Our Current Blog Articles
June 15, 2017
What to Expect When Inspecting a Roof
Your experts at GreenPoint Roofing in Longmont are here to explain what to expect when inspecting a roof. The National Roofing Contractors Association recommends that homeowners inspect their own roof at least twice per year, ideally sometime during spring and fall. This will allow you to check for any noticeable damage caused during the harsher seasons of winter and summer. Roofs can suffer from ice dams created by frozen rain in winter and thermal cracking of shingles during the heat of summer.
The more frequently you inspect your roof, the easier it will be to notice small changes. Spotting some flashing that has slipped out of place, cracked shingles or an increase in dark spots can make the difference between a quick repair and the possibility of permanent damage to your home, and not just your roof. If you are in doubt, it is always best to call a certified roofing professional. They will be able to evaluate the state of your roof and identify any problem areas that need attention.
An Overview of the Roof Inspection
A professional roofing inspection will start on the interior of your home. They will usually request access to the attic to check for mold or signs of moisture reaching the interior. Ventilation will be assessed, and your insulation will be examined. Proper insulation with the appropriate R-value can help keep your home at a comfortable temperature throughout the year and reduce your energy bills.
The inspection will continue outside where your roofing professional will check the lines of your roof for any sagging or bowing due to structural damage. They will examine the condition of your roofing tiles or shingles and take note of any cracking, blistering, mold growth, or loss of asphalt.
The flashing around chimneys, eaves, dormers and side walls will be checked. If you live in a cold climate, they will check for evidence of ice dams. Finally, they will review the entire roof for leaks, or broken seals where moisture can penetrate.
After the inspection, you should receive a report detailing any damage encountered, and a checklist of all the areas examined. This is important to have for your records, especially if your warranty or insurance requires evidence of regular maintenance check. If damage has been identified, your roofing professional will offer a suggested course of action.
They may also provide a quote for the recommended repairs.
Having your roof inspected by a professional will give you peace of mind. GreenPoint Roofing has been providing quality roofing services to homeowners and commercial clients in Longmont, Colorado and the surrounding areas for more than 20 years. In addition to new installations and roof repair work, we can also offer complete roof inspections at a reasonable cost.
Our extensive experience means that we already know what to expect when inspecting a roof and how to ensure our customers are not hit with unexpected costs from roofing issues that have been left to worsen over time. For more information or to get a quick quote, please feel free to get in touch.
May 18, 2017
14 Symptoms of a Roof that Needs to Be Replaced
If you want to avoid a nasty surprise, check for these 14 symptoms of a roof that needs to be replaced. GreenPoint Roofing has over 20 years of experience in the roofing industry here in Colorado. Our team has put together this list of sure signs that your roof needs some attention. Tackling an issue with your roof is easier and more affordable if you do it early. The following roof symptoms are easy-to-spot visual signs that any homeowner can check for themselves.
- Splitting or Cracked Shingles
Shingles exposed to weathering or dramatic temperature changes can suffer from 'thermal splitting.' Over time the surface of the shingle shrinks, but if the side exposed to weathering shrinks at a different rate to the inner side of the shingle, you may see lines on the shingles were the asphalt coating has cracked. This splitting or cracking can happen in any direction or a vein pattern.
- Sagging or Bowing Roof
A visibly sagging roofline indicates a severe structural problem with your roof. Sometimes a bowing roof is not visible from outside, but you may notice cracks in your ceiling drywall. This can indicate that the rafters or roof sheathing are not fully supporting the weight of the roof.
- Creasing Shingles
Creasing shingles happen when there are gaps that allow winds to get under the shingles and bend them upwards, creating protruding creases along the shingle. If the shingles are improperly installed, or if the underside has protruding nails, it's possible that the sealant will not fully adhere the shingles, leaving them vulnerable to gaps and creasing.
- Separating and Broken Seals
You may notice shingles that have lifted and are separated from their adhesive strips or seals. High winds or loose nails can allow shingles to break away from the sealant between each layer. This compromises the structure’s waterproofing abilities and the roof should be repaired without delay.
- Cupping Shingles
Cupping shingles are usually caused by exposure and weathering over time, or by ice dams. The surface of the shingle warps, leaving a concave center with raised edges forming a cup shape. Cupping shingles make your entire roof look shabby, and they can be fragile and prone to breakage.
- Ceiling Water Spots
Water stains on your ceiling are a clear sign that your roof is failing at protecting the interior of your home from the elements. Leaks in your roof can quickly lead to mold and rotting interiors. Check your attic or crawlspace for the source of the leak and use a container to collect any dripping water while you wait for a roofing professional to fix the problem.
- Buckling Shingles
Buckling shingles do not lay flat on your roof as designed. They warp or buckle outwards, usually as a result of the roofing underlayment wrinkling or moving around. They can also buckle due to poor ventilation and trapped moisture. When shingles do not lay flat, they allow more moisture and winds to enter the spaces, worsening the problem and damaging the underside of the roof.
- Damaged Flashing
Flashing is the watertight layer of metal protecting the base of chimneys or other protruding objects where they meet the roof's shingles. If you notice broken, uneven, curling or shifted flashing, your roof will be vulnerable to water entry and damage over time.
- Rotting Shingles
Rotten shingles are a sign of advanced damage to your roof. If your shingles are breaking apart, flexible and moist to the touch or easily disintegrate when manipulated, act quickly to get your roof replaced. This often occurs in organic-based shingles which are no longer on the market.
- Missing Granules
Roofing shingles are covered in granules to help protect the asphalt coating from the damage associated with UV rays and to make them fire resistant. If you notice that your shingles are balding or missing granules from their surface, you can expect rapid deterioration. When inspecting the roof, check in the gutters for an accumulation of shingle granules.
- Blistering Shingles
Shingles can blister when there isn't sufficient ventilation or insulation. Trapped moisture in the shingle expands the outer asphalt and leaves behind a pockmarked area. Blistering shingles typically happens within a year of the roof's installation and can lead to significant loss of asphalt if not addressed.
- Algae, Moss, and Lichen
Dark streaks of algae, green moss, or white spots of lichen are living organisms that can thrive on damp roofs. Shaded roofs in humid climates are more susceptible to damage from living organisms. While they do not usually cause more than superficial damage, they can ruin the appearance of a roof and should be cleaned or removed by a professional to prevent further damage.
- Missing Shingles
Heavy storms can sometimes leave your roof with a few missing shingles. Try to get them replaced as soon as possible to prevent water from reaching the underside of the roof and causing permanent damage. If your roof has a lot of missing shingles, it may be time for a complete roof replacement.
- Curling, Brittle Shingles
Curling shingles are typically found in older or worn roofs. They are a sign that the roof is approaching the end of its lifetime. When you see shingles curling upwards and away from the surface of the roof, they are no longer providing the necessary protection. Leaks and water damage beneath the shingles can quickly follow.
If you notice any of these 14 symptoms of a roof that needs to be replaced, do not ignore them. While they may seem like minor or cosmetic issues, they are often a clear sign that your roof is no longer serving its purpose. When your roof cannot adequately protect your home, you are putting at risk the very structure of the house, along with your possessions and the people living inside.
GreenPoint Roofing offers professional inspections to analyze roofing damage. If deemed necessary, we can repair or entirely replace your roof. We offer a lifetime workmanship guarantee on all shingled roof replacements. In addition to our roofing contractor services, we can also assist you in making a claim on your home insurance for damages covered by your policy. For more information, or to schedule an inspection, please feel free to get in touch with our experts.
April 18, 2017
The Long-Term Cost Savings of a Hail-Resistant Roof
Have you ever thought about the long-term cost savings of a hail-resistant roof? At GreenPoint Roofing, one of the common types of roof damage we encounter is damage caused by hail. For homeowners across Colorado, hail is an inevitable reality. Known as 'hail alley,' the Front Range of Colorado and the Eastern Plains of Wyoming experience the highest frequency of big hailstones in all of North America. If you live in this high-risk zone, it is well worth investing in some extra protection for your roof.
Adding Up the Cost of Hail Damage
Hailstones cause an astronomical level of damage to cars, homes, and property each year. It is estimated that over the last decade, hailstorms have cost over 1.7 billion dollars in damages. Depending on the policy of your home or car insurance, you may end up paying to fix these damages out of pocket. The worst time of year for hail damage in Colorado is between mid-May and late July. If you act right away, you may be able to make some adjustments in time to protect your home from expensive hail damage.
Hailstorms may be inevitable, but hail damage to your roof is not. With the right materials and design, you can give your roof the protection it needs. With our extensive experience in the roofing business, we have come to understand what makes a roof hail-resistant. The most important thing to avoid when trying to reinforce your roof against hail is re-roofing over existing shingles. For best results, remove the old shingles and replace them rather than just installing new shingles on top of the old ones.
Choosing the Correct Shingles
We are happy to share with you the most tried and tested methods of hail-proofing your roof. Firstly, you need to pay attention to the type of shingles used on your roof. Generally, shingles made with polymer-modified asphalt will be more resistant than those made from conventional oxidized asphalt. A more precise way to measure the hail-resistance of shingles is to use the 'Test Standard UL 2218'.
In 1996 Underwriters Laboratories designed a method to test roofing materials by dropping steel balls onto them and then classified them according to their hail resistance on a scale of 1 to 4. When shopping for shingles, you can compare the UL rating of different materials. A standard wooden shake will probably receive a Class-1 UL rating, due to its high susceptibility to damage from hailstones. Polymer-modified asphalt or concrete tiles are most likely to boast the highest rating of Class-4 UL due to their strength and resistance.
The Right Roof Design
Another factor that contributes significantly to hail-resistance is the pitch of your roof. Flatter roofs will suffer from a more forceful impact when hit by hailstones. Steeper roofs benefit from the inclined angle, as the hailstones are more likely to glance off the roof, saving it from having to absorb the full force of impact. A roof pitch over 6:12 will offer better resistance to hail damage.
Additionally, for maximum protection, you should opt for rigid roof decking. Tongue and groove style decking or well-supported plywood sheathing will give the shingles extra support. Using a thin, single layer underlayment is another way to fortify a shingle roof. Modern materials are thinner, stronger and allow for better air permeation than traditional asphalt-saturated roofing felts.
If you have the chance to install an entirely new roof or drastically remodel the structure of your home, you can incorporate the advice given on shingle type, roof pitch, decking and underlayment to create the optimum design for a hail-resistant roof. The reality for most homeowners, unfortunately, is that changing all the roof decking material and the pitch of a roof is costly, time-consuming, and unrealistic. For existing roofs, the easiest way to improve their hail resistance is to update the underlayment material and change your old roofing for high-quality shingles with a better UL rating.
Can I Really Save Money?
Some homeowners may ask if it is worth it. The cost of tearing off your existing roof and installing new underlayment and hi-tech shingles is substantial. If you plan to remain living in the house for the next 20 years and suffering through another 20 years of hailstorms then yes, it is in fact, worth it to invest in a hail-resistant roof. But how can you be certain of the long-term savings?
A standard asphalt shingle roof with a life expectancy of 20 years will cost approximately $1,800. For homeowners in 'hail alley,' a typical asphalt roof with no additional hail-resistance modifications can need replacing about every 7 years. Over the span of 20 years, the homeowner can end up paying a total of $5,400 out of pocket, or an average of $270 per year. Homeowners opting for Class-4 polymer modified asphalt shingles can expect to pay around $2,500 for their hail-resistant roof. Although this appears to cost much more, the hail-resistant roof has a life expectancy of 30 years and is much less likely to need replacement over this timespan.
A Worthwhile Investment
If you are willing to make the early investment in purchasing a hail-resistant roof, you will benefit from an overall lower cost in the long run. As if this wasn't encouragement enough, insurance companies are also eager for their customers to choose higher quality roofs if they are in areas with frequent hailstorms. Most insurance companies will reward their customers either with a cash incentive or an overall reduction in your yearly premium for choosing hail-resistant shingles. Immediate cash incentives can be as high as $500, and premium reduction as high as 25%.
Overall, the long-term cost savings of a hail-resistant roof are undeniable. When you combine, the money saved over the roof's lifetime, and the great discounts you will receive from your insurance company, it's a no-brainer! If you live in an area hit by hailstorms, such as the Front Range of Colorado, it really does make sense to make the switch to a hail-resistant roof. In addition to saving money, you will also save yourself the hassle of having to get your roof repaired or replaced so often. For more information on making the change to a hail-resistant roof before the upcoming summer hail season, contact GreenPoint Roofing.
March 14, 2017
6 Roofing Materials to Choose From
GreenPoint Roofing in Longmont provides quality roofing services and valuable information such as 6 roofing materials to choose from for your next residential or commercial project. When designing or renovating a home, one of the most important factors to consider is your roof. The material you use to make your roof can drastically affect its functionality, insulation properties, aesthetics, and longevity.
Asphalt shingles are the most popular material used to roof homes across the United States, and for a good reason. They are widely available, inexpensive, and easy to install. If you are looking for a fast and affordable option, asphalt shingles offer an excellent solution. Asphalt shingles are the most common on the market and are usually available in a few different colors. You can often find asphalt shingles on traditional suburban style homes, but they can work well with many different architectural styles.
Some disadvantages of asphalt shingles include their limited lifespan of around 20 years, variations in quality, and weak insulation properties. It is possible to have your shingles reinforced with fiberglass or cellulose without altering their appearance. For homes in freezing climates, it may be worth investing in additional insulation when using asphalt shingles. To avoid having to make these modifications and incur extra costs, you could consider choosing a different, harder-wearing roofing material.
Wood Shingles and Shake
Wood shingles, or their more rustic counterparts, hand-cut wood shakes, can certainly add character and charm to your home’s new roof in Longmont. Typically made from cedar, redwood, or pine, wood roofing materials have been used for centuries with great success. They tend to gradually weather to a grayer tone and last from 25 to 30 years
Wood shingles are not practical for all climates. In areas with hot, dry weather, fire codes may prohibit the use of wood roofing materials or require that they are treated with a fire-resistant coating. In wet climates, wood shingles can weather quickly and are more likely to mold, rot and split over time.
Slate roofs are beautiful, sustainable and built to last. Slate is a very hard-wearing, fire-resistant material that can be used successfully in all climates. You can choose from a number of different shades of green, red, gray, and purple slate to add a personalized appearance to your home
Due to the material's weight, a slate roof will usually require extra framing for support and professional roof installation. Slate is one of the most expensive options for roofing, costing around $600 per square. With a typical lifespan of 50 to 100 years, a slate roof may be worth the investment.
Clay or Concrete Tiles
Clay tiles can create a wonderfully textured appearance and work very well on Mission, Mediterranean, and Spanish style homes. Rounded terracotta tiles not only look great but they are also practical with their ability to quickly drain water. Clay tiles are long-lasting and can be found in different shapes including flat, scalloped, and ribbed. If you opt for concrete tiles, you can save some money and benefit from a higher energy efficiency rating.
Clay and concrete tiles are substantial enough to warrant additional framing and a professional installation, however, they are one of the most durable roofing materials. The classic look of terracotta tiles comes with a high price tag. After slate, clay tiles are the second most expensive roofing material.
Synthetic Roofing Products
Synthetic roofing products have been designed to mimic the appearance of traditional wood, slate, and tiled roofs. Usually, the actual materials are made from rubber, plastic or polymer blends. This means that synthetic roofing materials are much lighter than traditional shingles and tiles. They are sturdy, easy to maintain and can be installed without additional framing. Synthetic roofing is available in a wide range of styles, colors, and textures, allowing you to choose your favorite aesthetics without having to deal with the expense, maintenance, and fragility of traditional materials.
The major disadvantage of synthetic roofing materials is the lack of information we have on their longevity. These materials are so new that we have not had the chance to see how they endure long-term weathering, although many manufacturers offer a warranty of up to 50 years. Before buying, it is a good idea to view a synthetic roof that has been in place for at least 10 years in your area. This will give you an idea of the rate of wear to be expected.
Metal roofing materials are available in stainless steel, copper, aluminum and zinc. This lightweight material can be installed in panels or shingles and is a good option for those living in extreme environments. Metal roofing is useful when designing an efficient home as the material offers a high solar reflectance and can be suitable for use in harvesting rainwater. Metal roofing materials will last considerably longer than asphalt or wood.
Prices on metal roofing can vary widely, from $100 to $800 a square. Some homeowners do not find the appearance of metal roofing attractive and prefer to use traditional materials, especially on homes designed with specific architecture in mind. Depending on the type of metal used, these roofs can oxidize and change color over time.
A Few Important Factors to Consider
Now that you have an idea of the pros and cons of each different material, you should be better equipped to select the right type of roof for your home or commercial roofing project. Before you order your roof, it’s also important to talk over the following factors with your GreenPoint Roofing expert:
- Climate Suitability - Will this kind of home roofing material protect you from specific local weather conditions such as high temperatures, heavy rainfall, snow, hail, and the wind?
- Cost - Calculate the square footage of your roof and the total cost before saying yes to a new roof. Does it fit your budget? Will the cost pay itself back over time?
- Weight - Does this roofing material require additional framing for support and a professional installation?
- Fire Safety - If your area has restrictions on roofing materials, does it meet the fire code specifications?
- Aesthetics - Does the appearance of the material fit with the style of your home and is it available in the color or design you are looking for?
For more information on these 6 roofing materials to choose from, or to schedule a free inspection and quote, simply contact GreenPoint Roofing in Longmont. We have over 20 years of experience in providing quality roof installation and repair services. You can rely on our team to offer a wide variety of options in roofing materials and designs, customized to your individual needs.
September 14, 2016
How do I know if my roof needs replacement
A leaking roof is the most obvious sign that you need a complete replacement of your home roof. The majority of homeowners are not aware of the other simple signs that can indicate a damaged roof. So how do I know if my roof needs replacement?
Getting to know these signs yourself means that you can be aware of the condition of your roof and make an informed decision when it comes time to repair or replace it. If you ignore the maintenance needs of your roof until a serious leak occurs, you will risk causing extensive damage to your home and property. The best approach is to be vigilant and be sure to replace your roof before it presents a real danger.
As a general rule, typical home roofs will last between 20 and 25 years before they require replacement. When buying a house, it is wise to request information on the age of the roof as well as the age of the entire building. Once you know the approximate age of your roof, you can estimate how many more years it should last. Factors such as the climate you live in and the general upkeep you give your home can add or subtract years from this general figure.
Regular visual inspections from the inside and outside can give homeowners a good idea of the condition of their roof. From the inside of your attic, you can check for areas of sagging roof deck or water damage. Examine the inside of the roof for mold growth, dark spots, or trails. This discoloration could be evidence of water damage, especially if it occurs near the seams and joints of the roof. You can also test your insulation for moisture. Check during the day to see if sunlight enters through unsealed gaps in your roof. If sunlight can enter, that means rain, snow and cold air can also make its way into your home.
From the outside, you should be regularly checking your gutters for loose asphalt granules. Older shingles can start to lose their structural integrity, and one of the first signs of this is loose granules. Without walking on the roof or putting yourself in a dangerous position, visually inspect the shingles of your roof. If you notice more than a couple are missing, or that they are starting to curl upwards at the edges, this could indicate they are nearing the end of their functional lifespan.
Other key issues to look out for include broken or damaged metal flashing, extensive mold coverage, drainage problems and a high percentage of cracked shingles.
If you notice any of the warning mentioned above signs, you should get in touch with a qualified and licensed roofing contractor. Some specialists such as GreenPoint Roofing will even carry out an inspection free of charge. If your roof does need a complete replacement, it is best to get this done during the warmer months of the year. Temperatures below freezing make shingles brittle, difficult to work with and the roof will not seal as effectively. Avoid a hasty and difficult roof replacement by regularly examining your roof and knowing well in advance if it needs replacement.