Roofing 101

Roofing 101


It is important to know the basics of roofing in order to feel confident when speaking with your roofing
contractor
. A roof is not simply a cover over your head: roofs are complex structures and have many styles, protective layers, and architectural features. A close look at these factors will help you to decide what roofing materials best suit your roof and budget. Click info bars below to learn more.

Roof Decking: The roof deck is the base material of your roof and is most commonly comprised of wood. The roof deck must be in good condition to ensure that the shingles can do their job. Original roof decking often suffers damage and rot when moisture gets under the shingles or when there is not enough ventilation to allow moisture to escape.Hawkeye Roofing - Roofing For Dummies

Underlay: Low-pitched roofs are susceptible to damage from ice dams in our harsh Canadian climate; therefore, tarpaper is installed along all low-pitch roof eaves. In addition, the installation of certain products, like the ice and water shield, can provide further protection from potential water damage during the winter freeze/thaw cycle. Hawkeye Roofing starts above building code and installs ice and water shield along the perimeter of your house. As well, underlayment is provided and automatically installed on all roof pitches 6/12 and under, meeting both manufacture specifications and our high company standards.

Shingles: Shingles are installed over roof decking and underlay. Shingles should never be installed over old shingles or warranties may be voided and appearance may be compromised. Shingles come in a wide range of colours and materials (including cedar, asphalt, slate, and metal.)

Chimneys and Skylights: Special precautions are taken to ensure there are no leaks around chimneys and skylights. Often, such precautions include the installation of metal flashings, ice and water shield, and/or caulking.

Roof Vents: Roof vents are necessary to allow the escape of heat and moisture from the roof. There are several different types of vents, and a combination of vent types may be necessary for your house. Ridge vents, whirlybird vents, and pot vents are available to provide proper venting for your home.

It is necessary to understand the style of your home’s roof in order to choose the appropriate materials.

Steep-pitched roofs are very noticeable from ground level and are as important to the look of the house as the brick, windows and doors, and lower-level materials. Architectural roofing products, such as cedar shingles or asphalt shingles, may be preferred on steep-pitched roofs. Steep-pitched roofs often are found on custom homes, mansard and saltbox styles, and those with gables and dormers.

Low-pitched roofs are not as visible from ground level and are often dressed with traditional shingles. Low-pitched roofs are more susceptible to ice buildup. To help prevent any damage from occurring, Hawkeye Roofing automatically provides an ice and water shield on all sloped roofing projects.

Many homes, however, have a combination of roof styles and may require a variety of roofing materials to ensure they are both watertight and attractive.

Shingles: In Canada, traditional shingles are the most widely used roofing material. Shingles come in many colours and styles. Hawkeye Roofing has many samples to choose from in order to best suit to the style and colour scheme of your home. Generally, common shingles come with a twenty-five-year manufacturer warranty, and architectural shingles carry a thirty- to forty-year warranty.

Cedar shingles:Depending on your roof style and pitch, cedar shingles will often last forty to sixty years. Cedar shingle roofing is more expensive than traditional shingle roofing. However, cedar shingles are very striking on most steep-pitched roofs and may be well worth the difference in cost.

Eco-Friendly/Green Shingles:Environmentally friendly shingles are growing in popularity and provide a distinctive look of real slate or aged cedar shake. These roofing materials can withstand extreme outside elements and offer a lifetime warranty. Prices are comparable to cedar shingles and other premium roofing materials.

Slate shingles: Slate shingles, most commonly found on historic homes, are rarely used in new home construction in Canada due to the cost of materials and installation. Slate is a type of stone and typically lasts as long as the house is standing. Repairs to slate roofs are required when the ‘nails’ holding the shingles on fail. Such repairs are expensive. The cost of slate roofing materials is often prohibitive for the average homeowner.

Metal roofing:Metal roofing, although more expensive than traditional shingles, has recently become a more common option. Metal roofs have a lifetime warranty and come in a variety of designs and colours.

Architectural asphalt, cedar, or slate shingles can be enhanced by the use of certain accessories. For example, copper flashing is often used with cedar shingles to ensure a luxurious and consistent look. Other accessories can include lead flashing, copper and lead window coverings, finials, and even cupolas.

If you have a hard time imagining how your roof will look with the different products that are available, speak to a Hawkeye Roofing representative. We will be happy to provide you with samples and pictures to help in the decision-making process.

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