Residential roof repair involves addressing any issues that may threaten the integrity of a home’s structure. This includes examining the roof for leaks or water stains, sagging or uneven rooflines, and structural damage such as rotting boards or exposed nails.
Inspecting the attic, crawl spaces, rafters, and decking is also a good idea. If you find any of these areas are damaged, it’s time to reroof. You’ll be glad you read this!
Many homeowners need roof repairs because of wind damage to shingles. This type of damage occurs in several forms: creasing, where the shingle tab is bent up and down to the point that it creates a crease along the edge of the shingle above; lifting, where the shingle is lifted up from its nail slots without any physical mat damage; and tearing, where the shingle is actually torn from the roof.
To repair a damaged shingle, first, loosen the adhesive under it by sliding a pry bar (a large hay fork or rake-sized scraper also works) underneath and separating the layers of shingles. Next, push the pry bar under the shingle above and pull up on it to expose the second row of nails. Remove the nails with the claw end of your hammer.
Next, slip the replacement three-tab shingle into place. Before nailing, apply a small dab of roofing cement under it. If you have leftover shingles from the last time your roof was repaired, use those. Otherwise, buy a bundle at a home center or lumberyard.
Dormers are a great addition to any house and add character and architectural detail. They also bring light and ventilation into dark attic areas and can provide extra room, making it possible to tuck in a top-floor bedroom or bathroom. They can be a focal point of the home’s exterior and increase curb appeal and value.
In many cases, dormers that leak are due to improper flashing. Inexperienced general contractors often use straight flashing because it is easy to install and can look good to homeowners who don’t know better. The best time to install dormers is during new construction, but they can be incorporated into older homes with proper planning.
Using a ladder and a flashlight, check the discolored areas of the roof around the dormer to locate any spots where water is entering the attic. Lift up shingles near the dormer to see if any flashing is missing or cut short. If this is the case, the dormer must be re-flashed.
Homeowner’s insurance covers damage to the dwelling portion of your house, which includes the roof. However, it’s important to note that homeowner’s policies typically exclude damages that are caused by a lack of maintenance or old age (including roof repair).
If you live in an area that experiences frequent hurricanes and tornadoes, it may be wise to consider adding a separate wind and hail deductible to your policy, which can help reduce your annual premium. If you decide to do this, make sure to document any storm damage to your home and roof.
Some homeowners’ insurance companies also offer a Building Code or Ordinance Endorsement, which pays to rebuild your home to comply with new or updated local ordinances and codes that were not in effect when your home was built. This type of coverage isn’t available in all states, however. Next article.
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