Atlanta Roofing Concepts and Issues
Most Atlanta homeowners begin their search for an Atlanta roofing
contractor when they notice leaks in their roof. It's a good idea to
get educated about the parts of your roof, roof repairs and what to
look for in an Atlanta roofing contractor before you have to make a
Flashing and loose nails. Two of the most common sources of leaks are problems with flashing and
loose nails. Flashing is metal placed in trouble spots, such as sharp
angles in the roof. Nails become loose when decking expands and
contracts each time a roof is heated and then cooled, or each time the
moisture content changes. With each expansion and contraction, the
nails are pulled slightly out of their holes. Once a nail is pulled out
of its hole far enough to puncture the shingle above it, a leak
develops. Fortunately, over the life of a properly installed roof,
nails rarely pop up far enough to puncture shingles.
Decking. The decking is
what the roof is attached to. It is commonly made of plywood or
oriented strand board, which is an engineered wood product. Water
leaking through a roof may cause the decking to rot. Because nails
hammered into rotted decking will not hold, rotted decking must be
replaced before a new roof can be installed. However, it is difficult
to know how much decking, if any, must be replaced before the old roof
is torn off. Therefore, many Atlanta roofing companies will give a firm
estimate on the tear-off/replacement roof and a firm estimate per unit
of decking which must be replaced.
Leaks. There are two ways
to go about fixing leaks. You can tear off the old roof and replace it
with a new one, possibly with new decking. Or, you can install a new
roof over an old one. The second option can work if your Atlanta roofer
uses the correct materials and the house has not already been re-roofed
and the truss and house structure can handle the weight. Also, the
decking must be in good shape. Since the only way to ensure that the
decking is not damaged is to tear off the old roof, if you re-roof, you
have to assume that your decking is in good shape. Here's where a
reputable Atlanta roofing contractor will be able to tell you if
re-roofing is an option.
Ventilation. The other big
factor to consider when fixing your roof is ventilation. Attic
ventilation is extremely important for lowering your electricity bills.
Circulating air helps keep your attic cool in the summer. In the
winter, circulating air helps prevent mold and mildew growth by
minimizing attic humidity. The best ventilation systems are those
systems which move the most air for the least cost.
The ridge-and-soffit vent system is one of the best ventilation
systems available. It employs the natural rise of hot air to generate
air flow much like a chimney. Cooler air enters the attic through the
soffit vents in the eaves. This air is heated in the attic, rises, and
exits through the ridge vents at the highest point in the attic.
Ridge vents are preferred by most Atlanta roofing contractors and
shingle manufacturers because they are more efficient and
cost-effective than turbines, standard roof vents and power exhaust
fans. Ridge vents are usually installed when a new roof is installed.
They consist of a pre-manufactured vinyl-dipped fiberglass mat that is
installed on the ridge of the roof for the entire length of the house.
The ridge vent is capped with shingles to keep it watertight and
usually has built-in screens to prevent small animals and insects from
entering the attic. Adequate soffit vents are required to make the
ridge vents function effectively.
Roof life. Proper roof
installation, decking quality, shingle life, proper ventilation,
flashing quality and routine maintenance can really extend your roof's
life. Routine maintenance includes inspection for problems, as well as
leaf removal and gutter cleaning. Proper ventilation is essential
because if the roof is not properly ventilated, most shingle warranties
are voided. Among the various available grades of shingles,
high-quality shingles are warranted for 40 years or longer. According
to some industry sources, shingles rarely last for as long as they are