Wisconsin winters can reach below zero temperatures, while our summers average in the mid-’80s. Snow and ice are brutal on your residential roof, but what about the summer heat? How does the heat affect your roof? Do you need a roof repair or roof replacement? We turned to our expert roofing team here at High Quality Contracting Inc. to find out.
The sun produces UV Rays. These rays are beating down on your home’s roof every day. When choosing the color of the shingles, consider the and reflective capabilities. Also, considering the reflective coating of the shingles as some coatings are better and last longer than others. Over time, the sun’s rays begin to fade the color of your shingles, which affects the ability to keep the inside of your home cool.
How hot can your roof get?
The standard asphalt shingle roof that protects most of southeastern Wisconsin’s homes can reach temperatures hovering 150°F plus during our hottest months. During the winter, the same roof will reach temperatures well below zero. In Wisconsin, we have times where we go from freezing to hot in a single week. This expanding and contracting of the materials in the shingles and wood can affect the integrity of your home’s roofing system. This process is called Thermal Shock.
Thermal Shock creates cracks, buckling, and discoloration over time. Due to this sudden rise and fall of temperatures, straining is especially hard on roofing systems older than a decade. As time goes on, home roofs become brittle. The wood and shingles crack, leaving openings for moisture and water to seep in and cause further damage.
Couple Thermal Shock with fierce storms that blow through our counties, homeowners have a recipe for roofing damage that may happen at any time. The key to preventing severe damage to the structure of your home is to stay on top of regular inspections of your roof and taking action to repair any damage found.
The steps to protect your investment are simple, yet many homeowners choose not to do them. These steps are:
1) Schedule an inspection.
Schedule an annual roofing inspection performed by a professional contractor. He/She will know where to look for any defects that may affect your home in the near future. The contractor should go on top of the roof and look for signs of wear, rust, buckling, missing shingles, holes, and damage. As well as an interior inspection to search for moisture and stains from leaks.
2) Clear the area to avoid roof replacement from damage.
Be sure that your roof is clear of any trees or branches that could fall during a storm. If a tree is dead or dying, take it down immediately. Trees are one of the biggest causes of roof damage in Wisconsin.
3) Inspect insulations help determine if a roof replacement is needed or repairs.
Take care of your attic by ensuring it is adequately insulated. You can check this by going into your attic in the middle of the day. Make sure all the lights are off, and then look for light shining through any cracks. Turn on the light and search for damp insulation or water stains. Look for discoloration in rafters, beams, and plywood. If you find any issues, consider calling a licensed, insured contractor like High Quality Contracting, Inc. to come to take a look.
Worn old shingles on a roof show signs needing a roof replacement.
4) How Old is Your Roof?
If your roofing is older than a decade or of poor quality, you will want to make sure you have it inspected. Also, consider re-roofing with a higher-quality shingle and better quality underlayment.
Several manufacturers, such as GAF, make terrific products for roofing systems that were not available even ten years ago. These products are more wind resistant, have excellent UV light resistance, a more formidable water barrier, and a longer life expectancy.
As the heat of Wisconsin’s summer sun beats down on your home, remember to do a few simple tasks to keep your investment and family safe from a damaged roof which will end in needing a roof replacement. Scheduling an inspection to see if you need a new roof or if you can get by with some repairs is as easy as picking up the phone and calling High Quality Contracting, Inc.
We also offer special discounts to our servicemen and women.
Please contact your homeowners’ insurance to find out what, if any, discounts are available in the event that you replace your roof. Many homeowner policies offer substantial discounts (5%-30%) if your roof is under 5 years old. Depending on the product you choose, that discount can vary.
At High Quality Contracting, Inc., we offer craftsmanship that you can trust. Contact us today for your roofing inspection.
Winter roof damage can get you down. Humans are not the only ones who become blue in the winter, your roof can too. The pressure of the hard, cold days and nights, piling up on top of it, as well as the wind blowing across every shingle. No wonder your roof responds poorly. Here are some of the signs that your roof has the winter blues, and could use a little love from the folks at High Quality Contracting Inc.
When the heat from your home reaches the cold service of the roof it results in condensation. The condensation moistens the existing insulation and wood causing mold and mildew to grow resulting in the interior structure of your home being damaged. To check for this you can go into. your attack space and look for moisture, wet marks, and mold. To prevent this from happening you must eliminate the amount of air leakage into your attic as well as improve the insulation & ventilation which will allow moist air to escape the roof.
Although those icicles are beautiful to look at, they are dangerous, furthermore, they are a sign that your roof may have a problem. Icicles are the result from heat melting the snow on your roof and then the water forming around the gutter system. The problem with icicles is that they are dangerous and can fall on someone or damage property, as well as, the weight from several well-formed icicles is daunting on the structure of your roof and existing gutter system. To prevent icicles from forming, clean out gutters during the fall, and sweep the snow off your roof and from your gutters.
The most dangerous of winter roof hazards are ic dams. These nasty structures form when the snow melts on the warm roof, resulting in the accumulation of ice and water on the roof and under the shingles. The fact is that an ice dam does not need to be thick to cause a problem. They can be as thin as one inch and severely damage the integrity of your roof. They can become very heavy and often result in roofing leaks and damage. Most often by the time you find the leak inside of your home, the damage has been there quite a while because often the water from the ice dam pushes into the home and travels around the wall and ceiling cavities until it finds an escape.
So what do you do if you think you have an ice dam situation? Winter roof damage gets worse the longer the damage is not taken care of. We would strongly suggest contacting a licensed and insured roofing specialist like High Quality Contracting, Inc. We will investigate the problem and develop a solution based on your specific home structure and needs. It is not always an insulation problem that needs to be addressed, sometimes, missing shingles, air leaks in gaps, or aging roofing is the cause.
Remember as the winter cold hits your face, it is also hitting your home. Keep your home happy this winter and chase the winter blues away by keeping your roof strong and sound.
Perhaps you have heard the term “Ice Dam” or “Ice Damming” and are not sure what exactly that is or how it affects your home. We have the answers for you.
An ice dam refers to a rim of ice that forms at the edges of your room and gutter systems that prevent water and melting snow to run off the roof (drain) properly. The water backs up and can cause damage to the roof, interior walls, insulation, ceiling, around windows as well as other areas. Ice dams can also be dangerous as when they break loose, sharp ice and icicles can fall to the ground potentially harming people or pets.
Mold and mildew problems caused by ice dams.
Not only does an ice dam cause damage to your home but it can also cause a health hazard with mold and mildew growth. The moisture and water leaking into the house will soak into the walls, insulation, and drywall. When this happens long enough, mold spores and mildew begin to grow.
How are ice dams formed?
Ice dams are formed when the higher portions of the roof are above 32°F while lower surfaces are below 32°F. The water at the more moderate portion freezes and the more elevated portion runs down to the lower portion backing up behind the ridge adding to the ice dam.
How does the roof maintain two different temperatures?
Heat rises. When the heat rises if the insulation on the inside of the attack space or in a variety of roofing areas is not sealed properly the top of the roof will become warmer than the edges of the roof. The heat loss also prevents the home from heating fulling and increases home energy costs.
How do you prevent ice damming?
To prevent ice dams from forming it is important to check the insulation levels in your attic as well as make sure that your roof, soffits, and vents are all sealed properly. It is also essential to make sure that your gutters are free of debris and corrosion as this can cause the water from draining correctly. Roof shingles should be well maintained and lose shingles and rotting boards replaced. Flashing around the chimney should be sealed well.
How do I clear an ice dam that is already formed?
Safety is critical in this area as that when you are removing an ice dam, you can quickly be hit with massive clumps of ice that roll off the roof. A roof rake is preferred if you have one or to call an expert to remove the ice dam to prevent further damage or injury.
What is the best type of insulation to use in my attic to help prevent ice dams?
Every home is different as to what kind of insulation works the best for your particular home. Homes with angled ceilings and no attic, roofs with skylights, flat roof dormers and low-slope roofs are especially challenging to vent at a proper level to prevent the ice dams from forming. To understand which options are best for your home it is best to ask an expert such as High Quality Contracting to review your situation.
If you would like to schedule an appointment to review your ice damming problem, please contact us here.