Drones Can Cut Property Inspection Costs—but Are They Safe?

Powie / Pixabay

Drones Can Cut Property Inspection Costs—but Are They Safe?

Building inspectors who used to rely on binoculars and ladders are turning to drones to check property exteriors for signs of damage or deterioration that could lead to injuries.

But use of drones for this purpose is causing a dilemma. Their lower cost and greater thoroughness is coming into conflict with another public safety concern: the danger drones pose to other aircraft or people on the ground.

In New York, which has thousands of old skyscrapers, drone use is largely prohibited and the technology isn’t being considered for property inspection. The Department of Buildings “does not use drones for building inspections, and there are currently no plans to start using drones in the future,” a department spokesman said.

Drones, which had early applications in warfare and surveillance, increasingly are being adopted by a wide range of businesses—from package delivery to underwater exploration. Business applications have grown significantly since 2016, when the Federal Aviation Administration enacted a new rule making it easier to become a commercial drone operator.

Since the rule passed, technological developments have made drones smaller, more reliable and easier to fly, causing a growing number of residential and commercial building inspectors to embrace them. “We’re able to inspect areas of a building we have never inspected before,” said Vincent Boccia, founder of New York consulting engineering firm Engineered Building Inspections PC.

The chimney of a cathedral in Long Island, N.Y., could be inspected without having to erect scaffolds. PHOTO: ENGINEERED BUILDING INSPECTIONS

Mr. Boccia pointed to the inspection of a cathedral in Long Island, N.Y. Using a drone, inspectors could examine the cathedral’s chimney without having to erect scaffolds—the difference between a $1,000 inspection and an estimated $10,000 scaffolding inspection, Mr. Boccia said. Using a drone also can shorten a weekslong inspection to a day, he said.

“It is realistic that a $10,000 drone inspection could cost over $100,000 of hanging scaffolding,” Mr. Boccia said. His company, which inspects up to 150 facades a year, retains an outside company to fly the drone.

Nick Gromicko, founder of the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors, said about 8% of its 21,000 members based in the U.S. use drones for inspections. Four years ago, he said, “everybody was afraid to use drones.”

Since the technology improved and became more mainstream, Mr. Gromicko introduced a training course and began working with the FAA in hopes that his organization can certify inspectors as drone pilots.

National Property Inspections Inc., the parent company of National Property Inspections in the U.S. and Global Property Inspections in Canada, began training franchisees on operating drones for building inspections in 2016, according to Randy Yates, a training supervisor for the company. Mr. Yates became aware of the technology’s potential four years ago, but couldn’t spearhead training until the FAA passed its 2016 rule.

“The whole intent was to keep our guys safe, so they wouldn’t have to climb up on a roof, and not damage building materials,” he said.

Still, in dense urban areas, especially near airports, drone use is highly restricted. Nile Berry and Pablo Marvel, co-founders of the New York digitalization agency Nova Concepts, looked into the potential of drone inspections in New York City, considering that building height can significantly limit the scope of inspections. But they hit a dead end.

“In New York, buildings over five stories must be regularly inspected, and it’s one of the most old-school processes that exist,” Mr. Berry said. “An inspector goes out with binoculars, field notes, a pen and paper.”

Some of these obstacles could be removed as drone companies invest heavily in technology. Industrial SkyWorks, based in Canada, has developed software allowing drones to take images of a property and use the data to develop building models and issue inspection reports.

The FAA also certified Industrial SkyWorks to carry out nighttime drone inspections of walls and roofs, according to Michael Cohen, the company president. Such inspections allow inspectors to accurately track where energy is escaping from buildings, Mr. Cohen said.

Phil Larsen, global director of sales and operations for ABJ Drones, a consulting agency, said there’s “tremendous value in real estate” when it comes to drone development, particularly with software that analyzes buildings.

But he pointed to the many obstacles that still exist in the U.S.

“The three major hurdles are transparency, privacy and protection of manned aircrafts,” he said. “It’s difficult for many municipalities to use the technology beneficially because they may be close to an airport.”

Mr. Larsen estimated that drone technology undergoes significant updates about every three months.

George Mathew, chief executive of the industrial drone company Kespry, said the company is “pushing the edge of where this technology is at present, within the regulatory framework.”

Still, Kespry has developed technology in which a drone can fly automatically without a ground pilot to inspect buildings—something not yet allowed by the FAA. “It’s not a technology question of how much drones can do,” he said. “It’s a question of if the regulatory framework will open up in the next several years.”

Up to 50 design decisions to consider in a high-performance roof

Up to 50 design decisions to consider in a high-performance roof

The design and construction of a roofing system is a complex undertaking that can involve up to 50 considerations. To ensure that state-of-the-art roofing practice is incorporated into the finished product, the licensed design professional, architect, engineer, building owner, facility manager or roofing contractor should have the latitude to select the most suitable product, system and assembly available on the market.

Capri23auto / Pixabay

The factors that will impact roofing system design include:

Type of structure that needs to be protected.
Interior usage of the structure.
Geography and climate where the building is l

ocated.
Extreme weather conditions the roof will need to withstand (hail, high winds, etc.).
Orientation of the building.
Climatic impacts of the building.
Planned longevity of the roofing system and structure, as well as the recyclability of the roofing membrane.
Environmental impact of the materials to be used in the construction process.
Given these factors, the roofing professional can then determine the specifics of the roofing system design. This will include basic considerations such as how will the roofing membrane be attached to the roof deck. Options such as fully adhered, mechanically attached, and ballasted systems each offer unique benefits: a fully adhered system, for instance, which is attached to the substrate with adhesives, is essential to protect a roofing system in an area that frequently experiences high winds.

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The roofing professional must also accommodate any special requirements presented by the overall design of the building (such as the presence of solar panels, plant equipment, generators, or other equipment adhered to the roofing surface). Will the roof be used for materials storage? How much insulation is needed, and how might that impact the choice of a roofing membrane? How will future access to the roof be managed safely to facilitate ease of maintenance? And finally, how will the construction of the roof be sequenced properly to ensure that a durable finished product is delivered on time, on budget and adhering to local building codes?

This complex orchestration of interdependent design and construction decisions requires a steady hand, a wealth of experience and access to a broad range of design solutions, not prescriptive requirements that limit creative choice.

Three tips for a great new roof

Three tips for a great new roof

Most houses in Canada have asphalt shingle roofs, and June is an excellent month to have new shingles installed. With hot weather on the way, shingles will seal down reliably later on in the summer sun. But June itself is also not usually so hot that the shingles will be soft and easily damaged underfoot during installation.

TaniaVdB / Pixabay

If you’re interested in getting the best possible asphalt shingle roofing job, there are details you need to discuss with your roofer. As with any other professional in life, don’t assume all roofers necessarily use the best possible techniques. Be your own watchdog by asking about the re-roofing details here and you’ll get the best possible results.

There are three parts to any great asphalt shingling job — the shingles themselves, the underlay system and the roof vents that round out any good installation.

Improved tar, gravel and substrates have boosted potential shingle lifespan enough that 40- and 50-year shingle warranties are now common. Thirty years ago shingles were sold with 10-, 15- and sometimes 20-year warranties at the top end. These days all manufacturers have doubled these numbers, and the difference is about more than just marketing.

The “10-year” shingles on the left lasted for 30 years before needing to be replaced. Thefibreglass shingles, right, have a rated lifespan of 40 years. (STEVE MAXWELL)

Most of the gain in shingle life comes from the use of fibreglass as a shingle substrate instead of the more traditional organic felt. Fibreglass shingles look the same as organic ones on your roof because they’re impregnated with the same kind of tar and gravel used as part of all asphalt shingles. That said, fibreglass is much more resistant to heat than felt, and this makes all the difference. Even on very hot, unventilated roof surfaces, fibreglass shingles consistently deliver their expected lifespan without curling. You also get a higher fire rating with fibreglass. In addition, fibreglass shingles are about 30 per cent thinner than organics for a given quality of shingle, making them easier to install on ridges, as part of woven valleys or any other application where bending of some shingles is required.

Ventilation is another critical roof issue. Most roofs need more of it than they have for two reasons — first, more ventilation reduces attic temperatures during summer, making it easier to keep upper floors cool, and second, attic ventilation allows internal moisture from domestic activities like washing, showering and breathing to vent away freely in winter, in case this moisture happens to enter the attic incidentally. You can’t have too much attic ventilation, and there’s no better time to install more vents than during a reroofing job. Ridge vents deliver the most ventilation for the least amount of visual distraction.

The best roof installations are waterproof before shingles go on, and this means more than just a layer of that old-fashioned, 15-pound tarpaper nailed to roof sheathing. There are two philosophies behind creating a reliable secondary layer of protection underneath your shingles, and they’re completely different.

The black fabric being installed here keeps water out if the shingles fail, but also allows watervapour to escape if necessary. (STEVE MAXWELL)

When self-sticking ice and water shield arrived on the scene about 25 years ago, it didn’t take long for it to replace tarpaper as a complete roof underlay on high-end installations. And this approach still makes a lot of sense, except for one universal Canadian issue.

Cold climates create a moisture threat that can attack roof structures from both top and bottom. In addition to the usual hazard of water leaking from above, there’s also the possibility of moisture condensing in parts of the roof structure from below during winter. This is why the best roof underlay these days is breathable. It combines the ability to shed water along with the ability to dry out from the inside.

Ask any prospective roofers for homeowner references, check them out, then go with a contractor who has a track record of good work and is willing to use today’s best shingling methods.

Roof Maintenance

A residential property could have triple-reinforced titanium steel walls, and it still wouldn’t be worth a darn without a sturdy roof. It’s through the roof and rooftop features that many problematic elements can enter a building

jarmoluk / Pixabay

, from wind to rain to ice to debris. And because of that, the roof must be adequately fortified and properly maintained. Otherwise, the integrity of the building – along with resident safety and property value – are bound to suffer.

Basics for Beginners

Roofs are not just complicated, relatively delicate structures—they’re also harder to keep tabs on than a facade, or windows that people look at all day. Fortunately, there are myriad experts – from property managers to A/E/C professionals to trades persons who work solely on roofs – who can do the job for your building and keep your roof in good repair.

“A roof should be inspected every few years,” says Frank Sausa, Vice President of Altura Construction Company, Inc., in Garfield, New Jersey. “If a leak gets severe enough, a homeowner’s ceiling can literally collapse. The most common cause of leaks that we see is when the rubber boot around plumbing vents deteriorates. Additionally, we often conduct repairs around chimneys, skylights and valleys, utilizing shingles, leak barrier ice and water shield, synthetic paper, step flashing, counter flashing, and, most importantly, kick-out flashings.”

Between formal inspections by a roofing professional, associations should be doing routine maintenance on their own. “Inspection of roofs should be part of the basic building maintenance, and reviewed at a minimum of a few times per month, especially during and after heavy rains or snow,” says Dennis DePaola, Executive Vice President of Orsid Realty Corp., in New York City. “Not only should the roofing surface, pitch pockets, and flashings be checked, but the floor below should be looked at as well, in order to catch even the smallest amount of water infiltration as early as possible, before any major damage occurs.”

Of course, roofs are not ‘one size fits all,’ and a maintenance schedule therefore depends on the make and age of one’s model, as well as the weather to which it’s subjected. “Appropriate frequency of inspections of a roof may depend on its age, but annually is probably a general minimum,” recommends Christopher R. Berg, President of Independent Association Managers, Inc., in Naperville, Illinois. “Severe weather conditions may necessitate specific inspections, particularly for shingled roofs. If you can see the roof from the ground, loose or missing shingles can be spotted by the board or management on a simple walk. However, many problems would only be identified via closer inspection. For example, an examination of the attic may identify leaks and problems that wouldn’t be apparent elsewhere, such as insufficiently ventilated bathroom moisture or dryer lint.”

In areas like New England, where the weather in a given year can reach sweltering highs and frigid lows, roofs can wear much faster than in more temperate regions. To be proactive, an association should perform a visual inspection of its roof on an annual basis,” suggests Tim Arel, Owner and Principal at North Point Management, which has offices in both Massachusetts and New Hampshire. “This inspection should look for missing or damaged shingles, as well as wear and warping. That will allow an association to perform the small and relatively easy repairs before they develop into serious issues that result in the need for full roof replacement, or damage to the buildings. Proactive annual inspections work to extend the life span of the roof, but they also provide information needed to plan for a roof’s eventual replacement. And they can initially be performed by qualified members of the management team, or by association volunteers. The key is to have individuals who know what they’re looking for perform these inspections. Then, when issues are identified, management and the board should contact a qualified roofing contractor to perform the needed repairs, or to provide a professional assessment with recommendations.”

Damage Done

Certain roof-based dilemmas are more common than others, so it pays for a board or management to be aware of the likely suspects.

“We’ve taken over buildings from other firms wherein we have found severe structural steel damage due to neglect, and the failure to stop water infiltration for prolonged periods of time,” notes DePaola. “In such instances, we’ve had to install shoring within apartments to offset the load from the damaged steel. That may require a relocation of the residents, depending on the severity of the situation.

“We’ve also been successful in spotting smaller repairs of roofing systems that are still under warranty, at little-to-no expense to the building owner,” he continues. “By regularly checking for these smaller repairs and addressing them in a timely manner, owners can greatly extend the useful life of the roofing system, sometimes well beyond their 20-to-25-year warranty.”

As one may intuit, ice is a major enemy in regions with particularly cold winters. “The improper removal of ice dams has been a significant contributor to roof damage over the past several years,” says Arel. “When faced with an emergency situation caused by interior water intrusion from ice dams, some vendors believe that the solution lies in removing the ice via the use of hammers and pickaxes. While this may temporarily alleviate the problem, the net result is often significant damage to shingles and roofs. This makes for a great example as to how proper planning and hiring vendors with the correct equipment will benefit an association in the long-term.”

And the type of roof – shingled or flat – also affects its aging process.

“Shingled roofs often age prematurely, as a result of insufficient ventilation and/or insulation, and may need to be inspected more frequently,” warns Berg. “When attics can’t vent the summer heat, cooked shingles will curl and break the adhesive that holds them down, leaving an edge up to become a sail in the wind. Sometimes you can be alerted by shingles on the ground or in the gutters, but other times they seem to have vanished from the earth. When attics can’t stay cold under snow-covered roofs, they cause ice dams that can lift shingles, split wood and bend metal, whether or not it causes visible interior damage. Rubber parts and applied sealants need to be inspected for cracking, so they can be replaced before they leak. However, gutters often have to be cleaned of leaves and other tree debris in both spring and fall, which makes for two great opportunities to just inspect all of the roofing.

“And then flat roofs have both masonry and metallic elements, in addition to drains, pipes, and other membrane penetrations, so they may need regular engineering inspections as well,” Berg adds. “Minor cracking in masonry joints and membrane transitions can lead to serious problems, whose resolution come with serious price tags. So the more complicated your roofing system is, the more regular inspections you may need, and by more technical professionals.”

Balance in Budget

The more on top (pun intended) of roof-related affairs an association is, the less likely they’ll have to spend exorbitant amounts of money to fix a disaster. With that said, unpredictable calamities, however, can happen, and an association is best served tucking away some extra funds in the event of a rainy day.

“Every association should have both short- and long-term capital plans for the essential building components,” says DePaola. “We know that roofing systems have a useful life between 10 and 30 years, depending on the system and the warranties received. Therefore, the association should be funding or implementing a plan to fund – via either borrowing or assessment – for the roof replacement during the entire life cycle of the capital component. The most costly roofing projects to which we’ve been privy are those that have not been planned for and those that have been deferred for too long.”

“Having a reserve study and financial plan in place to ensure that the funds needed for capital projects exist in the association’s reserve account is the best method to avoid the significant impact of special assessments,” Arel agrees. “Proper funding is always based on proactive planning. Unfortunately, a great number of associations are under-funded, and thus do not have sufficient reserve funds required for a significant capital project. In these occasions, associations need to evaluate their options to determine what plan best suits its owners. Due to the current financial environment, a great number of associations are looking to loans to make up for their lack of reserves. This option allows an association to borrow the necessary funding, typically through a fixed interest rate loan that may cost less per month than delaying work and facing the increased costs of labor and materials. When roofs need to be replaced within a several-year period due to leaks or other severe issues, financing the project allows an association to spread out the payment over a greater span, thus resulting in a lower monthly increase.

“However,” he continues, “it’s important to note that one option is not right for all association. A board should weigh all options and the financial impacts thereof and present that to the owners. It’s important to involve the owners when making any decision that will result in a significant fee increase, such that the owners can understand the process that the board has undergone and the options available, then provide input as to what they believe is the best option to meet the association’s needs.”

Managing and working with asbestos

Managing and working with asbestos

This information will be of particular interest to employers, asbestos contractors and others with duties under asbestos regulations, together with those workers currently at greatest risk from exposure to asbestos.

The importation, supply and use of all forms of asbestos are banned. However, many buildings, and some plant and equipment, still contain asbestos-containing materials (ACMs).

Before you start any work in a building that might contain asbestos (eg built or refurbished before the year 2000), you need to do the following:

Identify whether asbestos is present and determine its type and condition

  • People responsible for maintenance of non-domestic premises, have a ‘duty to manage’ the asbestos in them, and should provide you with information on where any asbestos is in the building and what condition it is in.
  • If no information is available or it is limited and you suspect asbestos may be present you should have the area surveyed and representative samples of the material you are going to work on analysed.
  • Alternatively, you can assume that any material you need to disturb does contain asbestos and take the appropriate precautions for the highest risk situation.

Carry out a risk assessment

  • Decide if its possible to carry out the building or maintenance work avoiding the risk of asbestos exposure all together.
  • If that’s not possible, identify who might be at risk and the level of possible asbestos exposure from any work.
  • On this basis, decide what work methods are necessary to provide effective control of the risks.
  • Further information on carrying out a risk assessment is available.

Decide if the work needs to be carried out by a licensed contractor

  • Most asbestos removal work will require a contractor holding a licence from HSE.
  • All work with sprayed asbestos coatings and asbestos lagging and most work with asbestos insulation and asbestos insulating board (AIB) requires a licence.
  • Identify if your work needs a licensed contractor;
  • Find a licensed contractor, or find out how to apply for a licence.

If the work is not licensable, decide if the work needs to be notified

  • If it doesn’t need a licence, you can do maintenance work on or around ACMs with the appropriate controls in place.
  • Some non-licensed work also has additional requirements, ie notification of work, medical surveillance and record keeping. This work is known as notifiable non-licensed work (NNLW).

Ensure those carrying out the work are suitably trained

  • Any worker who is liable to disturb asbestos during their day-to-day work needs to receive appropriate training to enable them to protect themselves and others.

This post was taken from http://www.hse.gov.uk/asbestos/detail.htm

Where can you find asbestos?

Where can you find asbestos? From HSE.GOV.UK

Asbestos can be found in any industrial or residential building built or refurbished before the year 2000. It is in many of the common materials used in the building trade that you may come across during your work.

INDUSTRIAL PROPERTY

Inside

1. Sprayed coatings on ceilings, walls, beams and columns

2. Asbestos cement water tank

3. Loose fill insulation

4. Lagging on boilers and pipes

5. AIB ceiling tiles

6. Toilet seat and cistern

7. AIB partition walls

8. AIB panels in fire doors

9. Asbestos rope seals, gaskets and paper

10. Vinyl floor tiles

11. AIB around boilers

12. Textiles eg fire blankets

13. Textured decorating coatings on walls and ceilings eg artex

Outside

14. Asbestos cement roof

15. Asbestos cement panels

16. Asbestos cement gutters and downpipes

17. Soffits – AIB or asbestos cement

18. Asbestos cement flue

AIB = Asbestos Insulating Board

Residential Property

Inside

A. Asbestos cement Water tank

B. Pipe lagging

C. Loose fill insulation

D. Textured decorative coating eg artex

E. AIB ceiling tiles

F. AIB bath panel

G. Toilet seat and cistern

H. AIB behind fuse box

I. AIB airing cupboard and/or sprayed insulation coating boiler

J. AIB partition wall

K. AIB interior window panel

L. AIB around boiler

M. Vinyl floor tiles

N. AIB behind fire

Outside

O. Gutters andAsbestos cement downpipes

P. Soffits – AIB or asbestos cement

Q. AIB exterior window panel

R. Asbestos cement roof

S. Asbestos cement panels

T. Roofing felt

AIB = Asbestos Insulating Board

All information in this article is only from http://www.hse.gov.uk/asbestos/building.htm website.

Are roofing tiles that act as mini solar modules a good idea?

Are roofing tiles that act as mini solar modules a good idea?

Are roofing tiles that act as mini solar modules a good idea?

Each year, thousands of Arizona residents email or call Rosie Romero’s radio show with questions about everything from preventing fires in their chimneys to getting rid of tree roots invading their sewer system. His goal is to provide answers that suit the specific lifestyle wherever someone lives in Arizona.

QUESTION: We aren’t too interested in putting solar panels on our house, but we are interested in other new roofing products, like glass tiles that also act as mini solar modules. When you buy them, you also get a battery that will let you use the solar power your roof produces and possibly keep the lights on if the electrical grid goes out. They are pretty expensive, but are they a good alternative?

ANSWER: A lot of the appeal of these roofing products seems to be based on the fact that homeowners like their looks better than that of traditional solar panels. They look like tiles that have been made out of glass. However, some versions of these tiles have been around for a while and generally don’t seem to be too effective. The tiles get too hot and then they stop working. Then they have to be replaced. Generally, they only last five to 10 years while traditional solar panels can have a 25-year life expectancy. One Web site we saw said they could cost about $22 a square foot, compared with $5 a square foot for traditional shingles.

 

Q: I recently had a contractor come in to do a whole house energy audit and to talk to me about installing solar electric panels. But he also suggested a lot of other energy saving alternatives like buying a variable speed pool pump and adding more insulation in the attic. Why did they do that?

A: It’s always a good thing to find ways to make more of your house energy efficient. But not all home energy audit companies are the same. Many times, they promote the items that have the highest profit margin and could greatly benefit the contractor if you installed them. So proceed with caution.

Q: Off and on for a long time, we’ve been considering installing solar panels for electricity. But we’re afraid that tighter regulations to solar might be coming along in future. The solar industry and the utilities always seem to be fighting with each other.

 

A: Yes, the two parties have had their issues in the past, but they seem to be getting along better now. As for more regulations, that could happen. But so far, every time the utility companies have tightened up the rules and cut back on solar benefits, homeowners that already have their solar systems have been “grandfathered in” under the old regulations. The federal tax benefits of solar have also been retained.

Q: I had a new air conditioning system installed and when the installers did that job, I had them put in an extra vent and some extra ductwork designed to help cool off a bedroom located over the garage in my home. That bedroom is one of the hottest rooms in the house and the new vent doesn’t seem to have helped very much. How can I fix this problem?

A: You may need to install some insulation in your garage in order to solve the problem. You might also be able to install a mini-split air conditioner in the bedroom or in the garage in order to cool that part of your house. A mini-split consists of a very small indoor air handler that has its own small outdoor condenser. They’re not cheap, but they’re an effective way of cooling an especially hot room or a garage.

Roof Maintenance

Repairing or replacing your roof can be expensive. Spending a few minutes every six months looking closely at your roof can help you identify roof maintenance opportunities that will help prevent costly repairs later. It’s also important to periodically check your homeowners insurance to make sure that serious roof damage is covered by your policy.

Roof maintenance: What to look for

It’s critical that you inspect your roof every spring and fall. A good time to do this is when you’re cleaning your gutters.

Look for missing, damaged or curling shingles and any other signs of wear and tear. It’s easy and inexpensive to replace one or two shingles, or to hire someone to do it for you.
Check for signs of fungus or algae. If your roof is starting to collect moss or algae, install zinc or lead control strips.
Inspect metal areas for rust. If it’s present, wire brush the rust, then prime and paint the metal.
Examine the flashing to make sure it’s solid. If not, remove all of the old caulk and scrub the area clean before resealing.
Seal any cracked mortar or caulking around joints and chimneys, if it appears to be deteriorating.
If you see any signs of leaking, like dark spots on the ceiling, or mold or dampness in your attic, take action immediately. Roof leaks get worse, not better, and it’s better to spend a few dollars on roof maintenance rather than a lot on a big repair.

Other roof maintenance issues

Sweep or blow off excess debris on the roof. Sticks, leaves and other debris can damage shingles, cause algae to grow and eventually clog the gutters.
Trim any branches that are hanging over the roof to prevent damage and keep squirrels and raccoons away.
A thick layer of snow accumulation could lead to roof collapse. If this happens, carefully pull the snow off the roof using a snow rake available at most home improvement stores.
Roof maintenance is often ignored, but small problems with a roof can lead to some of the most costly home repairs around.

Product, coverage, discounts, insurance terms, definitions, and other descriptions are intended for informational purposes only and do not in any way replace or modify the definitions and information contained in your individual insurance contracts, policies, and/or declaration pages from Allied-affiliated underwriting companies, which are controlling. Such products, coverage, terms, and discounts may vary by state and exclusions may apply.

Roof Shingling Tips and Tricks

Roof Shingling Tips and Tricks

Roof shingling is an easy job to do yourself, especially if you use a few shortcuts that don’t compromise the quality of your work. Keep in mind that safety should always be your first priority when it comes to doing any construction work on a roof. With the proper equipment and know-how, you will be able to complete your shingling jobs without wasting money or time.

Shingle Over Shingles

 

Some professionals will suggest that you not place new shingles over the top of existing shingles. The reason is that asphalt shingles have a lifespan of up to 20 years. Placing multiple layers of shingles will give your roof time to develop problems that can’t be easily detected if the roof is stacked with shingles. It is acceptable, however, to add new shingles over existing shingles. The rule is that there should not be more than 3 layers of shingles already placed. While this is a time saving shortcut, it is best practice to strip the roof to inspect for any damaged areas of the roof.

The Best Roof Stripping Tool

On occasion you will see do it yourself roofers armed with a crowbar to strip the shingles from their roof. The best and most convenient tool for this job is called a Roofer’s Spade. This tool is very similar to a snow shovel but is out-fitted with teeth or notches in the front of the shovel and a fulcrum underneath. This allows the prying up of the shingles and nails to be much easier than using a crowbar or a regular shovel

 

Rent a Dumpster

When stripping your roof, there will be lots of debris that will come from atop, including nails. Instead of throwing the loosened shingles and nails into the back of your truck and causing damage, you can call your local equipment rental company and rent a dumpster. This will allow you to throw the debris directly into the dumpster and call the company to pick it up when 

 

you are done.

Underlay

The purpose of underlay is to be that second layer of waterproof and leakage protection on your roof. While many professionals and do it yourself experts will disagree, an underlay is not necessary to install before you add your shingles on your roof. If your shingles are properly installed, you will not have to be concerned with any roof leakage issues. Although adding an underlay of felt has become the industry standard for asphalt shingles, it is not crucially needed.

Ice Guard

When you have completely stripped your roof of all shingles, walk the roof again to check for any nails that didn’t come up during your initial sweep. Remove them if there are any and prepare your roof for an application of roof guard. Ice guard is waterproof membrane that will help protect your roof from water damage. Ensure you follow the directions of use and application.

 

 

Bar Magnet

Trying to find all the nails that fell from your roof to the ground is an all day job that you don’t have time for. To remedy this issue, tie a rope to a bar magnet and drag it along the perimeter of your house. You will pick up all the nails that your eyes could not see.

5 tips to think about when renovating roof

5 tips to think about when renovating, repairing and replacing your roof

1. Roofs should ideally be inspected twice a year or more, both from the outside (with binoculars) and inside the loft. If you can see daylight in the loft, there may be something missing on the outside. Roof tiles or slates that have broken, slipped or been blown off are a common occurrence. If they’re not replaced, rainwater will get into the loft and cause damage there, and then in the rooms below. Other parts of the roof can cause leaks and damp, too, including the flashing, guttering and chimneys. You may be able to spot these problems yourself, but will usually need a roofer to put them right.

2.If the roof has to be retiled, do you replace the tiles like for like or go for something different, provided there are no planning restrictions? “Although handmade tiles look great, they can make the job more time consuming – you may need an experienced roofing team to manage the materials,” says Simon Braithwaite, category manager at builders merchant Travis Perkins. “Handmade tiles are also expensive. Expect to pay around £1,000 per 1,000 tiles – the average detached house requires 8,000 tiles. Another consideration is the area – if you live in a rustic village, handmade tiles may be much more in keeping with your surroundings.”


3“Handcrafted tiles, which are tiles that have been dealt with by hand during part of the production process, usually cost much less than handmade ones,” says Braithwaite. “If you have a smaller budget, machine-made clay or concrete tiles are the most affordable options. Concrete tiles can degrade in appearance and structure over time, whereas clay lasts much longer and is more aesthetically pleasing.” He continues: “Another consideration is the roof pitch – you can’t use certain types of tile on certain roof pitches because they don’t look good and could cause structural problems.”


4 If you’re overhauling a roof, think about fitting skylights (again as long as there are no planning restrictions). Skylights (also called roof windows) come in all shapes and sizes and can make a big difference to the amount of light entering the room below. If you’re doing major building work, such as an extension or loft conversion, skylights are a great addition, but they can also transform existing rooms with little or no natural light. While fitting a skylight is usually a job for a roofer or builder, experienced DIYers can fit them. You may think that skylights are expensive, but they don’t have to be – the Tyrem range at Screwfix starts at £161.22 for a 550mm x 780mm double-glazed skylight. These skylights are straightforward to fit, have a handle instead of a bar, which can make opening and closing them easier, and come with a 10-year manufacturer’s guarantee – just remember to get the correct flashing kit for the type of roof covering.


5 Flat roofs can be prone to leaks, not least because they should have a gradient, but the gradient often isn’t steep enough. If the roof is too flat or doesn’t have an adequate structure or materials under the roof covering, it will sag, allowing rainwater to pool and eventually enter the room below. The roof covering can also get damaged. If you’re building a single-storey extension, putting a flat roof on it will enable you to easily access the house above (to repair the guttering on the main roof, for example), but a pitched roof should be more reliable long term and is more aesthetically pleasing inside and out.

This post was taken from http://www.hamhigh.co.uk/property/how-to-re-vamp-your-roof-1-4905411