Sometimes acts of nature can be devastating to our property that’s why most of us protect ourselves with Homeowners insurance. Lets say a storm runs through your neighborhood with strong winds, rain and maybe even hail. What is the first thing you should do? You should call your roofer to come out and inspect your roof to check for damage, he should be able to tell you if the damage is great enough for you to file an insurance claim. If you determine that you should file a claim it is advisable to have your roofer present when the insurance adjuster comes out they can sometimes catch things the adjuster might miss. This can also be a disadvantage if your roofer is of the aggressive kind (you roofers know who you are). Your roofer should never interfere with the insurance adjuster’s job at hand and is just there to answer questions the adjuster might have.
Every insurance company has criteria that must be meet when adjusting a claim this is where it is beneficial to have those larger insurance company’s as some insurance company’s can use loop holes to not pay claims.
Documentation is everything in the insurance world you have to have proof of a loss you just cannot say there’s damage and expect to have the loss covered.
As outlined here this is a typical Shingle roof adjustment procedure for a hail claim.
Photograph the front of the property this is so the correct address can be verified.
Front of House
Measure the eves
Haag Gauge which measures the shingle.
Check for the number of layers of roofing.
Layers of roofing
Check for damage on soft metals. If there is soft metal damage that usually means shingle damage. As you can see in the picture below there are lots of hail dents in both the awning and the tie-in metal
Check soft metals
Create a test square this is a 10 X 10 area. You would then look for hail hits circle them with contrasting chalk then photograph them. Most insurance company’s require at least 10 hits within the test square to total the roof some require more some require less.
As you can see in the picture below there was no damage found
No damage Test Square
This house was kind of unique in the fact I did find hail damage on the soft metals but none on the shingles this is because this roof was replaced only month prior from a previous hail storm but the awning was not. There however was new hail damage on some of the new soft metals from hail but was only a couple and not enough to amount to any kind of measurable loss. This is just a basic overview the adjust would also include siding, pool decking, garage doors, sheds, A/C units, and gutters to name a few.
We all know that you cannot get a home loan without a home inspection. With that said is a home inspector really qualified to look at my roof? A home inspector is going to tell you what he see’s and what he thinks about the condition of your roof, a good home inspector is also going to tell you that he is not really qualified to make any type of set in stone judgement about the condition of your roof and that you will need to have a “Licensed Roofing Contractor” look at it. What are some of the things a home inspector might look for when assessing my roof? That depends on what type of roof you have. In this article we are going to look at a tile roof.
Identification of the tile roof
Clay, Sand cast, or Concrete and Underlayment type.
Inspection Check list
1. Broke, cracked, loose, or missing tiles
2. Loose or missing flashing and or roofing componants
3. Broke Concrete “Mud balls”.
4. Torn, curled, cupped or otherwise worn out underlayment.
5. Estimate age and serviceability.
When it comes to liquid applied coatings it’s important that you understand how to correctly apply them as well as making sure that the are compatible with the existing materials you intend to apply them over. In this picture it shows an elastomeric coating that was applied over an asphalt based emulsion. You can apply an elastomeric coating over emulsion as long as the emulsion has fully curd and the oils have totally burned off. If you coat it before its fully curd then the results down the road will look like the picture. Because the process was done incorrectly this home owner will be spending money on a new roof.
The two most common sources of roof leaks on a foam roof (or really any type of roof) is skylights and scuppers. Generally when a roof leaks it’s because of a failed penetration on the roof. Leaks are usually not found in the membrane it’s self. Curb mount skylights are the easiest type of skylight to change and usually come in 2 common sizes 2′ by 2′ or 2′ by 4′ and are avalible from home depot or lowes. It should be noted that they will carry single and double dome skylights, the difference being a single dome has one lens where a double dome has two lenses. If the space under the skylight is liveable space it requires a double dome, if it is not liveable then you only need a single dome. I recommend double dome sklights no matter where they are going it’s twice the protection for about $10 more.
In the picture below it shows a picture of a skylight that has been sealed shut and no longer functions correctly. This pretty common thing being done and it only woks in the very short term and should not be done. The time it takes to seal it up and the price you might pay someone to do this you could have replaced it for less.
sealed skylight lens with failed coating.
In this next picture it shows how a skylight functions.
functioning parts of the skylight
In This last picture it explains how to remove the skylight
Be sure to remove all 8 nails or screws before removing
Removing and replacing skylights isn’t as hard as you might think. Find the nails or screws holding the skylight on remove them and the gently pull the skylight off. Once you have it off put the new one in place and push it down so that it’s flush against the top of the curb then nail it in place. You can probably remove and replace on of theses in about 15-20 min.
Shingle roofs are not maintenance free. Ok for the most part they are there’s not much you can do for them except check for blown off shingle tabs or shingles, check pipes and penetrations for cracks and or holes. But more importantly if you have had work done by An A/C guy or had a new satellite dish installed you should probably get on the roof (if your able) and look at their work. Remember your A/C guy is not a roofer and they seldom call roofers to fix their work until they have a leak.
Improper A/C jack install
As you can see in this picture this A/C jack is not installed properly. What do you think happened here?
2. You should always have abandoned equipment taken off of the roof they are in many cases sources for leaks. In the case below this T.V. antenna is not used but it became a great roosting spot for pigeon’s and other birds. Their scratching around and poop has started to deteriorate the shingles around it. You can’t just replace those shingles a lot of times they are stuck together. So most of the shingles are in good shape and have lot’s of life left these do not.
Bird damaged shingles
3. Finally you should check for cracks in pipes and other penetrations at least once a year repair them as necessary to prevent leaks. Just put more mastic around the pipes and penetrations.
In this tutorial I’m going to show you how to fix a small foam split next to a plywood seam. As a rule of thumb foam that is sprayed directly over plywood will not leak. This is because water cannot travel underneath the foam because it’s fully adhered to the wood. However there are some exceptions to this rule
1. A leaking penetration i.e. pipe , t-top, scupper ect.
2. A split at a plywood seam.
This split is only about 1 1/2 inches long but the damage it did inside was incredible.
foam split next to plywood seam
As you can see this is a very small split that can go unnoticed. Typically something like this would never leak. But what gives it away is the plywood seam right next to it.
1. First cut one side of the split in a V pattern
Split through to seam
2. Next use a polyurethane caulking to fill the crack. (It’s important you V it out don’t just caulk the top it will split again)
Caulk the hole
3. Tool the caulk with you finger or cardboard. Make sure you go past all the edges of the cut.
Tool the caulking
4. Now the repair is finished you can coat the caulking with elastomeric coating.
The foam isn’t the problem on this roof. It’s because of improper maintenance. Wrong materials used for repairs, neglect and abuse that has led to a total tear off of this foam roof and and new roof system being installed.
As you can see from the repair done on the picture above. Yes thats a plywood patch.
mastic on foam
In picture above you can see incompatible materials have been used that’s asphalt mastic with elastomeric coating over the top. It’s because of things like this that this roof is being torn off. Poor maintenance and poor repair practices lead to costly and early roof failures. You can see where the roof coating has cracked this is often times because of cheap coatings being applied to much and to often.
This is a short video showing the elastomeric re-coat process. As you can see they are back rolling as they go, this ensures the coating fills any little cracks or holes. Also this is done when there has been an aggregate added before.
The re-coat process involves more than just putting coating down.
1. Clean roof with a broom, leaf blower, and if necessary a water hose.
If the homeowner thinks they have damage, they should first call their insurance company or agent and ask to file a claim.
The insurance company sends an adjuster to access the damage.
If the adjuster determines damage has occurred, he will issue a report listing the damage and the expected cost of recovery.
The adjuster will then cut a check for the damage minus the depreciation of the home.
The homeowner can choose 2 different ways to hire a contractor. He may bid the work to one or more contractors and accept a bid. If that bid is less than the insurance company estimate, the insurance company will pay only that amount, less deductible. If the bid is more than the insurance estimate, the homeowner can submit the higher bid to the insurance company and attempt to work out the difference. The homeowner can also opt to hire a trusted contractor of their choice. The contractor can then work out their rates with the insurance company.
Under NO circumstances can a homeowner avoid paying their deductible. Any contractor that suggests otherwise to a homeowner is committing insurance fraud.
After the project has been completed, the contractor or homeowner sends an invoice and certificate of completion to the insurance company. Insurance then cuts a check to the homeowner for the depreciated portion of the loss (providing the homeowner has replacement cost insurance, which most do.) In some instances, a mortgage company and/or contractor may be listed on the check as co-payees.
Don’t be in a hurry- you have a whole year!
You have 1 year to replace your hail damaged roof or siding!
Storm chasers will often use a high-pressure tactic of informing homeowners that they have to act fast since insurance companies will only pay for your home repair if you file the claim within 2 weeks, one month, or 6 months of a storm. That is absolutely not true. According to most policies, homeowners have up until 1 year following a storm to file a claim for hail damage to their home!
Storm chasers will also tell homeowners that they need to sign the contract fast so that the homeowner doesn’t get stuck behind many other people needing a new roof. This is another tactic to get homeowners to sign quickly, since the storm chasers will be moving to the next storm area as rapidly as possible.
Think of it this way, would you sign a contract this quickly if you were replacing your roof simply because of age or normal wear and tear? No! You’d take your time, get several different estimates, and carefully choose style and color. So why rush now? Slow down and make sure you are working with someone you trust to get the type of roof you desire.
HAIL DAMAGE! DON’T HIRE ANY CONTRACTOR UNTIL YOU HAVE READ
There are roofers from just about every state in Arizona right now taking advantage of the Hail Storm. Some of them are just trying to make a buck and have landed jobs with reputable contractors. And then there are those who are what we call “storm chasers” and they will do whatever it takes to get your insurance check. They come here and use local contractors licences to install new roofs they pay the local contractor a fee for the use of their licence. And then give you the homeowner a new roof. So whats the big deal you say.
#1 Your probably not getting the best value for your money.
#2 Some of them are cutting corners and will be long gone by the time you find out and you’ll be left with the bill.
#3 Some of them are not paying any taxes that are used in your community, so most of that money is leaving Arizona.
#4 Some of them Are just plain out not roofers!
The list can go on and on. Don’t be a victim let the ArizonaRoofer recommend a trusted local licensed roofing contractor please contact us .The ArizonaRoofer is the homeowners information source we are always on the homeowners side. We don’t play favorites, we play who can best serve you for your roofing needs.