Reroofing is a fairly big job so homeowners are often looking for ways to do it faster and more affordably. One option is to install new asphalt shingles over your existing shingles. This is obviously a lot faster because there is no need to rip off all the old shingles. However, this isn’t always a good solution or even feasible. Here are some of the things which need to be considered.
Algae is actually pretty amazing because it is able to live on a variety of surfaces – including the asphalt shingles on your roof. If you see algae growing on your asphalt shingle roof or see black streaks, it is probably because the algae is eating the limestone filler which is typically found in these shingles. Luckily, the algae doesn’t harm the shingles, but it does look unpleasant.
Before you set about cleaning algae from asphalt shingles, you should read any warranty information about your shingles. Many shingle manufacturers will void the warranty if you use certain cleaning methods, such as a pressure washer. There is good reason for this: if you get too close to the shingles with the pressure washer, the high pressure could damage them.
Even if your roof shingles aren’t under warranty anymore, it is probably best to play it safe and not use a pressure washer. Instead, the best method is to get up on your roof with water and scrub brush or garden hose with a sprayer attachment.
What You Need to Clean Algae from Your Roof
To safely clean algae from your roof, you will need the following supplies:
- A cleaning agent
- A pump sprayer
- Garden hose with sprayer or scrub brush
- Slip-resistant shoes
Remember that working on a roof can be dangerous! Never stand on wet spots on a roof. You might consider using a safety harness and rope to prevent falling. Because you are working with chemical cleaners, you will want to wear gloves and goggles.
Which Cleaner to Use?
You can use regular soap and water to clean your roof. However, you will probably get better results using a cleaner with bleach. It is generally not a good idea to use chlorine bleach. While very effective at killing mold, it is also toxic to plants. It will drip off the roof and kill the grass and plants around your home.
Instead, consider using oxygen bleach. You can buy special solutions at hardware stores for cleaning algae. Or you can mix your own solution.
- Mix the oxygen bleach and water in the pump sprayer.
- Using caution, spray the cleaning solution over the roof (work in sections to avoid having to step on wet, slippery roof shingles).
- Let the solution sit on the roof shingles for about 15 minutes.
- Rise the solution with a garden hose at high pressure. This should take the algae off. Or, you can use a scrub brush to get the algae off, but this will take much more work.
- Only clean algae from roofs on overcast days. On sunny days, the cleaning solution will evaporate too quickly.
- Work in sections of about 4 feet, spraying the solution from the top to the bottom.
- NEVER stand on wet roof shingles!
- When in doubt, hire a professional.
Asphalt shingles are one of the most common roofing materials. They are affordable, fairly simple to install, and come in many different colors and styles. One of the other benefits of choosing asphalt shingles over the other types of roofing common materials is that they have a long lifespan. Most asphalt shingles can last up to 20 years, and there are some which can last 25 to 30 years. The lifespan of asphalt shingles can vary drastically though depending on the climate. In areas like Colorado where the summers are warm and winters are cold, asphalt shingles will be lucky to make it much past their guaranteed lifespan.
No matter what kind of asphalt shingles you have or how well they are taken care of, they will eventually need to be replaced. Since this is a big job, you will not want to do it if it is not completely necessary. Luckily, it is fairly simple to tell when an asphalt shingle roof needs to be replaced.
Look for Curling and Cuffing
As asphalt shingles age, they start to warp. You will be able to notice the edges of the shingles curling upwards or see cuffing in the shingles. This might be visible on just some or all of the shingles. When many of your roofing shingles are warped, it is important to reroof as soon as possible to prevent water from leaking into your roof and causing severe damage.
Use the Flexibility Test
If just a few shingles are warped, then you can use the “flexibility test” to determine whether you should replace your roof. Go up to the roof on a warm (but not hot) day. Use a knife or a spatula to loosen the edge of one of the shingles. Then try to bend the shingle backwards. If it bends, then the shingles still have a bit more life in them. If the shingle cracks when bent, then it is time to replace your shingles.
Fix Damaged Areas ASAP
If your roof shingles are only damaged in one area, such as from wind or tree branches hitting them, then you probably don’t need to replace your entire roof. It is fairly simple to repair asphalt shingle roofs by removing the damaged shingles and slipping new ones into their place.
There has been some concern in the news lately about the safety of Denver area roofing companies. With a record number of falls being reported, it makes it more difficult and daunting to find a reputable roofing contractor. At A&H Roofing, we want to reiterate that safety comes first.
Coowner Mike Aberle, says, “We have a very good safety program that includes annual safety meetings, job site checklists, random safety inspections and yearly provisions for safety equipment. We have regular safety meetings & strict guidelines for safety in the workplace.” All safety training is done through Lancaster Safety Consulting, a trusted source in safety consulting nationwide.
Vinyl doesn’t exactly have the best reputation as a material for siding as some “purists” will scoff at the idea of covering a home in what is essentially a type of plastic. Yet, despite this, vinyl has become the most popular type of siding for homes in the United States. Even compared to pricier siding options like wood and stone, there are many reasons why you should consider choosing vinyl siding for your home.
When choosing a material for the siding of your home, you will need to take into consideration many factors like the cost, water resistance, lifespan, insulation rating, and style. Here are the top four siding materials commonly used and their features.
If your home is in need of a new gutter system, you will have many options for materials. The material of the gutters makes a big difference to the price and also how long the system will last. Here are the pros and cons of the main types of gutter materials.
Before you decided to redo your roof, you probably didn’t realize how many different styles of asphalt roofing shingles there are. Asphalt can easily be shaped and colored so it mimics the appearance of other materials, like wood or slate, and can be designed with various edges to complement the style of your home. Here are some of the most common styles of asphalt roofing shingles you will find.
Most homeowners choose asphalt shingles for their roof because they are durable, easy to install, and affordable. Asphalt shingles even come in styles and colors so they mimic the appearance of high-end slate, wood shake, or even tile shingles. That means homeowners will have many options when it comes to the color of their roofing shingles. Here is a simple guide to help you choose the best color of shingles for your roof.
Homeowners in Denver have many different material options for roofing shingles. It is important to weigh the pros and cons of each of these types of roofing shingles because they can make a big difference to the overall appearance of your roof, how long your roof will last, and your budget. Here are the four main shingle materials used on Colorado roofs:
If you didn’t have gutters, water and debris would fall of your roof in curtains, potentially causing damage to your home’s walls and foundation. In order to make sure that your gutters keep doing their job, you need to regularly clean and maintain them. With these tips, gutter cleaning and maintenance can be easy.
It goes without saying that your roof is one of the most important parts of your home. If something goes wrong with your roof, it is going to affect the rest of your home, with problems like water damage and mold growth, or letting cold air in. Your roof is also one of the most expensive parts of your home and installing a new roof can be a major drain on your budget.
Most roofs in Denver will last 15-20 years, depending on the type of material used for the roof. With these simple tips, however, you can make your roof last as much as twice as long as this, saving you money on roof repairs and replacement services.
1. Clean Your Roof of Debris
If your roof is sloped, then most leaves and other debris will probably fall off of it quickly. However, if you have flatter parts on your roof or nearby trees, then debris can accumulate. As the debris starts to decompose, the moisture can cause damage to your roof shingles. You can prevent this by periodically sweeping the debris off of your roof. Invest in a good brush with a telescoping pole and this task can be done quickly and easily.
2. Clean Your Gutters and Gutter Drains
Without gutters, water would run haphazardly down your roof. Gutters channel the water so it doesn’t damage your home’s foundation or siding. If your gutters become severely clogged, the water can even run upwards to your roofing shingles! The water and debris buildup in the gutters can then cause some serious damage to your roof. So, do your home a favor and keep your gutters and gutter drains clean.
3. Trim Tree Branches
Have trees hanging over your roof? Be sure to trim back their branches! Otherwise, the tree branches can bang against your roof, gutters, and siding, causing expensive damage.
4. Replace Broken Shingles Quickly
If you notice that shingles are damaged, be sure to replace them as quickly as possible. The damage can spread to nearby shingles or lead to structural damage of your home.
5. Remove Snow
Colorado gets quite a bit of snowfall and this can damage some types of roof shingles. Using a roof rake with a telescoping wand, remove large snow drifts from your rooftop. Do NOT attempt to pry off ice sheets on your roof though; this might damage the shingles.
A slate roof is a roof for life. In fact, many slate tiles outlive the life of the building they protect and are then recycled for use on another building. Of course, this is not so surprising when you consider that the slate used to make roofing tiles today was formed some 500 million years ago.
The Many Shades of Slate
The color of slate varies depending on its geological origin. For example, slate in shades of purple and green is quarried in Vermont, shades of red and green in New York and black slate is quarried in Pennsylvania. The color of the slate can also help to date its formation which can range from 435 to 570 million years ago.
5 Shades of Gray
Gray/green slate – Also known as sea green, tiles in this shade originate from quarries in the region of Vermont and New York.
Vermont Gray – This shade is considered a traditional shade of slate gray which may also have small flecks of black running through it.
Unfading Gray – Unlike many slate tiles, this variety will not change shade as a result of exposure to weather over the years.
Strata Gray – This shade of gray has stripes of black running through it and is sometimes referred to as mottled gray/black.
Vermont Gray/Black – As the name suggests, the shade of gray in this slate tile is darker than many others and can be completely black. Gray shades are generally distinguished by darker linear markings.
Find out if slate roofing is right for you! Give us a call at A & H Roofing.
Clay tiles were first used as a roofing material in America in the 17th century but it’s believed the origins of clay tiling go way back in history to around 10,000 B.C. with clay tiles used as a roofing material in China and the Middle East.
Archeologists in North Carolina have uncovered examples of clay roof tiles dating back to 1585 and these early tiles would have been imported by European settlers. By the mid-17th century, clay tiles were being manufactured in the Hudson River Valley and glazed and unglazed varieties were available through several different sources by the time of the American Revolution.
Weatherproof and Fireproof Qualities
New fire codes introduced after the great fire of London in 1666 and Boston in 1679 led to clay tiles becoming the roofing material of choice because of their fireproof qualities. Clay was also widely favored for its durability with one New York newspaper ad’ in 1774 guaranteeing clay roofing tiles to be able to withstand any weather.
Enduring Qualities of Clay Roof Tiling
By the mid-19th century, clay tiles had fallen out of favor with new and cheaper materials such as galvanized iron, slate and tinplate gaining popularity. However, new production processes soon made clay tiles more affordable and clay’s enduring qualities of durability and ease of maintenance along with its ability to deflect heat and keep a home cool have ensured its place in America’s roofing history for many generations to come.
Has the winter taken a toll on your roof? Should you repair or replace your roof for the spring? It is important to be able to tell the condition of your roof without inviting a roofing contractor, which will most probably cost you some extra cash.
You can check for damages on your roof from the ground by using a pair of binoculars or you may decide to climb up on the roof to check for damages. If you decide to climb up, make sure that you are using safety equipment to keep safe from falls and injuries.
With the Professional Roofing Magazine reporting that at least six roofers in the US die from falls every month, your safety is the last thing you want to be lax with. Also, never climb on a wet roof, and always be sure to set up the climbing ladder and rope properly.
Once you are on top of the roof, check the following few aspects that are indicators of the condition of your roof:
- Check for general sagginess of the roof. If the roof appears overly saggy, there is every probability that you should call a roofing contractor.
- Rusted and popped nails are also an indicator of a roof that is not in a healthy condition.
- Seepage in the attic especially after an ice build-up.
- Peeling exterior and/or interior paint.
- Growth of mildew and mold on walls and ceilings.
- Decaying siding.
- Cracked or curled shingles.
If you are not comfortable with the idea of walking around your roof the safest thing is to hire a contractor to complete a thorough check of your roof. At A & H roofing, we have professional roofers available at your call and at the most affordable prices.