Have you ever tried to install or repair your own roof? Many homeowners with a knack for home improvement projects would answer ‘yes’, whether the aim was to save money or learn a new skill. Roofing is, however, a highly-specialized trade. In many cases, these DIY roofing projects don’t go as planned.
That’s not to say it’s impossible to do your own roofing work successfully. It can be done; but in most cases, homeowners choose to outsource their roofing needs to a professional. The reason for this is obvious enough: Since the roof is such a vital part of the home’s construction, people want to make sure they get it right. Making critical errors during the repair or installation of a roof can have serious financial consequences, and can affect the long-term health of your property.
Unfortunately, such errors have been known to occur – usually by inexperienced DIY roofers, or by contractors who lack the necessary skill or experience to do a great job. There are also some cases of “shady” roofing contractors who simply cut corners, and make conscious decisions that undermine the quality of the work. Obviously, any such contractor should be avoided at all costs.
Here are some roofing mistakes that are commonly made, whether by DIY or professional roofers.
1. Not using the correct shingles
This is especially important if you’re doing a repair. Using the mismatched shingles is a very common mistake, and has both aesthetic and structural consequences. Carefully selecting the correct shingles for the repair is crucial.
2. Layering shingles
Installing new shingles directly over the old ones is a hugely problematic practice, but it still goes on. Many localities have specific laws that prohibit the practice of layering shingles, and DIY roofers are often unaware of these laws. A proper installation or repair will involve removing old and defective shingles before installing new material.
3. Not getting a permit
You might not have thought that a specific permit was necessary for the roofing work you did, but this can be a costly assumption. Make sure any and all permits are obtained by you or your contractor before starting your repair or installation.
4. Re-using the old flashing
The metal that protects your roof from water is called flashing. It serves to keep water flowing away from the home, which is very important, as the water would otherwise be absorbed by the roofing and underlayment. Flashing is often re-used to save cash, but this can be a very costly mistake in the long run.
Avoid creating a bad situation with your roof
When it comes to your home’s roof, cutting corners simply isn’t worth it. The best way to avoid creating a bad situation is by hiring a skilled and reputable company who knows roofing backwards and forwards. Finding the right roofing professional can save you a lot of time, stress and money. Obviously, you want to find a good deal on your roofing needs, but long-term value should also be kept in mind. Those contractors who come with rock-bottom bids are sometimes the same people who don’t deliver the finest results.