Q: Does where I live have anything to do with the type of roof I have?
A: The simple answer is YES; in climates with above average days where the temperature is below freezing, roofing materials that absorb moisture are less desirable due to the freeze-thaw effect damaging the material and shortening the life of the roof.
Q: Which roofing material is best for my home?
A: There are a number of factors to consider here; you need to consider the climate (Hot, Mild or Cold), architecture or your home and local building codes. A particular look of the roofing material can accent your home. With the other factors in mind, it is always best to go with a Class “A” Fire Rated roofing material.
Q: Does the steepness of the roof matter?
A: Yes, There is always a balance here between the architectural design of the building and the steepness or (pitch) of the roof. The steeper the roof the faster the water will run off. So in locations where rain and snow are concern the roofs tend to be steeper than warm dry climates. Remember the faster your remove the water, the less likely the roof is to leak.
Q: My roof only leaks during really windy storms, what is going on?
A: Most roofs are designed to shed water and are not waterproof. Water-shedding is achieved by the overlapping of the roofing materials starting at the bottom (eave) of the roof and working your way to the top (Ridge). This shedding method is utilized on grass huts to multi-million dollar structures, yet strong winds can overcome gravity and force water work its way between the shedding layers and into the building at locations that typically never leak. It is not uncommon for a number of homes in your city or town to experience leaks during high-wind rainstorms.
Q: The home inspector said my roof is damaged at a number of different locations, but the family room ceiling is the room with evidence of stains, why is that?
A: Let me start by saying that any damage or defect with the potential to leak is not good. Now with that said, a hole in the roof closer to the bottom (eave) is more likely to leak than a hole closer to the top (Ridge). The simple fact is that the volume of water increases as it runs down the roof surface, so more water will pass over the hole in the lower area of the roof then the hole in the higher area.
Q: Are all of the stains on my ceilings from roof leaks?
A: It is a good chance that they are from roof leaks, however; other factors can come into play. You could have plumbing leaks, but that would be a much larger issue than ceiling stains. How about the conditioned-air ducts; if you have a home that was constructed with a heating system only and poorly insulated ducts were routed through the ceiling and an air-conditioning system was added to the home without installing the appropriate (better insulated) ducts. On hot and humid days the temperature in the attic may be well over 100 degrees. Turning on the air-conditioner to cool the home will lower the temperature of the ducts promoting condensation on the ducts from the hot humid air in the attic. As more moisture collects, it begins to drip and may show up as stains on the ceilings.
Think of a glass of ice-water sitting on the kitchen table and how moisture collects on the outside of the glass; the glass is not leaking, it is the moisture in the air cooling and condensing or changing from a vapor (gas) to a liquid, the same thing may be happening in your attic especially on un-insulated or exposed metal components.