5 Common Toronto Roofing Problems and How to Fix Them

At Professional Roofers, we regularly deal with a wide range of roofing problems that homeowners have across the Greater Toronto Area. Since we first got into the business of Toronto roofing, we’ve seen it all, but some problems are a lot more common than others.

If you’ve often wondered with the most consistent roofing problems in Toronto are, here’s a list of the top five most common issues Toronto homeowners have with their roofs — and a few things that can be done to avoid them.

Buckling, Loose, Curling, Cracked or Missing Shingles

As is true just about everywhere, one of the biggest challenges facing roofing experts in Toronto is simply the natural wear and tear that affects all roofs. Exposed to the elements, asphalt shingles become less effective as they age, and at a certain point will need to be replaced.

What makes Toronto roofing different from roofing in gentler climates is the fact that roofs in Toronto have to withstand an awful lot of stresses over the course of a year. According to Environment Canada, average temperatures in Toronto vary from a high of twenty-seven degrees Celsius in July to minus seven in January, a swing of thirty-four degrees — but it gets both a lot hotter and a lot colder on the coldest days of the year, which means that Toronto roofs need to be designed to handle much greater maximum and minimum temperatures.

On top of the wide variance in temperature, there is also a significant amount of precipitation, from drenching summer thunderstorms to lake effect snow from November to April.

All of this means that Toronto roofs tend to age quickly, and the first signs of this ageing can generally be seen in the shingles themselves. Missing shingles, cracked shingles, curling shingles, and loose shingles are caused by high winds, rooftop damage, and the cumulative effect of hundreds of cycles of soaking and drying, and the older your roof gets, the greater the likelihood of these problems become.

When it comes to fixing individual shingles, some homeowners do opt to get up on the roofs themselves to take care of the problem. But it is important to remember that this is not a long-term solution. At a certain point, the entire roof will need to be replaced by a roofing company Toronto if you want to avoid bigger problems like leaking and water damage further down the road.

Ice Damming

For Toronto homeowners, ice damming is a well-known and incredibly frustrating phenomenon. It is also one that is likely to be a particular problem for those living in houses near the downtown core or in the older suburbs, where the charming mid-twentieth century housing stock comes with the downside of inconsistent attic insulation and a host of ventilation problems.

Ice damming is caused when ridges of ice form along the eaves of a building, trapping melted snow on the roof. Ice dams form over time as heat rising from inside the house causes snow by the ridge to melt and run down to the colder eaves, where it freezes (a problem exacerbated by clogged gutters and insufficient drainage).

As melted water runs up against these ice ridges, it has nowhere to go, and slowly rots away the roof deck, leaking into the attic and causing even more serious water damage throughout the house. Ice dams are also a major cause of icicles, which can destroy eavestroughs and pose a risk to pedestrians and cars when they inevitably fall off.

Toronto homeowners who are experiencing problems with ice dams have a few options to consider — but first and foremost, they should book a consultation with expert roofers who can help them understand the underlying problems of their roof.

In most cases, ice damming is primarily caused by insufficient ventilation. If warm air rises from the inside the house and has nowhere to go, this will have the effect of heating up the roof deck and increase the likelihood of snowmelt. In situations like this, installing better ventilation options like roof ridge and soffit vents can nip the problem in the bud.

If the problem has caused sufficient damage, however, new vents will not be enough, and the entire roof will need to be replaced.

Overflowing Gutters and Eavestroughs

Gutters play an essential role in channelling water away from your roof, and many problems (like ice damming) that affect the roof may be related to overflowing gutters that are causing water to pool on the roof.

One of the things many homeowners value about living in Toronto is the many beautiful trees that offer a leafy shade canopy in the summer. But these very trees can also wreak havoc on drainage systems, as falling leaves can quickly clog up gutters, eavestroughs and downspouts, causing water to stagnate. This is why the installation or repair of downspouts and eavestroughs is one of the most common roof maintenance issues homeowners in Toronto face every year.

A smart approach to roof drainage starts with clearing clogged gutters in the spring and fall, which is why Professional Roofers offers gutter cleaning and repair services across the Greater Toronto Area.

We can also provide you with roof maintenance tips to ensure that your gutters are working at maximum effectiveness, and install gutter guards that will help you avoid build-up of organic matter during the summer and winter months.

Deteriorated Soffits and Fascia

A functioning roof involves a lot of different components, and among the most frequently overlooked are the soffits and fascia boards that close off and protect the eaves from water damage.

The soffits and fascia are connected to the gutters and tend to be affected by related problems. Overflowing gutters, for example, can speed the decay and deterioration of soffits and fascia, meaning then need to be replaced sooner.

It is a good idea to have soffits and fascia inspected every spring and fall, and homeowners in Toronto should be particularly mindful of the fact that wild animals such as raccoons often make nests under the eaves of buildings. For this reason, when inspecting old or damaged fascia boards, it is always a good idea to be prepared for an encounter with wildlife.

If you realize that you do need to replace these components, getting in touch with a Toronto roofing company like Professional Roofers is the best way to ensure the job is done quickly and efficiently.

Standing Water on Flat Roofs

Toronto homeowners whose houses have flat roofs have a different set of concerns from those who have chosen to use different roofing materials (you can click here to learn more about the pros and cons of different styles of roofing). While flat roofs make DIY repairs easier, they also require more care, and in particular, homeowners need to make sure standing water isn’t pooling on the roof.

Just as Toronto’s generous foliage causes problems for gutters, it is also an issue for flat roof owners insofar as dead leaves can quite easily clog up flat roof drains.

If you have noticed problems with standing water on your flat roof, the first thing you should do is check the drains to see if you can unclog the debris manually. If this doesn’t work, you may need to call a professional roofing company that specializes in flat roofs to snake your drain and check to see that there are no tears or holes in the roofing membrane.

The last thing any homeowner wants to be confronted within the depths of January is a roof leak. But making sure your roof can last through the harsh Toronto winter means thinking ahead and ensuring that your house is in good repair during the summer months when fixing issues is easy.

If you have noticed that your roof is showing signs of ageing and has one of these five common Toronto roofing issues, the best thing to do is book a consultation with Professional Roofers to find out what kind of solutions are available.

Because Professional Roofers deals with such a wide range of roofing issues, we can provide you with expert advice on whether the problem you are facing can be easily fixed by installing more attic ventilation, or whether you will need to overhaul your roof complete if you want to avoid serious structural damage in the near future.

As a Toronto roofing company that has been solving problems from homeowners across the Greater Toronto Area for years, we can help you with whatever your particular issue is, big or small. Get in touch with us today to learn more!

3 Reasons Why Summer is the Best Time to Repair or Install a Skylight

Perhaps no roofing feature can improve your quality of life and the enjoyment you take in your home as much as a skylight. Not only do skylights serve the practical purpose of letting more natural light in, they also add a touch of class and elegance to a house, increasing your home’s value and making it more desirable to future buyers.

While skylights have many benefits, and have long been associated with a higher standard of living, you might be surprised to learn that, especially if you live in one of the many Toronto homes designed to have a flat roof, a skylight might be more affordable than you think.

In this blog, we will outline some of the reasons why you might want to consider having Professional Roofers install a skylight (or repair your current skylights), and why summer is the best time to do so.

The Benefits of Skylight Installation

The most significant way in which a skylight improves your standard of living is, of course, by providing you with better access to natural light. In cities like Toronto, Mississauga, Brampton, and Hamilton, this can make a huge difference in the winter months, when night falls early and the sun rises late.

Getting the most out of the daylight hours is especially important for those who suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder and need access to good light for mental health reasons, but it isn’t just people with SAD who benefit from skylights. Exposure to natural light has been shown to have a beneficial impact on everyone’s general health.

But skylights can also improve your quality life by making you less reliant on artificial light, thereby reducing your energy bills and shrinking your carbon footprint. At a time when many families are looking for ways to make their homes more energy-efficient, considering how you might reduce your reliance on electric light can help you use less electricity.

Furthermore, the architecture in large swaths of downtown Toronto makes skylights a critical solution to lack of natural light.

The neighbourhoods that sprung up along major arteries like Queen Street, Dupont, Davenport, Spadina, Dundas West, and College in the first part of the twentieth century were built with density in mind, and the long bay-and-gable designs that are such a notable part of the city’s architectural heritage restrict the amount of sunlight that can filter through to windows in the external side walls.

If you live in this kind of home, skylights might be your best bet for making sure that every room in your house gets at least some daylight.

While these are all good reasons to consider installing a new skylight or repairing your current skylights, it can be more difficult to know when the best time to do this is. If you have skylights in your home or want to explore your installation options, here are three reasons to do so this summer.

1. The Weather is Perfect

Perhaps no aspect of home improvement is as conditional on good weather as roofing is, and this is especially true when dealing with major projects like skylight installations that require parts of the roof to be removed. The last thing you want to be doing in a rainstorm is cutting a hole through your roof deck, and while the coldest months of winter might offer dry conditions, most people won’t want to have a skylight installed in sub-zero weather.

This means that if you get in touch with your local roofing company to ask about the possibility of having a skylight installed, one of the first things you’ll likely be told is that the exact timing of the installation will depend to some degree on the weather. Because the summer is the most consistently warm and dry part of the year in the Greater Toronto Area, the likelihood of being able to schedule repairs or installation between June and September are much higher.

And then, of course, there is the fact that a summer installation will allow you to enjoy the beautiful golden light of July and August right away. For this reason, if you want to know what can skylights do for your home and how you can get started on the installation process, give Professional Roofers a call today to find out more about how it works, and what you need to do.

2. You Can Get the Job Done Faster

As with any intensive home renovation, getting the job done as quickly and efficiently as possible is always going to make it more convenient and affordable. And when it comes to installing a skylight, the longer the renovation takes, the more time you will need to spend with a hole in your roof.

The good news is that under the right conditions, a skylight installation doesn’t need to take long. Depending on the style of roof you have, it can even be completed within a matter of hours or a day at most.

One of the reasons to have your installation done in the summer is that it will take far less time for one of our Professional Roofers roofing teams to prepare the roof and handle the installation, repair, or replacement than it would in the winter, or at a rainier time of year like spring or fall.

While our teams have years of roofing experience and are equipped to handle even the most challenging jobs in a fast and efficient way, arranging to have repairs made in the summer always helps ensure that the job will get done in as timely a way as possible.

But don’t take it from us: read the many reviews from satisfied customers on our website to find out just how seriously we at Professional Roofers take every aspect of Toronto roofing, from skylight repairs to full roof replacements.

3. You Can Pair Installation With Other Roofing Services

When spring comes around, many homeowners take the opportunity to have their roofs inspected for damage that may have occurred over the course of the winter months. This is usually the point at which they discover issues with their skylights as well.

Because your roof is a complete system that requires a variety of different components to work in concert in order to function properly, if you are having problems with your skylight, such as leaks or buckling, ask us about the possibility of a full consultation to see whether more comprehensive roof repairs are needed.

If other parts of your leak are roofing, simply replacing your skylight won’t be enough to actually deal with the problem, and you may notice issues persisting. In this case, the expense you went to in order to replace the skylight will have been wasted, which is why you should err on the side of caution by hiring Professional Roofers to make sure the job is done right the first time.

If you are having a skylight installed and want to pair it with more extensive roof repairs, or are having a flat roof installed and want to make a skylight part of the package, give us a call to learn more about the services Professional Roofers offers.

We specialize in flat roof installation and have extensive experience working with common flat roofing materials like modified bitumen, EPDM, PVC, and metal, which makes us the ideal Toronto roofing company to work with if you want to get the best expertise and service.

When the days get hot and summer holidays roll around, the first thing many Toronto homeowners will think of is how they can make the most of the nice weather to dive into home improvement projects. If you want to increase the value of your home while also measurably improving your own standard of living, installing new skylights, or repairing the skylights you already have, is one of the best ways to do so.

Skylights are guaranteed not only to increase your mood year-round, but they can also reduce the amount of energy you need to use, and can be much easier to install than you might believe. If the possibility of getting a new skylight this summer is something you want to explore further, get in touch with Professional Roofers for an expert consultation.

Our experienced roofers will not only be able to help you find the best way to improve your home with skylights, they can also advise you on how skylights can fit into your current roof system, and whether you should undergo other roof repairs at the same time.

Toronto is famous for its beautiful summers, but don’t forget that January is coming sooner than you might think. If you want to make sure you’ll be able to soak up as much light as possible year-round, call Professional Roofers about getting a new skylight today!