Tip top Trough Blog

1Common Roofing Mistakes to avoid

roof-plate-tiles-brick-black-48882A roof is one of the most important parts of a building envelope and this is why it becomes important that one should know what to avoid when hiring a team for roofing your building.

Read the following points to know some of the common roofing mistakes that you can avoid:

1) Choosing wrong materials for roofing:  Using good material is important, but when it comes to roofing; quality along with choosing the right type of shingles is important. Quality or choice of shingle separately will not be much of a benefit, but both, when combined, will bring out the essence and will do justice to the purpose it is being installed for (i.e. Protection). Therefore, avoid choosing a shingle that will not match the slope of your roof.

2) Flawed Installation: Installing a roof is not as easy as it seems to be. Roof installation is tricky and technical. Those who are not well-equipped with tools or lack experience in installing roofs will install a roof that has flaws, for example, a new roofer may install new shingles over the old ones and when this is done the whole roofing system will weigh down forcing you to replace the entire roof. It’s best to hire a professional roofer/ or a team of roofers who are experts at installing roofs.

3) Using too many or too few nails: Yes, not using the right number of nails can be damaging to your roof which can further shorten the lifespan of your roof. Therefore, make sure that at least four nails are used per shingle and at least six if the roof has a steep grade. Additionally, nailing at the wrong place can also create a big problem. Make sure that the nails are not driven into or above the self-sealing cement/spot. Talk to your professional about this.

4) Improper installment of valley flashing: Another common roofing mistake one should avoid is installing valley flashing improperly.  Valley flashing is a method of lining the valley of your roof. Usually, inexperienced roofer/contractors install valley flashing directly on the shingles; which is wrong. Directly installing valley flashing is not the correct way of installing it. The flashing should not be installed on top of the shingles but underneath it.

5) Inadequate protection for valley flashing: Security of valley flashing is as important as installing it is. Roof valleys are responsible for driving out excess water and that is a reason why the roof valley is prone to leaks. This is why, when you get a valley flashing installed, make sure that your roofer uses enough securing materials so that your roof does not leak after handling a large volume of runoff water. If an adequate amount of securing material is not used, the roof valley will start leaking and will collapse. Therefore, in order to avoid buckling and investing more money; make sure your roofer uses enough securing material.

6) Not considering winter season when planning: Living in an area where the winter season is harsh; ice dams will form on the line of the roof which will most likely lead to water penetration under the shingles. An experienced professional roofer will know all of this and will keep this in mind when installing a new roof for your building.

7) No space is given to attics or ceilings to vent: Venting is an important feature that needs to be considered, this is why shingles should be laid down in a way that it does not affect the ceiling or attic. Attics/ceilings need space through which they can vent out air; otherwise, moisture will build up which will weaken the material used for shingles.

8) Too much or too little overhang is a no-no: The edge of the shingles hanging over, correctly is important for roofing. An experienced roofer will always hang the edge of the shingles over a roof. This could be between an inch and an inch and a half. In cases a drip edge flashing is installed; the roofer will hang the edge between a half-inch and three-quarters of an inch. If the hang is too much, there is a possibility that the shingles blow off when the weather is windy, whereas if the hang is too little, water can easily seep into fascia boards.

9) Not giving shingles the appropriate exposure: Shingle exposure is a requirement for roofing. Therefore, shingles should be given appropriate exposure. If the exposure given to the shingles is shortened, then the shingles will be susceptible to dampness during a rainstorm because less exposure will lead to the collection of maximum moisture.

Roof shingle exposure is defined as the amount of a shingle whose upper surface is not overlapped by the next successive shingle course or in some roofing patterns, the amount of the shingle that is not overlapped by a side-adjacent shingle

Roof installation requires using the right tools and the best techniques. To avoid the common roofing mistakes and to have a good roofing experience, choose an experienced professional.



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1Fixing Ice Dams & Other Roofing Problems

31829067153_2d795f1fc6The roof is your home’s first layer of defense against many elements. From rain and snow to falling debris, it’s crucial to have and maintain a roof that is tiptop in shape and performance.

When roof problems are left unattended, it can lead to many other troubles that won’t only further damage your house but your wallet as well. That’s why it pays to know what the various roofing problems are, how to be aware of them and eventually, how to fix and avoid them.

Since many homeowners do not have sufficient knowledge and experience to address these problems, we’re here to help.

From fixing ice dams to fixing roofing problems, below are essential nuggets of information every homeowner should know.


The need for professional help

Before we continue on with this post, we’d like to stress the importance of contacting professionals should roofing problems arise. While it helps to be more knowledgeable about what causes these common problems, it is still recommended to have only those with expertise and experience fix the problem. Otherwise, you could be causing more harm than good.


Dealing with Ice Dams

Apart from leaks, one of the most common roofing problems is an ice dam. Winter season can be quite unforgiving, and this is often the time that your roof of your house is challenged.


But first, what is an ice dam?

Ice dams form when water from melting snow freezes into ice at the edge of your roofline. Once this happens without repair and immediate fixing, the ice that has accumulated can end up growing large enough. When this happens, the ice prevents the water from melting snow from properly draining off the roof. The result? It could lead to your shingles and will eventually penetrate the inside of your home.


Identifying what an ice dam is

There are times when some homeowners would quickly believe that they have an ice dam in their roof. However, that’s not always the case. There are telltale signs that you do have one including its accumulation at the edge of your roof as well as water stains and moisture in and around your ceiling, particularly in the attic.

Icicles are confined in the gutters aren’t always ice dams. However, they could pose danger especially if they are already close to falling off. Should you wish to remove them, make sure you are not standing directly underneath it.


Removing and preventing ice dams

Once you’ve spotted an ice dam, the next best step is to contact professionals. What they will often do is rake off the excess snow and make use of calcium chloride ice melt product.

Some of the preventive measures includes improving your home’s insulation and ventilation, installing sealed can lights, caulking penetrations and adding an exhaust to the outside.


Preventing Other Roofing Problems

Ice dams are just one of the problems you may encounter in your roof. The good news is there are a lot of ways you can help prevent all these problems and ensure you have the best possible protection over your heads.

Here are some ways to prevent common roofing problems.

  1. Conduct inspections

Whether you have DIY experience or want to have a professional do it for you, regular inspections are key to preventing roof problems. It’s important to prepare for the changing of seasons and to assess whether or not every part of your roof is still performing at its prime.


  1. Replace shingles and tiles

The root of many roof problems can be attributed to broken, missing or cracked shingles and tiles. This is a fairly easy job to do especially if you are just dealing with one or a few pieces. There are plenty of instructional videos online if it’s going to be the first time you’re replacing these parts.


  1. Clean your ridges and valleys

The ridges and valleys of your rood are areas where dirt, dust and debris all accumulate. When left uncared for and unattended, they can lead to graver problems that will cause leaks, tears and wears not only in your roof but also, in your walls and ceilings. So make sure you take the time to clean these areas regularly.


  1. Improve ventilation and insulation

Poor insulation and ventilation are also major causes of roofing problems, particularly the formation of ice dams. Be sure to check if your soffit intake vents and ridge vents are not blocked. Remove anything that could be blocking it. Moreover, add insulation baffles between each rafter or roof truss. The attic is one area you want to pay more attention to, as it is prone to moisture from snow and outside air.


  1. Stay in the know

It’s good to be knowledgeable about the basic ways to care for your roof. Whether it’s to read or watch more videos online, or even ask for more information from roof professionals, try your best to equip yourself with enough knowledge.

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15 Tips to Winterize Your Home

30952137634_675099de93Snow can be unforgiving to our homes. That’s why when this season comes, we need to doubly prepare our house in order to preserve its entirety. The last thing we want is enjoying the holiday festivities only to find leaks and water seepage through our walls and ceilings.

The good thing is winterizing your home shouldn’t be too hard. In fact, when you do it as early, as effectively and as religiously as possible, you don’t have to worry about expensive repairs.

But why do we really need to protect our home during winter?

Why should you winterize your home?

First, when you winterize your home, you are protecting it against possible leaks and water seepage. When your house is leak-proof from the roof down, you don’t have to worry about moisture entering the interior of your house because when it does, it’s going to make your house vulnerable to further damage.

Another reason as to why you should winterize your home is it saves you a ton of money on electric bills. Poorly ventilated and insulated homes during this season are going to cause owners burn a deep hole in their pockets In fact, the Department of Energy reports that “random air infiltration through gaps and cracks accounts for 25 to 40 percent of the energy loss in most residential structures.”

Market value is another reason why you should prepare your house for winter. When the time comes that you want to sell your house, it needs to have good bones and it should be in very sound condition. This is made possible by protecting it and preventing problems.

How to winterize your home

Now that you have a better idea as to why you must prepare your house for winter, it’s time to learn a few tips on how to winterize your home. From the easy to ingenious, here’s what we recommend you try.

  1. Inspect your gutters and downspouts

In a previous post, we’ve stressed the importance of having good downspouts and gutters. After all, the roof is your first line of protection against the snow. So as early as now, you should have a thorough inspection of your roof and the areas that surround it.

When you do spot problems, be sure to contact a professional to do the work for you. This is critical especially if you don’t have any experience in fixing roofs.

  1. Check for cracks and leaks

The next thing you should do is to check the entirety of your house for cracks and leaks. From the attic to the windows, you wouldn’t want cold air or moisture to seep in because your heater will work double time. This will cause your electric bills to soar.

Immediately seal cracks and leaks. Moreover, you can add weather-stripping or caulkin to remove the cracks and dafts. This way, you don’t have to worry about spending far too much on something that’s preventable.

  1. Trim the branches

Ice and snow can weigh down trees and branches especially during a snowstorm. When this happens, it can cause major damage to your house. So be sure to trim the branches back and keep your home safe from catastrophic disaster.

While you’re at it, you should also prepare your outdoor furniture. Shut off your water valves an set aside your garden house in your storage.

  1. Inspect your furnace

If you are not familiar about inspecting your furnace, call an HVAC professional to do it for you. These professionals will give it a tune up and they will clean the filters as well as inspect the gas piping of the furnace. It may set you back $100 but it will definitely save you a ton in your bills. Plus, you have the peace of mind that your house is safe.

While you’re at it, you can also have the HVAC professionals inspect heating ducts. In fact, studies have shown “that up to 60% of heated air escapes from ducts before making it to the vents.” That’s going to save you from paying high electric bills.

  1. Reverse your ceiling fan

Many people don’t know that they can reverse their ceiling fans. What this does is when the blades run clockwise, the warm air gets pushed downward then it will circulate throughout the house. This will then keep your house warm without spending too much while using the heater.

Just don’t forget to reverse the blades once again when it gets warmer.

Keep in mind that when you prep your house for winter, you are not just assuring your home to stay protected. You are also ensuring the safety and peace of mind of everyone in the house.

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