Indianapolis roofing expert offers tips to check for problems
Citing a love for being outdoors and enjoying a good challenge, Randy Yeary, owner of Universal Roofing LLC, started his roofing company in 1988. Since then, customers say his business deserves high marks, including an unbroken streak of Super Service Awards since 2002, for its focus on quality and customer satisfaction.
“My joy is being on the job site,” Yeary says. “I love solving problems.”
Yeary weighed in on some important roofing considerations in the area:
How do I know my roof needs repairs or replacement?
Binoculars are an easy, safe way to check your roof without getting on a ladder. Missing shingles that may have been blown off, nail pops where the nails have pushed the shingle up in the air a little bit and granules in your downspouts all could indicate premature wear or a product failure.
Other common problem areas are around the chimney base, the exhaust pipe boots, valleys and areas where the gutter line meets the roof.
If your roof is under warranty and you see damage or missing shingles, call the contractor. Homeowners can also replace shingles themselves, but the key is to not damage the area surrounding where you're working, which can cause a leak.
What if I don't see any problems with my shingles?
Even if your shingles look good, it's always the things you can't see - the ventilation, the underlayment and the nailing - that are paramount to a good roof. One thing we see during tear-offs in older homes is underinsulated attic areas.
If you're getting heat loss from an underinsulated or poorly ventilated roof, it can cause ice damming, which can damage the shingles.
If the attic area needs insulation, timing it during a roofing job works great because you don't need to come through the house to install it. And with the stimulus program, homeowners could also qualify for a $1,500 credit toward more energy-efficient material.
Another key to an efficient roof system is proper ventilation. For example, if you have too much exhaust, your home can actually suck moisture into your attic.
How much should I expect to pay for a new roof?
The average price range for a new 30-year asphalt dimensional shingle roof is $6,000 to $12,000, depending on size and other factors. That's the most common roof type for our area, and an average roof is about 3,200 square feet.
Taller or steeper roofs, which are more dangerous, and the presence of sensitive landscaping can affect the price. If the installation process is done correctly, a new roof can last 30 years.
A roof's longevity is affected by the pitch. If you've got a 10- to 15-degree pitch, you can get a lot more years, because the quicker the water runs off the shingles, the longer they last.
Do you have any tips for hiring a roofing contractor?
Another important thing for a new roof is making sure your contractor is aware of your municipality's permit process. Towns like Fishers, Indianapolis and Carmel have separate processes and making sure the proper permits are posted is crucial. It should be a red flag if a contractor asks the homeowner to get the permit.