Tag: Lansdale Roofer

  • Save Money and Sanity With a Long-Term Roofing Plan

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    After a new roof is installed on your home it is often ignored. Generally the furthest thing from a  homeowner or business owner's mind is the (literal) roof over their head.

    However, not having a proper maintenance plan for your roof will end up costing you more money and decrease the lifespan of your roofing system. By taking care of minor problems now, you will be able to avoid most big problems in the future.

    Here are some tips to monitoring your roofing system, courtesy of FacilitiesNet:

    Through regular inspection, facility managers can track the progress of roof issues, providing advance warning when the roofing system is approaching the end of its service life. Staying apprised of roof conditions may also save money by preventing damage to the building interior. By documenting deterioration and leaks, facility managers can respond promptly to repair needs and monitor emerging conditions. Looking back on past inspection logs, facility managers will then have the information to determine the best course of action. Otherwise, the roof may fail unexpectedly, requiring costly and disruptive emergency replacement.

    Roof inspection data may also be used to plan ahead for replacement. It's generally easier to budget for a planned reroofing project than it is to scrape together funds at the last minute to deal with sudden roof failure — and to clean up water damage to building envelope elements and interior finishes.

    Collecting roof condition information on a regular basis establishes a database of information on manufacturers, warranties, age of roofing assemblies and accessories, past repairs, and the success of maintenance efforts. Between inspections, facility managers can build on these inspection reports by documenting changes in conditions, including leaks and storm damage, on an ongoing basis. This information can prove useful when determining when and how repairs or replacements should be performed.

    In early spring, as the weather warms, check for damage from snow and ice. Remove any storm debris that may have collected over the colder months, and evaluate the roof membrane for signs of wear, puncture, or failure. Also include penetrations, flashings, drains, and accessories in your assessment. A checklist can aid in keeping written records of observations.

    Exterior Specialties of PA is here to help with all of your pennsylvania roofing inspection, roofing plans, roofing repair and roofing maintenance needs. Call us today at 215-453-9180 for your FREE estimate!

     

  • Dark vs. Light Roof Shingles

    Courtesy of Familyhandyman.com

    Courtesy of Familyhandyman.com

    There is not debating whether or not lighter colored roof shingles save on cooling costs for homes.  Lighter shingles help keep your attic temperatures down. However, when it comes to whether light roof shingles last longer than dark roof shingles, there is no definitive answer.

    According to Family Handyman:

    One major shingle manufacturer I spoke with said its tests showed no difference. Its position is that a properly ventilated attic provides enough cooling to offset the increased heat retention of dark shingles.

    But some studies dispute that. They claim that since heat always increases molecular activity, and since dark shingles always run hotter, the heat factor alone dictates a shorter life for dark shingles. Yet another study suggests that the sun's UV rays play a much bigger role in shingle degradation than heat.

    In a nutshell though, most experts agree that the most important thing when it comes to roof systems (and the longevity of its shingles) is proper attic ventilation.  So, make sure you have enough roof soffit vents and you should be fine, unless you want to save money on cooling costs, and then you can also pick the lighter colored roof shingles.

    Exterior Specialties of PA is here to help with all of your roof shingles, roof repair, roof installation and roof maintenance needs. Call us today at 215-453-9180 for your FREE estimate!

  • Power-Assisted Roof Vents Can Boost Energy Efficiency

    Courtesy of House Logic

    While Soffit and exhaust roof vents can protect your home (and especially your attic) from heat buildup, there are other ways that may be more effective.  According to House Logic, "A power-assisted roof vent uses a motorized fan to suck hot air out of your attic, keeping your house cooler and drier while reducing potential problems such as rot, mold, and ice dams."

    Check out the benefits and costs of roof vents in this helpful article from House Logic:

    Power up your attic ventilation

    Power-assisted roof vents work even in still air and ensure vigorous ventilation. They relieve heat buildup in the attic, where temperatures can reach 150 degrees or more in summer. Reducing attic heat buildup prevents trapped, hot air from warming ceilings and radiating back into your living areas—a problem that also is avoided with proper attic insulation.

    Mount power-assisted roof vents near the roof peak on the back slope of the roof, where they are less visible from the street, or high on a gable end wall.

    Typically, a single power-assisted roof vent will service an average-sized home.

    Costs for power-assisted roof vents

    Power-assisted roof vents cost between $70 and $300, plus labor to install, and $2 or $3 a month to operate. For another $90 to $150, you can include an optional humidistat and thermostat, which turn on the fan when excessive humidity and/or temperatures are detected inside your attic space.

    If your attic lacks electrical wiring, it may be necessary to have a licensed electrician run a circuit or line extension to power the fan. Depending on the complexity of the project, figure on paying $50 to $100 per hour for a job that may take 2 to 4 hours.

    Going solar

    Solar-powered roof vents have zero operating costs and sell for $350 to $600. Some are eligible for state tax incentives and local utility rebates.

    Some builders complain that solar-powered roof vents may not work properly when it’s cloudy, and that these types of vents don’t pull enough air.

    Drawbacks of power-assisted roof vents

    While roof vents definitely remove hot air from attics, their effect on air conditioning needs is disputed.

    Some experts believe that because power-assisted roof vents evacuate hot air, they create negative pressures inside the home, drawing in hot outside air and increasing the load on existing air conditioning systems. However, this potential problem typically is avoided with the addition of adequate soffit vents, which allow fresh air into the attic.

    Another concern is that a roof vent adds another penetration through roofing materials, and that the vibrations caused by the motorized fan made lead to the failure of caulks and sealants, increasing the risk of water leaks.

    Exterior Specialties of PA is here to assist with all of your roof vent installation, roofing installation, roofing installation and roofing maintenance needs.  Call us today at (215) 773-9181 for your FREE estimate.

     

     

  • Corbett Announces No Insurance Deductibles Applied to Sandy Damage

    Courtesy Pennsylvania Office of the Governor

    Pennsylvania homeowners will get a little bit of relief from the costs of repairing damage to their homes from Hurricane Sandy.

    According to the Perkiomen Valley Patch, "Governor Tom Corbett advised insurance companies that deductibles, which can be up to five percent of the insured value of a home, should not be applied to any Hurricane Sandy homeowner insurance claims."

    Here are some tips courtesy of Patch to help you file a claim:

    • Before calling your insurance company, try to locate your policy number and other relevant information. Your company representative will prepare a "Notice of Loss" form and an adjuster will be assigned to assist you.  Ask for a timeline on when your agent can help you.
    • Take photographs/video before clean-up or repairs. If you have already taken your damaged items out of the house, take pictures of the debris. After you’ve documented the damage, make the repairs necessary to prevent further damage, but do not make any permanent repairs until an adjuster or company representative is able to inspect the damage and your carrier approves the repairs.
    • Save all receipts. Keep a diary of all discussions with your agent or carrier. Cooperate fully with the insurance company.  Ask what documents, forms and data you will need to file the claim.

    If you have any other questions, visit www.pa.gov or www.insurance.pa.gov. Consumers with insurance questions or complaints can call the Insurance Department’s toll-free, consumer hotline at 877- 881-6388.

  • How Passive Roof Vents Can Help Your Home

    Passive roof vents provide ways for stale, moist air to escape from your roof.  According to Houselogic, "vents encourage natural air flow and work without the aid of motorized fans."

    Here is an overview of roof vents courtesy of Houselogic:

    How much roof ventilation?

    The rule of thumb for proper attic ventilation calls for a minimum of 1 square foot of vent area (openings) for every 300 square feet of attic floor space. If you have asphalt shingles, you must have some kind of attic ventilation or you’ll risk voiding the warranty.

    Check your roof vents

    You or a professional roofer should check your roof vents annually.

    • Periodically clear vent screens of dirt, leaves, dust, pollen, spider webs, bird nests, and other debris that impedes air flow.
    • Repair screen rips or tears and damaged flashing.
    • Check for rust or rot around the framing or flashing.
    • Clear insulation from soffit vent openings. You’ll need to inspect from inside your attic. Make sure attic insulation stops clear of the under-eave area.

    If you’re having problems with ice dams, mold, and damaged shingles, have a ventilation or roofing professional evaluate whether you have adequate ventilation and need to retrofit exhaust or intake vents.

    Roof vent options

    • Ridge vents run along the peak of the roof. They feature an external baffle to increase air flow and protect your house from snow, rain, and dust. They’re usually capped with a material that blends in with the roof. It costs about $245 for a professional to install a 40-foot ridge vent.
    • Static vents have no moving parts. They’re basically protected holes in the roof that allow air circulation. They come in various designs—roofline, dormer, roof louver, or eyebrow vents—and are installed in an even line across the roof. Some pros swear by them; others think they tend to leak. They cost between $35 and $50 per vent to install.
    • Gable vents, or wall louvers, are placed in the gable ends of the attic and can be used in combination with other vents. The higher they are, the more effective. However, the airflow from gable vents is limited because they’re under the roof deck, resulting in hot spots. Professional installation costs about $185 per vent. Or, buy a set yourself and install them for $45 apiece.
    • Wind turbines are mushroom-shaped caps atop roofs designed to catch natural wind currents, which spins an internal fan and propels hot air out of the attic. Wind turbines are most effective in areas where winds average about 5 mph.

    Exterior Specialties of PA is here to help with all of your roofing maintenance, roofing repair, and roofing maintenance needs. Call us today at (215) 773-9181 for a FREE estimate!

  • Energy Audit: What's Best For You?

    Do you think your home's inefficiencies are bumping up your electric bill? Why not do an energy audit and see where your home's efficiency issues are?

    Houselogic has some tips on choosing the type of energy audit that's right for you! Whether you do your own or hire a professional, it will give you a hint as to what needs to be repaired and/or replaced around your home. Houselogic says it can even save you 5-30% annually on your electric bill once you've made the changes needed after the audit. Here are some ways to approach an energy audit courtesy of Houselogic:

    Use an online energy audit questionnaire

    You can find them at the website for your local utility or municipality, or at government-supported websites such as Home Energy Saver or Energy Star.

    Online questionnaires immediately calculate areas where you can achieve savings. Be prepared to answer specific questions about your home energy usage and costs, such as:

    • Energy costs and usage for the last year.
    • The energy sources for your home (gas, propane, electric).
    • The square footage of your home.
    • The number of gallons of water your toilet tank holds (often stamped on the inside of the tank).
    • The R-value of insulation in your attic (sometimes printed on the paper bats), but you won’t have to climb into your attic or poke around behind the water heater.

    Cost: Free.

    Conduct a DIY energy audit

    Got a flashlight, ladder, measuring stick, safety glasses, dust mask, screwdriver, and a stick of incense? If so, you’re equipped to inspect your home. You’ll also need to dig out utility bills and do a little research about optimal insulation requirements for your area. Expect to spend 2 to 4 hours.

    Cost: $50 if you have to buy the tools; otherwise: no cost.

    Hire a professional energy auditor

    Even if you conduct a DIY energy audit, it’s a good idea to double-check your diagnosis with a professional energy auditor, especially if your audit reveals you have problems. An auditor knows homes well enough to advise you on how to get to the source of a problem, saving you a lot of trial, error, and perhaps unnecessary expense.

    There are two types of professional energy audits:

    • Visual inspection. Along the lines of DIY energy audit, this evaluation will give you the benefit of the energy auditor’s keen eye and experience. You’ll come away with plenty of ideas for improving your home’s carbon footprint. Cost: $150.
    • Diagnostic inspection. Using hi-tech equipment like thermal scanners and duct blasters, a professional energy auditor will shake down your house for air leaks, noxious fumes, and spotty insulation. Cost $400 to $600.

    Exterior Specialties of PA is there to help with any of you roofing, window replacement, and window repair needs. Call us today at (215) 773-9181 for a FREE estimate today!

  • Tax Credits for Roof Replacement

    courtesy of houselogic

    Did you replace your roof in 2011? You may be eligible for a $500 energy tax credit, according to HouseLogic.

    The tax credit limits and deadlines are:

    • 10% of expenditures, up to $500 for the year, for all energy improvements combined.
    • A relevant roof must have been installed by Dec. 31, 2011.
    • Save receipts and labels.
    • For roofs, installation isn’t covered.
     Make sure to check out the Energy Star guidelines to see exactly what's covered.  As of  Jan. 2012, the government hasn't extended the tax credit into 2012.
    Exterior Specialties of PA is here to help you with all of your roofing needs. Call us today at 215-773-9181 for a FREE estimate.
  • How to Handle Emergency Roofing Repairs

    Courtesy of servicerunner.com

    Every now and then, you may encounter the need to make emergency repairs on your roof due to a large storm or other elemental changes.  Obviously you'll want a roofing professional to look at your roof to make further, more long-lasting repairs. These tips are for taking care of things in a pinch before you can contact the roofing contractor.

    If the damage happens during a storm, you shouldn't attempt any roof repairs until the weather stops because of risk of high winds and lightning.

    According to FacilitiesNet, there are several things you should keep in mind for emergency repairs:

    1. Protect the interior. Control the spread of water by collecting it in containers. Depending on how much water there is, you may also want to use plastic sheeting to protect objects in your home or building.

    2. Remove excess water from the roof.

    3. Check roof drains and scuppers to make sure they are working and draining water properly. If you see a clog, be careful. "Draining water can cause significant suction that can pull tools, hands, arms and ballast quickly into the roof drain."

    It is always best if you are unsure of something to contact a professional and have them handle all the repairs.

    Exterior Specialties of PA is here to help with all of your roof repair, roof maintenance and roof installation needs. Call us today at (215) 773-9181 for your FREE estimate!

     

  • Getting Cool Roof Rebates For Your Building

    If your building's roof is in need of replacing, a cool roof system should be a consideration. According to FacilitiesNet, some utility providers offer incentive for installing cool roof systems, and this alone should provide you with some incentive to look into cool roofing.

    However, if this hasn't sold you on it, "President Obama promising tighter efficiency standards for buildings and a system to cap carbon dioxide emissions, cool roofs are one way facility executives can ready their organizations," according to FacilitiesNet.

    In addition, you'll possibly get rebates from the gas and electric utilities of your building by going with a cool roofing system. The utilities usually pay back  a "certain percentage — usually about $0.20 on the dollar — after installation and documentation."

    Here is a list I compiled from FacilitiesNet of other rebate options for both commercial and residential buildings:

     In October of last year, President George W. Bush authorized the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008. Among the other legislation it contains, this law extends tax credits for use of ENERGY STAR-rated products — much like its predecessor — the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (EPACT).

    A tax deduction of up to $1.80 per square foot is available to owners or designers of new or existing commercial buildings that save at least 50 percent of the heating and cooling energy of a building that meets ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2001. Partial deductions of up to $.60 per square foot can be taken for measures that meet the criteria for any one of three building systems: the building envelope, lighting, or heating and cooling systems. These tax deductions are available for systems “placed in service” from January 1, 2006 through December 31, 2013.

    Another way facility executives may find some cash is some cities and states also award incentives to facilities that are voluntarily built to the rating systems for green or sustainable building systems — such as Green Globes or the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED)

    Many cities, Chicago among them, mandate minimum values. In Chicago’s case, however, the city government also provided grants to further spur cool-roof use. About a year and a half ago, the city announced $185,000 in grant money — equivalent to approximately 55 grants of $6,000.

     Exterior Specialties can help you with all of your roofing installation, roofing maintenance and roofing repair needs. Call us today for a free estimate!
  • Types of Roofing Materials

    Here is an interesting video from Roofing FAQ on different types of roofing shingles.

     

    Exterior Specialties of PA is here to help you with all of your roofing maintenance, roofing installation and roofing repair needs. Call us today at  (215) 773-9181 for a FREE estimate!