Category Archives: roofing company

Roofing terminology every homeowner should know

Before you hire a roofing company to replace your aging, leaking roof there are a few steps you should take to ensure that you do not get ripped off and to ensure that you know what the contractor is talking about when they discuss your roof and its replacement. First and foremost, you should research to make sure that the roofing contractor that you hire is licensed, insured with both worker’s compensation insurance as well as general liability insurance and has a good reputation.  Look at the company’s website as well as their social media presence to see how they are rated.  You can also look at review sites like Google or Yelp, as well as the Better Business Bureau to find out how well the company is doing.  You should research at least three different companies before making a decision as to who to hire for the job.  In addition, there are a number of terms that you should know so that you can have an informed conversation when you discuss the cost of the new roof and the work that will be performed.  
  • Shingles.  These are the materials that make up the top layer of your roof.  They are made of several different materials and come in a variety of colors, styles, and textures.  The most common tiles are made of asphalt.  You can also get shingles made of wood, slate, or cement.  In addition, the shingles can be interlocking, self-sealing or laminated.  Interlocking shingles are good for windy climates.  Laminated shingles provide good insulation and self-sealing helps to prevent leaks.
  • Flashing. Metal pieces used to prevent water from seeping around intersections or projections in roofing, including chimneys, vent pipes, and valleys, as well as joints that occur at vertical walls.
  • Pitch/Slope. This is the incline that your roof has.
  • Roof Deck. This is the first layer of roof.  It is attached to the frame of your home. It should be inspected for damage and may need to be replaced when you replace the shingles.
  • Felt/tar paper. This is the layer between the deck and the shingles.
  • Square. This is how your roof is measured.  One square is equal to 100 square feet.
  • Drip edge. This is an L-shaped metal strip that lets the water run off the roof so that it does not end up under the deck and eves.
  • Eave.  The horizontal edge of a sloping roof.
  • Coverage.  This is the amount of protection provided by the overlapping shingles.
  Knowing these terms will make it easier for you to understand the work being done on your home.  This way you will be able to ask informed questions of the roofing company working on your home once you get the estimate in writing along with the guarantees and warranties being offered.  Be sure the estimate is broken down so that you know what you are paying for and indicates what may change the cost of the job.