for more style guides!

Catching Up On Roof Repair Basics: Part Two

Here at Professional Roofers, we are very fortunate to have so many great clients. Because we are a small, family owned business we are able to maintain good relationships with you – our customers! There are various methods that we’ve established over the years to save ourselves money, and these savings are reflected in the rates that we offer. Our state of the art disposal system, and the excellent rates we get from our suppliers are two key places where we are able to save money, so that when you need roof repair specialists in Toronto or the GTA, we can give you the most competitive price, while upholding a high level of service.

Thus, when you realize that you need to call in the pros, we’re probably the first people you think of – and while we don’t want your roof to fall into disrepair, we’re always happy to hear from you and to be able to remedy the situation.

In part two of this two-part post, we’re going to go over a couple quick things that will help you understand the fundamentals of roof and roof repairs, fundamentals that can be supplemented by the roofing FAQs already posted on our site for your perusal:

Basic Installations to Prevent Leaking:

Since the primary purpose of a roof is to shield you from the elements, it is only logical that you would take every possible precaution to prevent leaking. One measure you can take is to install ice and water shields around your valleys, dormers, chimneys, skylights and most definitely at the edges when the roof is less than 5/12 pitch. Water shields usually come in the form of self adhering underlayment that can easily be installed, beneath the top layer of your roof. Obviously it’s easiest to install the shield when the roof is being installed, and once it’s on there you’ll rest easy at night knowing your roof is weatherproof. We can also install and replace metal flashing to discourage leaking; metal is extremely moisture resistant, which is another good reason that metal roofs are so popular as well.

The Importance of Downspouts and Eavestroughs

The importance of the tools that divert water away from your roof and flush it safely into the sewer without pooling cannot be overstated. If water pools over and over again, there’s only so much that flashing and water shields can do. On our end, things that jump to mind are leaf guards, pitch repair, basic cleaning and re-hanging the downspout outright. These services are all very reasonably priced and can solve a lot of problems before they become serious.

Draining water away from your foundation is also of the utmost importance – if your roof and drainage system don’t effectively clear the rain and snow, it may end up flooding the 

foundation and basement of your home. Thus, maintaining a healthy, functional roof serves the whole structure of the house in addition to keeping out the elements. Don’t let downspouts become a problem this coming spring; if they are doing their job properly, it will take a lot of pressure off your flat or pitched roof and give it a longer lifespan.

Catching Up On Roof Repair Basics: Part One

Here at Professional Roofers, we know from experience that sometimes, you need to call in a professional to give you a helping hand with your roof. At the same time, we think our clients should take an interest in the wellbeing of their roofs if they have time, especially since it is such an integral part of every home. The benefit of learning about your roof is that you will be able to diagnose most problems yourself, and assess when it’s the kind of thing you can handle on your own, or when you need to call in Toronto roofing experts immediately.

In warmer climates, people worry less about their roofs. In hot places like Jamaica and Thailand, people worry more about letting air pass through their homes to cool them down, rather than keeping out the cold. Life in Canada’s inhospitable climate means that while ventilation is extremely important, we need to make sure that our houses are well insulated in the frigid winter months – such as those that are upon us at this very moment.

While the winter is not an ideal time to having roofing work done on your home, sometimes you don’t have a choice. In a best case scenario, once a thick layer of snow settles on your roof, it actually provides an extra layer of insulation. If your roof is in good shape, well insulated and properly sealed, then you can cozy up and rest assured that everything is in order.

If, on the other hand, you are getting drafts and leaks, you may not be able to wait until spring – it may be time to call in our expert roof repair services team.

In part one of this two-part post, we’ll look at some roof repair basics to keep in mind, so that you can best understand your roof and problems the may arise:

Roof Replacement Vs. Layering Shingles

At Pro Roofers, we like to think of ourselves as a value added service: we are experts at extending the life of a roof as long as is reasonable before you need to outright replace it. This way, you get the best possible value out of either the commodity that is your roof, or the money that you spent on the materials and installation. If you notice that a section of your shingles have been weather battered and worn, there’s a chance that we can install a sheet of fresh shingles can be overlaid in order to extend the life of the roof. This service is considered on a case by case basis, depending on an assessment of the structure of your home and whether or not the extra weight of the shingles can be supported. Contact us anytime if you want a fair and honest assessment of your roof. Once we’ve taken a good look at the state of your roof, we can figure out the best course of action together and get you an estimate for the work.

In most cases, laying shingles on top of older ones is effective for pitched, asphalt shingle roofs. With metal roofing and weatherproof flat roof membranes, it’s a whole different story; we’ll explore these issues in part two of this post.