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How to Choose a New Roof for Your Home

When it’s time to get your roof replaced, you want to know that the roof you choose will serve your home well for many years to come. Hiring someone to do a roof replacement installation is a big deal. The first thing you need to do is determine whether your roof is due for a makeover. It’s Time for a New Roof A roof typically lasts for between 20-25 years. Depending on how the previous roof was installed, it may need to be replaced sooner. If your current roof was placed over the top of an older roof, rather than the old roof being removed first, you will probably need to replace it closer to that 20-year mark. If you have a lot of storm damage to your roof and it is getting close to that 20-year mark, you may choose to simply replace the roof rather than pay for repairs, only to turn around and have to replace the roof in a couple more years. You can look at your roof and know whether it needs to be replaced if you know a few key things to look for: 1.       Shingles that are curling. If the shingles are starting to curl or fall apart, it’s a good sign that they are past their prime and need to be replaced. Check the side of the roof that faces the sun. These are the shingles that will be the most worn out. 2.       Missing shingles. If you have a room that has peaks and valleys, check the valleys for missing shingles. Missing shingles in this area in particular can make your home more susceptible to leaks. Sometimes a storm can blow individual shingles off a roof. While you may be able to have this repaired without replacing the whole roof, it is best to have the roof inspected to ensure that your home is well-protected. 3.       Spongy boards on the roof. If you climb to your roof, you may notice walking around that some boards have some give to them—we describe this as “spongy”. If you notice this, it is important to have the roof repaired or replaced quickly to prevent leaks from ruining your day. Making the Call If you have questions about your roof, it’s always best to call and have the roof inspected. While the cost for repairs or replacement can be steep, estimates…

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Roof Ready for Spring Checklist

Roofing repairs are never something that people enjoy jumping into. You'll probably never get super excited about the prospect of tackling a roofing job. It just doesn't seem like the most enjoyable or most exciting thing to do on your weekends. So, naturally, everyone wants to avoid any need for repairs or roof services, if it can be helped. When checking your roof, you want to make sure that you take copious notes of everything that you see. The best time to inspect your roof is in the spring and in the fall, before and after the harshest months hit. Let's be honest, nobody wants to be on the roof in the middle of July or August anyway. There should be some basic items on your checklist. First and foremost, you want to make sure that the gutters are cleared, and that you've cleaned away any obvious debris on the roof itself. This'll make your job much easier because you'll be able to make a more thorough inspection. Every homeowner should do this sort of upkeep periodically, but if you haven't been up there all winter long, there's bound to be some stuff to clear away. Second, you should check for any rust spots or cracked caulk on flashing. You'll need to make sure that you note the exact locations and the degree of the cracking or rust. This is a good time to take pictures. Third, you'll check the shingles. You need to note if any are curling, blistering, or buckling. In the south, the UV bombardment that shingles receive every summer can wear and age them very quickly. Fourth, you should check if the rubber boots around vents are cracked or worn. Again, you should be taking plenty of notes and pictures the whole time, identifying not only the damage but also the exact locations. Worker hands installing bitumen roof shingles - fastening one with nails, closeup The fifth step will vary depending upon your needs and ability. If you're comfortable making some basic repairs like replacing shingles or doing some caulking, you can pick up the materials and get to work, whenever you're able to set aside the time. Typically, you can expect a half-day of work to handle a few basic shingle repairs. If the work is more involved or you're not comfortable doing the repairs yourself, you'll…

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How to Prepare Your Home for Roof Replacement

You called the experts, received a free estimate, and picked out your new shingles. Soon, a crew of professionals will be climbing all over your roof, pulling, tearing, and hammering away. Having your roof replaced may seem like a big ordeal, but a little preparation can ensure a smooth transition.  Inside Your Home When work begins, dust will stir inside your home. You'll want to cover furniture, bedding, and clothing with cloth or plastic sheeting to protect your fabrics. Remove picture frames and mirrors from the walls and have them carefully stored. Chandeliers should be taken down if possible. If not, wrap them carefully with plastic sheeting to protect against falling dust and debris. If you store china or other breakables on wall-mounted shelving units, pack them away in bubble-wrap until the work is done. Loose nails or wall brackets can result in objects falling and breaking so it is better safe than sorry.  Outside Your Home Move outdoor patio furniture, grills, decorations, and potted plants as far away from the house as possible. Your roofers will need clear access to your roof and there is always the chance of falling debris. This means moving your garden gnomes to a safe distance--twenty feet away from your home, at least. This rule also applies to vehicles. Your roofers may need access to your driveway. The experts at Leaksmith only use a portable "Driveway Friendly Trailer." At the end of the work day, the trailer--and the trash --leave with the crew. Other companies use roll-off dumpsters that will sit there day and night until the project is complete. Roll-offs can also scratch and crack your pavement.  Remove solar panels, TV antennas, and satellite dishes. Swimming pools and hot tubs should be covered in case of falling debris. It is also a good idea to cut your grass before work begins. This will make finding debris easier during the cleanup process. While work is ongoing, remember to wear protective footwear when you venture outside. While the experts try to keep debris to a minimum, sometimes nails can come loose and become lost in your grass. Watch your step and wear shoes to be on the safe side.   Family and Pets At Leaksmith, safety is a priority, however, accidents can happen. This is why children and animals should not be allowed to wander the…

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10 Different Roofing Services for Your Home
Roofer preparing part of bitumen roofing felt roll for melting by gas heater torch flame

10 Different Roofing Services for Your Home

Want to keep your roof in good shape? Your roof is responsible from protecting your home against the elements, and it can make the difference between a comfortable home and one that is always too hot or cold. Here are 10 roofing services that can help you get more life out of your roof. Leak Identification and Repairs Roof leaks are often small and difficult to spot with the naked eye. A roofing contractor is an expert at finding and repairing leaks that are causing water damage in your home. If you notice mold or a musty smell in your attic, a roof leak is likely the cause. Shingle Replacement Shingles often fall off because of wind or damage. This can cause leaks and further damage to your roof. Luckily, they are easy and inexpensive for a contractor to replace. Mold Remediation Mold can spread rapidly and cause serious damage to your roof. It can also be dangerous to you and your family. Have your roof thoroughly cleaned to remove all traces and make sure mold doesn’t come back. Roof Waterproofing In certain climates, your roof may need special treatment to withstand the elements. There are various types of waterproofing options available that may better protect your roof against rain and snow. Gutter Repairs Your gutters help protect your roof and home from water damage. They should be repaired any time they become leaky, rusty, or otherwise damaged. Flashing Installation Flashing also helps your roof shed water efficiently. Make sure there is enough flashing to do the job, and make sure it hasn’t been damaged or grown rusty. Ventilation Repairs Without adequate ventilation, your attic will grow hot and humid, and your whole house will suffer. Have your roofing contractor repair damaged ventilation to keep your home cooler in the summer. If your roof doesn't have sufficient ventilation, more may have to be installed. Chimney Repairs Roofing contractors can also repair a cracked chimney or chimney cap. Cracks in your chimney cause your home to be less insulated, increasing your energy bills all year long. Skylight Installation A skylight can bring natural light to an otherwise dark and gloomy room. This can help save money on artificial lights and also gives the room a more natural, relaxing atmosphere. Roof Replacement When all other roofing services fail, you may need your roofing contractors to…

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Install a New Roof This Winter

Most homeowners think that they need to have their roof replacement installation done during the summer or even the fall before temperatures start to drop. You couldn't possibly replace your roof in the winter, right? Not true. It's possible to have roof repair done any time throughout the year, and there are even reasons why winter roof installation may be the best choice for you. It's the middle of a blustery winter night when a gust of wind sweeps by your home, knocking several branches off of your tree. The branches fall, cushioned by the snow on your roof. Great for the branch, but now you have damage to your roof. When damage happens to your roof, you can't wait until the spring to get it fixed. Obviously, you need to get it fixed right away. However, it doesn’t have to be an emergency for roofers to make repairs in the winter. Homeowners can have their roofs repaired whenever they need to. Waiting until summer to repair those damaged shingles allows the shingles to freeze, thaw and freeze again. This cycle can lead to more damage to your roof and leaks and damage inside your home. It’s best to have repairs done as soon as possible to save money and to prevent further damage to your roof. At Leaksmith, our roofers are professionally trained and experienced to work on your roof no matter the temperatures outside. Typically, it’s best to install a roof when temperatures are at least 40 degrees Fahrenheit.  Winter temperatures in Lawrenceville don’t often dip lower than that, so it’s almost always ideal weather for a roof install. Some roofers even prefer working in winter. Heat rises, and roofs tend to be 10-15 degrees warmer than the outside temperatures, making summer work a real rooftop sizzler! It may feel cold outside, but for the professionals on your roof, it’s the prime opportunity to work in comfortable temperatures. There are some challenges to replacing a winter roof. For example, we may slightly modify the roofing materials we use during the winter to ensure adhesives bond despite the cool temps.  At Leaksmith, we know which adhesives and shingles are best suited to work for the climate in which we install, and for the roof itself to be highly effective in the local elements. Because many people believe that roofers only work…

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