5 Questions to Ask Roofing Contractors before you Hire Them

Homeowners routinely have to hire professional roofing contractors to perform metal roof installations, replacements, and repairs. The sometimes unpredictably extreme weather that we have here in North America can take its toll on one’s roof. Before settling down with a professional roofing contractor however, there are some key questions that should be answered.

5 Questions to Ask Roofing Contractors before you Hire Them

Can you see projects that the roofing contractor has done previously?

Irrelevant of what is being offered upfront, you want to know you’re in the hands of someone who is knowledgeable and experienced at their job. Inquire about past projects and assess their workmanship. Ignore the salesmanship, and pay heed to the way the jobsite is kept and the attitudes involved.

What exactly is included in the roof replacement, installation, or repair?

Every professional roofing contractor works a little differently and cost estimates are not always made equal. In addition, there may be additional issues that could significantly increase costs, such as building permits and local legislation. No homeowner wants to cut corners on their metal roofing installation and/or to pursue an illegal installation. Therefore, be sure to know what is included in the estimate and to inquire about if any permits or similar items are required to complete your roofing work.

What is the expectation regarding how a job site will be left at the end of the day?

Roof replacements and/or installations are multi-day jobs in some cases. Throughout this process, you don’t want to leave your house open to the elements. Also, the site should not look like a wreck. At the end of the day, the site should be as tidy as it can be, tarped where/when appropriate, and kept free from safety hazards. If there are any doubts, be sure to write this into the roofing contract prior to hiring.

Does your roofing contractor have workman’s compensation and liability coverage?

Any experienced professional roofing contractor should come with insurance including workman’s compensation and liability. If there are any doubts, seeking a document from the insurance provider addressed to you is not uncommon. A professional contractor may not be willing to go through the effort of providing such a document however asking is not offensive. In the event that someone is hurt or has fallen, you do not want them suing you for medical costs and lost wages. Always confirm that a roofing contractor has the necessary insurance in place.

What sort of warranties are provided with their roofing work?

Note that a manufacturer’s warranty only covers the materials themselves and not the labor. Thereby, it is the responsibility of the contractor to provide a warranty on work completed. A 1-year or 2-year warranty is standard among professional roofing contractors in Ontario. Be sure to have it in writing, ensuring everything is kept on the up-and-up.

No matter where in the province you may be based, hiring the right roofing contractor is imperative. By selecting correctly, you will ensure the installation is carried out properly, work is completed ethically, and that the materials used are cost-effective, high quality, and durable. These are the 5 questions to ask roofing contractors before hiring. Hopefully, the answers will shed light into what is the right option for your home.

Pros and Cons of Steel Roofing Installation

Steel roofing is becoming more and more popular for residential homes across North America. These new roofs look great but in large part, there’s still a pretty sizeable percentage of homeowners who don’t know much about steel roofing. As a professional roofing contractor, we want to highlight some of the pros and cons of steel roofing, to help you decide if it’s right for you.

Steel Roofing Pros

Metal roofs have a long life span, with some warranties extending to as high as 20 to 50 years. Resistant to wind, fire, insects, mildew, and deterioration, a metal or steel roof does need to be properly installed though.

The weight of a metal roof is significantly less heavy than a conventional roof. This makes installing on an older house easy because you know it’s not going to require much structural support.

For those of us living in regions where the snow and ice come heavy during winter, metal roofing has a smooth finish allowing that stuff to glide right off. Unlike a traditional asphalt roof, there is no absorption in the material and your steel will be kept near to brand new for a long time.

Metal or steel roofs are also very environmentally friendly. They are easily recycled at the end of their life span.

Most metal roofs can be installed quickly and safely by any trained roofing contractor. Due to the nature of them being easy to install and keeping in mind the interlocking design, it makes it more difficult for a leak to become present. Also, because they are metal and non-combustible, that makes them fireproof as well.

Steel Roofing Cons

The biggest con to steel roofing is likely the upfront cost which is higher than what one would pay for traditional shingles. Depending on the type and look of the metal, it can get costly.

That said, the difference is almost always recouped over time as steel and metal roofs last longer than their asphalt counterparts.

There are a number of other things to consider when it comes to steel roofing, such as being susceptible to scratching or denting when walking on it improperly (we can teach our customers on how to walk on their roof in order to avoid damage). As a material, metal is also more sensitive to temperature expansion and contraction, however properly installed metal panels will compensate for that .

Conclusion

Steel roofing is a newer, premium product that is worth considering for anyone looking to update their property. There are many factors to weigh, yes, however if one can cover the initial cost of material and installation, in the long-term they will be mighty thankful they did.

It’s a big investment installing a steel roof on your home but doing so will provide you with something that is built to last. For more information on what steel roofing type may be right for your property, contact a local professional roofing contractor to advise you.

How to Hire the Best Roofing Contractor for your Property

Experience does not necessarily guarantee expertise. Roofing contractors with years of experience can neglect key aspects of a job. It is up to the homeowner to know what to look for when hiring a roofing contractor for their property. Beyond the claims that they may make, they need to be able to back it up with indications that they are the one to trust with your property.

hire roofing contractor

Roofing contractors are usually hired to perform a complete roof installation or oftentimes to address a leak. Though there are typical routes to performing both of these, the importance is in the details. Any roof can be different and it’s important to conduct a thorough inspection prior to pursuing any work. For example, if your roof has already let enough water in to cause rot and mold, the repairs may be pretty extensive. You’re going to want someone you can trust, that is affordable, and who knows what they’re doing. Here’s where to start.

Consider his Professional Demeanor

Any roofer should conduct themselves in the estimate stage in a courteous, professional manner. They should show up on time, provide a written quote with details of the work they are setting out to do, and he should not appear disorganized.

Ensure the Contractor does a Thorough Inspection

Any estimator worth their title should have gone a pretty extensive inspection prior to handing over any quote. If a roofing contractor is just taking a look from the ground, that’s generally a bad sign.

Did they Explain the Options you Have – they Should!

Any roofing problem may have multiple solutions to offer. A roofing contractor should be willing to explain to you the different options available. There are many different installation methods, roofing products, and roof systems. They may be able to recommend something less expensive or a more permanent fix than what other contractors may give you.

Consider what will happen to the Waste

Ripping apart an old roof is a very messy job. If care is not taken, it can leave damage to landscaping, lawns, decks, siding, and more. During the estimation stages, don’t hesitate to ask about things like how the contractor intends to get rid of the waste as well as site protection.

Choose us to get the Job Done right – No matter how Tough it is

To trust a roofing contractor to install a roof on your property, they should be able to pass these four tests with flying colors.

As a homeowner, you’re essentially at the mercy of your roofing contractor. If they install or repair incorrectly, or provide just a temporary fix, they will be long gone before something turns up years down the line. All the while, you’re going to be hoping you hired the right company.

This is why the early stages of building a relationship with a roofing contractor is important. Mold, rot, and undetected leaks can mean some very serious consequences. To get a proper roof installation, you need to know how to hire the best roofing contractor for your property. Follow this list, do it right, and feel secure in knowing that you chose right.

Pros and Cons of Metal Roof Installation

There are many pros and cons to metal roof installation. Though the benefits are numerous, there are also some drawbacks. We’ve done our best to provide an unbiased analysis on the pros and cons of metal roofing.

Pro: Long Life

When a metal roof is properly installed, it should last as long as fifty years and possibly more. In many cases, it lasts as long as the house.

Metal roof installation done right seals out water, prepares your roof to survive high winds, and easily will be able to shake off accumulating snow. Also resistant to fire, mildew, insects, and rot, there’s not much that can bring this material down.

Con: Initial Cost

When you first buy a metal roof, it’s going to cost more initially than traditional shingles. Typically costs can be as high as $600 per 100 square feet. This is in line with other premium materials.

Because of its high durability, metal roof panels tend to save you more in the long-run by eliminating the seasonal maintenance and occasional replacement that traditional shingles offer. If you plan on staying in your home for a decade or longer, going with a metal roof will actually help save on cost over the years.

Pro: Lightweight

Traditional tile is 750 pounds per 100 square feet, concrete tile is 900 pounds per 100 square feet, and metal roofing easily outdoes both of these numbers at anywhere between 50 and 150 pounds per 100 square feet depending on the variety purchased.

This means less stress on the structure of your home, and ultimately a roof that is able to withstand snow and ice longer and more effectively.

Pro: Easy Installation

Metal roofing materials come in multiple shingle sections that simply need to have their panels interlocked for the most part. Any accomplished contractor can install these quickly and easy.

Pro: Better Heat Conduction

Metal reflects the radiant heat from the sun. This minimizes heat gain, saving you energy in the summer on air conditioning. The dead-air space between metal and roof deck also increases energy efficiency by providing better ventilation.

Pro: Shed Rain and Snow Easy

Living in an area where there’s always the threat of a major snowstorm can wreck a roof over time. Metal roofing is near imperious to rain and snow due to the interlocking nature of the design. Because the surfaces are hard and slippery, any snow or ice will fall right off.

Con: Denting

Just like when a golf ball cracks into a car, any hail stones that fall from the sky may end up leaving dents. The sensitivity to denting varies depending on the exact metal product purchased so it is worth keeping in mind and even asking about to your manufacturer.

As evidenced, there are numerous pros and cons to metal roof installation to keep in mind when deciding on whether to choose metal as your roofing material. If the upfront cost is not a problem, metal is still among the most highly recommended roofing materials in Canada.

How to Install Metal Roofing on a House

There are hundreds upon hundreds of tutorials outlining how to install metal roofing on a house, each providing a slightly different method and somewhat different insight. As it pertains to installing metal roofing in Toronto, Ontario, there are a few key pieces of information that bear mentioning.

Many residents choose to install metal roofing over their traditional asphalt shingle roofs. For many people, this is worth the expense and the savings of not having to remove the old roof. Building codes in Ontario allow for a maximum of two layers of roofing before requiring a complete removal. Therefore if your roof only has a single layer of asphalt shingles, the installation of metal roof panels is easy.

Installing metal roofing

Prior to installation, get a sense of what to expect from the anatomy of your metal roof panels. For example, holes need to be cut in the old roof to allow for air circulation and ventilation. These holes are typically cut above the soffit. It is also common for there to be a ridge vent, allowing for cool outside air to travel under the shingles while simultaneously pulling out moisture and heat.

When installing a metal roof on a house over asphalt shingles, avoid using standing seam roofs which use long, single vertical panels that run from the eave to the ridge. Instead, using smaller panels installed in horizontal rows will mimic the pattern of shingles and assist with ventilation.

Many people choose a framework of ‘2 x 2’ for three reasons. The first advantage of this is that its frame screws directly to the rafters and its interlocking shingles are screwed to the frame. The act of doing this allows for the roof to withstand winds of up to 120 mph without any significant damage. The second advantage is that the frame will create a flat, straight surface that will maintain its form even when the underlying shingles are curled or when the ridge is bowed. Thirdly, the frame will naturally create a ventilation gap, preventing ice dams in the winter and cooling the property throughout the summer months.

Some Toronto residents who see metal roofing as unattractive in residential settings or noisy can be put at ease. When metal roof panels are installed over an existing asphalt roof, this effectively puts to bed any noise you would otherwise hear. From an appearance standpoint, metal roofing adds significant curb appeal and from the wide array of different colors and style choices, it’s not difficult to find a metal roofing option that works for your home. As it pertains to installing metal roofing in Ontario, many manufacturers offer do-it-yourself systems that provide more detailed instruction on how to install. For any direct questions pertaining to your choice, always contact the manufacturer if the subject is not covered in the instruction. The majority of these systems install directly on the old roof and do not require being attached to the frame.

Prior to and throughout installation, there are a number of things to keep in mind. Make sure to measure the area and ensure all the required measurements are done. Preparing the materials for use and ensuring that you have all needed materials will save on down-time. Preparing the work site, examining for any unexpected damage in the materials themselves, and finally, ensuring that the roof is fully covered upon installation are all keys to ensuring a successful installation.