roofing repairs toronto

When it Comes to Roofing, Beware DIY Repair

Most homeowners know that regular maintenance is key if they want their house to be comfortable and maintain its resale value. This is especially true for those who live in the Greater Toronto Area, where snowy winters and humid summers place great strain on single-family homes.

Every season brings its own specific tasks, and once you’ve welcomed spring by cleaning your flowerbeds, putting in window screens, and fixing any winter damage, it’s time to start thinking about larger projects that can only be done during the warm summer months.

Given how hard Canadian winters can be on roofs in particular, many homeowners will be considering whether or not this is the summer to finally get around to replacing their aging roof with a one that is guaranteed to keep the rain out for decades to come.

Re-roofing a house is a complicated process, and one that involves significant financial investment in materials. For this reason, some homeowners may be tempted to take it on themselves as their big DIY project of the summer.

While this can seem like a smart way to save money, the truth is that roofing is one of those jobs best left to the professionals. If you want to take advantage of the summer months to replace your current roof, here are four reasons why you shouldn’t try to do it yourself:

1. It’s Harder Than It Looks

It can be easy to look at a roofing job and wonder if it is really as difficult as all that. After all, doesn’t it just involve removing the old shingles and replacing them with new ones? Like many household renovation projects, roofing is theoretically straightforward but difficult in practice.

First, you need to decide what roofing materials you want to use. Should you install simple three-tab shingles or more advanced roofing materials like laminated shingles that will cost more, but offer better performance and extend your roof’s lifespan in the long run?

This decision will have a major impact on the total cost of your project, and one of the benefits of having a professional take care of the job for you is that they will have a much better understanding of where costs can be cut in ways that won’t compromise the integrity of your roof.

When it comes to installing the roof itself, not only do you need to have basic knowledge about using tools like roofing spades, nail guns, chalk lines, and hammer-tackers, you also need to understand how roofing materials like asphalt shingles, tar paper, and ice and water shield are applied and what purposes they serve. Furthermore, you need to understand how to work around dormer windows, and valleys — not to mention roof vents, plumbing stacks, and chimneys.

And then there are all the little problems that crop up along the way, which can present a challenge even to experienced roofers (what to do, for example, if you discover that parts of the roof deck have sustained heavy water damage, or that the chimney needs to have new flashing installed?).

Finally, you don’t just have to worry about purchasing materials and having them delivered to your house. You also have to figure out how you are going to dispose of waste. Most roofs generate quite a bit of garbage, and you will need to rent an industrial sized bin and arrange to have it disposed of.

If this sounds like a lot to keep track of, that’s because it is. Fortunately, Professional Roofers is here for you — from selecting and delivering materials to handling the installation and removing the garbage when the job is done, we take care to make sure the work is done right every step of the way.

2. Replacing a Roof is Dangerous

Every year, homeowners are injured and even killed due to accidents on their roofs. Even a simple job like cleaning gutters or removing fallen branches can be risky, but when you are spending all day moving heavy materials onto a pitched roof, the chances of an accident increase exponentially.

For this reason, beware oversimplified DIY YouTube videos — there are lots of things that can go wrong when you are on the roof, which is why roofers are trained to use safety equipment that will protect them in the event of a fall or accident.

Don’t take chances with your wellbeing just to install a new roof: go with the experts who know how to do the work safely as well as efficiently.

3. Incorrect Installation Can Put Your House at Risk

It isn’t just your own safety that you have to watch out for when replacing your roof: an improperly installed roof can put your entire house at risk. This is because the roof is an essential component of the entire system of the house, and issues with the roof are bound to translate into larger problems with the entire structure.

For example, one of the most important things a roof system does is channel water away from the home — the shingles make sure it flows off the roof, the gutters keep it from falling close to the foundation, and the downspouts transfer it safely away from your foundation.

If any of these components are improperly installed, not only is your roof deck in danger, excess water can end up pooling beside your walls, seeping into the soil, and threatening the integrity of your foundation. If the problem is not addressed, this can eventually lead to basement flooding. Good drainage is important for your entire house, and good drainage starts with your roof.

In order to install a roof properly, therefore, you need to understand how all the components work together to manage water flow. Knowing where the stress points are on a roof is essential to providing the extra protection that is needed, and it is also important to know how good roof installation can help combat problems like ice damming and attic condensation. This means accessing the kind of expert knowledge that only professionals can bring to the job.

If you want to know more about how your roof system works, get your questions answered by roofing professionals who have experience working with a variety of different roof types, and can help you avoid mistakes that can cause a lot of problems with other parts of your home down the road.

4. DIY Roof Installation Can Impact Resale Value

Most professional roofers will be able to tell you at least one story about a nightmare job where they had to replace a roof that had been installed by a homeowner. These roofs are full of surprises: shingles nailed down incorrectly, too much (or not enough) flashing along with dormer windows and valleys, incorrectly applied caulking, insufficient ventilation and even — in the worst cases — situations where the previous homeowner simply roofed over the old shingles.

When shopping for a home, people are rightly wary of roofs that were not professionally installed, and even if you believe you have done the job correctly, the simple fact that you did not hire a contractor can raise red flags for some appraisers and buyers.

For this reason, it’s best not to take chances with the future value of your home — call us today to get more information about how you can get your home re-roofed by experts who know how to deliver quality workmanship. Our team of roofers will apply their extensive knowledge of how best to replace shingle roofs and flat roofs alike to make sure that your next roof is one that will continue to raise the value of your home for years to come.

One of the great pleasures of owning your own home lies in improving it — taking a space and making it your own, and in the process learning how all the different components come together to create a functional, comfortable, and attractive living space. DIY work not only makes renovations more affordable, for many homeowners it is a labour of love.

But there are limits to what DIY projects most homeowners can reasonably attempt on their own. Just as it would be foolish to try to re-wire your house on your own, trying to replace your own roof is simply not worth the risks involved. Instead, call Professional Roofers for an appraisal today.

Our roofing experts will help you decide what repairs are needed and can provide you with detailed information as to what the best approach will be. Best of all, we will take care of the job from start to finish, so you don’t have to worry about a thing. Get in touch today, and find out just how easy getting a new roof can be!

roofing repairs in toronto

4 Roof Repairs to Put on Your List of Summer Projects

Every Canadian homeowner knows that summer is the best time to pursue big renovation projects around the house. With the sun shining and the temperatures balmy, it’s a lot easier to contemplate replacing your windows, installing new floors, or just undergoing regular home maintenance tasks. Roofing is no different. Who wants to undergo major repairs to their roof during sub-zero temperatures?

Now that June has come around many homeowners are getting to work on their lists of projects for the summer — it’s prime season don’t put off those repairs being an idea most Canadians can relate to.

Even if you aren’t having your roof replaced this year, you should still consider spending some time and money ensuring your roof system is in good shape by tackling one or more of these roof repair projects this summer.

 

1. Look After Your Attic Ventilation

Ventilation plays an essential role in guaranteeing the longevity of your roof, but it is an aspect of roof maintenance that is often overlooked. A significant amount of roof damage is caused by a build-up of moisture inside the attic itself during the winter months, and much of this build-up is caused by condensation that forms when warm air from the interior encounters cold outside air in the attic.

If that condensation has nowhere to go, it can cause mould to spread through your house, compromise your roof deck, and, if left unchecked, can even rot out your rafters. Because this damage is largely invisible, homeowners often don’t even know it is happening until it is too late.

This is why it is important to be proactive about ensuring you have sufficient attic ventilation. A well-vented attic ensures that hot rising air is channelled out of your home and that any condensation that does form has a chance to dry out before it settles into the timber. In the hotter months, a well-vented attic has the added benefit of circulating air more effectively and reducing the internal temperature.

If you want to know how to keep your roof cool in summer one of the best things you can do is reconsider the type of attic ventilation you are currently using. Many mid-century Toronto homes were built with simple box vents that rely on wind to draw air into the attic. While these vents are effective when installed correctly, they have been surpassed as the industry standard by modern ridge venting, which provides more venting per square foot and are more aesthetically pleasing.

Better attic venting will also reduce the likelihood that you will need to deal with problems like ice damming.

Ice damming happens in the winter, when warm air from the attic heats up the roof deck and causes snow near the ridge to melt and run down toward the gutters. Because the eaves the overhang the roof are colder than the main part of the roof, the water then freezes along the gutter. If you have noticed that large icicles tend to form on your gutters during the coldest months of the year, this is a sign that your roof is probably suffering from ice dams.

The most visible damage ice damming poses is to the integrity of your gutters, but the worst effects of ice damming are felt under the shingles themselves. As the gutters become clogged with ice, melt water has nowhere to go, and pools along the eaves. This creates large sheets of ice under the shingles, which can cause rot to set in over time.

Better attic ventilation means there is less of a likelihood that the snow on your roof will start melting in the first place, putting less strain on your eaves and gutters and keeping your roof intact for longer.

 

2. Clean Your Gutters and Install Gutter Guards

Most homeowners understand the importance of cleaning out their gutters. Gutters that are filled with dead leaves and dirt regularly overflow, causing water to pool beside the foundation and creating unsightly hard water stains on your vinyl or wood siding that can be extremely difficult to get out.

But overflowing gutters don’t just cause problems when it comes to channelling water away from your house and ensuring that you don’t have issues with water damage to your external walls. When debris builds up in gutters, it can also push water back up under the shingles, where it can rot your roof deck and reduce the life of the shingles themselves.

Most modern roofing companies install extra protection along the roof eaves for precisely this reason, and if your roof was put in any time in the last twenty years, it probably has a layer of ice and water membrane beneath the shingles to waterproof the roof deck where it meets the gutter. Ice and water membrane is designed to provide a second skin, protecting against any moisture that might be forced up beneath the shingles.

But while ice and water membrane is an essential part of any Canadian roof system, it can only do so much. As with any roofing component, reducing the strain caused by clogged gutters is one of the best ways to extend the life of your roof.

Having your gutters regularly emptied is a great place to start, but installing gutter guards helps ensure that as much water as possible is channelled through the downspouts and away from the house itself.

 

3. Get New Soffits and Fascia

Soffit boards and fascia play an essential role in protecting your rafters and improving the curb appeal of your home. They are also, like attic ventilation, an often-misunderstood aspect of the roof system.

The fundamental role of soffit boards and fascia is to close in and protect the underside of your roof where it overhangs the eaves. This is a particularly vulnerable part of the home, and without good soffit and fascia, water can easily be blown up and under the eaves and into the house itself, dramatically reducing the lifespan of your roof deck and rafters and potentially causing extensive water damage to your exterior walls.

Homeowners in Toronto have another reason to take care with their soffit boards and fascia. Racoons, birds, and even opossums have been known to make their homes in the relative warmth and dryness of the space between your fascia and your roof, so checking to make sure that you aren’t playing host to unwanted vermin that can wreak havoc on your attic and your insulation is essential.

If you notice any damage to either the soffit boards or the fascia, get in touch with Professional Roofers before you try fixing it yourself. Soffit and fascia are difficult to install, and soliciting the help of experts is essential if the job is to be done right.

 

4. Replace Your Skylight — Or Get a New One!

Skylights are an incredible feature for any home, and are particularly important in Canada, where the winters are long and dark and daylight is often at a premium.

Skylights have been shown to offer a range of positive impacts for homeowners, including making it easier to get vitamin D, and increasing energy levels. Skylights can also add value to your home, and will even help you save on your electricity bills by reducing your reliance on artificial light.

If you want to install a skylight or replace your old one it is important to make sure that the work is done by experienced roofers who understand how the skylight interacts with the other components of your roof. When installed properly, a skylight is completely safe and provides more than enough insulation, but when the work is not done with sufficient care and attention to creating a watertight and airtight barrier, it can become a real hazard.

If you think a skylight might improve the comfort and pleasure you take in your home, get in touch today to learn how Professional Roofers can help you with the installation. With decades of experience in the industry, our roofing experts can help find exactly the right roofing solution to meet your needs.

Long-time Canadian homeowners know that when it comes to making improvements around the house, undergoing routine maintenance, and tackling renovation projects, there is no season like summer. Taking good care of your roof is a great way to improve the comfort of your home, and a roof that is in good shape will add significant value to it for years to come.

This year, don’t let the summer pass you by without taking on one of these four roof repairs. With the experienced roofing experts at Professional Roofers, making sure your roof is in the best possible shape is easy. Give us a call today to book your consultation!