Roofing 101 – Five Myths of Roofing
The typical homeowner rarely if ever gets on their roof to inspect it. Yet the roof is more than a visual featurewhen looking at the home. The roof protects attic space, living space, house contents and those who occupy the home from storms, sun heat, rain and/or snow depending on your climate.
When it comes to protecting the home the roof is the first defense against the elements. Most homeowners do not think of their roof unless the roof leaks or comes time to replace it.
Poor decision making on such an important subject can lead to poor results. With that in mind, here are five myths about roofing that every homeowner consider.
It’s OK to shingle over an existing layer of shingles with a new layer
In Florida the code allows for two layers of shingles. However problems arise from the multilayered roof. Home inspectors frown on two layers when trying to sell the home, making it difficult if not impossible to sell with the two layers. Rotten or damaged wood left underneath the first layer which should have been replaced now creates issues. Water if gets between the layers makes for finding the leak very hard. Insurance companies do not like two layers and know the wood decking is not to the 2007 nail code. With all these reasons just do not do it. The consequences are not worth the little savings from roofing over existing.
Plumbing stack vents do not leak.
There are basically two types of plumbing flashings. One is a neoprene collar which over time drys out and cracks exposing the pvc vent pipe to rain water. The other which is the best is a lead boot covering the pvc vent stack. In Florida we have squirrels that chew the lead boots exposing the pvc vent pipe to rain water. A periodic inspection once a year to determine if either are leaking is necessary. Inside bathrooms or kitchens where water drain pipes enter the wall water stains can be found on drywall or base boards by the floor if there is a plumbing vent pipe leaking.
My shingles are warranted so I do not need to worry about algae.
Yes, and no. Yes, there is a warranty but it is conditional and prorated. Meaning shingles are to be clean of debris such as leaves which can cause water moisture to stay on roof causing algae. Shingles are to be periodically cleaned, inspected and any installation issues fixed. Prorated means the manufacture will determine the years of use and apply any rebates accordingly. Now days the manufactures offer limit lifetime warranties with the emphases on the word limited, they will prorate. Lesson learned, be diligent in the maintenance of your roof.
Uncleaned gutters can do no harm to my roof.
Gutters though designed to divert water away from the house structure and its foundation can cause serious roof issues if left unattended. When gutters are left uncleaned of leaves, sediment and whatever object laying in the gutter from the children water can and does back up under the roof dripedge. Once behind the drip and fascia damaged wood and soffits results. Stains in the soffit overhang are signs of water getting behind drip and fascia possibly from backup gutters.
I have adequate insulation and don’t need roof vents.
On the contrary though roof vents allow for cooler attics thus cooler living space, there is much more to attic ventilation. Adequate roof ventilation eliminates air moisture buildup in the attic which over time causes structural and wood decking issues. In addition can also be a source for mold. Most homes are under ventilated with one or two vents. Remedy is installing or adding more individual vents, ridge-vents, gable louvered vents or solar powered vents.
Submitted by Michael Smith