Forget about the dreaded hot tin roof. They have evolved into energy-saving, cost-effective roofing materials. If you have it in the budget, it’s always a good idea to go with the most durable, long lasting material for the job. In most cases, this is metal. Although initially this will cost you more, a metal roof can last almost twice as long as a traditional asphalt roof, and is more energy efficient. In addition to this, metal roofs are trending as a more modern, sleek look for your home.
• Are available in a wide range of styles, colors and textures
• Are fire resistant and have a high fire rating
• Protect roofs against sun damage
• Galvanized steel roofs resist rust and corrosion
• Can last for up to 50 years.
A: Anybody who lives where hurricanes or tornadoes are a regular threat needs to know a little about emergency repairs. But that same know-how can be helpful in other parts of the country, too. It doesn’t take much for a heavy tree limb to snap and take out part of a roof, for instance.
Basically, what you want to do is cover the damage with a woven plastic tarp that is held in place with 1×3 wood strips. Here’s how I do it. First I roll one end at least twice around a long 1×3, then screw it to the undamaged side of the roof. The 1×3 “roll” should be against the roof so it won’t collect water and debris. The rest of the tarp goes over the ridge and down the other side of the roof several feet beyond the damage. Then I roll the opposite end of the tarp around another 1×3 and screw it to the roof sheathing, roll side down. Now it’s just a matter of using more 1x3s and screws to hold down the tarp’s sides. They don’t have to be rolled in the tarp. A “blue roof” isn’t pretty, I’ll admit, but it will keep the weather out until someone can repair the damage.
Having said that, this type of emergency repair is best left to someone who has the equipment and skill to do it safely. Roofs are treacherous, particularly when wet, and tarps are slippery even when dry. You don’t want to be wrestling with one in high winds, either. Better to submit a claim for property insurance than to have your family submit a claim for life insurance.
A: Those galvanized metal straps and clips that strengthen the connection between walls and rafters really do help to hold a house together in high winds. But it will be next to impossible to reach those spots from the attic. The only way to retrofit hurricane clips in most houses is by cutting out a section of the siding and the wall sheathing at every spot where a rafter rests on a wall or taking off the roof sheathing at the eaves.
Here’s an easier option: Go up into the attic and run a bead of construction adhesive alongside each rafter where it meets the plywood roof deck. That simple measure will roughly triple a roof’s resistance to being torn off by wind.
A: Yes, you need to strip the shingles. I don’t like to shingle over any old shingles, but one layer is acceptable. Two is not. A single layer looks better, lasts longer, and won’t put any unnecessary extra weight on the roof.
As to which shingles to use, the longer the warranty, the heavier the shingle and the greater the cost. You want to look for the best warranty you can afford.