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Category Archives: Tips

Universal Focus on Historic Structures, Including Network-Wide Roof Repair Charlotte

In 2006, the General Assembly appropriated $222 million plus toward the repairs and renovations of ECSU, NCCU and UNCA (1). The allocated funds included $600,000 toward roof replacement at the UNCC for Public Television Bryan Center and an additional $75,000 earmarked for network-wide UNC roof repairs Charlotte. The funds also supported improved energy conservation measures, renovations of various classrooms and support facilities and improvements to the General Administration electrical infrastructure.

Agricultural Buildings: Roof Repair Charlotte Historical Barns

When repairing historic Charlotte roofs – even an old barn – most owners prefer to retain the original look and feel. From wooden shingles to slate and from shingles to metal, historic agricultural structures run the gauntlet in roofing materials. Maintenance is critical to keeping a watertight barn roof. When kept dry, those old pine rafters, roof boards, framing and floors seems to last forever. But failure to preserve the roof ensures that your historic Charlotte barn ends up making a somewhat large scrap pile.

According to the University of Vermont, the original roofing of historic agricultural structures fits into the following time frame:

  • Prior to 1850 – Wooden shingles
  • 1851 to 1940 – Optional slate and early metal designs
  • 1941 to Present – Asphalt shingles and current fabricated metals (2).

It may be that your historic roof has already deteriorated beyond reasonable maintenance or roof repair options. If correctly maintained, slate and metal roofing materials tend to last for ages. But sometimes roof replacement is the best choice. To retain the historic look and feel, stick with the original roofing material type. It may be cheaper to installed corrugated fiberglass roofing sheets, but it will never reflect the historic character of an old wooden shingled roof.

Inspecting Your Historic Roofing System

Whether on your home or on your historic barn, yearly roof inspections ensure a watertight surface. Unless experiencing roof leaks or other roof problems that demand the attention of a professional Charlotte roof repair company, you can handle the standard inspections without ever needing to climb a ladder.

Unlike the roofs on houses, barn roofs are generally free of any hidden areas. Inspection can be as simple as using binoculars to scan the outer surface of the materials. The process is simple: Going row by row, scrutinize overlaps, flashing, ridges, eaves and intersecting walls.

Follow-up the external scan with several inside walk-through inspections. Use the sun to your advantage when trying to spot pinholes of light. Use the rain and the snow to spot the difficult leaks. Look for water stains, loose flashing and rust where rust is a factor.

Knowing When Roof Replacement Is Better Than Roof Repair

Contrary to the whispers of the industry: It is not inevitable that a roof will leak, need repair or require replacing during your lifetime. Well-maintained metal and slate roofs can last for generations. But that is the problem with historical roofs: They have been around for generations.

The following simple questions will help you determine if your roof repair Charlotte project should change into a roof replacement project:

  • If possible, repair historical roofs that are original to the building
  • Identify the root of the roof problem
  • If replacement is unavoidable, seek to locate the historic roofing materials
  • If material availability is non-existent, consider custom fabrication
  • Can you still find a Charlotte roofing contractor with the skill to repair your historic roof?

Explore the options. When possible, retain the character of your historical structures. House, barn or any other legitimate structure, Right Way Exterior Solutions, LLC is always ready to help you with your Charlotte roof repair, roof replacement or roof installation. For more information, click here.

 

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Charlotte Roof Repair: Tricky If Not Correctly Diagnosed

Correctly diagnosing your need for a roof repair Charlotte expert can be tricky. Not all signs of roof trouble are obvious to homeowners. Finding the right solution compounds the issue. Physical leaks may be evident by plain signs of water damage. However other evidence of roofing failure can be subtle

Look for anything in the following three categories:

Changes in Colors Often Reflect Damaged Roofing

  • Discoloration – The causes of shingle discoloration are many. For example: Excessive moisture nearly always promotes the growth of algae and mold. Likewise, color fading indicates excessive loss of shingle granule. Either of these indicates your need to contact roof repair Charlotte services.
  • Mold – Inadequate attic ventilation often results in moisture buildup. This can cause mildew and mold to show up on your ceilings and/or walls.
  • Interior Stains – A leaky roof nearly always ends up causing stains on the ceilings of your home. The causes can be many, but a misaligned shingle underlayment is something that the average Charlotte roof repair inspection may miss.

Roofing Compromise Evidenced By Appearance

  • Blistering – Also marked by peeling paint on the inside or outside of your home, blistering is an earmark of increased humidity due to poor attic ventilation
  • Dents – Also including chips out of the shingles or dings in metal roofing, dents indicate hail damage
  • Siding Issues – Sometimes linked to attic ventilation problems that trap heat, buckled, decayed or discolored siding can reveal the presence of roof trouble
  • Missing Roofing Materials – Although common to homes roofed with short-life asphalt shingles, wind and storm can damage or strip away metal, wood and even tile roofing
  • Shingle Separation – When shingles age, heat and weather can cause a widening in the spaces between shingle tabs. Eventually water will find an entrance into your attic.

Water – A Leaky Roof is the Horror of Every Homeowner

  • Water Condensation – Typically seen on the underside of your roof sheathing, water condensation is a sign that your attic is trapping moisture.
  • Leakage In the Attic – Poor metal flashing, torn shingles, missing shingles, faulty underlayment and host of other roofing failures can be associated with leakage in the attic. Call for a roof inspection ASAP.
  • Leakage That Reaches the Interior Ceilings – Everything from a leak in chimney flashing to missing nails and from torn sheathing to missing shingles can result in serious damage to your interior ceilings. Don’t permit such a problem to go untreated.

Questions to Ask Your Roof Repair Charlotte Contractor

Before leaping into the process of finding a reliable roof repair Charlotteprofessional, consider one final and often overlooked sign of roof trouble. Though it seems strange, an unusual increase in your energy bill can reflect roofing problems. For example: An increase in summer cooling costs may indicate that your attic ventilation system is failing. Likewise, an increase in your heating costs may indicate moisture in the attic and water accumulation on the installed insulation resulting in a reduction in R-value.

But what do you look for in a Charlotte roofing contractor? How do you know who is earnest, local and stable? Start by avoiding any roofing contractors that show up randomly at your doors. Don’t even permit them to inspect your roof: Some scam-roofers have been known to create damage in order to make a sale. Also follow these tips:

  • Get and check the company’s license, insurance and bonding information
  • Get a functional local contact number
  • Ask for and check referrals
  • Get the contract in writing
  • Never permit your contractor to arrange your lending contract. According to the Federal Trade Commission, the “Home Improvement” loan scam is a primary way that shady contractors rip customers while still managing to slip within the limits of legal theft (1).
  • Get the names and identity information of any subcontractors
  • Get evidence that the Charlotte roofing contractor is experienced in projects that involve the same materials and services as are needed on your home.

 

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Siding Repairs Service – Importance of a Written Home Improvement Contract

A siding repairs service contract defines the terms of agreement between you and a given siding contractor. Although some homeowners and contractors are willing to come to terms via a verbal siding service contract, such a venture often lacks legal protection for either party. On the other hand, a written contract for siding services indicates, through text assumed legally binding, the full scope and pricing of the expected siding repairs.

Furthermore, the written home improvement contract also defines responsibilities associated with each party of the siding repairs service contract as well as the relationship between the two parties. By getting all the details documented via a written home improvement contract, the homeowner hopes to avoid:

  • Nasty disagreements
  • Unexpected charges
  • Delayed services
  • Poor contractor behavior
  • Sloppy work
  • Uninsured accidents
  • AND much more.

Reaching an agreement in advance of any siding repair services helps both the homeowner and the home improvement contractor know what to expect from self and from the other party. Getting it in writing helps ensure that the siding contractor strives to uphold his or her reputation, prevent delays, and use quality siding materials..

Keeping Up With Payment Schedules and Schemes

Although most home improvement contractors follow a reasonable approach to payment schedules and schemes, the Charlotte homeowner should never sign papers based upon an assumed payment plan. As a rule of thumb, avoid working with any exterior services contractor who seeks up-front payment before work begins or is completed. On the other hand, some home siding installation and repair companies seek stage-payment wherein you pay along the way according to a predefined job-stage completion plan. For small Charlotte siding contractors, a scheme for stage-payment provides reasonable builder protection while also ensuing that the homeowner receives services rendered for services paid.

Whether working with an established incremental payment schedule or paying only after the job is fully completed, get it all in writing. And read the small print. Even with the best intentions, a homeowner may encounter events that force late payment. Make sure you understand the costs and effects of missing your side of the home improvement contractor’s agreement.

Hidden Costs For A Charlotte Siding Repairs Service Job

Don’t get caught in the hidden costs scam. Honest home siding contractors are upfront with pricing and additional costs. Watch the pre-job inspection. Maybe you don’t understand all that is happening, but much can be determined by how through seems the inspection. Contractor’s who are concerned about a “No Surprise” siding repair service take time during the inspection to ensure that nothing gets missed or overlooked.

 

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Decking Material – Distinctions in Decks Styling

Decking material, not always an obvious choice. Having a deck in your home provides a comfortable place to stay when you want to enjoy the outside environment. It can also be a great addition to increase the value of your house. Constructing a deck however requires several factors that should be considered in purpose as well as material types. You can either contact deck builders to do the job or build the deck yourself.

Types of Decks

  • Barbecue Decks – instead of having all the cooking done in your kitchen, you can build a barbecue deck for your home where you can grill barbecue and steaks. Barbecue decks became very popular after the recent revival of grilling activities in most parts of American suburbs.
  • Porch Decks – the most popular type of deck as an addition to home. It is usually placed in front of the house so you could just step out of the front door if you want to relax and enjoy the fresh air. Porch decks are very ideal for houses in rural areas and those with wide yard.
  • Pool Decks – these are structures build around the pool if you have one at home. Pool decks must be comfortable to the feet since you will walk barefoot. It should have a smooth and satin-like surface. There are decking contractors that make deck pools out of composite materials which are designed specifically for easy walking around the pool even if barefooted.
  • Free-Standing Decks – these decks are perhaps the easiest one to build. They do not require siding or being attached to the home that can possibly damage the house during the construction. This deck will only require structural support from all the sides.

Common Decking Materials Used in Building Decks

Wood is the traditional material used in building decks. Among the most common is redwood, pressure-treated southern pine or western cedar depending on the place where you live. However, the major choices can be the natural wood or the composite wood. Deck builders are the best resource person whom you can inquire about the most ideal materials you can use for your home deck.

When building your home deck, you must consider the durability and the life span of the deck materials.

  • Wooden planks can be vulnerable to splintering and cracking due to varied weather conditions as well as to water damage that can lead to deterioration. Composite decks can fade or distort but won’t splinter or crack. However, they can get stained easily and prone to scratch.
  • The redwoods with high grades are valued for their durability as deck materials. Redwoods are very constant as well as have natural resistance to insects and rot. Working with redwood is also easier and has excellent performance in holding finishes.
  • The Alaska yellow cedar and the Western red cedar are also ideal decking materials because they are resistant to rot, stable, easy to work with and straight grained. The western red cedar is lighter compared to the Alaskan redwood or cedar. The yellow cedar is heavier but stronger and it comes in clear and brought color. It is resistant to stain due to its density.
  • Perhaps the best decking materials, when it comes to durability, are the tropical hardwoods. A South American hardwood called Ipe is extremely resistant to insect damage and decay. Because it is exceptionally durable, Ipe is considered the finest decking product but also comes in very high price. At present, this hardwood is considered endangered because of exploitation for many years.

If you want to build the most ideal deck for your home, it is better left to the hands of professionals. Deck builders will determine the best material to use as well the design of the deck that is very ideal for your home. For more information, contact Right Way Exterior Solutions.

 

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6 Pre-Construction Stages As You Plan New Deck Projects

Decks constructed without forethought… Ugly. Short-lived. And Untrustworthy. We’ve all seen it, the results of what can happen if a homeowner fails to plan new deck projects. Complications develop. Poor ground preparation results in one corner sinking lower than the rest of deck. Lousy choices in material result in a nasty mismatch in the décor of the associated home. Shoddy craftsmanship ends up with stumped toes, floating nails, and oversize drainage gaps. Failing to plan your new deck may be a home disaster in the making.

So…

Before starting deck construction, take a look at the following 6 pre-construction thoughts and objectives. Besides, planning for a new deck before you make contact with Right Way Exterior Solutions, LLC assures that can relay to our sales team a more perfect idea of your goals for the finished deck project.

Step 1 – Purpose for the Deck

Sometimes people think that all decks are crafted for entertainment, relaxation, or weekend cookouts. But what if you like to observe the stars, maybe even plan to setup a telescope on the deck? Ah… Now the availability of darkness becomes a major factor in the plan new deck projects scenario. For some folks, those who live on the waterfront, a deck must be designed to double as a boat dock. For others, a deck may be crafted with plans for future expansion into a sun-room.

Before ever starting on the plan for how to build your deck and what materials must be used, determine the purpose of the deck.

Step 2 – Ideas for Deck Designs

Simple Deck LayoutTo get ideals for deck designs, take a stroll around your own neighborhood. Observe the various home styles and the choice of deck design and decking materials most popular within your community. You don’t have to copy anyone, but fact be known, the homes in many Mount Holly and regional areas tend to follow a standard community design that conforms to the given neighborhood. Thus you need a good understanding of what works best on a similarly styled home. Pay attention to the shape of the homes and the associated deck styles. Notice how each style works in the attachment to the house. Put together a mental image of how to fit the same deck to your own home, as well as how you could modify it to make your home unique.

But even if you have a custom designed Charlotte home, a look around the neighborhood can help you develop an eye that enables you to plan new deck projects with vision and imagination. And remember: Right Way knows how to help you work up a great looking layout for the deck of your choice, no matter how distinct the layout of your home.

Likewise, take time to review current and old home improvement magazines. The styles of yesterday have a tendency to come back over and over again. Thus you could, in yesterday’s home improvement magazine, find the new style for today.

Things to look for:

  • Kit based deck railing versus custom designed deck railing
  • Location of stairs, both the deck stairs and existing house stairs
  • The use of post caps, rail lighting, and lighting on the deck steps
  • Choices of materials and how those materials fit into the décor of the associated home
  • Mode of craftsmanship: Is the deck freestanding or is it attached to the house, and why the distinction in a given situation.

Step 3 – Testing the Layout of Your Deck

You know the purpose and that defines the primary shape of your planned new deck project, the best on-site location for the deck, and any considerations that must be included to enable perceived future expansion, modifications, or further deck construction and perhaps even a new roof. You also now have the ideas that define the desired characteristics for lighting, rails, roofing and stairs.

Now you need to calculate the best size. Aid the process by cutting out some cardboard silhouettes of benches, chairs and planters. Also weigh in for a fire pit, grill, and hot tube as the case may be. Use twine toe mark out the outer perimeters of the purposed deck’s framework and then place the silhouettes as necessary to suit your goals and living style. To get final measurements, modify the visual as necessary.

Step 4 – Selecting Deck Materials

Time has arrived for deciding on types of deck materials. During the stages of layout and location selection, Lay Deck Constructionyou likely gathered some key thoughts about types of materials best suited for your deck. But situations differ and not all types of decking materials suit every planned new decking project. So keep in mind that your choice in materials may force a modification or reshaping of your perceived outdoor sunning deck.

The most common deck building products include:

  • Green Treated Pine – Least costly and easy to stain or pressure wash and re-stain
  • Cedar – More expensive but long lasting and stainable if desired but also weathers to a beautiful gray.
  • Redwood – Weathers nicely, but can also be stained or treated
  • Composite Decking – Noted for low maintenance but not to be considered maintenance free. Also has a bit of a reputation for crumbling over time.

Step 5 – Deck Lighting Options

Time to consider deck lighting options. Concerning color and style, choices abound thus you can easily match any home décor scheme. Consider low voltage deck lighting to the post caps, the deck railing, and the deck steps. You can also include recessed deck floor lights. Keep in mind that installing deck lighting will affect the deck construction process, and may even force certain design changes.

Step 6 – Starting Deck Construction

3D Deck Design Software by Big hammerWhether making this a DIY deck building project or ensuring polished quality by hiring in professional carpenters, consider dropping $79 for the HGTV Ultimate Home Design with Landscaping & Decks or just make use of the free online Home Improvement3D Deck Design Tool.

These programs and others like them use a simple drag and drop interface to enable plan new deck projects customers to see their visions in various sizes and styles. Most of them even enable users to calculate the ballpark cost of before starting deck construction.

Professional Deck Design, Deck Repair, and Deck Construction

Perhaps these six tips have triggered your desire to get your deck project on the move. Right Way Exterior Solutions can make your vision of a new deck on your home into a real world Charlotte home deck solution. Call for further details. Or merely complete the attached contact form. We are certified reliable, price efficient, safety minded, and focused on complete customer satisfaction.

 

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Repairing Roof Damage – Simple Advice From a Charlotte Roofer

Weather in the Charlotte/Gastonia area can be erratic and damaging to roofs and other home components. Rain, sleet, snow, and hail come at random intervals, in season and out. Many Charlotte area homeowners can bear first-hand witness to the dangers of high winds, downed trees, and hail the size of golf balls. They have seen dimpled shingles and dented copper. They know what happens when the wind rips away a roof crown.

But how many people really pay attention to the less obvious sources of roof failure?

This article addresses the obvious roof problems, but it also provides advice concerning the overlooked issues such as poor maintenance routines, basic exposure to long-term weather patterns, airborne chemicals, and the things that kids throw into the sky. Shoddy craftsmanship during an initial roof installation can also cause problems. Incorrectly installed Flashing may result in a slow leak that takes months or even years to become self-evident. Eaves and overhangs are also points of difficulty. These are the places where leaks sometimes go unnoticed for long periods of time.

Roof Damage That Springs From Immediate Conditions

Homeowners in the vicinity of Charlotte, Gastonia, and the surrounding areas can expect an extended share of high winds, hail storms, flying debris, and fallen tree limbs. These problem sources can generate an immediate situation of roof failure, or an impending condition of roof failure. Winds can rip away the cover ridge, chimney caps, roof vents, flashing, and/or shingles. Broken tree limbs or some other type of airborne debris can strike the roof with sufficient force to puncture shingles, felt, and even the wood beneath. Any of these damage types can permit an instantaneous leakage of rainwater.

 

However, the same things that cause on the spot emergencies can also cause long-term, unseen water damage. For example: A tree limb may not create an immediate leak. Yet if the limb is not promptly removed and the area of impact properly treated, the future effects may demand extensive roof care.

Whenever a heavy storm passes through the Charlotte area, you should take the time to examine your roof. Even if there are no obvious leaks, certain roof components may yet be missing or damaged. Furthermore, you should check to ensure that no foreign object is blocking the roof valleys or the gutter tracks. Here are some basic methods of checking:

  • Examine the roof, either from a distance that enables a full view of the housetop, or by a physical presence on the roof.
  • Look around your yard for any roof components that may have blown to the ground.
  • Question neighbors. They may have noticed something during the storm that affects the condition of your home.
  • If it seems reasonable, check the attic space for any signs of leakage.
  • If necessary, or for the assurance of adequate preventative measures, contact a Charlotte, Gastonia, or Kannapolis roofing specialists.

Roof Damage Related to Poor Maintenance

Too many homeowners ignore the obvious. Periodic roof inspections are critical to home maintenance. Be quick to repair problem or damaged areas. Stopped up gutters cause foundation damage as well as roof and wall damage. Applying leaf guards to rain gutters is one of the easiest fixes available. If you are unable to handle the installation yourself, hire a pro. The cost of maintenance is much less than the cost of major repairs. Here is a list of other primary maintenance issues:

  • Trees growing too near the home should be trimmed or removed
  • Although common in regions of high humidity, any sign of algae, fungus, or mold should be investigated.

Roof Failure Due To Inferior Craftsmanship

Flashing is designed to establish a watertight boundary between roof components, including roof sections, roof projections, and the joints of roof and external walls. Sometimes flashing gets damaged due to wind or hail or other force. Sometimes a contractor fails to install flashing. And sometimes a “craftsman” blotches the installation. Educate yourself concerning your home. Learn which areas of your roof require flashing, and then make flashing inspection a part of your routine home maintenance process.

Of course, flashing is not the only roof element that may involve inferior craftsmanship. Shingles do not always last as long as they should. A shady contractor may get a bargain deal from a local salvage yard. Whether building a new home, or replacing an old roof, make certain that you know from whence the materials were purchased.

Roofing Options

When purchasing roofing materials, homeowners typically seek durable products, aesthetic appeal, and quality installation at a reasonable cost. The options in material choices are many, ranging from cheap but popular asbestos to the unique beauty of copper shingles. Asbestos is typically low cost and easy to apply yet some roofers believe that metal roofing is a better choice. Several forces drive this conclusion. Metal roofs provide:

  • Efficient heat deference
  • Durability
  • A fire retardant nature
  • Low maintenance
  • Energy efficiency
  • Materials that can be painted
  • Resistance to mildew and algae.

Other roofing choices include:

  • Clay tile
  • Concrete tile
  • Hot mop roofing
  • Slate
  • Wood Shakes.

Certain evidences indicate that many of the high-end roofing materials are failing to live up to the stated warranties. If you are thinking of utilizing one of the new man-made products, take care to investigate the issue. Ask your Charlotte area roofer to confirm the track record of your chosen materials.

Roof Repairs and New Roof Installs

Although the correction of minor roof issues is not beyond the capabilities of many Charlotte homeowners, it may be wise to consult with a roofing specialist before moving ahead with the work. A structurally sound roof installation is critical to the stability of your home. Utilizing the right materials in the right way will protect your home and reduce the risk of future water problems.

 

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Roof Protection – Dealing With High Winds

Weather related home damage, including flooding and roof destruction, is no stranger to the Metrolina region of North and South Carolina. Thunderstorms, heavy rainfall, and powerful winds have wrecked havoc in the past, and will likely continue to be a yearly threat throughout the Charlotte metropolitan area. Recent months have seen an increase in hailstorms and vicious wind forces. Many homeowners have been caught off guard and ill prepared. Here are some points that can help you avoid the high cost of wind related roof damage.

Understanding Roof Design

Perhaps you have never considered how the shape of your roof affects the possibilities of wind damage. Windstorms create outside pressure against your home. The force of the moving air passes along your roof, down the exterior walls, and lastly against the very foundation of your home. If this energy is not managed correctly so that the blunt of the wind force gets transferred to the ground, your home can suffer major damage.

Simple designs would seem less susceptible to problems, yet gabled roofs are the most likely designs to experience wind damage.

Ok. So what is a gabled roof?

Think of a rectangle or box shaped home with a roof that sits on it like an elongated “A.” The outside wall on each end of the house extends to the top of the roof. On a home with a gabled roof, the end walls take the blunt of any wind force. Reliable roof protection requires a right-crafted roof structure. If not adequately braced, the end wall can collapse, taking with it part of the roof.

The typical gabled roof is structured upon manufactured trusses. Roof sheathing is then fastened to the trusses. Plywood is the typical sheathing material, and nails or staples are the basic means of anchoring. The sheathing is topped with some form of vapor barrier. Shingles, metal, or some other roofing material provides the finished roofing cover.

In many homes, the sheathing is the only thing that holds the manufactured trusses in place. The higher the wind force becomes, the greater is the risk that the home may suffer serious damage. This may seem a ho-hum statement. And of course we are not talking about the average thunderstorm. Hurricane force winds may not often touch the Charlotte Metrolina area, but tornados have proven to be very common. Why not consider installing additional supports and braces within your truss system.

Inspecting The Truss System Beneath Your Roof

Start by donning clothes that help protect you from the dangers associated with the common attic space:

  • Dust mask
  • Eye protection
  • Work gloves
  • Long sleeved shirt and full-length jeans.

Take hold of a trustworthy flashlight. Ascend into your attic. Unless your attic is floored, be careful to walk only on the wood joists. If possible, take along a few boards to use as walking planks.

Ok. Look overhead. You are seeking out evidence of poor construction. Pay attention to the nails and staples that are poking through the sheathing. If you see strong evidence of shoddy workmanship, of nails and staples that missed the trusses, consider calling in a Charlotte roofer to have the sheathing properly installed. Be aware that this will also involve some replacement of the currently installed roofing materials.

Bracing Your Roof

In the event that your roof needs additional bracing, consider the following three methods of support:

  • Truss Bracing. This involves running 2*4 studs the length of the roof. The studs should overlap across two trusses. They should be installed at three places: 1) Approximately 18 inches from the ridge of the roof; 2) Near the center of the span; 3) At the base of the truss.
  • Gable End Bracing. Consider the face of the “A”, or the inside of the wall, as the gable end. To brace the gable end, install 2*4 studs in an “X” pattern that begins with one stud running from the top center of the gable and ending at the bottom center brace on the fourth truss, and one stud that begins at the bottom center of the gable and runs to the top center brace of the fourth truss.
  • Hurricane Straps. Functional against any type of high winds, hurricane straps are designed to help retain the roof to the walls. These galvanized strips of metal are designed to overlap the truss, extend below the wall top plates, and anchor into the nearest wall stud.

This roof protection article, adapted from an article designed for the American Red Cross by Janie Harris, Extension Housing Specialist, is purposed to help Metrolina homeowners better protect their homes from unusually high winds. For more information, contact: Right Way Exterior Solutions, LLC

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What Happens In Homes Without Proper Roof Ventilation?

One of the most important aspects of the way your Charlotte roof is designed and built is proper ventilation. You simply cannot over-estimate its importance.  What happens when a roof doesn’t have proper ventilation?  Improper ventilation allows formation of condensation, moisture accumulation, and damage to the roof deck and, eventually, to the stability of the roof.  Improper roof ventilation can also affect the health of your family.

The industry standard for roof ventilation to provide 1 square foot of intake ventilation and 1 square foot of exhaust or outflow ventilation for every 300 square feet of attic space, provided the area is insulated with a vapor barrier.  If the area is insulated without a vapor barrier, the requirement doubles.

Proper ventilation of the roof and attic of a home achieves several important functions:

  • It makes the attic space cooler
  • It makes the home more energy efficient
  • It prevents condensation and accumulation of moisture on the inside of the roof deck, and prevents rotting of the roof deck
  • It reduces the risk of fire

Several types of vents can be used to assure efficient roof ventilation at your Charlotte home.  Roof ridge vents are placed along the ridge line of the roof. Ridge vents are used for exhaust or outflow of moisture, heat, and stale air. Soffit vents and Eaves are placed at the lower extremes of the roof and provide the intake ventilation.  If you live in an older home, your roof might not be constructed for roof ridge or soffit vents. Older homes were not built with the tight seals of today’s houses. There were cracks and openings around windows and doors, chimneys and other openings.  These cracks and openings allowed fresh air to flow into the house.  On the principle that hot air rises, the accumulated heat and moisture would rise to the attic and out the roof vents.

Without adequate roof ventilation, moisture rises with the hot air and forms condensation on the inside of the roof deck. This moisture is released into the air inside the house from bathing, cooking, plants, laundry and other causes.  When the condensation forms on the roof deck, it begins to rot the wood.  This introduces mold spores into the air, as well as damaging the wood.  The result, if the problem is not noticed and repaired, can be destruction of all or part of the roof deck and creation of unhealthy air inside the house.

In our increasingly airtight homes, the importance of proper Charlotte roof ventilation in home roofing systems cannot be over-emphasized.  It is important to take the time and do the research to understand the ventilation needs for your Charlotte home in your area and how best to meet those needs.

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Home Protection – Install the Right Roofing Material

Whether installing a new roof or re-covering an existing roof, you need to make certain that you select the right roofing material for your home. Your choice of materials affects both the external appearance of your home and the inside comfort of your family. Furthermore, the materials used on your roof can also play a major role in energy conservation. But… Making the right choice is not always easy. Several factors are involved:

The first consideration must be the architectural style of your home. The pitch or angle of the roof might suggest a particular type of roofing material. The style of your home will also suggest some materials and argue against others.  For example, cedar shakes would look out of place on a southern colonial home.

1) Asphalt Shingles… The most commonly used roof material is asphalt shingles.  Asphalt shingles can work on the roof of many home styles. They are often chosen because they are less expensive and they are considered the most cost-effective option.

2) Cedar Shakes… are a good option if you are trying to create a “rustic” look. Like asphalt shingles, cedar shakes can be expected to last up to 30 years. They are made from wood blocks and usually are not of uniform size or thickness. They are usually pressure-treated to make them fire resistant. They can be stained or painted to change their appearance.

3) Concrete Tile Roofing … has become increasingly popular in recent years.  The concrete tiles can look like slate, shake or terra cotta tiles. The concrete is much more durable and can be effectively used to create a well-ventilated roofing system that will help to prevent loss of interior conditioned air.

4) Metal Roofing Materials… Several types of metal roofing products are also available.  Metal costs more than asphalt shingles or cedar shakes, but will last a lifetime with relatively little maintenance. They will also reduce air conditioning costs if properly insulated and installed.  Tin is still used in many areas of the country. Copper offers a wonderful antique appearance, but probably is unaffordable for most people today.  Thing is: get the right roofing materials for your taste, financial range, and family’s long term comfort.

A number of new metal roofing materials are now available that will last a lifetime, provide the insulating value of a metal roof, but look like other materials.  These roofing materials are shaped into panels, baked to various colors, and backed with insulating fiberglass or foam in some cases. Some of these materials are made from recycled materials, making them more environmentally friendly.  Painted aluminum and steel roofing are often made from recycled drink cans.

Evaluate, Estimate, and Then Install The Right Roofing Material

To choose the right roofing material for your Charlotte home, first consider the architectural style and the type of roofing “look” that is right for the house. Then evaluate the natural materials and the metal simulations.  You should be able to find a roofing material that matches the style of your home, fits your budget and provides better insulation for your home.  This will make the home more attractive, more comfortable and more energy-efficient.

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Electrical Fatalities Makes 2013 OSHA “Fatal Four”

From home roofing to basement remodeling, the risk of electrical fatalities cannot be ignored. Water and electricity do not make good company. And whether you are working in a wet basement or resolving issues with a leaky roof, personal safety demands that you observe all electrical safety rules.

The OSHA 2013 construction safety report marks 71 out of 828 deaths as a direct result of electrocution. Although focused on roofing safety, the following 18 electrical safety tips are good for helping anyone avoid accidental electrocution.

1) Safe Electrical Setups – Check to avoid overloaded circuits. Ensure your power tools and the local electrical outlets are properly grounded. Never use a power tool in an area where water or moisture has accumulated.

2) Electrical Roofing Tools – Never modify a plug by bending or removing components. When prongs are bent, loose or missing, replace the entire device.

3) Electric Plug Adapters – Avoid use of three-prong-to-2- prong cord adapters. System ground connections exist for your safety. By passing a ground is not a sound electrical safety practice.

4) Broken Prongs – If a plug prong breaks off into a receptacle, do not attempt to remove it. Turn off the circuit, and call a licensed electrician.

5) Receptacles – Ensure that all used receptacles are mounted securely in their boxes and do not move when the plug is inserted. A loose receptacle can cause a short circuit. Never use loose receptacles or other faulty electrical equipment until the equipment is repaired or replaced and inspected by a licensed electrician.

6) Damaged Components – Replace all damage electrical enclosures such as receptacle, switch, and junction boxes. If you are not equipped for such service work, call in a licensed electrician.

7) Extension Cords – Use extension cords only when necessary and on a short-term basis. Never install an extension cord as a substitute for permanent wiring. Also, take care that your extension cords are properly sized and rated for the use intended.

8) Stumble Hazards – Keep electrical cords and all other working materials in clearly identified areas of the work zone. Avoid putting items in high-traffic work areas. Roof replacement and stumble hazards make very bad company.

9 Frayed Cords – Don’t use appliance or extension cords that show signs of wear, such as frayed or drive sheathing or exposed wires.

10) Inspection – Visually inspect all electrical equipment before use.

11) Proper Usage – Never staple, nail, or otherwise attach an extension cord to any surface.

12) Cord Care – Always turn off tools before unplugging them. Never unplug a tool by yanking on the cord.

13) Avoid Water – Unless using a wet/dry shop vacuum or some other tool that is rated for use in wet areas, keep all electrical equipment away from any source of moisture or water.

14) GFCIs – When possible, use ground ground–fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs). When working in wet, damp and moist areas, GFCIs are regulatory.

15) Receptacle Overload – Limit the use of receptacles to one appliance. If more than one appliance will be on the circuit, use an approved plug strip with a built-in circuit breaker.

16) Lighting – Use proper lighting in areas where the risk of an electrical hazard is present. Also remember to keep emergency backup lighting readily available.

17) Tools – Use only tools that have double insulated casings.

18) Safety Awareness – Make yourself aware of potential hazards before beginning your roofing project. If electrical components are in any way involved in the work, use appropriate protective equipment, including safety glasses, insulated gloves, rubber mats, etc.

Even among the most safety conscious worker, roof repair and roof installationcan result in accidental injury. Increase your odds for a safe workday. Applying these 18 electrical safety tips may not fully prevent electrical fatalities, but they make a strong defense.

 

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