Category Archives: Roofing Customer Education

Can I Re-Roof During The Winter?

Is It Safe To Re-Roof A Home In The Winter

Roofing In Winter There are many concerns on whether its safe to re-roof during the winter months. There are many factors that come into play which determine if a home or business owner should wait until Summer to re-roof or go ahead and re-roof during winter. It is important to understand however that the answer is yes, you can safely re-roof during the winter.

Asphalt Shingles Are Durable And Made To Withstand Cold Weather

Its important to note that asphalt roofing shingles are designed to withstand cold and hot weather. There are some shingles that are designed specifically to waterproof homes in regions like Alaska where the temperature can easily reach 20 below 0 degrees. Many contractors like to avoid re-roofing when its to hot so a dry winter week might be favorable in more than one way.

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GAF offers these winter roof protection tips on KHQ-TV

The biggest concern many have about winter re-roofs is improper sealing. There is a strip on the back of each shingle that heats up when warmed by the sun to cause the shingle to seal to one below it. This prevents wind blow off. If the shingle does not reach adequate temperature then they will not seal properly. What many people do not consider however is that a roof is on average 20 degrees warmer on the roof. If its 50 degrees outside it can be 70 degrees on the roof. In addition all of the warm air from your home is blowing up into the attic and warming the underside of the shingles as well which aides the sealant with proper adhesion.

If its just to cold out and an ideal temperature cannot be reached to get the sealant to warm up and adhere hand tabbing is suggested. Roofing cement is an asphalt based products that can be purchased in a caulking tube. By distributing a few quarter size dabs on the corners of the shingles you can easily achieve the necessary seal and wind resistance requirements until the temperatures warm up to seal the shingles.

Whats Best For Your Home?

In order to determine if a winter re-roof is necessary you should contact a professional roofer in your region. A few factors that would warrant immediate re-roof are: Extreme leaking, massive shingle blow off, a compromised roof structure that cant take the weight of compiling snow just to name a few.

If you are in the Puget Sound region of the Pacific Northwest and are considering a winter re-roof call us today for an expert opinion at 253-445-8950.

Important Questions To Ask Your Roofing Contractor

Roofing Help You know that you need to have your roof repaired or replaced and you have contacted some local contractors to obtain quotes.  Now, how do you decide which roofing contractor is the right one for your project?  How do you ensure that the installation of your new roof goes as smoothly as possible?


It is important that you ask questions of a potential contractor so that you can feel confident that you have chosen the right contractor for the job.  Getting answers to your questions will also make sure that you know what to expect so you don’t face any unpleasant surprises.  Here are a few questions that will enable you to make a more informed decision when choosing a roofing contractor (link to


1. Ask about liability insurance and workers’ compensation insurance.  A roofing contractor should have liability insurance in case they cause any injuries or damages to your neighbours or their property.  They should also have insurance for their workers in case someone is injured on the job. 


2. Ask what warranties you will receive for both materials and labour.  Ask what the contractor has done in the past when a problem has arisen with work done by his company.  Make sure that you will be satisfied with the customer service you can expect if something goes wrong.


3. Ask if they intend to use subcontractors or employees to do the job.  You want to know who is going to be doing the work. 


4. Ask about the qualifications of the contractor and the employees or subcontracors who will be performing the work to your roof.  Ask about what certifications, licenses, training and experience they have. 


5. Learn about the type of roof you are having installed and ask as many questions about it as you can.  Your contractor should take the time to fully explain the roofing system that will be installed.  


6. Ask about the timing of the project.  You want to know when they will begin work and approximately when they intend to have the work completed.  You also want to know what time to expect them in the morning and when they will leave in the evening.  It is a good idea to ask to be notified of any changes to the work schedule.


7.  Ask the contractor for references.  Make sure that you get names and phone numbers so that you can speak to the references.  Driving by a house isn’t going to tell you whether the work was done on time, whether the new roof leaks or what the contractor did to fix any problems that arose after he installed the roof.  Make sure that the work done for the references is similar in scope to your project. 


A good roofing contractor (link to should be proud of past work and more than willing to answer any questions you have.  So ask as many questions as possible and be confident that you have chosen the best contractor for your project.



(About the Author: Roofmaster / Rooftek (link to is an award-winning Ottawa roofing company.  We specialize in the identification and repair of stubborn leak problems but offer a wide array of services to ensure that your roof is maintained to the highest standards.)

What Is The Purpose Of Roofing Starter Shingles?

The Purpose & Application Of Roofing Starter Shingles

Roofing Is Intended To Be Installed As A Complete System

Starter-shinglesRoofing systems achieve the best waterproofing results when installed correctly as a complete system. When having a new roof installed on your home you will need to verify that your contractor has included all of the critical components of the roofing system in your contract price. Its is very typical for some contractors to offer you a very appealing price but in the end they have removed some of the most critical components of the system in order to provide you with a low number. Always remember that when it comes to selecting a roofing system that if you cut corners to save a few dollars now you will end up paying for it later as the system begins to fail or needs repair. For more information on what ingredients, so to speak, are in a complete roofing system check out this article I provided for Marcus Anthony Construction, a roofing company in CT. Now onto our purpose which is to explain the purpose of using starter shingles on your new roofing system.

The Purpose Of Starter Strips

Roofing-Starter-ShinglesStarter strips “are” a key component to your new roofing system. A starter strip is an asphalt based shingle utilized to waterproof the eave and rake edges of your home during a re-roof. The reason you need starter shingles is because laying a course of shingles on the perimeter edge will create’s a channel  where the shingles butt up against each other which is in direct contact with the roof deck. By applying a starter course and then applying an additional course of field shingles on top of them you are effectively covering those water channels and waterproofing your roof deck appropriately. Starter strips prevent shingle blow off by adhering the field course and the starter course together with a strong adhesive. Check out the short video below by Juff’s Roofing Toronto, which illustrates this principal in an easy to understand way.


Installation Tips

-Make sure the factory adhesive is facing up so it can adhere to the field shingles.
-The edge of the starter strip should hang over the eave and rake edge 3/4″ in order to create a drip edge. This is required on all Golden Pledge system warranties.
-Utilize 4 nails per shingle for proper wind rating.

Technical Information About GAF Pro-Start Shingles

As a GAF Master Elite contractor we prefer to use their factor starter strips. They save us time on the install and provide a cleaner appearance than cutting up 3 tab shingles. Factor starter is also a part of the GAF complete roofing system and required to qualify the roof for an upgraded warranty.  Here are a few technical points for Pro-Start starter strips (from GAF website):

Product Specifications (Nominal)

ICC-ES 1475
Dade County Approved
Meets ASTM D3462 , D3018
UL 790 Class A fire rating
Florida Building Code approved

Product Size
(full sheet) 13″ x 38″
(half sheet) 6.5″ x 38″

Bundle Count
19 full sheets (38 individual pieces)

Coverage Per Bundle
Approx. 120.33 linear ft (when split in half)

Selecting A Quality Roofing Contractor

A Rich Heritage In The Roofing Industry

Tacoma-Roofing-ContractorsMy grandfather started an independent manufacturers rep company in the Pacific Northwest decades and decades ago. The biggest part of this business focuses launching and selling new and innovative roofing products to distributors and suppliers. I worked for the family business that is now run by my father for years.

The number one reason this company has been and is so successful is due to what we call “pull through”. There are two ways you can approach a roofing distributor or supplier. One, you can set an appointment and introduce this new product to the buyer and hope he or she sees the value. Two, you can go out to the actual roofing companies and sell them the product first, then approach the distributor or supplier with a sale. This is referred to as pull through.

I spent countless hours crisscrossing Oregon and Idaho, my territory, talking to roofer after roofer. This gave me a bird’s eye view on the roofing industry, and taught me how to identify the best roofing contractors from the rest of the pack. Here’s what I’d look for when looking for the best roofing company for my home:

Value Over Price

Generally speaking, cheap is the most expensive roof you can buy. There are a hundred ways you can build a roof with a hundred shortcuts. Look for roofing companies that are focused on analyzing your roofing system as a whole. They will talk to you about ventilation and simple upgrades that greatly extend the life of your roof and actually pay you back through energy efficiency. These communicators of roofing will put you in a place where you will be able to make an educated decision.


The top asphalt roofing manufacturers all have their own certificated/preferred contractor programs. These programs are not something you can pay for and those contractors that earn their spot are able to offer far superior warranties than contractors who do not. To earn their certified or preferred status, they have to be local to the market and have a large number of happy customers.

Focused On Giving Back

It may take a little longer to find a roofing contractor focused on giving back, but the payoff is well worth it. Most homeowners have no idea how to hold a roofing contractor accountable to install a high quality roof. Getting them to stand behind their work, should something go wrong, is another issue many homeowners face. Finding a roofing contractor with strong character and deep values will go a long way, just as it does with all things.

For almost a decade now, I’ve been a roofing contractor myself. Fortunately for me I was given the example of what great contractors focus on. I hope this helps you in your quest to find the best roofing solution for you and your family.

This article was provided by:
Bo Hamby of Think Roofing KC
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