Replacing your roof is a costly investment and one that should be taken seriously. It’s a demanding task that even some professional roofers fail to do adequately. Many things can go wrong, and problems that can arise during a roof replacement project, most of them stemming from human error. In this article, we’ll highlight the biggest mistakes to avoid when replacing your roof. Let’s start with the biggest mistakes in DIY roof replacement projects.
Biggest Mistakes in DIY Roof Replacement
If you’re planning to replace your roof yourself, keep in mind that many things can go wrong. It’s easy to make a mistake when replacing your roof without any prior roofing experience. Not to mention, doing work on your roof can also be very risky. Here are some of the biggest DIY roofing mistakes that often happen to DIY roofing enthusiasts:
Reusing Old Flashings
Replacing the roof DIY might seem like a great idea to save money. And, while you’re at it, it might also come across your mind to reuse old flashings that appear to be in good condition. In practice, this is something you should avoid at all costs.
Flashing serves a crucial purpose in protecting vulnerable parts of your roof from water intrusion. Installing pre-used flashing can lead to a breach and result in severe water damage and even higher repair and replacement costs.
A common mistake many DIY roofers make is installing new shingles on top of their old shingles. Even some professional roofers employ such practices, although there are many more cons than pros in overlaying. Overlaying the roof can provide it with extra security, but the tradeoff is simply not worth it. It hides any existing damage, traps heat between the shingles, and can even prematurely destroy your new shingles.
Some homeowners go through the effort to purchase all new materials and remove all of the old shingles from their roof before installing a new one, yet still, end up with a bad roof. What gives? Well, the improper use of roofing nails is to blame.
The average DIY homeowner has no idea how many nails to use when installing shingles. Or how high the nails need to go on the shingles. Small details like this may seem unimportant when you’re full of enthusiasm and ready to install a new roof. But these issues tend to manifest quickly as loose shingles start falling off the newly-installed roof.
Poor Ventilation and Inadequate Moisture Protection
The shingles protect your attic from water, but when it comes to moisture, they can’t do the job alone. Installing inadequate moisture barriers will lead to excess moisture in your attic. In addition to being adequately protected from water, your roof should also be adequately vented.
With all of the above in mind, hiring a professional and certified roofing contractor is always the best and smartest move. You should know some other things so you can avoid making one of the biggest roofing replacement mistakes when hiring a roofing contractor.
Choosing a Contractor Based Exclusively on Price
Calculating all of the costs that go into your roof replacement project will help you prepare for such a substantial financial investment. Although you should have a fixed budget, you should never choose a roofing contractor based on price alone.
Set a reasonable budget that will cover all of the expenses without compromising any of your project’s aspects. Be sure that you’re getting a good value for your invested money, and not cutting corners on quality. Having a solid roof over your head is essential, so make sure you pick a proven local contractor you can trust.
Read our top ten tips for choosing a roofing contractor to get a better understanding of everything you should know before hiring a contractor for your next project.
Biggest Roofing Replacement Mistake: Not Signing a Contract for your Project
A contract creates a legal obligation between you and the contractor. It ensures that you will get the service you agreed upon. You can avoid a lot of headaches if you get everything on paper before the project starts.
If you find yourself working with a shady contractor, and without a contract in place, you can easily find yourself scammed out of your roofing budget.
Before signing a contract, see to it that you get a written estimate from your contractor. Or several potential contractors before you start the project. You can also get an independent inspection and estimate of your roof. This will help you avoid any price inflations and “unforeseen” costs once the project starts. You can also use the contract in a court of law if the contractor did an inferior service or tried to scam you.
Not Researching Your Roofing Contractor
If you decide to leave the roof replacement project to professionals, make sure you’re getting your money’s worth. Take the time to thoroughly research your potential roofing contractor.
Trusted organizations such as the Better Business Bureau can help you verify a particular contractor’s reputation and licenses before hiring them. You can also read up on reviews from Google Reviews and Angie’s List, or dig deeper and call references provided by the contractor. All of this may take some time. But it’s worth it so you can avoid one of these biggest roofing replacement mistakes.
Avoid the Biggest Roofing Replacement Mistakes: A Final Takeaway
A planned roof replacement is, thankfully, not an emergency project. So there’s no reason to rush it and risk making any mistakes that will take even more time and money to fix.
Are you currently planning a roof replacement? If so, contact us today. We’ll offer you a free roof estimate for your next project. Call 813-373-9088 or fill out our short online form.