Archive for roof claim John’s creek

Stop Roof Leaks – Maintenance vs Repair

Posted in Roofing Articles with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 2, 2016 by HAPS

This is a long post, but with roof issues we want to educate homeowners on issues which occur on roofs.  Most people don’t climb on roofs; so we want you to have a good understanding of roof issues so you can decide if your contractor knows what they are doing.

Home Asset Protection Services, LLC (HAPS) is located in Suwanee, GA, and we specialize in roof leak repair and full roof replacement in the Gwinnett County Georgia and surrounding areas. Our leak specialist has over 25 years experience diagnosing and repairing leaking roofs; and we’ve just about seen it all.

Unfortunately, over the past several years a lot of the roofs replaced in the Metro Atlanta area have been built incorrectly, especially in the flashing areas.  Fortunately for us, we get a lot of work as a result. Many fly by night storm chaser companies rush into town during storm season, help homeowners get their roofs replaced through insurance claims, do the job, and then one of two things happen. They either leave the area to follow the latest storm in another city/state, or they go out of business. Trust us, we see it all the time. Homeowners are stuck holding the bag.

Let’s look at where most leaks occur.

  • Chimneys – siding, stucco, or brick
  • Flat roofs.
  • Bathrooms – exhaust vents.
  • Skylights
  • Ridge Cap – shingles covering the top of the roof
  • Improper Nailing – high nailing, below the line, or nail gun pressure issues.
  • Nail Pops & Toeboard holes.
  • Dead Valleys – where roof valleys run into a wall
  • Valleys – improper installation
  • Gutters – generally overfilled gutters or gap between decking & fascia.

Many of these leaks can be prevented by a simple roof maintenance plan if addressed in a timely manner.  After 3-5 years certain components of your roof need attention. We offer a service called a roof tuneup, and this service will prevent leaks and extend the life of your roof for years. Call us at 404-933-6610 to see if a roof tuneup is the best option for your home, and do it BEFORE the roof starts leaking.

What is  a roof a roof tuneup? 

Your roof has certain elements which deteriorate over time. A roof tuneup takes care of these issues, and this will prolong the life of your roof for another 3-5 years. Here are the things we do with a roof tuneup.

  1. Repair or Replace Pipe Boots.
  2. Seal Exhaust Vents.
  3. Seal turtle vents, power vents, & dryer vents.
  4. Paint All vents with rust preventive paint.
  5. Repair Nail Pops.
  6. Seal Toeboard holes.
  7. Seal exposed nails.
  8. Replace up to 10 missing or damaged shingles.
  9. Clean minor debris off roof.
  10. Inspect roof & flashing for major issues.

Explanations of the services listed are explained in detail below.

Repair Pipe Boots – Most bathrooms have vent pipes which are designed to remove the musty smell from the plumbing system. These exhaust type vents almost always go out of the roof.  The pipes are covered with a rubber pipe boot to seal off the area from leaking. (See photo below). These boots have a thin rubber elastic area designed to fit snugly around the pipe. After 3-5 years the rubber dry rots and cracks; and many leaks occur in this area.

If you have a roof leak in your bathroom, chances are very high that your pipe boots are cracking. With a roof tuneup, we install new rain collars and seal the exposed nails where vents are nailed to roof. This adds around 3-5 more years of life for this area of the roof.

Seal Exhaust Vents – These are the metal vents which carry exhaust fumes from your HVAC unit. When a roof is installed, these vents must be sealed with high grade roof sealant around joints and nails. Over time the sealant wears off. Also, these vents rust over time.  With a roof tuneup we reseal the vents with the highest grade of silicone roof sealant available in the market. We also paint the vents with rust preventive paint to extend the life of these elements.

Seal Turtle Vents, Power Vent, & Dryer Vents – Turtle vents are aluminum or plastic “boxes” found on the back of many roofs. These vents are used to ventilate the attic. This prevents heat buildup in attic which causes shingles to blister and increases heating and A/C bills. A blister is basically like a popped bubble on the shingles. Power vents are the big round fans found on many hip roofs, and dryer vents are vents which carry moist air out of the house from the clothes dryer.  These items need resealing over time to prevent leaks.

Paint All Vents With Rust Preventive Paint – Over time your HVAC vent will rust. We paint the vents to stop/prevent the rust from destroying your exhaust vents. We also paint other vents on the roof to prevent rusting and to improve the look of the roof.

Repair Nail Pops & Toeboard Holes –  Nail pops occur when nails on the roof loosen over time. When nails pop out they often cause indentations or holes in the shingle. A roof tuneup will take care of this issue. We nail down the loose nails and apply premium roof sealant to the affected area.  Toeboard holes are actual holes in the shingles when the roofing crew nails boards to the roof to stand on when installing the roof.  A good (and safe) roofing crew will rope & harness when installing the roof instead of using toeboards. With the roof tuneup we seal all toeboard holes on the roof to prevent leaks in these areas.

Seal Exposed Nails  – All roofs have exposed nails on the ridge cap and bottom side of all the vents. While sealed during installation (we hope), the sealant wears off over time. When this occurs the nails rust, and eventually lead to bigger problems. With the roof tuneup we seal all exposed nails with premium roof sealant.

Replace Missing or Damaged Shingles – While obvious, we replace up to 10 shingles which are missing or damaged on your roof. Missing shingles could be a major issue which is described below; however, in many cases a few shingles fall off from loose nails, improper nailing, or even wind damage.

Clean Minor Debris Off Roof – Most often, this involves removing pine straw in the valleys. Pine straw will stop water flow during rain, and this can often cause leaks. It also causes algae to grow on the roof, and eventually leaks to leaks and rotten wood below the shingles.

MAJOR ROOF ISSUES 

Below are major roof issues which involve much more extensive repair.  These are the most common areas for leaks due to installation issues and/or rot over time.

Chimneys – Probably the biggest area for leaks we find are around chimneys.  A lot depends on the type of chimney, and where the chimney is located. The main problem we find around chimneys is flashing related.  Flashing is metal which redirects water away from the walls of the chimney so it can properly drain the the gutters (or edge of roof).  The section on the roof above a chimney needs a cricket (framed & shingled diverter), j channel flashing, and  a properly installed chimney pan.  Water pounds this area, and if flashing is not installed correctly…you will have a leak.  On the sides of the chimney step flashing or J-channel flashing is used to channel water down the roof. If installed improperly, the water will run under the shingles or behind the flashing causing water stains on your ceilings.

Additionally, on homes with wood or hardie plank siding, we often find leaks from rotten or broken siding, worn out sealant on joints, or rotten corner boards.

On homes with brick chimneys you not only need properly installed chimney pan & flashing, you also need counter flashing over the step flashing to prevent water from running down the chimney and behind the flashing.  Properly flashing a brick chimney is a specialty, so if you have brick chimney leaks…make sure the contractor knows what they are doing.

Dead Valleys – Dead valleys is a term to describe sections of roof that run into a wall.  Here the rain water slams against the wall, and often runs up over the flashing and down the walls into your home.  These are delicate areas, and extensive repair needs to be done to properly repair these areas. Inspection of the area needs to be done to determine best course of action, but basically the repair needs to run up the wall so water can get behind the flashing.

Valley Repairs – Roof valleys are installed one of two ways. A weave pattern is when shingles from intersecting roof sections are woven together; and a French cut pattern where shingles are cut in a straight line down the valley.  Obviously water runs down the valleys. If the water gets under the shingles, you have a problem.  Valleys should have metal flashing or ice & water shield installed to keep any leakage from getting to your ceilings. We install ice & water shield on an roofs we build.  It’s not cheap, and many roofing contractors do not use this extra product to save money.  If you have a valley leak, we will most likely need to tear out the valley, install ice & water shield, replace rotten decking, and re-shingle the entire valley.

Improper Nailing – We see this quite often. The biggest issue we see is nail gun pressure issues. If the roofing crew sets the nail gun pressure too high, the nails often go through the shingle too far. As a result, the shingles eventually fall off. If you see entire shingles fall off your roof, chances are the nails were installed improperly. This is actually a big problem. We repair up to 10 missing shingles with a roof tuneup; but if shingles were nailed too hard…the problem will continue. We can repair the shingles which have fallen off, but we may have to come back over the years as the shingles fall off.  It’s cheaper than replacing the entrie roof, but eventually your roof will need to be replaced. We advise making the repairs until shingles have lived their life; and then replacing the roof with a company who knows what they are doing.

Gutter area leaks – We often find leaks due to gutter issues. Gutters full of debris cause water to go behind the gutter and down the wall into your home. This causes interior leaks as well as soffit & fascia damage on the exterior of your home.  You may want to consider installing gutter guards to keep debris from building up in your gutters.

 

 

We also see loose gutters, shingles not hanging over edge of roof enough, and gaps between the plywood decking and fascia. This is also the area of the roof where squirrels or other rodents enter your home. We can diagnose the issue and offer a solution to the problem.

Flat Roofs – If a roof is less than a four pitch, it should be considered a flat roof. Four pitch means the roof rises 4″ in height per foot of roof.  Water pools on flat roofs, so a special type of roofing is needed to prevent leaks. We get a lot of work from homeowners who have shingles installed on low slope roofs. Think of it this way. If sideways rain occurs, the water is going under the shingles.  There are many types of low slope and flat roof components, and please consult a qualified professional when dealing with these areas of your home.

And finally, the big one. Your roof has lived it’s life.  It is what it is.  If your shingles have lived their functional life, you need to replace your roof.  An inspection will determine if roof needs replacement. Signals incluce major granule loss, brittle shingles, and major wear and tear.

Home Asset Protection Services, LLC is a full service roofing contractor serving Atlanta, Buford, Chamblee, Dacula, Duluth, Dunwoody, Flowery Branch, Lawrenceville, Lilburn, Norcross, Sandy Springs, Snellville, Suwanee, Sugar Hill, and surrounding areas for roof repairs.

For roof replacement we work in all of Metro Atlanta and surrounding counties.

Call HAPS at 404 933-6610 to discuss your roof issues; and you will get honest answers and service at a competitive price.

April 2011 Storm Damages Metro Atlanta Homes

Posted in Atlanta Hail Damage Information, Claims Guide with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 17, 2011 by HAPS

Another large group of storms hammered the Metro Atlanta area in April 2011 causing hail and wind damage to roofs in many areas.  Our inspectors have seen some significant hail damage in certain areas which confirm storm reports from local media.  This is the third big storm this year so the hail and wind damage claims business is picking up dramatically.

The April 2011 storm dropped hail up to 2.5 inches in certain areas with many homeowners reporting hail “covering their driveway”.   We are finding approvable damage in certain zones; and we are seeing an increase in hail and wind claims being approved in these zones.  If you would like to know if your home is in the hail area call 404-933-6610 or Click Here to fill out a reply form to set up an appointment with one of our claims reps to discuss your options.

Unfortunately, we are also seeing a lot of out of town roofers coming into town to work these storms.  We advise homeowners to be careful when deciding on using a roofer/claims services company to represent them during the storm.  While the out of state companies are adept at determining damage and getting claims approved….once the storms are done they leave town and the homeowner is stuck if they have a problem with their roof.  We see it ALL the time.

Since Roofing Claims are picking up we would like to take some time in this article to cover a few topics which we see every day, but the average homeowner has little knowledge of….

1. When we ask homeowners if they have had their roof checked (for free) to determine if they have suffered from hail damage to your home so many homeowners answer this question with the simple answer of “I don’t have leaks” :  Truthfully, hail doesn’t generally cause leaks at the time of the storm unless we see softball sized or broken windows.  Hail damage does cause a breakdown of the shingle which eventually allows water to pass through and damage your home.

If this is the case why do insurance companies pay for roof replacements if the hail damage doesn’t cause leaks.  The answer is actually simple.  If hail damages your shingles, you don’t have leaks now…but you will.  The insurance companies pay to replace the roof to prevent further damage to the interior of your home.  Waiting for leaks could add up to thousands if drywall, painting, mold, insulation, and/or furniture gets damaged. 

2. My neighbor got a new roof so I must have hail damage or wind damage:  Not true.  We see storm damage on one house and little damage on the neighbor’s home quite oftern.  Much is determined by many factors including age of the roof, tree cover, type of shingles, direction of storm, location of home, and obviously size of the hail.  The only way to determine if you have storm damage to your roof is to have it inspected by a company with EXPERIENCE in dealing with storm claims.

3. I was told by a roofer he/she could see that I have hail damage from a ground inspection.  This is crazy unless you live in Texas or Oklahoma where the hail is often big enough to go through the roof.  These roofers are saving time, playing the numbers game, and having you put a claim on file without regard to your relationship with your insurance company.  Don’t put in a claim without an inspection.  Call 404-933-6610 if you would like your roof inspected in the Metro Atlanta area.  We have built many roofs in areas such as Alpharetta, Acworth, Atlanta, Austell, Cumming, Dunwoody, Fairburn, Flowery Branch, Gainesville, John’s Creek, Lawrenceville, Lilburn, Marietta, McDonough, Roswell, Sandy Springs, Smyrna, Snellville, Sugar Hill, and Suwanee.  

4. My roofer guaranteed me I would get approved:  Nope, not true.  The insurance company approval is up to the adjuster, not the roofer.   While we know what should be approved, there is no guarantee.  Approval of hail damage for roof claims is totally subjective opinion based on the opinion of the adjuster; and I promise you…the opinions are all over the board.

5. I’ve been denied so I know I don’t have damage;  This one is tricky.  Because adjusters opinions are different you may have one say you have damage and another say you do.  Have you ever had different feelings/opinions on bad day vs good days?  Also, our experience shows that approval rates are much higher right after the storm vs. 1-2 years after the storm. 

6. I don’t need a company experienced in claims services to represent me.  I’ll do it on my own. – Go ahead, but understand you may have just decreased your chances of approval by 30-40%.  Rarely do we see a roof with damage on every shingle.   It’s easy to find no damage on a roof with a lot of damage.

7. All roofers are the same.  Not true.  We see some ugly stuff out there.  Scammers who take the money and run, partners who fight, companies who cut corners on materials or use inexperienced labor at cheap prices in order to give away deductibles, fly by night companies who don’t deal with complaints.

8. The cheapest price is the best deal:  This applies in just about any industry…You get what you pay for.  We’ve seen roofs with no felt, 2 nails per shingle, no flashing at the chimneys or walls, no starter shingles, inadequate ventilaton, no caulking at exposed nails (ridge cap) etc.  Don’t make this mistake.  The roof is one of the most important parts of your home.  Do it right.  After all, a good roof should last 20 years with no storm damage.  If you don’t believe us, talk to someone who has leaks.

9. I want my roof done without paying a deductible: See #8.  Also, see House Bill 423 regarding new legislation relating to this activity.

10. I’ve had my insurance for 20 years without putting in a claim.  This will help me get approved:  Not true.  The adjuster doesn’t look up how long you’ve had the policy.  They look up if you’ve put in a claim and if so, they look at the inspection results and pictures to see if your roof has been incurred more damage or if you made repairs from previous claim payments.

If you would like to know if your home has hail or wind damage call HAPS at 404-933-6610 or visit our company website at http://www.homeassetprotectionservices.com to arrange for a free inspection.  If we find damage, we’ll help you through the entire process.  If you don’t have damage, we’ll tell you you don’t.  If you need maintainence even if you don’t have damage, we’ll let you know. 

Your shingles are supposed to last 20-50 years, but other parts of your roof don’t.   In fact, we suggest roof maintainence every 2-3 years.  With this plan we change pipe boots (they rot), recaulk areas needed (caulk only holds up for a relatively short period of time, inspect flashing (it can move), and deal with rotten siding issues. 

We hope this article helps you understand a little more about our industry.  We hope you’ll call us at 404-933-6610 if you would like an inspection of your roof, if you have questions regarding your home, or if you have other home improvement projects where you are looking for someone you can trust for honest opinions, quality workmanship, and competitive pricing. 

Home Asset Protection Services, LLC (HAPS)                                                                                         Suwanee,GA  30024                            404-933-6610

September, 2010 Hail & Wind Storms Cause Roof Damage in Metro Atlanta

Posted in Atlanta Hail Damage Information, Claims Guide with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 27, 2010 by HAPS

 

Roof Job in Progress

A rare summer hail storm hit the Metro Atlanta area in September, 2010.  Homeowners need to react quickly if you think you may have hail damage or wind damage to your roof.  Storm reports indicate hail hit in Smyrna, Sandy Springs, Dunwoody, Duluth, Sugar Hill, &  Newnan.  Additionally, high winds occurred across the metro area.

The only way to know if you have enough storm damage to file a claim with your insurance company is to have a professional inspect your roof.  Hail damage to your shingles is generally NOT visible from the ground.  If you have had hail storms in your area you should have your roof inspected quickly.

While insurance companies allow hail or wind claims within a 1 to 2 year period, the majority of the claims get approved during the first few months after the storm.

While not verified, it is believed more roof replacements get approved soon after the storm because the insurance companies managers are so busy processing claims that they don’t have time to micro manage the adjusters who decide whether the claim should be approved or not.

The adjusters are trained to make the call, but when their bosses are watching over them with a careful eye they are more careful in what they approve.  This is what happens long after the storms when less claims are being processed and the managers have more time to look over adjuster reports and overrule approvals.

Again, this is speculation; however, we see higher approval rates after each storm.

If you experienced hail or high winds from the September  2010 storm call Home Asset Protection Services at 404-933-6610 to arrange for a free inspection of your roof.  We are a full service roofing company who knows what to look for, knows how to file the claim, knows how to get your roof approved, and knows how to make sure you get proper compensation for your claim.  You can also contact us at CONTACT FORM

We do quality work on your roof, and we go over and above the claim scope of work to make sure your roof is built to last for years.

If you are interested in finding out if your home may qualify for a roof replacement paid for by your insurance company due to storm damage …. give us a call at 404-933-6610.