Frequently Asked Questions
Sylvester Roofing has a team of experts to diagnose your roofing and building envelope requirements. Please review these commonly asked questions, or feel free to call us at (760) 743-0048 or fill out the form at the bottom of this page.
All too often, roof system problems are discovered after leaking or other serious damage occurs. It is recommended to inspect your roof 1-2 times a year. Owners should look at the exterior of a roof for cracked, warped or missing shingles; loose seams and deteriorated flashings; excessive surface granules accumulating in the gutters or downspouts; or other visible changes in your roof system. Interior inspections should check for cracked paint, discolored plasterboard, or peeling wallpaper.
Not necessarily. Leaks can result from flashings that have come loose or a section of the roof system being damaged. A complete roof system failure, however, is generally irreversible and usually a result of improper installation or choice of materials or the roof system installation is inappropriate for the home or building.
Most work should not be done yourself. Professional roofing contractors are trained to safely and efficiently repair or replace roof systems. You can damage your roof system by using improper roofing techniques or severely injure yourself by falling off or through the roof.
Maintenance performed by home and building owners should be confined to inspecting roof systems 1-2 times a year (recommended during the fall and spring) to check for cracked or curling shingles and cleaning gutters filled with dead leaves and other debris. If you must inspect your roof system yourself, use a firmly braced or tied-off ladder equipped with rubber safety feet. Wear rubber-soled shoes and stay on the ladder (and therefore off the roof system), if possible.
It Depends! If the existing roof or insulation is wet or deteriorated, or if there is any concern about the condition of your underlying structural deck, a tear off will be recommended to ensure safety and integrity of the new roof. Moisture trapped within the old roof will, in most cases, prematurely deteriorate your new roof system, ultimately causing a high probability of re-work and more money to save the new system. It is often the most cost-effective over the life of the roof to tear off and start with a new, cohesive system.
If the existing construction is sound and an owner wants to save money, one can often leave the roof in place and install new materials over it. This is subject to city codes and restrictions.
There are two common options for a re-roof:
- A complete replacement of the roof system, involving a tear-off of the existing roof system
- Re-cover the existing roof system, involving only the installation of a new roof system
If a structure has already had one re-cover installed on the original roof system, check with a professional roofing contractor. In many instances, building code requirements allow no more than one roof system re-cover before a complete replacement is necessary.
There are many types of roof systems and membranes available to address the unique requirements of buildings. Most membranes are specifically suited to a particular structure or situation. This can depend on how much foot traffic there will be, if any mechanical equipment will be on the roof, if the roof be highly visible or if solar reflectivity has to be considered. These are just a few of the many considerations which may need to be considered, and an experienced roofing contractor can assist in making the best material and application decisions to ensure the highest quality roofing system available.
Most new roof systems are designed to provide useful service for about 20 years. Some roof system types—such as slate, clay tile and certain metals like copper—can last longer.
Actual roof system life spans ar determined by a number of factors, including local climatic and environmental conditions, proper building and roof system design, material quality and suitability, proper application and adequate roof maintenance.
Roofing product manufacturers offer a variety of warranties on their products. Take a close look at those warranties to see what responsibilities and financial obligations manufacturers will assume if their products fail to reach their expected lives.
Either type of roof, if designed and installed properly, will perform well. The costs are dependent on the circumstances of the project. The three main considerations are the size, detail work involved, and the accessibility to the site. Often a single-ply membrane will be the roof of choice. There are numerous types of single-ply systems available and different methods of installation for each. Please feel free to discuss your situation with any of our roofing specialists.
Properly installed insulation as part of a roofing system will enhance the energy conservation of the building. Many roofs currently due for partial or full replacement may have been installed before energy conservation was top-of-mind for builders, so any re-roof is great timing to consider adding insulation to maximize cost savings throughout the life of the roof. Although added insulation will increase the cost of your roofing project, often the energy savings over the life of the roof. An experienced roofing contractor will consult with building codes in your area to determine the required “R” value for roofing insulation efficiency for new builds, or if your existing roof needs to be torn off prior to replacement and addition of insulation to the system.
The price of a new roof system varies widely, depending on materials selected, type and location of the structure or home, local labor rates and the time of year. It's wise to get a few estimates from reputable contractors in your area, but equally important to keep in mind that price is only one factor, and it must be balanced with the quality of the materials and insurance-backed workmanship.
For each roofing material, there are grades and corresponding prices. There also are a variety of styles and shapes for different visual designs. You need to look at the full product range and make a choice based on your budget and desired aesthetics.
Within the roofing profession, there are different levels of expertise and craftsmanship. Insist on a contractor who is committed to quality work.