You’re a homeowner and determined your home’s roof needs fixing or needs to be improved with a replacement roof. You’re all set to get moving. What’s the optimal way to get a high quality roofer who will accomplish a good job? What could you look for in a roof contractor or contractor to obtain this work? Mead
When homeowners choose to repair a roof or replace that roof with asphalt during the cold winter months, they’re often plagued by worries that their family will freeze before the job is completed. In the same vein, those starting a roofing job in the sweltering summer months worry that they’ll be facing heat stroke. These concerns are perfectly normal and common among many homeowners looking for roofing fixes or roof replacement contractors.
MeadIt's time for a new roof on your house and you would like to have an idea how many shingles will be needed for your roof replacement. Skilled roofing contractors know how to do this. But perhaps you would like to know yourself. Measuring a roof is not always an easy task. There are a few basic things you will need to know for an accurate measurement.Roofing Contractors have their own LingoThe first thing you need to know is that shingles are purchased in what roofing contractors call "squares". A square is an area that is 10x10 feet or 100 square feet. Normally for basic three tab shingles one square would require three bundles of shingles. Today's architectural shingles are heavier and thicker. If you are using these it will take four or five bundles to make a square.First thing to do is to draw what your roof looks like by looking straight down at it from above. Even if you don't get the exact look a basic drawing will do the trick. The measurements you get will add up to give you the number of squares needed. Although some are, most roofs are not just two straight sides. Many times there are dormers, valleys, and hip sections. That's where it gets a little complicated. Seasoned roofing contractors are used to these and should have no problem in delivering the correct amount of shingles to your home.How to Measure for your Roof ReplacementLet's take a look first at an easy to measure straight roofing section. Go to the ridge of the roof and measure all the way across. Then measure the length from the ridge to the bottom of the roof. Let's say the ridge length was 60 and the rafter length is 16. Multiply 60x16 and you will get 3,600. That's 960 square feet or 9.6 squares.If you have a hip roof you will measure the top ridge length, the bottom length, and the rafter length. Add together the ridge length and the bottom length and divide by two. Then multiply that number by the rafter length. For example: the ridge length is 20 and the bottom is 35. 20+35=55. 55 divided by 2 is 27.5. If the rafter length is 14 you will multiply 27.5 times 14. That equals 385 square feet. Remember we need squares so it is 3.85 squares.The end of the hip roof or the triangle shape is an easy one. Measure the length from the top to the bottom and then the bottom edge. Multiply the length by the height and divide by two. Divide that number by 100 to get the amount of squares.Adding Extra Shingles for Waste, Ridge Cap, Starters, and ValleysOnce you have all the different dimensions you will add those all up together. You then need to account for the extras. You will need to have extra shingles for waste, ridge cap, and starter shingles. One a straight two sided roof you should add 10 percent. For a hip roof add 15 percent. You may have an even more cut up roof than that with dormers and valleys. These basic instructions will get you through that. Remember though, the more cut up your roof is the more you will need to add for waste.Residential Roofing Contractors - Keeping them HonestRoofing contractors regularly measure roofs and know how to accurately figure the size of your roof. Now when your residential roofing contractor comes to give you an estimate you will have a good idea how many shingles you will need...and if the contractor is giving you a precise bid.
How to Protect Yourself When Choosing a Roofing ContractorIf you need a roof estimate, one of the first places some people look is in the phone book. But if you want a GOOD roofer, that's not the best place to find him.Sure, he probably has a small listing there if he's been in business for longer than a year or so. That's just part of being professional, so prospects and customers can find you. But unlike the companies that depend on big, expensive ads to make the phone ring, he gets most of his business from referrals.His name is on the hearts and minds of his happy clients and raving fans. His business card is in their wallets and purses or hung on their refrigerator. He has earned their trust and they wouldn't call anybody else.So where can YOU find this guy for your roof estimate? Actually, it isn't all that difficult. If you don't know him, you probably know somebody who does. Heck, they say everybody on earth is connected by just six degrees of separation. Joe Girard (The World's Greatest Car Salesman) figures the average person knows about 250 people. If each of them know 250, that is a pool of 62,500 people right there. Everybody but the homeless have a roof overhead and they were all installed by somebody. Here are five places to look for a good roofer for your project.1. Ask your friends, family and coworkers if they can recommend someone for a roof estimate. This is one of your very best sources because these are the people you know and trust. They will probably give you the WHOLE truth about roofing contractors they know. Even if they can't recommend someone, they might tell you who to avoid!2. Ask your neighbors. Find out who they used and if they would use them again. Some homeowner associations even keep a list of reliable contractors.Pay attention to roofing work going on in your neighborhood. Look for yard signs and company names on the vehicles. What's the condition of their trucks? If they don't care about their own equipment, how much do you think they will care about your roof? What about the roofing crews? Do they go about their work in a quiet professional manner... or does the jobsite resemble a wild roof party, complete with beer and music blasting from a boom box? Do they keep the jobsite clean... or are shingle wrappers and debris blowing all over the neighborhood? If you get the chance, talk to the homeowner after a hard rain. Is he a happy camper?3. Call the roofing suppliers in your area or drop by for some product literature. Talk to the manager, tell him you need a roof estimate and ask for the names of a few good roofers. The suppliers deal with all the roofing contractors in town on a daily basis. They are plugged into the grave vine and have a pretty good idea who has a good reputation and who doesn't.4. Call the building inspector for your municipality and speak to a roofing inspector. Ask about the permit and inspection requirements for your project. While you have him on the phone, tell him you need a roof estimate and ask for a few names of good roofers in your area. It's his job to check roofing work, so he should know better than anyone who does it right and who doesn't. He probably can't make an official endorsement, but he might give you a few names to check out. 5. Finally, check out your prospective roofers online. The internet has made advertising cheap and easy, but it has also made it more difficult for the bad guys to hide. Google the names of the roofing companies you are considering and see what comes up.It's also a good idea to check the names of the owners of these companies. A common practice when roofing companies get in trouble is to shut down and then open back up under another name.See what Angies List (www.angieslist.com) and the Better Business Bureau (www.bbb.org) have on them. Check their status with the local and state licensing boards.By now you should have several companies to choose from for your roof estimate. Select the three with the strongest reputation and give them a call. Be sure to tell them where you got their name. Us roofers who depend on "word of mouth" advertising know how important referrals are and we will try especially hard not to disappoint you!