What to Look for in a Roofing Contractor

The roof is one of the most important structures of the home. So, when it needs to be repaired or replaced, you should only trust a reputable, certified roofing contractor. Finding a reputable, qualified roofer can be more difficult than you think, but there are certain guidelines that can help you find the best roofer possible. These guidelines include:

  • Membership and participation in professional associations
  • A physical address and valid contact information
  • Valid references
  • The ability to provide a contract and warranty

Membership and Participation in Professional Associations

Reputable contractors are certified and members of professional associations. A roofing business should be registered with several associations, including:

  • Trade associations or national and local roofing contractor associations (e.g. National Roofing Contractors Association or the Canadian Roofing Contractors Association)
  • Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB)
  • Local Chamber of Commerce
  • Better Business Bureau (BBB)

Membership with these associations can establish reputability. It can’t, however, establish the quality of a contractor’s service, so pay attention to a contractor’s standing with these associations. They should especially be in good standing with the BBB and WCB. Additionally, check for complaints or other issues with the contractor. Membership to some of these associations is crucial to service quality. For example, registration with the WCB can establish that your roofer is following industry insurance guidelines, they have liability insurance and offer insurance on their products and contractors.

A Physical Address and Valid Contact Information

Every serious company should have a physical address and valid contact information. Even though roofing contractors don’t work in an office, a permanent business address can help provide proof of their validity. Plus, it can make it easier to reach the contractor if you need future service. Valid contact information and dedicated customer service can also make it easier for you to reach the contractor, set up service and get answers to your questions.

Valid References

Real or valid references is one of the top ways to check the quality of a contractor’s work. Satisfied customers are often willing to share their experiences with a company, so ask your roofer for references. Additionally, look for online reviews from past customers. Contact these past customers and ask questions about workmanship and service quality. Remember, these reviews should be fair and honest.

The Ability to Provide a Contract and Warranty

A reputable Edmonton roofing contractor, like Crest Roofing, will always provide a contract and guarantee for their work. Contracts are important because they provide an outline of pricing and job specifications. When working with a roofing contractor, always ask for a contract, written estimate and insurance policy. Of course, with reputable companies like our own, you won’t have to worry about these things. We provide top quality roofing at fair prices and are a great choice for roofing in Edmonton. Call us for a quote today!

Your Spring Roof Inspection Checklist

Canadian winters can be hard, especially on homes. And, during the winter, roofs take the brunt of the damage from the ice and snow. So, a springtime roof inspection is a must for every homeowner. This inspection should be performed by a professional roofing contractor, but it’s a good idea to know what it is that they will be looking for. For example, the contractor will look for a buildup of asphalt granules in the gutters, roof buckling, missing shingles and more. The damage assessment, however, will also depend on the area of the roof that’s inspected. During an inspection, for example, your roofer should check the shingles, flashing, gutters, soffit and fascia, as well as the attic and ceiling.

Shingles

The shingles are one of the most important components of your roof because they serve as your roof’s first line of defense against the elements. Shingles are thoroughly checked during a roof inspection. This is what a roof inspector is looking for:

  • A buildup of granules from the roofing material in the gutters
  • Missing or loose shingles
  • Buckling, cracking or peeling

Roof Flashing

Roof flashing is literally “the glue that holds it all together.” It connects different structures on the roof to the roof, including skylights and chimneys, but it’s also one of the key elements that  prevents moisture from seeping into the roof. During an inspection, flashing is checked for:

  • Loose fasteners
  • Rust formation
  • Dents and other damage
  • Cracked or missing caulk

Gutters

Roof gutters are often overlooked, but they’re a vital part of your roof and drainage system, and a spring inspection will ensure they’re ready to handle the rainy season. To perform properly (removing runoff), they’ll need to be cleared of grime, leaves and twigs. You can hire someone to clean your gutters or choose to do it yourself, but the gutters should be cleaned for the spring and before the roof inspection. Once the gutters are clean, your contractor will check for:

  • Proper downspout drainage (water should flow away from the home’s foundation)
  • Gutters separating from the edge of the roof
  • Leaks in the gutter seams

Soffit and Fascia

Although it may seem unimportant, the roof’s soffit and fascia should be checked during an inspection. In fact, unchecked soffits and fascia can be dangerous, as small animals can work their way into holes in the structures. The soffit and fascia should also be checked for:

  • Missing or damaged parts
  • Rotten or weak spots caused by excessive moisture

Ceiling and Attic

The ceiling and attic aren’t a part of your roof, but they can be affected by a damaged roof. Signs of damage in these areas can indicate problems that could be overlooked during the inspection. Damage your roofer will look for, includes:

  • Signs of leakage or moisture buildup, such as mold and/or mildew
  • Damaged, defective or worn insulation
  • Buckling between rafters
  • Leaking chimneys or vents

If your roof has never been inspected or you’re worried about the health of your roof after the winter, now is a great time to schedule an inspection. When it comes to residential roofing, Edmonton home owners trust Crest Roofing to provide quality workmanship and service, no matter the size of the job. Call us today.

How a New Roof Adds Value to Your Commercial Property

Most property owners know that replacing a commercial roof can be expensive, but a new roof can also add value to a property. So, instead of looking at it as an expensive burden, look at it as an investment that will pay off when the property is sold. Not to mention, replacing the old roof will prevent further property damage and help you avoid expensive repairs in the future. Frequent repairs can add up quickly and become more costly than a one-time roof replacement. Here are a few ways that a new roof can add value to your property:

Lowers Maintenance and Repair Costs

A failing roof can cause additional damage to a building. For example, leaks can lead to water damage to the ceiling and/or interior and exterior walls. Extensive moisture buildup can also cause warping, leading to leaks, gaps, and other major structural issues. Damage caused by any of these issues can call for expensive repairs. However, a roof replacement can prevent all these damaging events from happening. Maintenance on a failing roof and repairs for damaged structures can be much more expensive than a replacement. With a new roof, you won’t have to worry about future damage or the need to perform frequent maintenance.

Improves Energy Efficiency

A well-insulated roof can help improve energy efficiency, thus lowering monthly energy bills. Most old roofs aren’t properly insulated, which can increase maintenance costs on your commercial property. This can also lower your property value. Today, energy efficiency is a feature most buyers are looking for, so if your building isn’t up-to-par, you won’t get top market value. Keep in mind that the more energy efficient your property is, the more money you will make. Tax breaks and incentives are also offered for having a “green” roof or property.

Heightens Curb Appeal and Protection

It’s no secret that great curb appeal attracts more buyers. And a new roof can brighten up and draw more attention to your property. Not to mention, attracting new buyers or tenants. However, if your buyers can’t see that your roof is new, include that information in your property’s brochure, web description, and more. For most buyers or investors, a new roof screams security, reliability, protection, and less money out of their pocket. Calling one of the top commercial roofing companies Edmonton has to offer – Crest Roofing – and having a new roof installed will make your property more appealing to buyers in more ways than one.

Do you have concerns about the roof on  your commercial property? Give us a call for a free quote today!

Popular Winter Roofing Myths for Shingled Roofs

The roof is an essential part of a home, which means it can be one of the more expensive parts to repair or replace. It’s exposed and vulnerable to the elements, meaning it’s susceptible to weather damage. Although many people may not realize it, this can be especially true during the winter. Surprisingly, there are many myths surrounding shingled roofs, roofing and the winter. Below are three of those myths and the truth behind them.

Myth 1: Leaks are Less Likely During the Winter

Many homeowners believe that frozen precipitation lowers the risk of roof leaks. Although frozen, this precipitation also slowly melts, meaning moisture from snow and/or ice travels down the roof beams and into the dry wall. Melting snow is more likely to lead to a roof leak than rain. This is because roofs are designed to combat falling rain, not snow or ice. Moisture that freezes, melts or refreezes can cause more damage to your shingles, flashing and other structures on your roof. For example, ice can pull shingles apart and allow moisture to seep through.

Myth 2: Roofs Can Support Any Amount of Snow

Canadian winters can be harsh with plenty of snow, snow that could cause a roof to cave in or suffer irreparable damage. Roofs are strong enough to hold average loads, not hundreds or thousands of pounds of snow. So, there is a threshold for how much snow your roof can hold. Heavy snowfall isn’t uncommon in Canada, so be aware that the weight of it could cause severe damage to your roof and your home. The best way to combat buildup from heavy snow fall is to hire a professional to remove it from your roof.

Myth 3: Roofs Can’t Be Replaced During the Winter

This one is partially a myth; you see, while most people wait until late spring or summer to have their roofs replaced, some put off replacing a roof that is in really poor condition, only to have it obliterated by extreme winter weather. Edmonton roofing companies like our own don’t recommend replacing a shingled roof in the winter because the shingles can crack and fail to properly adhere, but replacements are possible in emergency situations. The best course of action is always to plan ahead and to have your roof replaced before the snow flies.

If you’re in need of a roof repair, don’t delay! Give us a call and let’s ensure your home or business has the protection it needs.

Why it’s Important to Have Heavy Snow and Ice Removed from Your Roof

Snow and ice buildup can damage your roof, exterior walls and more, which is why it should always be removed. However, snow and ice should only be removed by a professional and before it gets too heavy. Remember that the heavier the load, the more strain it puts on your roof. Heavy snow has even been known to cause roofs to collapse. Roof collapse is catastrophic, but there are even more reasons to prevent snow and ice from building up on your roof this winter.

Prevents Ice Dam Formation

After a snowstorm, ice dams are irritating ice ridges that can form along the edges of your roof. They pose a serious threat to your roof and your home’s structure. For example, ice dams prevent snow from falling off the roof, which can be disastrous. Heat emanating from the attic can melt the snow on your roof, and the water from this melting snow can back up and leak into your home. This can cause damage to the roof, ceiling, insulation, interior walls and floors. Because of their precarious position and the high risk of damage, ice dams should only be removed by professionals.

Protects Against Falling Icicles

It doesn’t matter if they’re large or small, falling icicles can be dangerous. They can potentially injure you, your family and your pets. Icicles on the edges of your roof can be easily removed with a roof rake, but they could also be accompanied by more ice or heavy snow. Removing them incorrectly could cause more ice or heavy snow to come tumbling down. Additionally, waiting for them to melt away could prove disastrous for your family or your roof’s flashing. So, if large or many icicles form on the edges of your roof, call a professional for immediate removal.

Prevents Moisture Damage

Heat from your home’s attic can melt the snow on your roof, but freezing temperatures can cause it to freeze before it passes through the gutters. Ice can cause gutters to collapse or clog them. So, other water from melting snow can back up and seep into your roof’s structures. For example, water can seep into the shingles and cause moisture damage to the main frame. This damage will eventually lead to small leaks and these small leaks will eventually become big leaks. If this happens, your best course of action is to call a roofer, like our trusted team at Crest Roofing. As one of the most experienced roofing companies in Edmonton, we can remove the snow safely and prevent a potentially costly and dangerous situation.

Get Your Leaking Roof Repaired Immediately – Here’s Why

Many people delay home repairs or ignore them altogether, especially when there’s a seemingly hidden issue. A leaking roof is often one of those issues, but a leak can be a sign of serious roof damage or it can lead to serious damage. Whenever there’s a leak, call a professional roofer for immediate repair. Below are three reasons why delaying this repair could be disastrous.

More Expensive in the Long Run

In almost every case, unaddressed issues in your home will only escalate and become more complex and expensive to repair. Ignoring roof damage for months or years can lead to the need for expensive repairs or a full roof replacement. Extensive damage or repairs can break the bank and/or make your home unlivable for an extended amount of time. However, if you have your roof inspected and repaired at the first sign of a leak, you could save a lot of money, time and effort.

Hazardous to Your Health

A leaking roof will of course, lead to moisture build up, and moisture buildup typically leads to mold growth. Excess moisture can cause mold to form quickly and without warning. Mold spores circulate throughout your home and pose a health risk to you and your family. Inhaled mold spores can cause headaches, allergic reactions, respiratory issues, exacerbation of respiratory issues (e.g. asthma or bronchitis), and so much more. Besides, localized mold formation can quickly become a widespread infestation that affects many areas of your home. To prevent moisture build up and a mold infestation, call a pro like Crest Roofing & Co. to perform a roof repair. Edmonton home and business owners trust us to provide the solutions they need in a timely and cost-effective manner.

Leaks Can be Signs of Major Damage

To non-professionals, a little drip from the roof may not seem like a big deal. But, most homeowners don’t have the knowledge, skills or expertise to determine just how serious a leak might be. No matter how small the drip, a leaking roof can be a sign of major roof damage or lead to major roof damage. For example, a leak could be the result of:

  • Hail damage
  • Cracked roof vents
  • Misaligned roof flashing
  • Missing shingles
  • Holes in the ridge cap
  • Old age

Call a professional like Crest Roofing & Co. to have your roof inspected. This is the only way to determine where the leak is coming from and how serious it may be. Putting off repairs for too long could lead to more damage or compromise the structure of your roof. Remember that replacements are much more expensive than minor repairs.

Roof Repair Versus Roof Replacement for Shingle Roofs

Over time, all roofs sustain some form of damage. The level of damage generally depends on the roof’s age and/or exposure to bad weather conditions, but eventually, this damage will require attention. In some cases, repairs may not be enough, while in others, a replacement may be too much. This means you will need to know when to repair and when to replace. Below are four factors that could point you in the right direction.

 

Hidden Damage to the Sheathing or Roof Deck

If you simply replace some shingles or repair certain parts of your roof, you won’t get a good idea of the total damage. A leak or damage in one area isn’t indicative of the health of your entire roof. But, it could be indicative of major problems. A full inspection is the only way to detect major problems. This means the shingles will have to be removed and the sheathing or deck will have to be inspected.

If major damage is detected, the deck should be repaired and lined with a protective, weather-resistant layer. Repairs of this magnitude require a roof replacement. However, if your roof is leaking along flashing points, then the leak is isolated, and only a repair is required.

 

The Age of the Roof

When deciding between roof repair or replacement, the age of the roof is one of the most important factors. Generally, roofs last between 15 to 25 years. A lightly damaged roof that’s under the age of 15 should only require spot repairs. On the other hand, a roof over the age of 20 should definitely be replaced. For roofs between the ages of 15 and 20, the overall condition of the roof should be the deciding factor. If you’re unsure, call an Edmonton roofing expert like Crest Roofing & Co. to inspect your roof, assess the damage and determine how age could affect your decision. We will recommend the best solution after the assessment.

 

How Long You Will Live in the House

If you only plan to live in your house for a few years, you should generally consider roof repair over replacement. However, you must also consider the condition of the roof. Repairs can save money, but they’re a short-term solution. No matter how long you’re planning to live in a home, if your roof is in bad condition, repairs won’t be enough. On the other hand, if your roof is damaged but the overall condition is still good, repair is always the best solution.

 

Homeowner’s Insurance Discounts

Replacing your roof with high-quality materials could garner insurance discounts. Many insurance companies offer reduced rates for roofs made of high-quality weather and/or fire-resistant materials. Just ask your roofing contractors, check your policy and contact your insurance provider before your roof is replaced. That said, homeowner’s insurance discounts are no reason to get your roof replaced when it doesn’t need to be.

The health of your roof is something you should not take lightly. If you’re concerned about your roof but are unsure as to whether it needs a repair or a total replacement, give us a call and we’ll be happy to schedule a consultation.

Signs Your Flat Roof May Need to Be Replaced

In certain situations, flat roofs are more advantageous than sloped roofs (i.e. when used on commercial buildings). Of course, like any roof, flat roofs may be prone to certain issues, including leaks and long periods of water retention, known as pooling. Pooling can damage and/or destroy a building’s structure as well as shorten the life of a roof, if it’s not addressed. Fortunately, your commercial roof will always give you signs when it’s having issues and needs to be replaced.

The Roof is Old

Generally, if a flat commercial roof and/or its material is nearing the end of its life, the roof should be replaced. Repairs are counterproductive and may lead to more problems for an old roof. Besides that, on an old roof, repair costs often exceed the cost of a replacement. If the cost of repair exceeds 20% of the cost of a replacement roof, the roof should definitely be replaced. Additionally, if the age of your flat roof is more than half the projected age of the material it’s made of, it should also be replaced. Commercial roofing pros, such as Crest Roofing & Co. will assess your roof and weigh its age against your repair or replacement options.

Rips and Tears

Flat roofs are sometimes made of materials that are prone to ripping and tearing. This often happens along seams in the roof or where two pieces of material meet. Slight tears are repairable, but extensive tears or rips call for a replacement. Numerous rips or tears can also indicate possible extensive damage in multiple areas. An inspection by a commercial roof repair company will show the full extent of the damage by uncovering all damaged areas.

Extensive Water Pooling

Water pooling is the biggest problem with flat roofs. However, excessive and/or regular pooling is a sign that your roof needs to be replaced. If this happens to your roof, call a roofing expert for an immediate replacement. Pooling can lead to leakage and massive amounts of water damage. Once your roof is replaced, invest in products that can heighten your roof’s pitch and prevent water pooling.

If you suspect that there are issues with your flat roof, give us a call and we’ll let you know whether a repair is all that’s needed or if a full replacement is required.

Commercial Green Roofing in Edmonton

In the Edmonton and Strathcona County construction scene, green initiatives are becoming a hot topic. And as commercial roofers, we’re hearing a lot about Solar Roof Systems and Green Roof Systems.

In 2009, Toronto was the first North American City to pass a bylaw that required all commercial, residential, and institutional buildings over 2000 square metres to have “vegetative roof coverage.”

Depending on the size of the building, the green roof portion has to cover between 20 and 60 percent! That may seem like a drastic requirement, but Toronto wants to position itself a leader in green roof adoption.

As more major cities follow in Toronto’s footsteps, it won’t be long before Edmonton enacts similar green development bylaws.

Strathcona County already has buildings with green roofs, including its Community Centre where you’ll find a grass-covered green roof on Council Chambers. Take a look at all the green initiatives they’re taking with the centre here (including rainwater collection for their toilets!).

The Many Benefits of Green Roof Systems

A roof is there mainly to protect the structure from the elements. It helps keep you warm and dry. But a green roof goes above and beyond its basic duties:

  • Beautifies the space
  • Increases biodiversity
  • Creates habitat for animals and insects
  • Reduces the “heat island effect”
  • Reduces noise pollution
  • Helps regulate temperature in the building
  • Increases energy efficiency
  • Slows release of rainwater into sewer systems
  • Increases stormwater quality and quantity
  • Improves air quality

The only downside to a green roof is the cost, which can be substantially higher than a typical flat roof system. For more about the cost of a green roof system, read on.

Styles of Green Roofs

The two different types of living roofs are intensive and extensive green roofs.

Intensive Green Roof Systems are also known as Rooftop Gardens. This is the type of green roof that will have walkways, benches, ponds, fountains, and other features in addition to trees, shrubs, and flowers. They are made for people to enjoy and are irrigated and maintained regularly.

Extensive Green Roof Systems are lower maintenance and higher performance green roofs. These use hardy, utilitarian plants with shallow roots that will give you all the benefits of a green roof without all the maintenance. They also require less structural support than a rooftop garden, so they can easily be added to existing roofs.

How Green Roofs are Made

A green roof is like an onion. It has many layers. The top layer is the vegetation and growing medium. Then underneath are layers: root growth inhibitor, waterproof membrane, and a drainage system.

Want more details about how green roofs work? Godfrey Roofing Inc. wrote an article about green roofing where they go into details about the layers of a typical green roof.

Commercial Products Available

There are a few commercial green roof system products on the market right now. Soprema’s has a green roofing products line, SOPRANATURE that has a range of nice options to choose from.

There will definitely be more companies making green roofing products in the future, so keep an eye out for improving techniques and competitive pricing.

Plants for a Green Roof System in Alberta

With interest in green roofs picking up, NAIT ran a study to test which plants fare the best as rooftop plants in Alberta for a low-maintenance green roof system.

They found that the hardiest plants are the ones we find here naturally, which shouldn’t surprise you.

The plants that can withstand direct sun, high winds, infrequent watering, and extreme temperatures were the grasses and sedums native to Alberta.

*Note: Green roofs are not meant to provide food. Constantly uprooting the plants can damage the green roof system.

For rooftop gardens, plants that do well in containers will do the best. Vegetables like tomatoes, cucumbers, and salad greens and flowers like petunias, marigolds, and zinnias.

How Much Does a Green Roof Cost?

The price of the roof components, installation, and maintenance for a green roof vary, but a typical low-maintenance/extensive system should cost between $15 to $20 per square foot.

You can expect a green roof to last well over 50 years, which is double the life of the average asphalt shingle.

Are Green Roofs Going to Become the Standard?

We’re interested to see if/when commercial green roofs become the standard in Edmonton.

Are you interested in commercial green roofs? Let us know what you think.

For your commercial roofing needs, Crest Roofing has you covered.

Call the roofing experts at (780) 466-1601.

Condensation in the Attic Causing “Leaks”

Is your roof leaking? You may see the telltale signs of water damage: water stains and drips coming from the ceiling. Maybe a moldy smell. But there may not actually be a leak. If the weather has just gone from -35 to +5 degrees in less than 24 hours, you may be experiencing roof problems caused by condensation.

Why is there Condensation in My Attic?

When air is very cold, like it gets in Edmonton every year, it can’t hold much moisture. So when warm air escapes from your house (and it will–there is always going to be some heat loss to the attic), the moisture quickly separates from the air and attaches itself to the attic.

Every house has places where warm, moist air can escape into the attic: bathroom vents, kitchen exhaust vents, chimney flues… Vents in general are big sources of attic heat and moisture.

Once warm air hits the attic, but before it vents outside, your cold attic air separates out moisture, which then turns into frost. The frost will build up on the underside of your roof deck, on nails, and even in the insulation!

The problems start when the temperature suddenly heats up and all that frost melts. That’s when you’ll start seeing signs that make you think your roof is leaking:

  • Water stains
  • Discolouration of ceiling/walls
  • Rust on the nails in your attic
  • Drip marks on the attic floor
  • Buckled or damaged roof sheathing
  • Moist insulation

But your roof may not have sprung a leak …yet. You could be experiencing roof condensation problems.

How Do I Fix Roof Condensation Problems?

Condensation problems can happen in any type of roof, residential to commercial. There are two main reasons for condensation problems:

Improper sealing or insulation of the vents that let warm, wet air into the attic.

When you’re dealing with roof condensation, you have to make sure that your vents are all properly sealed and that no warm air escapes through cracks or gaps.

Bathroom and kitchen exhaust vents need to be well insulated so that the hot air stays hot until it is all the way outside.

In general, your attic needs a certain amount of insulation. If there isn’t enough, it could make condensation problems worse. Add more insulation if your roof needs it.

Tip: Check to see if there are any major reasons for excess heat in the attic. @InspectorPeter found a broken furnace pipe!

Improper ventilation of warm air from the attic.

If all your vents are sealed up and no excessive heat or moisture is getting into your attic, that’s a great first step. The next step is making sure there is adequate airflow to allow hot air and moisture to escape.

There is always going to be some frost buildup on the underside of your roof in the winter, and good ventilation will ensure that the moisture gets out.

Check to make sure that you have intake and exhaust vents and that there are enough of them. Proper roof ventilation isn’t always as simple as it sounds, but a good roofer will be able to assess your roof’s ventilation situation and recommend any changes that need to be made.

Want to know more about the fascinating topic of roof ventilation? Read Roof Ventilation: What’s it all About?

Is your roof “leaking”? Do you think it might be condensation? If you’ve had a major weather change recently, that could be what’s causing water damage.

Another common winter roof problem is Ice Damming along the eaves of your roof.

Don’t Ignore Roof Condensation Problems!

You might be tempted to ignore a winter roof problem, hoping that once the weather improves, things will sort themselves out. But condensation makes great conditions for mold and rot, and in the worst case scenario, you could end up with roof holes or collapse.

For any of your roof needs, including attic insulation and ventilation to prevent condensation problems, the experts at Crest Roofing are just a phone call away! Give us a call at (780) 466-1601 or send us a message.