Skylights are designed to allow additional natural light into the home, not water when it rains. While the natural light is beneficial to your home, leaking skylights eliminate the benefits and cause problems, such as rotting structures or even mold.
Why Skylights Leak
It isn’t difficult to determine where the leak is coming from. You want to first ensure that your skylight is closed all the way. Next, make sure that the leak isn’t coming from condensation on the underside of the skylight (more common than you think, especially in damp rooms and cold climates). Next, inspect the area around the skylight inside the house and outside checking for stained or damp surfaces. Remove any debris that has accumulated on the leaking skylight and check it for cracks. If cracks are found, seal them with clear silicone.
Inspecting Skylight Flashing and Nearby Roofing
When you’ve determined that the water is coming from the outside, make sure that all roofing and flashing near the skylight are installed correctly and functioning properly. Nail down any loose shingles. If you notice pinholes or corrosion on the flashing, it needs to be replaced. Make sure that there are no gaps between the flashing and roofing material, as this can result in leaks.
Sealing Skylight Flashing
Remove any debris or water that has accumulated between the flashing and roofing. Lift the shingles up so that you can gain access to the skylight flashing. A putty knife should be used to apply some roofing cement between the roofing and flashing offering a protective layer against future leaks. Check this sealant every several months to ensure it is still functioning. If it has dried out or has begun to peel, remove it and apply a brand new layer.
Handling leaking skylights can be done on your own; however, if you are uncomfortable performing work on your roof, give us a call and we’ll be happy to inspect things for you. We are a certified and licensed roofing professional and can fix your leaking skylight quickly and accurately. Click here for a free inspection.
Most homeowners don’t look at their roof except for when they are backing out of or pulling in the driveway. However, it’s important to actually perform a thorough inspection of your roof twice a year – in spring and again in fall – to keep your roof in tip-top shape. By doing this, you can make minor repairs throughout the year preventing costly repairs that could have crept up down the road had those minor repairs not been made, or possibly needing a new roof altogether.
It’s spring and if you haven’t examined your roof, then here’s what you need to do and look for. First, get a flashlight and head on up to your attic. There are four things to primarily look for in your attic:
- Locate areas where you notice sagging of the roof deck.
- Locate signs of leaking or any form of water damage.
- Locate areas with trails and dark spots.
- Locate areas where you can see outside light shining in through the roof.
Once you’ve examined your roof from the inside (your attic), it’s time to head outside. You’ll want to examine the roof for several things from missing shingles to algae growth. Here’s what you need to do when you perform the exterior roof check:
- Scan your roof to determine if there are any singles that are missing, torn, cracked or bald.
- Inspect the roof for any wear or loose material around pipes, vents, chimneys and any other penetrations.
- Examine the shingles for granules, which is the shingles protection layer against the sun. Shingle granules in your gutters may be a sign of advanced wear.
- Look for any signs of rot, moisture or mold. Wet spots do not necessarily mean that the problem is in that immediate location, as water will travel prior to dripping. Bacteria, fungi and mold can begin growing within just 24 to 48 hours of a problem related to water.
- Survey all gutters and downspouts to ensure they are secure, stable and free from any form of debris. Make certain that drains are open so that water can exit.
- Ensure that all dryer, kitchen and bath vents do not only go into the attic space, but also the outside of the home.
Sure, all this roof inspection and examination doesn’t sound fun, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. If you detect problems early, then you are less likely going to find yourself needing a premature roof replacement. If your roof is in too bad of shape for repair and a new roof is necessary, it’s best to have a professional conduct the work as it is a tough and dangerous project to do on your own.
With your roof being an essential in life, it’s important to maintain its appearance and stability so that you and your family stay safe. By doing so, you can rest assured that your family will stay safe and sound for many years to come.
If you need us to take a look, please call or email us for a free roof inspection.
Replacement windows are a tremendous way to save money compared to your cold, drafty windows. They also enhance the overall appearance of your home. Choosing the right windows is sometimes a little overwhelming, but it can also be exciting to spruce up your home at the same time.
Having double pane replacement windows allows a barrier between the inside of your home and the exterior by having air between two panes of glass. This helps insulate your home from hot and colds weather extremes. And at the same time, it reduces your home’s energy costs and changes its decor.
You can find replacement windows to match your home with many options: shapes, sizes, and styles. Basically, there are four types of replacement windows:
- Replacement windows will add light and style to your home
- Skylights brighten the room and adds an impressive design element
- Sliding doors are another form of replacement windows
- The slider helps you save on energy, especially in summer, because you can leave the screened portion open.
Replacement windows have several ways in which they open:
- Casement windows with vertical hinges that swing in or out by winding a handle
- Double or single hung types made of two cases that slide up and down
- Sliding windows that move horizontally
- Plain fixed form windows that don’t open at all, but let the light come in.
Of the types of windows, vinyl windows tend to be the popular choice as compared to aluminum, wood, and fiberglass. Theyare energy efficient, easy to install, and easy to maintain. They provide a high degree of insulation. The maintenance is wonderful as they practically require no maintenance due to their durable surfaces which are already stained, finished, and sealed. The exterior casing of vinyl windows resists fading or wear from ultraviolet sunlight, making them far more durable and lasting than aluminum or wood.
The ultimate replacement window is the triple-pane windows that have three pieces of glass with layers of air between them. Air absorbs heat and cold much better than glass. This will help you further reduce utility costs if you replace the air with a gas called argon.
Call us today to find out more. We provide free estimates and home evaluations. 855-665-7663.
Insulation for your garage can be very important, especially if your home has a bedroom or bonus/game room over your garage. The room above can certainly be cooler in the winter and hotter in the summer, as compared to the rest of your home. Insulating the garage can even this out and can save money on your utility bills.
First, you will need to evaluate your options for installing the insulation:
- Are you going to do it? Or to hire a professional insulation contractor?
- Are the walls open – can you see the stud walls, or is the garage sheet rocked?
- How large is your garage?
- What’s your budget?
- What are your local building codes for garages?
DIY or Hire an Insulation Contractor
This solely depends on your level of expertise and comfort in tackling a project like this. If you have any apprehension, then it is suggested to at least consult with a licensed insulation contractor.
Type of Insulation
If your garage walls are open, then you will need to install lame-spread rated batt insulation and then install sheetrock to secure the insulation as well as improve its performance.
If your walls are already coved with sheetrock, then the blown-in insulation is the easier way. In this method, of course you will not have to remove and replace the sheetrock.
You will want to either check your local building codes yourself or if you hire an insulation contractor, they will take care of this. Sheetrock thickness, as well as fire codes, have to be met in order to comply with local code. Also you may have to install smoke detectors as well. You will certainly want to comply with the local building codes, and make sure your storage of liquids such as gasoline for the lawn equipment, propane, etc are stored in such a way that it too complies with the code.
If you need any help with either evaluating your situation or hiring someone to insulate your garage, please give us a call. You can email us too for a free estimate.
Many home owners face the challenge of whether they simply need a roof repair or have their roof replaced completely. Often times your roof simply needs a repair, especially if your roof is not very old. But finding that leak can indeed be troublesome to the untrained eye.
Improper installation or defective flashings are the cause of nearly 90% of all roof leaks. Some examples of are: chimney, step, apron and valley – where two roofs join together. During the roof repair, it is important to look for any roof deterioration that could potentially lead to further problems. If leaks are ignored, the structure of the entire home may be threatened if and when the frame begins to rot from continued exposure to moisture.
There are a number of factors that may lead to roof leaks, resulting in the need for roof repair:
Clogged or improperly installed gutters. This can cause water to overflow and leak into the inside walls and inside the home. During the winter, a roof leak along the inside walls or basement is most commonly caused by an ice dam. Melting snow and ice will travel over the back of the gutter or through the side of gutter spikes and down the walls.
Flue pipes inside of a chimney may cause water leaks if they are not properly aligned. Also, if the flashing around the chimney has deteriorated or not properly installed, this can cause water leaks.
3) Siding & Windows
Improperly installed or defective siding or windows are common causes for roof leaks as well. When a roof leaks after heavy, wind-driven rain, it is usually caused by a problem with the windows or siding.
The sealant around the glass can deteriorate over the years from constant weather and sunlight allowing water to enter through the skylight. This is a very common problem in older skylights, but generally an easy fix. Using outdoor silicone to seal the perimeter of the glass will usually take care of the issue.
Also, in order to maintain a pleasing eye appeal, roof cleaning is important to remove dirt and debris. It is critical that homeowners do not use a pressure washer on their roof as the force is often too strong for shingles and may result in shingle damage or complete removal. In addition, the strong force of a pressure washer would wreak havoc on the interior of the home if there were to be an undetected leak somewhere in the roof. It is also important that gutters be properly cleaned in order to prevent a buildup of rainwater, ice or other debris that may lead to added weight and damage. By maintaining a clean roof, you will ensure pleasant curb appeal and a full functioning roof system.
It is very important that home owners check their roof regularly. If you are not comfortable checking for roof repair, then we can certainly help.
This was from a little while back, but this article in the Huntsville Times was a nice gesture from Mr. Vollmer. We are glad we were able to help!
Roofing job fortune
In December my 86-year-old mother-in-law had the misfortune to be a victim of an unscrupulous roofing contractor that took a $2,300 deposit for roofing materials and then left town.
I had the good fortune of meeting Mr. Keith Fusion of C and K Roofing and Construction at the builders show at the VBC. I told him of my mother-in-law’s problem and asked him if he would give her a bid for her roof replacement. He inspected her roof and gave her a fair bid to do the job.
A week or so after she received her bid, Mr. Fusion called me and said he was really troubled by her misfortune. He said he had gotten a shingle supplier to donate the shingles for her roof and that C and K would do the installation for the difference between her insurance payment and the $2,300 even though it would not cover all their expenses.
They proceeded to do an excellent job. I think Keith Fusion and C and K Roofing deserve to be recognized for their consideration and compassion. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if every contractor could be as honest and caring as these folks?
John B. Vollmer
One of the most common questions of a homeowner regarding their roof (and roof damage) is whether a new one is needed or if you could get by with replacing it. If this is something you are asking yourself, then it is important that you know the key danger signs of a failing roof, which are as follows:
- Attic leakage following a heavy rain or build-up of ice.
- Staining and/or mildew or mold growth on interior walls and ceilings.
- Missing, curled or cracked shingles.
- Peeling or blistering of paint (interior and/or exterior).
- Exterior decay of siding and/or sheathing.
These are just a few of the most common and most dangerous signs of roof damage and the need for a new roof.
It is important to conduct roof inspection regularly, especially if you live in an area where you extreme weather is experienced – particularly heavy snowfall and ice build-up , tornadoes and/or hurricanes. You can perform a roof inspection on you own, but you must make certain that you know what you are looking for and to use adequate safety equipment so that falls and injury can be prevented. Here are a few things to look for during your roof damage inspection:
- Check under overhands and eaves for any damage that might indicate water leakage.
- Check for the growth of any algae, mold or lichens.
- Examine any torn, cracked, warped, curled or missing shingles.
- Check for open joints or seams, which could result in leakage.
- Examine gutters for signs of leaks, sagging and granule accumulation (which is the pieces on top of shingles).
- Inspect the roof for growth or dark patches.
- Inspect the roof’s structure for any buckling or sagging.
- Look for any rusted or popped up nails as well as stains around the nails.
- Inspect roof ventilation sources for clogs and to ensure there is proper ventilation.
- Examine the roof decking from the attic for any rotted wood.
- In the attic, check for any areas that are allowing outside light to come in.
- Check the attic for any dark spots, sagging sheathing, holes and signs of leaks.
If you are uncomfortable with examining your roof yourself, that’s okay, we would be more than happy to assist you with your roof inspection. By hiring a professional to conduct the inspection for roof damage, you can rest assured that it will be inspected thoroughly. Please give us a call 855-665-ROOF, or request a free inspection.
Gutters prevent water from flowing off your roof and over entrances to your home and porch. Even a light rain can create a wall or sheet of water that runs off the edge of your roof, resulting in wet entryways and potentially damaging yards and flower beds due to constant flow of water.
Keeping your Home Cleaner
Without gutters, rainfall will flow directly from the roof in a sheet of water and can splash dirt onto the lower part of your home on the exterior walls. As mentioned above, it can certainly damage lawns and flower beds, even shrubs and small trees.
Lawn and Yard Erosion
Even with light rain, erosion of your lawn is at risk. Heavy rain only amplifies the problem. Eroding dirt can cause water build-up or puddles in your yard damaging your grass and flowers.
Prevent Wood Rot
Homes without gutters typically are more likely to have wood rot on the soffit and fascia. The water has a unique skill in finding any crack or crevasse and ultimately damaging exterior paint and caulking.
Keeping Your Basement Dry
Funneling water away from your house is key with keeping your basement dry. If the water continues to buildup at the base of your home, it can seep through the foundation creating cracks and potential flooding.
Keep Your Foundation Stable
Sitting water and constant wet conditions will eventually begin to erode the foundation of your home, causing settling and issues with your home’s stability.
Gutter systems don’t just keep the water off your porch, but are a critical element of protecting your home. Gutters channel and funnel water where you want it to go and ultimately harmlessly into your lawn and/or drain system. If you need any advice or interested in having your gutters inspected, please give us call 855-665-ROOF or you can email us.
When it comes to household repairs, you are more likely to fix appliances on the interior of your home; however, occasionally, your roof will become old and start to leak. Alternatively, a storm could cause a tree to fall on your roof resulting in the need for a new roof or a storm could possibly tear your roof right off. There are a number of Mother Nature occurrences that could damage your roof as well as non-weather related factors such as mold, but regardless of the reason that your roof is damaged, you need a new one.
When it comes to needing a new roof, the first thing you need to determine is whether or not you need an entirely new roof. Sometimes a small repair can fix the problem. If your roof is at least 10 years old then a new roof is probably the wiser option; however, if there is just a leak in one part of the house, it could be caused by something little like a nail hole or a part of the roof that was not sealed properly.
You will need to determine what type of shingle you want on your roof. There are a number of different types such as three-tab shingles and architectural shingles. There is also an assortment of colors that you will need to select from including gray, brown and black as well as whether or not you want a dark tint or a light tint. To determine this, consider the color of your home – the bricks or siding. Of course, your personal preference will come into play when deciding on your shingles.
Another important factor will be whether or not you want to tear off the old roof or not. Some contractors will recommend it while others will not. The general rule of thumb is that if there are three layers of shingles on your roof then you need to tear the roof off. No more than two or three shingles should be on one given roof at a time and most contractors wouldn’t even recommend having more than one layer. By tearing off your old roof, you will be able to see the roof deck and be able to determine if there are any issues there such as rotten wood. If there are, they will exposed and can be repaired easily and depending on the problem, future damage could be eliminated.
One of the most important things that you need to ensure is that you are hiring a skilled contractor. Hire someone that has experience in the roofing industry and has a proven track record. If you forget to do this, you could end up with more problems than you had to begin with. Your roof is what covers your entire home and shelters you from the weather. You need to make sure that it is done right so hiring an experienced roofing contractor is the most important step in needing a new roof.
North Alabama Businesses and Professionals Recognized for Their Excellence
Best in Business Award Association has announced 40 recipients of their 2013 award for the North Alabama area. Quality, integrity, trust and experience are the cornerstones of this prestigious award, which recognizes excellence for businesses and professionals.
Recipients of the award are Admiral Cleaning & Restoration, Alabama Foundation Specialists, Alabama Hearing Associates, All Needz Rental Center, All Star Pools, Annette Hale’s Indoor Comfort Systems, Bragg’s Furniture, Breland Homes, Brooks Lock & Key, C and K Roofing & Construction, Cartridge World, Christina Smith – State Farm, Creative Catering, DogWatch Hidden Fence of North Alabama, EyeCare Associates – Drs. Sullins, Lee & Sullins, 1st Family Mortgage Company, Flint River Animal Hospital, Fox 54 WZDX-TV, General Shale Brick, Inside Huntsville & Just for Women Magazines, Insight Home Inspection, Inspiring Smiles Dentistry (formerly Toney’s Family Dentistry), Kemp’s Flooring, Kirkland Custom Cabinets, Kirkland’s Pest Control, Ledford’s Landscaping, Mac Resource, Millar Chiropractic Clinic, Mr. Electric, Mobile Impressions, Natural Stone Concepts, Rocket City Broadcasting (Rocket 95.1, Star 99.1, Sunny 98/1550AM), Rocket Harley-Davidson, Rosenblum Realty, Safe-T-Shelter, Sound Depot, 24/7 Health Club & Wellness Center, Valley Title and Closing Services, Visiting Angels Senior Homecare and Woody Anderson Ford.