Knowing when a roof needs replacing is the easy part – a visual inspection by the homeowner often yields telltale signs. But identifying roofing mistakes once that new roof is installed isn’t as easy, given that issues aren’t always visible to the untrained eye. This is why hiring a reliable roofing company, one you know you can trust, is crucial. Below are the top five roofing mistakes to look out for.
- Nail Pattern and Number per Shingle
A consistent nail pattern is crucial, and the installer must make certain that no single nail is either under or overdriven. Moreover, scrimping on the number of nails is not wise. Typically, a manufacturer will require five to six nails per shingle. We use six.
- Improper or Lack of Counter or Step Flashing
Flashing is a primary means of preventing water leakage into the home. The installer should utilize step flashing where roof meets siding and counter flashing where the roof comes into contact with masonry such as the chimney. Often an installer will caulk these seams – we utilize reglet flashing for optimized assurance. Here, a groove is added at the seam in order to provide a greater seal.
- Not Thoroughly Inspecting the Home’s Ventilation/Insulation
Intake occurs at the soffit located at the bottom of the roof with exhaust at the ridge via a ridge vent or exhaust fan. However, the installer should also take a peek inside the home to make certain that the attic is properly insulated. The balance between ventilation and insulation is a fine one; an improperly insulated attic can compromise the life of the shingles and may negatively impact the roof’s warranty. Remember to vent the home by way of either a ridge vent or attic exhaust fan, but not both.
- Improper Placement of Ice and Water Shielding to Drip Edge
Delaware Code minimally requires a waterproof membrane be installed two feet in from the warm wall of the house to the drip edge. While soffits can be as wide as three feet, this is not a sufficient barrier. “We install a minimum of four-and-a-half feet,” said Jake Domanski, senior project consultant at G. Fedale Roofing, adding, “We go well beyond the rakes, valleys, and peaks of the roof to include all penetrable areas.”
- Failure to Use Capped Nails or Staples
A 2012 International Residential Contractors (IRC) code strengthened the means by which a roof’s underlayment is attached. The synthetic paper commonly used as the underlayment cannot be installed utilizing nails or staples that have not been capped. Moreover, staples must have a head diamond no smaller than an inch. Capped nails have been a longstanding feature of a G. Fedale installed roof.
“Our job is to educate the homeowner about how we install all these things making sure it’s done properly to code and for warranty,” Jake said.