(386) 263-7906 floridasbestroofing@gmail.com
roofing
Roofing Blog

What to Do After a Storm

Just a few days ago, Hurricane Ian passed across Florida causing great harm, loss of life, and tremendous destruction. We hope that all of you and your families are safe. We also would like to help you in the rebuilding efforts that must follow. Thus, this is a good time to discuss what actions to take immediately following a hurricane or tropical storm to begin returning your life and your property to normal. Hurricanes like Ian cause immense property damage mainly through flooding and winds. Here are some actions to take that will begin to repair the damage.

 

Evaluation

Once you are safe and the storm has passed, first, it is important to identify and document any damage that your property may have suffered. A simple inspection of the property is all that is required, first on the interior and then the exterior. During this be careful of any debris that may have fallen during the storm, branches that may be on the tipping point of collapse, and of course downed power lines. Do not approach power lines, even if you think they do not carry a live current. For power lines and the restoration of power, call your local electrical company. Yard debris can be removed by hand in most cases, however, be careful of downed trees–these may require professional removal for the sake of safety. Before calling any tree removal company or any contractor, make sure to make notes and take photos of any damage that has occurred. Look especially at siding damage, roof damage (missing shingles or shingles on the ground), gutter damage, and damages to pool enclosures or any exterior structures like sheds. If you do find damage, take your own photos of it first. If you see debris on your roof, take photos of it before removing anything. This may pay off for you in the long run.

 

Insurance

Once you have assessed the damage you should look up your property insurance information. Even if you don’t find any damage, this is a good time to check and make sure that you have a current property insurance policy. You should also know what kind of coverage the policy provides, whom to call to make a claim, and what your deductible is. Beware that most property insurance policies have separate hurricane and non-hurricane deductibles. Any named storm, even if it did not bring hurricane force winds to your area, including all tropical storms, are covered under the hurricane deductible. Hurricane deductibles are typically higher than deductibles for all other perils. Make sure that you know the difference. Additionally, look into flood insurance. Most typical property insurance policies do not cover flood damage. A separate flood insurance policy is required for this. Check to see if you have flood insurance and consider, as a Floridian, purchasing a flood insurance policy if you do not have one already. 

If you have identified storm damage to your home, consider filing an insurance claim. If it is flood damage, you will need to file under your flood damage insurer. If it is wind damage, then it will be covered by your general property insurance policy. Remember, that your hurricane deductible will apply. To begin the process, you simply need to call the claims department of your insurer or go online. Most companies now have websites where you can file a claim. Remember, millions of people were affected by this storm, so waiting times, especially for phone calls, may be quite high at this time. Once you file a claim, an adjuster will come out to inspect and document the damage. If you need to do immediate repairs prior to the inspection, and in many cases the insurance company will expect you to, make sure to document the process from beginning to end with photos and receipts for any material purchased or labor hired. Provide copies of this documentation to your adjuster so that they can see the full scope of the damage.

 

Repairs

Once the damage is found, documented, and reported to the insurance carrier, it is time to make the repairs. Unless you are confident you can handle these yourself, it is time to call a contractor. When selecting a contractor there are some factors you will need to consider. First, always choose a reputable local contractor. Check their website, their reviews, and how long they have been in business. Make sure that they are licensed with the state of Florida and fully insured. Unfortunately, hurricane damage often attracts unscrupulous and sometimes even criminal elements who are either unqualified for the work or worse will take a deposit for work to be done and never show up again. Take care to avoid these. Finally, consider that wait times always increase in this period. Quality work takes time and quality contractors will be busy following a storm. It may also be helpful to get several opinions, as contractors most often provide free estimates.  

If you have any questions about roofs, we would be happy to help you out. Florida’s Best Roofing, Inc. is a fully licensed (CCC 1325974) and insured, local roofing contractor with decades of experience. If you are interested in roof replacement or repair and you are in the Palm Coast, Flagler, or Volusia area, please give us a call at 386-263-7906 for a free estimate!

Summer Fun
Roofing Blog

Summer Fun: Tales of Roofing Across Time Part V

As promised in the last post, here we will continue looking at various less well known roofing techniques used throughout the world and across history. In the last post we covered three of the most ancient types of roofs and how they were adapted from available technologies and suited to versatile environments: wattle and daub, thatch, and clay tile. Here, as previously mentioned, we will continue to discuss ancient roofing techniques, perhaps less well known and widely spread than the three discussed in the last post.

Because in the end there are always some fundamental engineering concepts that must be utilized for basic construction techniques, many ancient methods are similar to one another to the extent that they can be interpreted as variations of the same basic concepts. For instance, across the world, different techniques existed comparable to wattle and daub with slightly differing components that changed with what was locally available. Pug and pine, mud and stud, pierrotage, columbage, bajarreque, and jacal are all examples of this. Pug and pine were used in the early days of colonization of South Australia. Timbers of a local tree, termed pine, were spaced out at regular intervals and the gaps sealed with pug, a clay and grass mixture. Mud and stud was a construction method once popular in parts of England and consisted of ash studs spaced out and connected by cross beams at the top and bottom. The structure was then daubed with mud, straw, hair, and dung. 

Pierrotage and columbage were very similar construction techniques used in eighteenth century Louisiana and surrounding southern states. Pierrotage infilled half-timbering with diagonal braces with a mix of lime mortar clay and small stone aggregate. In the columbage technique, the mix is instead made of spanish moss or grass and clay. In the bajarreque technique, the dry and pulpy fibrous material left after crushing sugarcane or sorghum is used as the wattle and daubed with a mix of clay and straw. It was popular in geographic areas where those two plants are grown. Finally, jacal is a fairly basic construction technique, another variation on wattle and daub, used in the southwestern United States. Closely spaced sticks or poles are interwoven with small branches and covered in mud or adobe clay that is left to dry. 

Perhaps the most ancient style of construction, mudbrick has been used across the world, starting in the middle east, for over ten thousand years. In mudbrick construction bricks are made of loam, mud, sand, and water and dried in the sun or (for about the last six thousand years) fired in a kiln. Rice husks or straw are mixed in as binding material before firing or baking. Mudbricks were used for the entirety of a dwelling or other edifice, just as most of the wattle and daub style methods mentioned above. Mudbrick in areas of Spanish influence is called adobe and is often associated with areas once colonized by Spain in the Western hemisphere. Mudbrick or adobe is used to build exterior and interior walls as well as flat roofs. In many regions where this style of construction was utilized in the past (and sometimes in the present as well) flat roofs were very convenient for use as sleeping areas during the hot months of the year when interior air conditioning was not yet invented or not easily available as the interior would have been too hot.

Quincha is another variation on the above discussed methods. It is a traditional construction method in areas of South America and the name is a word borrowed from the language of the Inca. In quincha, wood, cane, or giant reed is used to construct a stable, earthquake proof framework structure which is then covered with mud and plaster. Quincha is very versatile in the shapes that it can be used to create, from modest dwellings to spiraled cathedrals. As you can see, ancient roofing techniques are fundamentally similar but vary very widely based on local material availability and environmental hazards and requirements.

If you have any questions about roofs, we would be happy to help you out. Florida’s Best Roofing, Inc. is a fully licensed (CCC 1325974) and insured, local roofing contractor with decades of experience. If you are interested in roof replacement or repair and you are in the Palm Coast, Flagler, or Volusia area, please give us a call at 386-263-7906 for a free estimate!

Roofing Blog

Summer Fun: Tales of Roofing Across Time Part IV

To round out our summer series on roofing tales from antiquity, in this post we will discuss how roofing developed across time from the examples we looked at in the last three posts to the modern roofs that are common today and which you might see on your own house and the houses of your neighbors. 

Roofing styles throughout history varied widely based mainly on three factors: the available technologies, available supplies, and environmental requirements. Nowadays, as we have discussed in many previous posts, roofing technologies have become quite advanced, allowing a fairly inexpensive and light asphalt shingle roof to do a job equal to that of a tile or even slate roof. Additionally, in our modern global economy, barring occasional disruptions, it is possible for roofing manufacturers, and in turn roofing companies, to purchase materials from all across the world at relatively reasonable prices, that is, prices that do not make the materials cost-prohibitive. Environmental considerations continue to carry heavy weight, and thus result, for example, in varying building codes across the US, but their impact in our time is often mitigated by technological advancement.

In the past, for much of human history, people across the world were missing those technological and engineering advances as well as the global supply chain which would allow them to overlook or overcome local environmental factors as well as local supply availabilities in favor of something better–that is something longer lasting which allows a greater degree of protection (in roofing terms) against flooding, animal intrusions, and storm damage. 

One of the most ancient roofing techniques (also used for walls), evidence of which can be found across the world for thousands of years, is wattle and daub. In this building technique a woven lattice of wooden strips, which is called a wattle, is daubed with a sticky moist mixture of clay, soil, and other locally available materials (such as sand, straw, and even animal dung). The daub is then allowed to dry. This creates an easy to make waterproofed construction which holds together well and can be easily repaired with the addition of more daub (a common method of upkeep for these sorts of structures). Wattle and daub gained its popularity from its versatility. Almost any place in the world has some kind of wood that can be used for wattle and a soil and clay mix with various aggregates that can be used to daub the wattle. While this technology is over six thousand years old, it is still used today in many parts of the world. 

A related ancient roofing method is thatching. A thatch roof is similar to wattle and daub in that it is created from strips of vegetation, usually whatever is locally available, but in this case the vegetation is not daubed. Instead, strips of vegetation (such as straw, rush, heather, or palm fronds) are laid very closely together in many layers to create a water-tight surface which also traps air and provides great insulation. Again, this method is prized for its versatility and used particularly in tropical and temperate climates. Although it is usually associated with relatively cheap construction in developing countries, it can also be found on historic buildings in places such as Ireland or on (very expensive) modern homes with owners who desire a rustic look. While the materials for thatch roofing are widely available, the technique of how to lay them together is no longer widely taught and requires the rare expert who has been trained in the art.

Ceramic or tile roofing is another technique from antiquity which survives in many places and in many different ways to the modern day. Ceramic roofing is more localized in antiquity to areas where the earth produces certain kinds of clay that are suitable for making tiles. These clay tiles also have to be fired (or baked) at certain temperatures for certain amounts of time to get them to the prime state of hardness and durability without overbaking. This is a learned technology that developed thousands of years ago in China and the Middle East from where it spread around the world. Tile roofing, as we have discussed before, is prized for its durability. In the Mediterranean, for instance, it is common to find examples of tile roofs that were built hundreds of years ago and survive and function in the modern day with minimal upkeep. In modern construction, tile roofing is relatively expensive but prized for its long life expectancy and pleasing aesthetics. Modern construction has tempered the expense of tile as now tile roofs are frequently made of concrete tile, not ceramic. Concrete tile is less prone to shattering, which makes it easier to work with, and also it is easier and cheaper to manufacture. 

There are plenty of other ancient roofing techniques which have not been covered in this post. If you want to know more, look out for our next post!

If you have any questions about roofs, we would be happy to help you out. Florida’s Best Roofing, Inc. is a fully licensed (CCC 1325974) and insured, local roofing contractor with decades of experience. If you are interested in roof replacement or repair and you are in the Palm Coast, Flagler, or Volusia area, please give us a call at 386-263-7906 for a free estimate!

Tile Roofing: Ancient and Modern
Roofing Blog

Tile Roofing: Ancient and Modern

Tile roofs are commonplace in Florida; they are aesthetically pleasing, durable, and an excellent choice for our hot and humid climate. But, did you know that tile roofs have been around for thousands of years? While roofing technologies are always improving and there are a few differences between ancient roofs and modern ones, the basic concept and the end result still remains the same. In this post we will be looking at the differences and similarities between modern and ancient tile roofs.

 

Modern Tile

Tile roofs are particularly evocative of Mediterranean climates, calling up images of Spain and Italy. In fact, most roofs in these countries, unlike in the US (where asphalt shingles are more popular), are still done in tile. But, just like in the US, modern tile in the Mediterranean has gone through some upgrades.

Modern tile is most commonly made out of one of two materials: either ceramic or concrete. Ceramic tile is shaped out of clay and then fired to harden it and give it durability. Concrete tile is poured into molds and then allowed to harden, achieving much the same effect. While both concrete and ceramic tile serve much the same functions and have the same longevity on a roof, concrete tile is significantly less costly because the process of making it is easier and the base materials required are much cheaper. Concrete can also be colored very easily by slipping a powdered coloring mixture into the concrete mix. Ceramic is much more difficult to alter in color and takes on the color of the clay that is used. In the US especially, modern tile roofs are mainly concrete tile.

 

Tile shapes

Modern tile generally comes in a couple of different shapes from which the homeowner can choose. Flat profiles are created from flat rectangular tiles which join together in specially crafted joints and overlap vertically. Another popular profile is the “S” shape, in which case the “S” tiles overlap when the convex part of another joins with the concave half of the tile next to it. Similar to the “S” profile, some tiles have a “W” profile which overlaps in the same way and results in a roof with softer curves. The most expensive type of tile roof is a barrel tile roof. For this type of roof semicircular tiles are laid out underside up and another course of semicircular tile is laid over the top where the first course’s tiles rest next to each other. This creates a waterproof layer. In any style of tile roof, semicircular tiles are used on the hips and ridges of the roofs as cover tiles.

 

Ancient Tile

Our example of tile roofing in antiquity comes from the ancient Romans, who perfected the tile roofing process, industrialized it, and made tile roofs ubiquitous across the Mediterranean territories that they conquered. The tile roofs of the Romans differed from modern tile slightly in both shape and composition, but overall were much like the tile roofs we see today in Florida. 

Ancient Roman building materials were generally made of stone or ceramic. Roof tiles were made of ceramic building material (CBM). Although the Romans did know how to make concrete, they generally used it in the form of hydraulic cement to line and waterproof floors, cisterns, and other such surfaces. Concrete was also used by the Romans in vaulted roofing, like barrel vaults and rotundas, as can be seen in the Pantheon in Rome. More frequently roofs were made out of ceramic tile.

Ancient Roman ceramic tile came in two shapes which were combined in an interlocking manner and joined with mortar to create a waterproof and weatherproof roof. These two shapes were pan tiles (tegula) and cover tiles (imbrex). Pan tiles were large, flat rectangles with a vertical strip (flange) along both of the longer sides of the rectangle. The tiles were placed next to each other in such a way that two flanges lay next to each other on each side. The cover tiles, shaped exactly like modern barrel (cover) tile, were then placed over the flanges in such a way that they covered both and prevented water from seeping between the two pan tiles. The tiles were also arranged in such a way that vertically the higher tile always overlapped the lower, just as they are today.

If you have any questions about tile roofs, we would be happy to help you out. Florida’s Best Roofing, Inc. is a fully licensed (CCC 1325974) and insured, local roofing contractor with decades of experience. If you are interested in roof replacement or repair and you are in the Palm Coast, Flagler, or Volusia area, please give us a call at 386-263-7906 for a free estimate!

Storm Damage: Repair or Replacement
Roofing Blog

Storm Damage: Repair or Replacement

When you notice storm damage to your roof, you are presented with a choice between hiring a contractor to perform a small repair on the roof or replacing the roof altogether. Storm damage can be incredibly stressful and is certainly something that happens very frequently in Florida. For this reason, almost every homeowner in Florida will eventually be confronted with this choice. Here we set out to provide you with relevant information surrounding this decision so that you can make the best choice for your home and for your roof.

Storm damage often appears as something fairly small. The most frequent form that it takes are missing or creased shingles on a roof. Other forms may include spots on shingles lacking granules (indicating hail damage), chipped or broken tile, or bent or dented metals. While it is true that strong storms, particularly tropical storms and hurricanes, may cause major damage to roofs through large pieces of flying debris (which could put a hole in the roof), most storm damage presents as something minor. 

So, if you see two or three missing or creased shingles on your roof, does this suggest repair or replacement? While the first instinct when confronted with such damage may be to get an estimate for a small repair (or even do it yourself with tools from the local hardware store), this may not always be the correct choice. 

Repairs due to storm damage do have some advantages. One is that they can frequently be done much quicker than roof replacement. Not only will a repair take only a couple of hours versus a couple of days for replacement, but it can also be scheduled much quicker. While most contractors schedule roof replacements two or three months out, roof repairs are typically scheduled within one or two weeks. The second advantage of repairs is probably the more impactful one: repairs are much, much cheaper than roof replacement. This does not, however, need necessarily be the factor that makes the decision for you.

How is that the case? Well, this all depends on the age of your roof. If your roof is about at the end of its life-expectancy (typically 15-20 years old for a shingle roof), then there are additional factors to consider besides time and cost. Firstly, it is nearly impossible to repair a roof of that age in such a way that it becomes as good as it was before the damage occurred. When shingles near their life expectancy they become brittle–that is very easily breakable or crackable. So, when a roof repairman goes to lift the shingles around the missing or damaged one in order to repair it, the surrounding shingles begin to tear as well. For this reason, most contractors do not give any warranties for repair work–it will simply never be as good or as durable as the original roof. Moreover, it is impossible to match older shingles (or tiles) in color because the materials’ color fades and warps with weather and wear. Consequently, a repaired roof will never be as aesthetically pleasing as the original, instead taking on a patch-work like appearance. 

The second factor to consider in favor of replacement is that storm damage is almost always covered by your home insurance policy. So, if you do notice storm damage, your first step should be to file an insurance claim, before any repairs take place since the damage needs to be documented. Now, an insurance company may elect to pay for a small repair, which often comes out under the policy’s deductible, but in the case that your roof is nearing its life expectancy and your roofing materials are not matchable in color, they are required to pay for full roof replacement even if the initial damage is minor. The reason for this is that Florida statute 626.9744 requires that insurance companies replace any damaged material with materials of matching color and quality. If such materials cannot be found, as in the case of a 15 year old roof, they are required by law to pay for full replacement of all adjoining materials. Thus, with the help of your insurance company, your roof replacement cost after a storm may amount to the same out of pocket cost as a small repair–the amount of your deductible.

If you have any questions about roof repair or replacement, we would be happy to help you out. Florida’s Best Roofing, Inc. is a fully licensed (CCC 1325974) and insured, local roofing contractor with decades of experience. If you are interested in roof replacement or repair and you are in the Palm Coast, Flagler, or Volusia area, please give us a call at 386-263-7906 for a free estimate!

Is Now a Good Time for Roof Replacement
Roofing Blog

Is Now a Good Time for Roof Replacement?

The question above is one that occurs at some point to every homeowner. Roof replacement is a big undertaking. It is a costly home improvement, it takes a lot of planning, and it is a major change and renovation for your home. It is also, however, essential for the upkeep and integrity of a property. An old, worn out, or leaky roof is a huge liability for many reasons. Firstly, it starkly lowers a home’s resale value, even in the robust real estate market of today’s economy. Whether or not you plan to sell your home, maintaining its value is always a wise investment. Secondly, aged or damaged roofs can strikingly raise home insurance premiums. In some cases, a bad roof can lead to insurance policy cancellations or even make a home close to uninsurable. Finally, damages to the roof, or even regular wear and tear over time, can easily lead to interior leaks or other further damages to the house. To avoid these liabilities, as well as the stress and cost that comes along with them, it is vital to the regular upkeep of a property to maintain a roof within its life expectancy and in good condition. 

This may leave you asking, when exactly should I start thinking about roof replacement? Is now a good time for it? Well, the simple answer is that if you are worried about your roof now or you think you should be worried, then yes, now is a good time. This does not mean that you need immediately to sign a contract. What it means is that there must be a reason you are considering roof replacement now. Maybe you know that your roof is reaching life expectancy (about fifteen years for most shingle roofs). Or maybe you have noticed your insurance premiums climbing, or, worse, you have gotten an insurance cancellation notice. Maybe your neighbors or friends are replacing their roofs, or at least talking about it. Maybe you are thinking about moving or putting your home up for sale and you want to make sure that it is in peak condition. If any of these circumstances apply, or if you have any other reasons not mentioned here, you should consider looking into roof replacement as soon as it begins to weigh on your mind, since there is likely to be a very good reason for that. 

Since the first step to roof replacement is simply getting a couple of estimates, it is an easy one to take. Any reputable roofing contractor would be happy to give you a free estimate within a couple of days of you requesting one, usually after a brief roof inspection (which you do not even need to be present for). After such an inspection, reputable contractors will also be happy to discuss your roof’s condition with you and explain whether or not your worries are reasonable or unfounded. Our representatives can tell you whether you have any outstanding problems on the roof, whether the roof has reached its life expectancy, and how long you can expect your current roof to last and function without replacement. Taking this simple measure can be an easy source of stress relief, as it will put your mind at ease if you do not need roof replacement and it will give you the comfort of having taken the first step if you do need it. 

With hurricane season coming up residents of central Florida may be reluctant to dive into roof replacement until the potential dangers have passed. This is not necessarily true though, as it is best to replace a faulty roof before a storm blows through. A new roof will stand up much better to tropical storm force winds than an old one, which will prevent leaks or other damages to the interior and personal property. Moreover, there is no season in central Florida that is completely without rain and windstorms. Even outside of hurricane season these tend to occur once or twice a month, albeit with less intensity. All this is to say that if your roof needs replacing now, waiting out the rainy season or the storm season is not a great reason to procrastinate. 

If you want to make sure that you and your roof are prepared for the future, just give us a call and we would be happy to help you out. Florida’s Best Roofing, Inc. is a fully licensed (CCC 1325974) and insured, local roofing contractor with decades of experience. If you are interested in roof replacement or repair and you are in the Palm Coast, Flagler, or Volusia area, please give us a call at 386-263-7906 for a free estimate! 

Spring is the Time to get your Roof Ready for Hurricane Season
Roofing Blog

Spring is the Time to get your Roof Ready for Hurricane Season

As spring is just around the corner, there is a lot to look forward to: warm weather, beach days, grilling and whatever else you may associate with spring and summer in Florida. One thing that we may not be looking forward to, but which is nonetheless just around the corner, is hurricane season. As the last couple of weeks have shown, even outside of hurricane season spring and summer in Florida are the seasons of frequent and often heavy storms that bring with them strong winds, rain, and even stronger wind gusts. All of this brings with it strain and pressure on your roof, which is why now is the perfect time to make sure that your roof is ready for hurricane season. 

 

Small Steps

Although storm preparedness is not a particularly fun topic, it bears thinking about now as small steps in the present can ensure that you save yourself headache and hassle in the future. There are two steps you want to take first which you can do yourself.

The first is to make sure that you have proper and up to date insurance coverage for your home or property. Hurricane season has the potential to be incredibly destructive, and although you may not need it, you want to make sure that you have proper coverage to get your home back to a pre-storm condition and avoid significant out of pocket costs. Make sure that you stay on top of any insurance renewal or cancellation notices and make on time payments to prevent lapse of coverage. Also, be sure to check out what your hurricane deductible amounts to. If that number is too high, which it often is as the hurricane deductible is separate from your other perils deductible, you may want to think about changing it or at least keeping in mind what sort of costs you could be facing.

The second is to take a quick look at your roof and ceilings. You can do this from the ground, so there is no need for climbing or ladders. Walk around your house paying particular attention to the ceilings to make sure there are no leaks. Even small water damage spots indicate that repairs need to be made to ensure roof integrity in the future. Outside, walk around the perimeter of your house, paying particular attention to the roof. Look for missing or torn shingles, uplifted areas, debris on the roof, and any trees with branches that may be brushing the roof or are near enough that they could pose a hazard if thrown by the wind. Trees growing near the roof should be trimmed as any rubbing during wind can cause damage to the roof surface and any heavy branches thrown by wind gusts can be a potential danger. 

 

Consult a Professional

If your cursory inspection reveals any problems, or even if it does not–especially if your roof is getting old–, you should next consult a professional. Contact a contractor to do an inspection and get a free estimate for any recommended repairs, big or small. Small maintenance jobs can be done quickly, easily, and are usually fairly cheap. They may involve things like tree trimming, cleaning gutters, removing accumulated small debris from the roof, or adding hurricane straps. If your roof needs a larger repair (for anything that can result in a leak) or full replacement (if it is past its life expectancy), this is also the best time to do it. Once we get closer to hurricane season and the beginning of summer, roofing companies will get busier as their schedules fill up. This is a great time to get ahead of the crowd and avoid having to wait months for a contractor’s schedule to open up, all the while stressing about being unprepared for a coming storm. 

If you want to make sure that you and your roof are prepared for the coming storm season, contact us for an inspection. Just give us a call and we would be happy to help you out. Florida’s Best Roofing, Inc. is a fully licensed (CCC 1325974) and insured, local roofing contractor with decades of experience. If you are interested in roof replacement or repair and you are in the Palm Coast, Flagler, or Volusia area, please give us a call at 386-263-7906 for a free estimate!

Warranties & Insurance
Roofing Blog

Warranties & Insurance

There are many factors to consider when looking into roof repair or replacement, but two of the most important are often overlooked. These are warranties and liability insurance. Before choosing a contractor make sure to check on their warranty policies and confirm that they are properly insured. Why, you might ask? Well here is a brief explanation of why these two factors should be among your top priorities when choosing a roofing company. At Florida’s Best Roofing, we want only what’s best for our clients. For this reason we are fully insured and we offer a 10 year labor warranty on all roof replacements and a 1 year warranty on all roof repairs.. Here are a couple of reasons why warranties are an important factor to consider when choosing a contractor.

 

Warranties protect the homeowner

Replacing or repairing a roof is an investment, oftentimes costly, in your home. Warranties protect that investment. They guarantee that the materials and workmanship are of a high quality. Manufacturers most often provide material warranties while contractors provide labor or workmanship warranties. In the case that the materials or labor are not up to par or have some sort of quality issue, the warranty guarantees that the manufacturer or contractor will make things right free of charge, provided that a proper warranty claim is filed within the allotted time period. 

 

Home Value

A new and freshly replaced roof will greatly improve your home’s value, whether you plan to sell or not. However, if the roof came without a warranty, this sends a red flag to potential buyers or investors, as it is an indication of potentially shoddy work. A roof with proper warranties will both protect and increase your home’s value. Warranties are also frequently transferable to new buyers. Manufacturers’ warranties can typically be transferred once, from one homeowner to another, but Florida’s Best Roofing’s labor warranty stays active for 10 years, no matter who owns the property.

 

Liability Insurance

You may be wondering why exactly you need to make sure that your contractor is adequately insured. Well, when you need your roof replaced, you want to make sure that you work with the best and most experienced contractor who will give you a finished product of the finest quality. Experienced contractors know how important insurance is in the business, because they want to make sure that everyone is protected, from their customers to their employees.

 

Accident Protection

Roofing is one of the most dangerous jobs out there, and it is consistently rated so by the Department of Labor. The old adage “if something can go wrong, it will” may not apply in every case, but as in any dangerous business, accidents are liable to happen. However, as the homeowner, you should not be liable for any accidents. Liability insurance exists to protect contractors and homeowners and cover any accidents or property damage that may occur on the jobsite. 

 

Protecting the Homeowner

Following this logic, you can see how contractors’ insurance is designed to protect their customers. If you take a chance on an uninsured contractor (or end up using one unknowingly) you can be held liable for any accidents or damage that occurs while work is taking place on your property. Because of the involvement of heavy machinery, heights, and dangerous tools like nail guns, this can include anything from hospitalizations to damaged automobiles or air conditioner units, all of which are quite expensive. 

Experienced and trustworthy roofing contractors are aware of all of these factors. For this reason, they would not dream of performing a job such as roof replacement without adequate insurance coverage. Insurance is a sign of a contractor’s integrity, professionalism, and a guarantee of their work’s quality, alongside their warranties. Do not get caught up in the headache of extra costs and liability claims. Make sure to choose a contractor with up to date insurance and a reasonable warranty policy with a local office, who can be reached easily in the case of potential problems or issues while work is taking place and in the future.

Florida’s Best Roofing, Inc. is a fully licensed (CCC 1325974) and insured, local roofing contractor with over a decade of experience. If you are interested in roof replacement or repair and you are in the Palm Coast, Flagler, or Volusia area, please give us a call at 386-263-7906 for a free estimate!

Florida's Best Roofing
Roofing Blog

Roofing Fun Facts

This week we have decided to go in another direction and post a light-hearted and hopefully entertaining article with some fun and miscellaneous facts about roofs, the roofing business, and the roofing industry. Although roofing is a serious business which ensures the safety and structural integrity of your home, it can be interesting too. Hopefully this post will peak your interest in our chosen profession.

  1. Roofing has a long history! As you might imagine, from the earliest times of human civilization, people have needed roofs over their heads. Roofs are a key component of shelter, one of the most basic necessities for human survival. While thatch and other natural elements like leaves were used as the first roofing materials, stone and clay were utilized much earlier than you might imagine. There is archaeological evidence of clay tile and stone being used as roofing material thousands of years before the current era. That is over four thousand years ago!
  2. Did you know that the Roman Empire had a cross Mediterranean manufacturing industry dedicated to building materials? They manufactured clay roofing tiles very similar in shape and quality to the ones used today! You can still see examples of intact Roman roofing tiles in museums. These tiles were standardized in shape and size across the empire to be employed in uniform building techniques. Individual factories also occasionally stamped their tiles to identify their place of production, the factory owner, or the foreman in charge of production. These stamps could include lettered inscriptions or symbols. Sometimes finger swipes and other marks made about two thousand years ago when the clay was still wet can still be identified by archaeologists today!
  3. Some of the earliest human dwellings were dome shaped huts with roofs made of reeds and thatch. The shape of the stately concrete or stone dome that is most familiar to us in the form of the Capitol building in Washington D. C., however, has its beginnings in the Sumerian civilization of Mesopotamia in the third millennium before the current era. The largest unsupported concrete dome, which still stands perfectly preserved to this day, is the Pantheon in Rome. It was built as a temple by the Romans in the second century of the current era and now functions as a catholic church. It is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Rome and has seen continuous use for about two thousand years.
  4. In the United States, the most popular roofing material is asphalt shingles, which were invented only about one hundred years ago. Asphalt shingles cover about seventy five percent of homes in America. They are a versatile, relatively inexpensive, and aesthetically pleasant roofing material which contributes to their popularity.
  5. The technologies involved in the manufacture and installation of roofing material are constantly improving. For instance, while asphalt shingles manufactured twenty to fifteen years ago stood up to maximum wind speeds of sixty-five miles per hour, shingles commonly used nowadays can stand up to winds of one hundred and thirty miles per hour. That is double the wind resistance and includes hurricane force winds! Likewise, while in the past consumers were encouraged to stay away from darker colored roofs in hot areas like Florida to avoid heat absorption, in the present the advanced materials we use function equally well in heat protection, whether light or dark. Black asphalt shingles are quickly growing in popularity.
  6. Metal roofing technologies are also quickly improving and providing a popular alternative to tile and shingle. Metal roofs are less expensive than tile and have higher lifetimes than asphalt shingles. They are also lighter, in fact, they are even lighter than wood shingles or shakes. Also, contrary to popular expectation, metal roofs do not attract lightning more than other roofing materials. They can actually protect your home from lightning since metal is not combustible.
  7. Water tends to glide down a sloped surface before dripping. For this reason, the origin of a leak can be found ten or more feet away on the roof surface from where you may see it on the inside. If you identify a leak, it is crucial to have the roof inspected by a licensed and experienced professional to find the appropriate repair solution.

Leaks should never be taken lightly. At the first sign of a leak, be sure to consult with a roofing professional to find the source of the problem and a possible solution. Whether you have a tile, metal, or asphalt shingle roof, if you are in the Palm Coast, Flagler, or Volusia area, please give Florida’s Best Roofing a call at 386-263-7906 for a free estimate!

Florida's Best Roofing
Roofing Blog

The Hidden Hazards of Water Damage

With all the rain storms we have been having, now is a good time to watch for leaks. It is important to examine your ceilings for leaks on a frequent basis and act at the first sign of one. Water damage can have serious effects on the safety and livability of your home.

There are certain home improvement problems that can safely be procrastinated. Nothing will go seriously wrong if you put off replacing an old carpet or repairing a creaky door. Leaks are another matter entirely. Even tiny leaks, barely a spot on the ceiling, can grow quickly and exponentially leading to major problems with very expensive solutions. Leaks can lead to structural problems which turn into safety and health risks.

Leaks can be caused by all sorts of damage to the roof. This can include wind, storms, falling debris, or hail. Improper installation of the original roof or a defect in the materials used may also be to blame. Improper maintenance or lack thereof altogether can also lead to leaks and shorten the lifespan of the roof. Remember that most roofs are only meant to last twenty to thirty years, even with regular maintenance and exclusive of external damage.

In addition to the obvious, there are some unexpected and unforeseen ways in which leaks can have an adverse impact on your home and life.

 

Higher Utility Bills

You may not know that when water enters the attic space, it can cause damage not just to the wood decking and ceilings, but also to the insulation in the attic that prevents excessive cooling of the house in the winter and excessive heating in the summer. When insulation gets saturated with water, it can take a long time to dry out. In the wet summer months it can go for months without drying under constant rains and leaks. If the leak continues for a long time without being addressed, it can deplete the efficacy of the insulation and result in higher utility bills as the AC unit or heater works harder to compensate.

 

Interior Mold and Mildew

The most serious potential consequence of neglected leaks is the growth of mold or mildew. These problems may take a while to develop, but if they do they will result in significant expenses and potential health issues. Once it begins to develop, mold can easily and quickly spread through the home’s structure and HVAC system from where it can reach other parts of the house including carpets, ceilings, furniture, and even clothing. The most common type of mold growth resulting from repeated water incursion is black mold, which is rarely toxic. Nevertheless, black mold can cause health and breathing issues, particularly for people who have underlying health problems like asthma. Getting rid of mold can be very costly and require specialists in mold remediation.

 

Fire Hazards

Because most homes’ electrical systems are wired through the walls and ceilings, including attics, leaks in these areas of the house can reach these wires and potentially pose a fire hazard. If you do notice that you have a leak be sure to check for affected wires and turn off electricity to that part of the house if necessary.

 

Attic and Ceiling Damage

The first damage from a leak will be to the wood in the attic and the ceilings. If the attic is used for storage, then the items stored there may be damaged as well. The plaster and paint on the interior of the ceiling will be stained and may form bubbles and expand. Continued leaking will spread to nearby ceiling surfaces and walls. The walls’ damage can get severe and will affect wall paint, insulation, drywall, and wall beams.

 

Structural Integrity

Rafters, ceiling joists, wall framing, fascia boards, and exterior trim are all structural elements that are susceptible to water intrusion. While the water damage to these areas can be superficial at first, continued water leaks can lead to mold, weakened wood, and rot. Once this happens these structural elements need replacing. This can get expensive, especially with the high prices of lumber materials at this time. Extended and neglected damage can result in the loss of structural integrity to the home making it unsafe for occupation and even liable to partial collapse.

Leaks should never be taken lightly. At the first sign of a leak, be sure to consult with a roofing professional to find the source of the problem and a possible solution. If you are in the Palm Coast, Flagler, or Volusia area, please give Florida’s Best Roofing a call at 386-263-7906 for a free estimate!

Roofing Blog

Asphalt Shingle Packaging, Transport, and Delivery: Part II

In our previous post we covered the in and outs of asphalt shingle packaging and the shingle transport process. We explained why it is too taxing in time, space, and manpower for most roofing companies to store and transport all the shingles and other supplies to each job site themselves. Asphalt shingles, in the amounts it takes to cover an average roof, are too bulky and heavy for it to be efficient for every contractor to store them in their own facilities and load them onto every roof they install or replace. Operating more efficiently and deferring storage and delivery costs lowers service prices and saves money for customers and consumers in the long run. 

As mentioned in the last post, there is a system of supply companies in place with the infrastructure and equipment to handle the logistics of shingle storage, transport, and delivery. Roofing supply companies are generally either national or regional companies that deal with dozens or even hundreds of roofing contractors and can efficiently handle the volume of that work. Each supply company’s regional office buys materials in bulk from manufacturers to temporarily store at their location. Roofing contractors submit orders to a local supplier’s office for delivery. 

Most deliveries are destined for a specific job site, which are submitted by the contractor to the supplier. Occasional deliveries are also scheduled for contractors’ offices. These are lower in frequency and contain items that need to be on hand daily for repairs and emergencies, like different types of vents, nails, flashing, small amounts of shingles in various colors, and other such supplies. 

Deliveries to job sites are scheduled for a specific day by the contractor, but they are organized by the supplier. Ideally the date is convenient for the property owner, fits well into the contractor’s schedule, and matches the supplier’s schedule and material availability. Ideal situations are, unfortunately, fairly rare, so there is always some compromise and give-and-take. For this reason, although it is desirable for shingles to be delivered to the roof the morning of the day on which they will be installed, occasionally the delivery date may be a day or longer from the installation date. The installation date can be delayed due to weather, the contractor’s schedule, or homeowner’s preference since shingle installation is a loud and disruptive process. Material availability, which has been particularly adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, can also delay delivery dates, especially if a property owner is intent on a specific color or shingle variety. 

Once the delivery date is set, the supplier analyzes all the deliveries they have to make that day, the locations of the deliveries, and the landscapes of these locations. Landscapes can factor into how deliveries are to be made and which trucks can be used due to distance between houses and other structures, types of driveway, locations of trees and shrubs, and other elements of this sort. Materials are organized by geographical area and truck. Several trucks go out each day to make a number of deliveries, depending on order size. Often, each truck will be loaded once for a morning delivery and another time for an afternoon delivery. 

There are two types of delivery: roof-top and ground. Each one is exactly what it sounds like. In ground delivery, the shingles are simply removed from the truck and left on the ground near the property, usually on pallets, either on the driveway or the lawn near the house. In cases like these, the roofers are the ones who later haul the shingles up to the roof, often using ladders and an assembly-line system. As discussed previously, this is not ideal since it is time consuming and labor intensive. The reason for ground drop can be one of many, but all really boil down to the delivery truck being unable to get close enough to the house for roof-top delivery. The trucks are very large, so if there are other buildings very close by or trees or other elements in the way, the supply company may decide it is not safe to do anything but ground drop. This is also done if the driveway is blocked by something immovable (like a broken-down car or a storage container) or if the driveway is covered in paving stones, which can look great but most often cannot handle the weight of a shingle delivery truck. Ground drops are usually ok (not preferable) for one story buildings, but cause a lot of problems with taller structures and can result in price increases to compensate for time and labor.

Roof-top delivery is the better and more frequently utilized option for contractors and suppliers. There are two types of trucks capable of roof-top delivery: trucks equipped with conveyor belts and trucks with boom-cranes. Trucks with conveyors must be loaded, usually one bundle at a time, from the ground and unloaded on the roof. The conveyor carries one bundle at a time up to the roof, where they are stacked by employees and arranged in a way convenient for the installers later. Boom trucks use a crane and forklift system to carry shingles up to the roof one pallet at a time. The pallets are then unloaded on the roof and shingles are arranged for the installers. Which of these two types of truck is used is determined by the landscape around the house and the shape of the roof. 

Once the shingles are delivered, it’s time to get to work. If you need work on your roof or have any questions about shingle delivery or want a free estimate for your roof in the Palm Coast, Flagler, or Volusia area, please give Florida’s Best Roofing a call at 386-263-7906!

What is Below Shingles on a Roof?
Roofing Blog

Do you want to know what is Below Shingles on a Roof?

When you look at a roof what you notice first is its shape and the material, most often asphalt shingles, that covers it. Upon a closer look you may notice some vents and pipes, but besides that it is really impossible to see what the roof is really made of. Unless you see a roof being replaced or a new roof being installed, you may never know how many layers and types of materials are hidden underneath the shingles and really make up the roof beyond the visible materials.

In fact, there are several layers beneath the shingles that work to create the roof shape, support it, regulate temperature, insulate your home, and block out moisture. Knowing about what really makes up a roof can help you understand how it functions, how it can be damaged or protected, and help you in dealing with roofing issues on your property in the future.

 

Layers Under Roof Covering

Let’s go over the layers that make up a roof, starting from the bottom and heading up.

 

The Frame

The frame of the home is what gives it its shape and defines its boundaries. The frame of the roof creates its shape and the support for all covering material. The frames of modern homes are typically made of a series of wood trusses manufactured to the specifications of a particular blueprint or home design. Occasionally, roofs are built completely on-site with wooden beams cut to appropriate rafter size and put together on the structure. It is important to have an idea of what the finished roof will look like when creating the frame since frames for certain roofing materials, like clay or concrete tile or slate, require additional reinforcing in the frame to hold up their weight. 

 

Insulation

Insulation in a house helps to regulate the internal temperature of a structure and prevent its fluctuations during weather changes. It also aids in reducing the use and cost of heaters and air conditioners. In a finished attic, the insulation is placed between the rafters of the roof’s frame. In an unfinished attic, the insulation can usually be found on the attic floor. 

 

The Roof Deck

The roof deck is nailed on top of the roof frame. It is made of wooden boards, usually either plywood or another engineered wood product such as oriented particle board (OSB). This creates the roof’s surface on top of the trusses. Holes are cut in the roof deck at appropriate areas where roofing vents will eventually be installed.

 

Water Shield

A waterproof barrier or membrane that is designed to prevent build up of moisture or protect areas that are particularly susceptible to water damage is laid down next. This is typically a peel-and-stick membrane that is used to line all valleys on the roof and, in climates that have ice or snow in the winter, the perimeter around the eaves. The peel-and-stick membrane attaches directly to the roof’s deck.

 

Underlayment

Next, and directly below the roof covering, is the underlayment. There are several different kinds of underlayment, which we will go over below since they serve as an integral part of the roof, particularly in preventing water from reaching the roof deck and then causing leaks. Underlayment is usually made of fiberglass paper or felt, and it covers the entire roof. Depending on the type of underlayment, it is either nailed to the deck or sticks directly to it if it is self-adhesive. 

Underlayment is either water-resistant or waterproof. There are three kinds of underlayment: asphalt-saturated felt, non-bitumen synthetic underlayment, or rubberized asphalt underlayment.

 

Asphalt-Saturated Felt

Until about 15-20 years ago, this was the most common kind of underlayment. It is water-resistant and nailed down to the roof. It is commonly called tar or felt paper and can vary in thickness. It consists of a base material (wood, cellulose, polyester, or fiberglass) which is soaked in a protective coat of asphalt (bitumen) or a similar material.

 

Synthetic Underlayment

This is presently the most common type of underlayment used by contractors, although in hurricane-prone central Florida it is quickly being replaced by the hardier rubberized asphalt (discussed below). Compared to felt paper (above) synthetic underlayment has increased durability. Fiberglass is added when the synthetic material is coated in asphalt, resulting in increased resistance to tears and punctures. Still, synthetic underlayment is water-resistant and must be nailed down to the roof deck.

 

Rubberized Asphalt

This is the most expensive type of underlayment, which is presently growing in popularity, although it leads to a higher cost of roof replacement. Its expense comes from a higher amount of rubber and asphalt polymers in production, which contribute to its strength. This underlayment comes with an adhesive on one side. When the covering is peeled away this adhesive sticks directly to the roof deck and creates a waterproof seal, as no nailing is required. It is also called peel-and-seal. 

Once the chosen underlayment is in place, the roof covering is added, beginning with the shingle starter strip and drip-edge at the eaves, the vents and flashing in their designated spaces, and shingles (or other chosen covering material) across the entire roof. 

If you have any questions about roof underlayment or need any work done on your roof in the Palm Coast, Flagler, or Volusia area, please give Florida’s Best Roofing, Inc. a call and schedule a free estimate at 386-263-7906!

Florida’s Best Roofing, Inc is a Palm Coast-based roofing contractor, providing professional roofing services in Flagler and Volusia County Areas.

Newsletter

We promise not to spam!