Though icicles might look nice, they’re trouble for your roof and rain gutters. When ice is damming up in your rain gutters, the weight can bend your gutters and even cause them to pull free from your house. Ice dams also force snowmelt to seep between the shingles where it can refreeze and create gaps leading to roof leaks and costly damage. One of the ways homeowners tackle this problem is heat cables which are basically hot electrical wires that zig zag across the area just above the rain gutters. But do they really wor

Sometimes they do but more often than not, they’re a waste of money. Here are a few reasons why.

They’re a temporary fix

Perhaps the biggest reason to avoid heat cables is that they don’t address the root cause of the problem and as such, they aren’t usually the most effective solution. Ice dams form when the snow on your roof is melting before the temperatures are high enough for it to do so naturally. If the snow is melting due to warm temperatures, it won’t refreeze in your gutters. But if warm air from your home is leaking into the attic space and causing the snow on your roof to melt, you’re going to get ice dams. Heat cables don’t fix this problem and in some cases, the snow can still reach your rain gutters and freeze there.

They’re expensive

While the upfront cost for having heat cables installed might not be too much, they’re a huge drain on your energy bills which are probably high enough if you’ve got warm air from your home leaking into your attic.

They’re ugly

Even if heat cables were cost effective and worked 100% of the time, they simply don’t look good on your roof.

If you have had problems with ice dams in the past, contact a Spokane roofing company to see about an inspection. Not only can a roofer spot damage from ice dams, the roofer can also inspect your entire roof system to make sure it’s up to the task of preventing ice dams in the future

Home improvement news brought to you by bartonroof.com

Source: builderonline.com/newsletter/do-heat-cables-really-prevent-ice-dams_c

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If your roof is going to spring a leak this year, chances are it’s going to be during the winter. Remember that even the smallest leaks can lead to major problems like mold, rot, and pest infestations. Here are five things you can do to decrease the likelihood of a roof leak this winter; some of them may surprise you.

Have your roof inspected and repaired

Of the five tips, this one should be the least surprising. If you want to prevent a roof leak you need to make sure your roof is in good shape before winter is underway. This starts with a professional roof inspection and ends with going ahead with any repairs the roofer recommends. There are Spokane roofing companies that will do the inspection for free and provide you with an estimate for any needed work.

Clean your rain gutters

This one may seem less obvious but your rain gutters have a lot to do with preventing roof leaks. They provide a way for water to get off your roof. If they’re clogged with leaves and other debris, water can pool up on the shingles and lead to roof leaks.

Clear debris off the roof

For the same reason you want to keep your rain gutters clean, you should keep the roof itself clean. Any debris that accumulates on your roof can impede water’s path off of your roof.

Trim tree branches

Trimming your trees will limit how often you need to clear debris out of your rain gutters and off of your roof, especially if you have a lot of taller trees that are near your home.

Replace attic insulation

What does attic insulation have to do with roof leaks? Proper insulation will keep the hot air in your home from melting snow and ice on your roof prematurely. When the ice and snow on your roof melt before it’s warm enough outside, it refreezes in the rain gutters leading to ice dams and roof leaks.

Source: portlandtribune.com/pt-insiders/329493-209263-keep-your-roof-leak-free-this-winter

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The technology behind solar roofing panels has really improved a lot in recent years making them more energy efficient, more affordable, and lot more popular. But before you jump on the solar roofing bandwagon, there are a few things you’ll want to consider first.

Your roof warranty

Your roof is warrantied in two ways. The shingles/tiles themselves come with a manufacturer’s warranty should they fail prematurely through no fault of your own. The roofing company who installed the roof (assuming you went with a professional) most likely insures their work so if the roof fails due to improper installation and the manufacturer doesn’t cover it, the roofing company will. When you install solar panels on top of an existing roof, there’s a good chance it can void either or both warranties. To be safe, put the solar panel installer in contact with the roofing company so you know where you’ll stand with your roof’s warranties after a solar panel installation.

Cost vs. savings

Though the cost of solar roofing has come down, it’s still expensive. Solar installers will tell you that the initial cost up front is worth it when you consider the savings but that’s not necessarily true. Depending on your climate and which way your roof faces, solar may not make good financial sense. Also don’t assume you’ll earn a tax credit since that incentive isn’t always being offered.

Alternatives

Though solar roofing is the only type of roof that generates electricity, there are roofing materials out there like clay tiles or metal that are much more energy efficient than asphalt shingles that can drastically lower your energy bills.

Home improvement news brought to you by bartonroof.com

Source: tucson.com/will-putting-up-solar-panels-void-roof-warranty/article_5697b942-89ae-11e6-ab9e-d79e31f49564.html

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When John Plaff of Pasco, Florida paid John Iacovino, owner of Ike’s roofing, $8,800 for the roof he installed, he thought everything was squared away. What he didn’t know was that Iacovino never paid the roofing material supplier for the roof materials. As a result, Plaff ended up with a $3,700 lien against his home for the cost of the roof shingles. Plaff wasn’t the only one burned by Ike’s roofing. At least 15 other clients of Iacovino are seeking extortion charges against him and the Pasco Sheriff’s office says that approximately 70 properties have liens against them because Iacovino didn’t pay for the roofing materials. In total, Ike’s roofing owes about $150,000 for building materials to various suppliers in the area.

Iacovino is now behind bars but that does nothing for Plaff and other victims of Ike’s roofing who are not stuck with liens against their properties. Since this can happen to any unsuspecting homeowner, it’s important for people to be very careful about who they hire to do roofing work.

Get several estimates

One of the most important things homeowners can do is get multiple estimates for roofing work. If you only get one estimate and hire the first roofer who agrees to do the job, you have nothing to compare that roofer’s price to. If you get at least 3-4 estimates, then you can spot bids that seem especially low. In the case of Ike’s roofing, Iacovino could afford to bid low since he had no intentions of paying for roofing materials he was going to use. Automatically going with the lowest bid, especially when it’s significantly lower is risky since it’s often a sign that the roofer is cutting corners.

Home improvement news brought to you by bartonroof.com
Source: wtsp.com/news/local/sheriff-roofing-contractor-skips-bills-leaves-70-victims/324806379

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Winter tends to be the hardest time of the year for your roof. If your roof is going to fail and let water into your home, it’s most likely going to happen during the winter months. The other downside to the winter is that it’s the hardest time to get out and do roof repairs when it’s cold and wet. Roofing experts recommend that homeowners start now to get their roofs ready for winter so that they’re in top shape before the severe weather hits. Here are a few maintenance tasks you should complete before the weather turns cold.

Replace damaged shingles

Over the years, shingles will wear out and become brittle. Some of your shingles may crack, curl, or become warped. Some may even come loose and blow away with a strong wind. Wherever you have damaged or missing shingles, your roof is vulnerable and can let water in. Replace these shingles now rather than waiting until it’s too late.

Examine your roof’s flashing

At the most vulnerable areas of your roof, around the edge and around the chimney, vents, and skylights you’ll have a metal underlayer called flashing. If your flashings have rusted or cracked, water can get through those areas so it’s important to inspect your roof’s flashing before winter hits.

Check the varge and fascia boards

The trim boards at the end of the roof that run from the eaves to the peak are called varge boards. The trim boards behind the rain gutters are called fascia boards. These protect the roof’s edges and keep the roof’s frame protected from moisture. If these boards are pulling loose or rotting, your roof may be compromised.

Repair your rain gutter system

Your rain gutters allow water to get off of your roof after rain or snow. Keep them clear of debris and make sure they’re securely attached to your roof. Watch for any rust or cracks in your system.

Home improvement news brought to you by bartonroof.com
Source: thedailyworld.com/lifestyle/nailing-it-down-autumn-weather-inspires-household-winter-prep

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There are a few things worse for your home than a roof that has fallen into disrepair. Your roof is your first line of defense, when it’s compromised, your entire home is put in jeopardy. A damaged roof can lead to costly interior water damage and pest control problems. Here are ten tips to make sure this doesn’t happen to you.

  1. Walk around your roof looking for shingles that have become dislodged or have fallen off completely.
  2. Use a pair of binoculars to look for cracked, curling, or otherwise damaged shingles.
  3. Keep an eye out for darker spots on your roof as this could be algae or mold.
  4. For metal roofs, look for seams that aren’t aligned properly.
  5. Inspect your chimney and the area immediately around it. There should be a tight seal around your chimney.
  6. Check the area where the roof meets the walls of your home. Discoloration or rot in the eaves or fascia are a bad sign.
  7. Make sure there are no holes permitting rodents to get into your attic space.
  8. Look for mold and water damage in your attic space.
  9. Keep your roof clear of debris such as leaves and branches.
  10. Trim back branches that hang over your roof so they don’t scratch it on a windy day.

Home improvement news brought to you by bartonroof.com
Source: yourhoustonnews.com/courier/news/ways-to-keep-a-good-roof-over-your-head/article_1247928c-32f7-50fd-9145-bb7b6d6b4d8e.html

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You’ve no doubt heard the phrase, “keeping a roof over your head.” In this popular phrase, the roof is symbolic of the entire home. It can be argued that the roof is the most important aspect of the home, the first line of defense between the outdoors and your home. There’s peace-of-mind that comes with having a good, strong roof over your head. On the flip side, having a roof that has fallen into disrepair can create a lot of stress.
The Better Business Bureau has offered some tips for getting the most out of your roof and keeping it in top shape.

Getting the most out of your roof

The expected lifespan of your roof varies widely based on the type of roof and the climate in your area. If you’re like the vast majority of Americans, you have an asphalt shingle roof. Asphalt shingle roofs come in varying grades but in general, you can expect to get about 15 to 20 years out of an asphalt shingle roof. The most important factor in determining the longevity of your roof is how well you take care of it. Homeowners can maximize the lifespan of their roof by following these tips offered by the BBB.

  • Periodically have your roof inspected. Though you can and should keep an eye on your roof yourself, you should also have a professional inspect your roof from time to time.
  • Clear away dead and overhanging branches. Overhanging branches can scratch up your roof and cause premature granule loss. Dead branches and leaves can also accumulate in your rain gutters which can shorten the life of your roof.
  • Take care of little problems before they become big problems. At the first sign of mold or a leak, or any other kind of roof damage, have a roofer come out and perform repairs. It can be a little costly but it’s better than having to replace your roof at ten years instead of 20 years.
  • After a point, it will become cheaper to replace your roof than to keep pouring money into patching up an old roof. Don’t put off replacing your roof when it gets to that point.

Home improvement news brought to you by bartonroof.com

Source: lillienews.com/articles/2015/08/11/bbb-tips-choosing-roofer#.Vds5dLJVghM

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Green roofs are the undisputed king of environment-friendly roofs. The materials are literally living things. They benefit the environment in numerous ways and tell your neighbors how environmentally-conscious you are. Unfortunately they’re also very expensive and difficult to maintain. As a result, it’s an impractical solution for the vast majority of homeowners. If reducing your carbon footprint is important to you but a green roof is out of the question, you may want to consider metal roofing instead.

Metal roofing is energy efficient


Asphalt shingles, the most popular roofing material absorbs heat and makes your AC work harder to keep you cool in the warmer months. Metal roofing is naturally reflective so it makes things easier on your AC.

Metal roofing is 100% recyclable

Though much of the waste generated by an asphalt shingle roof that’s being replaced is recyclable, it often ends up in landfills. Metal roofing, on the other hand, is 100% recyclable and can be turned into new roofing materials. You can explore the possibility of having a roof that’s made from recycled materials and you can bet that your roof, when it is replaced, is recycled again.

Metal roofing helps the environment


In urban areas, the collective effect of so many asphalt roofs can actually raise the ambient temperature in the area by as much as five degrees; this is known as the urban heat island effect and it affects air quality, greenhouse gas emissions, and water quality. If more homeowners used metal roofing instead of asphalt shingles, the consequences of the urban heat island would be greatly reduced and the environment would benefit as a result.

It turns out you don’t need to have a living roof to be environmentally conscious.

Home improvement news brought to you by bartonroof.com

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Buying a home is an exciting event. If it’s your first time buying a home, you’re probably especially anxious to sign on the dotted line and get the keys to your new home. But buying a home isn’t a decision you want to rush in. You want to make sure that you’re aware of any potential repairs that the home will need. One of the areas commonly in need of repair is the roof. Depending on the condition of the roof, these repairs can be quite costly. You’ll definitely want to know about any problems with the roof before you inherit those problems.

Questions to ask

When buying a home, ask these questions to find out whether you need to worry about roofing problems:

  • When was the current roof installed? The older it is, the sooner it will need to be repaired or replaced.
  • Is it the original roof? Has it been repaired or replaced? Is the existing roof installed on top of the older roof? If the roof is older but patched up, or if new shingles have been laid on top of old ones, expect to have more problems with your roof down the road.
  • Are there any known leaks? If so, is there any damage in the home resulting from leaks? If the answer is yes, these will need to be repaired immediately.


If you’re really serious about buying a home, you may even want to consider having the roof looked at by a professional roofer who can look for any other roofing problems such as gaps by the chimney or vents, damaged flashing, or damaged rain gutters.

Should you buy?

Of course, if there’s no major issues with the roof, you can feel more confident in buying the home. But if, on the other hand, there are some problems with the roof, that doesn’t necessarily mean you have to pass up on the home. Work with the current homeowner to have any roofing problems taken care of or estimate the cost of these repairs and agree on a lower price for the home to compensate you.

Just remember that the homeowner’s main concern is to sell the home. Often, homeowners go with the lowest bid when it comes to fixing the roof since they don’t have to live under it. It might be a good idea to work with the homeowner in selecting a roofing contractor with plenty of experience and a good reputation in the community.

Home improvement news brought to you by bartonroof.com
Source: the-daily-record.com/local%20news/2015/01/16/new-homebuyer-s-checklist-to-id-costly-repairs


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New homeowners learn quickly how important it is to stay on top of home maintenance tasks if they want to keep their home in good shape. One of the key aspects of the home that needs to be well-maintained is the roof. Anyone who has had a roof leak go unchecked can tell you how disastrous it can be. When a roof leak gets out of hand, it doesn’t take long to cost you thousands of dollars. It can lead to rot in your ceilings and walls and can damage your property inside your home. Roofing experts stress that now is the best time to inspect your roof before the weather turns cold.

When to inspect your roof

Most roofers suggest inspecting your roof at least once a year, and preferably twice. You should definitely be inspecting your roof in the late summer or early fall to make sure it’s in good shape for the upcoming harsh winter weather. Winter tends to be the hardest time of the year for your roof so if it’s not up to the task of protecting your home, the winter will take a serious toll on your home. If you’re inspecting twice a year, then the second time would be just after the winter to see how it held up. You may need to inspect multiple times per year if you experience especially harsh weather; it’s good to inspect your roof after a major storm in case there’s damage and you need to file a claim with your insurance company.

What to look for

There are five key areas you’ll want to check when inspecting your roof.

  • The shingles themselves. First check the roof shingles. You’re looking for any cracked, warped, loose, or missing shingles. Other issues might include moss, mold, or water that is pooling up on your roof’s surface or debris that is accumulating.
  • The flashing. Flashing is a metal underlayer. Watch for rust, cracks, or dents in the flashing as that can lead to water getting inside your home.
  • The roof overhang. If paint is peeling on the underside of your roof overhang, that’s a sign that there is moisture there and needs to be looked at by a professional.
  • Rain gutters. Your rain gutters should be kept clear of debris such as leaves, branches, dirt, and dislodged shingles. If you notice colored granules from your aging shingles, it’s a sign your roof needs replacing soon.
  • The attic. Finally, you should check the underside of your roof by heading into the attic space and looking for any signs of water damage there.


How to do it safely

The safest course of action is to have a licensed roofing contractor and perform the inspection. If you want to do it yourself however, make sure you inspect the roof on a day where the weather is good (no rain, snow, or strong winds). Use a sturdy ladder and make sure it’s on level ground. Wear rubber-soled shoes with good tread so you have traction when walking on the roof. Most importantly, don’t work alone. Have a buddy to steady the ladder and to be there just in case there’s an emergency.


Home improvement news brought to you by bartonroof.com
Source: telegram.com/article/ZZ/20150908/NEWS/150909915

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