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Flat Roofs - Roofing Questions
1.00 Damage to my property caused by a negligent neighbour, and insurance company problems?

Q. I live in the ground floor of a 2 storey mid-terraced house in West Lothian (that's Scotland for all you non-UKers out there!) There is an extension with a flat roof to the back of my house, and 2 years ago, I noticed that there was some water staining to the ceiling. Knowing that flat roofs only have a limited lifespan, I paid a local builder £3000 to replace the roof with a new rubberised type which is meant to be more durable than the traditional felt. A couple of weeks after completion, I had bubbled plasterwork in my hallway and water running down the walls. I called the builders back who discovered that the water ingress was due to my upstairs neighbour not maintaining her property. She had a part brick and part wood porch structure outside her front door which was in a shocking state - no guttering, holes in the roof and render falling off. The builders confirmed that the stone work and render was absolutely sodden, and rainwater was running down through the brickwork and into my property. At this stage, I advised my neighbour of this, and she promised to get the problem rectified...and then did nothing. I chased and chased her for a year, getting nothing but a list of endless excuses and promises. I had to get Environmental Health involved as by this stage I had black, green and yellow mould growing on my walls, and about an inch of water on the floor everytime it rained. Environmental Health issued her with a Compulsory Order, giving her 6 weeks to rectify the problem. She ignored this, and Environmental Health did nothing when she breached the 6 week deadline. I decided to go down the legal route at this stage ( I know, I know, I should have done it way before then) and threatened the neighbour with legal action. This finally did the trick and she eventually hired a builder to knock down and replace the porch structure. He got as far as replacing the brick shed/cupboard part of it, and was due to come back and build on the uPVC porch part...but has disappeared without trace and with some of my neighbour's money. However, by this stage, my property appeared to be dry - there didn't seem to be any more water coming in, and the damp dissipated. At this stage, the insurance company (Halifax) agreed that their builders could begin the repairs on my house. They arrived today, removed the ceiling plasterboard...and discovered that the inside of my new roof is absolutely saturated, wet and black. The foreman thinks that the insurance company will not cover the cost of this, as the other walls appear to be dry but the roof is wet, so he thinks the Halifax may try to claim that there is a different cause to the original water ingress, as this has now stopped/dried. I am horrified by this - it is blatantly still the same cause as before, and even if they try to insist it isn't, surely I have proved that I have kept my property maintained (by, for instance, putting on a new £3k roof not even 2 years ago!)? Can they really refuse to pay out for this? (they didn't pay out for the initial roof (I tried to claim retrospectively after discovering the cause of the damage was my neighbour's negligence and not just wear and tear) as they hadn't surveyed it prior to the work starting and therefore couldn't be sure on the state of it beforehand, which was annoying but understandable). As I stand at the moment, I could be faced with once again repairing/replacing a roof which is less than 2 years old, which has not been damaged due to my negligence, and which would probably be damaged again since my neighbour's builder obviously hasn't rectified the problem fully. Where do I stand on this (bearing in mind I am in Scotland and I think the law is slightly different here)? Is is likely that the insurance company will not pay out, and is there anyway I can compel my neighbour to get this sorted once and for all? Thank you. Jo

A. I would contact the local court, because it sounds as though he's not being a nice fellow.

1.00 What type of roofing should I use to replace current roof?

Q. I need to replace my current roof. My roof is a flat type roof and I was wondering which type of roofing I should replace it with? Should I use the modified bitumen or the built in roofing with tar/gravel. Which type would last the longest and easy to maintain? I've been experiencing some leaks and molding in the house and the roof is in bad condition.

A. Rubber EPDM roofing is the only way to go. The old hot tar and gravel roofs were notorious for leaking, and very difficult to fix. The rubber roofs are available in various thicknesses that translate into various warranty periods. If you intend to stay in the house for the long term, buy the best you can afford. A twenty year residential warranty is minimal with the norm being thirty years or longer. Have the roof installed by a reputable contractor and save all of your warranty documents as many of them are trannsferable to a new owner. Good luck with your roofing project.

1.00 How Can EPDM be bonded directly over rolled roofing?

Q. How Can EPDM be bonded directly over rolled roofing? im doing an addition to my house and im going to have epdm roofing installed (im installing it actually), the other half of my house has rolled roofing, the epdm company tells me i cant bond epdm roofing to rolled roofing with the oils, so is there anyway i can bond the 2 together?

A. Manufacture recommendations is for a reason. The over all reliability of the product. Bonding it directly to roll roofing....NO! You can apply a fiber board over the roll roofing then apply the EPDM, but then I would suggest to remove the roll roofing to keep the extra weight off the roof. I would go on to suggest to get rid off all the roll roofing. It is an old school product that is not dependable and repairing it normally helps "for the moment" but with all the seams you just shift problems from one spot to another. EPDM is a superb product and very durable and choice of many contractors doing flat roofs today.

1.00 What is average cost of roofing insurance in indiana?

Q. I am thinking of starting my own roofing business, but I would like to know what I should be expecting to pay in insurance before I start doing my budget. I have little experience in finance and would like to carefully scrutinize the numbers before getting too invested. Before contacting agencies, I would like to have some idea of what they charge. Thanks!

A. General liability for a one man shop, is probably going to run you around $1500 a year, if you do NO flat roofs or hot tar. Workers comp for roofers, runs 25% of payroll, or $2500, whichever is HIGHER. Both of those are AUDITABLE, so be sure to compare both the premium, AND the actual rate they are charging you.

1.00 Has anyone used a roofer who was experienced with flat roofs?

Q. I am looking for a roofer who has specific extensive experience with flat roofs that you can recommend from personal experience.

A. It would help to know where you are located. You can call the local BBB for references for roofers. You can find smaller companies on the builder bulletin boards at places like Lowes or Home Depot. A roofing supplier will have one of these boards too. Most will not recommend any one company, hence the use of the board for their business cards. Make sure and check references of other customers they've done work for. Flat roofs can be tricky and will tend to leak if not done correctly. Good luck.

1.00 Hey professional roofers, what's wrong with my newly finished roof?

Q. I went into the attic after the job was done......many of the 1x6 sheathing boards were beat up pretty good. it looks like they got broken up some when the shingle guys were putting nails through them. some of the boards have broken up parts as big as my hand that i can see right up through to the felt under the shingles. i feel like asking my roofer to redo this. i feel that these boards should have been replaced. it doesn't even look like i would be able to walk around up there without risking more damage .....roofer is coming to look at it today....what do you think? is this normal, or am i overreacting? thanks!!!!!

A. Some chipping of aspenite is normal if that is what you have one your roof you need to have them replace the boards with good ones any breaks or chunks or spots with holes will only show in the finish job as dips and sags and could leak later on worse in area`s with lots of rain and snow and wind even worse are roofs that have a low pitch or are flat a good job starts at the beginning -ie a is only as good as its foundation if your base it no good the roof will not last and could come crashing in and flood your house

1.00 What are the pros and cons to building a flat roof instead of a triangle roof on a greenhouse?

Q. My girlfriends building a small greenhouse for our apartment balcony, and we were thinking it would be easier to build a greenhouse with a flat roof instead of a triangle roof, just like some commercial building have flat roofs. Is there a reason why every greenhouse I've ever seen has a triangle roof?

A. Well it would depend on the kind of material you are using. If it is a soft vinyl/plastic, then it could get ruined by rain. An angled roof lets the water run down the sides easier, while a flat roof can sometimes collect water, making the roof sag down or even burst if it builds up enough.

1.00 How much do the Amish charge to build a roof?

Q. I know this question is usually based on location, but... I have a flat roof house in the country. Flat roofs are awful. It always leaks. A neighbor suggested that we hire some of the local Amish to build a pitched roof, but had no idea how much they generally charge to do it.

A. I've found the Amish to be considerably cheaper, they use better supplies and their workmanship is much better. I got 5 estimates for replacing our roof on this 100+ year old home. Yeah, it's steep but not one of those with all the valleys and stuff. I threw the high and the low out immediately. Threw another one out because he was taking short cuts and when asked about it gave me a smart answer. The difference between the remaining two was about $500. The Amish quote was using 40 years guaranteed metal roofing, stainless steel screws, 2 x 4 lumber to screw the metal roof to and stainless steel snow breaks along with all the flashing and trim pieces were factory painted to match the roof and the insulation "bubble" wrap. The non-Amish quote remaining was still higher; no insulation, plastic snow breaks, plain old aluminum flashing and trim and 1 x 2 lumber. We went with the Amish quote and are extremely happy with the results! They really took their time and made each piece of trim fit properly even though this old house is anything but straight! They cleaned up all the debris and hauled it away also. And they were very nice to have around, very polite and pleasant. And they discovered our one gutter was plugged up and they cleaned it out for us while they were right there! The transformation was far better than we had expected. Not often (now days) does something exceed your expectations. The total was about $6,500 and that included 2 porch roofs and a patio roof with clean acrylic panels. We noticed that there was a good 10 degree difference in the upstairs during hot weather right away. And it does seem to be warmer but we really haven't had much cold weather yet but I'm sure we will be saving on the heat this year also!

Flat Roofs

 Roofing - Flat Roofs Although flat roofs or built up roofs are more commonly found in commercial building than in homes, they are well suited to residential structures. Flat roofing is installed by using layers of hot tar and roofing felt alternately and then covering this with a layer of gravel. Layers of fiberglass based asphalt sheeting and hot bitumen may also be used in flat roof installation. Flat roofing is also known as tar or gravel roofing because of the gravel layering that they have which helps minimize damage from the sun. Our Buffalo, NY area specialist roofing contractors bring years of experience in flat roofing industry and are prepared to help you resolve all kinds of roofing issues, including those relating to roofing estimate.

 roofing company in Buffalo, New York Flat roofing does not require heavy duty maintenance minimizing up keep costs. Generally they come with warranties of 12 years but they will need to be replaced once their durability ends. However flat roofing tends to leak as soon as it is punctured. This can be avoided by using paving stones to protect the roofing membrane. Avoid collection of water after the rains by installing drains at the edges.

To locate a local Buffalo, New York area flat roofing specialist who is well versed in all aspects of flat roofing, including aspects involving roofing estimate, then you can fill out the form above. To find a qualified flat roofing contractor in the Buffalo area, just fill out the form below and you will hear from up to 4 of our expert flat roofing contractors. You will get free estimates, with no obligations, and within 48 hours!

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