roofs that protect against hail

Impact Resistance: The Best Roofs That Protect Against Hail

Colorado is right in hail alley, so our roofs need the best protection. Insurance agents in our state know that prevention is preferable to patching. Shoddy materials mean more claims next storm season. So, when clients need repairs, make sure they get roofs that protect against hail damage.

Impact Ratings 

There are scientific tests to determine the best roofs for hail. For example, Underwriters Laboratories (UL) is a non-profit organization that sets the standard for roof impact resistance testing. The test materials by repeatedly dropping 2-inch steel balls on the same spot. Similarly, the FM Approval Rating uses its freezer ice balls to evaluate hail resistance. Both tests certify materials on a 1-4 scale, with Class 1 being the lowest and Class 4 being the highest. 

Bear in mind that hail-resistant is not the same as hail-proof. Resistance testing happens on brand new materials in laboratory conditions. In addition, over time, exposure and weather reduce a roof’s durability. So, the Institute for Business and Home Safety (IBHS) developed tests simulating real-world conditions that consider roof aging. 

What kind of roof is best for hail?

The best roof materials are all rated Class 4 on impact resistance scales. For example, rubber and stone-coated steel are the top-of-the-line material for protection against hailstones. 

Roofing Materials

Certain materials withstand hailstones better than others. Knowing the options allows you and your clients to make informed decisions. Let’s look at the pros and cons of each type of roof. 

  • Rubber roofing membranes, called Ethylene Polymer Diene Monomer (EPDM), is the sturdiest Class 4 material to protect against damage. This material is typically found in flat and low-slope commercial buildings. 
  • Metal roofing is flexible and durable. Lightweight steel holds up well and lasts decades. Unfortunately, hail sometimes causes dents in dimples in metal shingles. Stone-coated steel, however, is a solid, Class 4 material with lovely aesthetics to boot. 
  • Tile roofs come in materials like concrete and clay. Concrete is durable but also very heavy and may require extra support. Clay, however, chips quite easily—not recommended for hail-prone regions like Colorado. 
  • Asphalt shingles are found in most homes in the U.S. They hold up moderately well in hail storms, but they’re not the best. The good news is that you can reinforce it with fiberglass that lasts up to 20 years. 
  • Slate roofs are durable and long-lasting. Unfortunately, they are also heavy and take a lot of maintenance.

Roofs That Protect Against Hail

The first step in choosing roofs that protect against hail is to determine the impact ratings of the materials. From there, you can select what fits your budget and style of home. Our expertise in the insurance, mortgage, and roofing industries gives us insight into installing roofs with the best impact resistance in Colorado. We will walk you through the process one step at a time. Give us a call at 719-374-8304 or 303-834-1126.

Can a Ceiling be a Roof

Can a Ceiling be a Roof?

An attic exists between the ceiling and roof. It insulates and protects the home, but is that space necessary? Or can a ceiling be a roof? The answer is not as straightforward as it might seem. There are several ways to blend the two, such as exposed beams, vaulted ceilings, and flat roofs.

Is the ceiling the same as the roof? 

Ceilings and roofs are similar in many ways. For example, they both protect the built environment from above. The difference is that a ceiling is the upper bounds of a room, whereas a roof covers the entire structure. 

Exposed Rafters

One choice is to remove the ceiling plaster and leave the rafters bare. You can then stain the timber to create visual appeal. This style gives the room an open feeling and rustic charm. The downside of exposed beams is a lack of insulation, making the space less energy efficient. 

Vaulted Ceilings

You can have vaulted ceilings with or without exposed rafters. Also called cathedral ceilings, this style eschews a flat ceiling in favor of following the angle of the roofline. Unfortunately, un-vented cathedral ceilings tend to be hot and moist, leading to hidden mold. For older homes, you may need to retrofit additional ventilation for the roof. 

Flat Roofs

Flat roofs have no slope and use a membrane to make them waterproof. They are easier to access for maintenance and repair than a pitched roof. You can also use it for outdoor storage or living space. The most significant disadvantage is the lack of drainage, so creating a slight pitch helps rainwater drain away.

Can a Ceiling be a Roof?

So, in the end, can a ceiling be a roof? In most instances, no. There is usually space between the upper surface of a room and the top of the house. The attic acts as a buffer and allows for insulation and ventilation. In the case of exposed rafters, the roof is also the ceiling. Whether your roof is vaulted, flat, or exposed, you can rely on Just Roofs and Gutters for all your roofing needs. Schedule an inspection online today or call us at 303-834-1126.

Annual Roof Health Reports

Keep on Top of Roof Maintenance with Annual Roof Health Reports

The weather on the front range is intense. And hail isn’t the only thing that can damage your roof. The freeze-thaw cycle of snow and ice, along with winter wind storms, dramatically change how your roof ages. So to keep on top of maintenance, you need to know the current condition of their roof. That’s why annual roof health reports are so vital for Colorado homeowners.

Annual Roof Health Reports

A roof health report provides a detailed analysis of the roof’s condition and needed repairs. The inspector will look for leaks, damage, organic growth, and general wear and tear. First, the professional inspects the roof material for signs of loose or missing shingles as welling damaged flashing, fasteners, vents and seals. Then there is an interior component because leaks damage the inside of your home, leaving water stains, mold, and rot. The inspector will also examine the overall quality to identify issues that may lead to problems down the road. 

How often should I get my roof inspected?

Always get an inspection when buying a new house. After that, get an annual review before hail season starts in April. If you see obvious signs of damage, you are already facing significant damage such as structural complications, mold growth, and insulation deterioration. A professional report will catch issues before they become a problem. Save yourself trouble down the road by scheduling an inspection each year.

Scheduling Annual Inspections

Annual roof health reports are an essential part of home maintenance. Roofs don’t last forever—they all need replacement at some point. No one wants the stress of a surprise roof replacement. It’s better if you know the condition of your roof so you can plan accordingly. At Just Roofs and Gutters, we have the experience and know-how to provide a professional annual roof health report. Schedule an inspection online today

Roof Health Report Before Spring

The Importance of Getting a Roof Health Report Before Spring

Getting a roof health report before spring has far-reaching consequences here in Colorado. When a big storm hits, the insurance adjuster can compare the information from before and after, which makes processing your claim easier and faster.

When should I get a roof inspection?

Homeowners in Colorado need to get their roofs inspected each year before hail season starts in April. After that, get inspections as needed following each major storm.

Benefits of a Roof Inspection

A roof health report from before hail damage is a big deal to insurance companies. Often, it’s the difference between approving and denying damage claims. In addition, an inspection gives homeowners important information about the health of their roofs. 

  • Shingle damage
  • Deteriorating materials
  • Gutter and downspout health
  • Damage from leaks, mold, and rot
  • Vent health

While insurance is there to protect you from financial loss, they also expect you to mitigate damage as much as possible. So, the earlier you detect problems, the sooner you can fix them. 

Actual Cash Value

The annual inspection gives you an idea of your roof’s lifespan. Knowing the current condition helps you budget and decide when to replace the roof. If your roof is in poor shape, premiums are higher, and reimbursements are lower. That’s because homeowner’s insurance generally provides actual cash value (ACV) for roof coverage. So, they consider depreciation and only pay what the roof is worth at the time of the claim. For example, a new roof receives a much higher payout for damages than a dilapidated one. 

Replacement Coverage Costs

Replacement costs are almost always higher than the AVC coverage. However, some insurance companies allow you to, and an endorsement where you pay a higher premium which covers the total replacement value. The higher monthly payment may be worth it, considering the out-of-pocket existences associated with AVC coverage. 

Getting a Roof Health Report Before Spring

In Colorado, it’s not a question of if it will hail, but when. Hail is inevitable out here. And after a big storm, everyone is scrambling for insurance claims. So, having a roof health report before spring puts your claim at an advantage for faster, easier processing. At Just Roofs and Gutters, we have years of experience in the insurance industry, and we’ll gladly walk you through the process every step of the way. So schedule an inspection online today.

Annual Roof Health Reports

Breathe Easy: The Importance of Roof Ventilation

As a property manager, you want to ensure the houses you manage are well-maintained from top to bottom. However, an often overlooked aspect of home maintenance is roof ventilation. Airflow through the attic allows the building to breathe. Vents protect roofs, increase energy efficiency, and circulate clean air.

How Does Ventilation in the Roof Work?

Heat and moisture get trapped in the attic and can damage roofing materials. Attic ventilation works through intake and exhaust vents that circulate air. The exhaust vents allow excess heat and moisture to escape, and the intake vents bring in cooler air from outside.

3 Important Benefits of Roof Ventilation

  1. Extends the Life of the Roof

The primary purpose of attic ventilation is to protect the roof. Unfortunately, hot attic air is a breeding ground for mold and mildew. Plus, expanding and contracting caused by attic temperature shifts can damage shingles over time. In fact, many shingle manufacturers will void the warranty over lack of attic ventilation. 

Ventilation also protects the roof during cold weather. Warm attics cause winter snow to melt and refreeze on the top. Melted snow slides off down until it reaches the cooler eves. It refreezes and forms an ice dam that blocks the snow behind it. Pooling water damages shingles, gutters, and soffits. 

  1. Increases Energy Efficiency 

Ventilation plays a considerable role in energy efficiency, especially in the summer. A warm, moist attic makes your air conditioner work harder. However, adequate airflow keeps cooling costs down. When combined with insulation, attic ventilation creates lasting efficiency. However, when placing attic insulation, be aware not to cover the soffit vents or block the airflow. 

  1. Reduces Spread of COVID-19

 Adequate circulation improves indoor air quality by pushing contaminants out and circulating fresh air in. According to the EPA, “ensuring proper ventilation with outside air can help reduce indoor airborne contaminants, including SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, and other viruses.” For example, we know that COVID-19 spreads via airborne droplets from an infected person. So, increased ventilation can be part of a protection plan along with other precautions such as masking, vaccination, and distancing. Clear the air by turning on the attic fan or running a bathroom vent. 

Maintenance of Ventilation in the Roof 

Various types of attic ventilation systems have different maintenance requirements. For example, passive ventilation uses natural wind and warm currents to circulate attic air. These systems have no moving parts and require very little maintenance. The main concerns are ensuring the vents are not blocked and using screens to prevent squirrels from entering. On the other hand, active ventilation uses mechanical methods such as fans to force air outside. The moving parts and motors wear down over time. An experienced roofer can thoroughly inspect the ventilation system to ensure things are in working order. 

Roof Ventilation Recommendations

There are several steps property managers can take to protect their residential properties and ensure adequate roof ventilation.

1. Calculate Number of Vents

Each building needs a different amount of ventilation. A general rule is one vent per 150 square feet of attic space. However, if the house has a vapor barrier, you only need one per 300 square feet. An even amount of intake and exhaust vents are essential for balanced circulation. 

2. Watch for Warning Signs

Icicles in the winter and condensation in the summer are sure signs of poor attic ventilation. Likewise, bubbling pain and curling shingles are red flags that something’s wrong overhead. Also, look for mildew or discoloration around the soffit or trim.

3. Get an Inspection

Call a roofing contractor to inspect your attic ventilation system if you notice any of these concerning signs. Identifying and fixing the problem now prevents worse damage down the line. Just Roofs and Gutters is here to help install, inspect, and maintain proper ventilation for the health and safety of your property. Call 719-374-8304.

Roof Damage and Insurance Deductibles in Colorado

Don’t Get Duped: The Truth About Roof Damage and Insurance Deductibles in Colorado

Colorado is in the heart of Hail Alley. We’re the state with the second-highest rate of hail-related insurance claims. It’s no wonder we hear so much talk about the roof damage and insurance deductibles in Colorado after a big storm. Unfortunately, there are fraudulent contractors out there who prey on unsuspecting homeowners. They claim to pay the deductible, but the truth is waiving insurance deductibles is illegal in Colorado.

Who is responsible for paying deductibles?

The homeowner is responsible for paying all deductibles. So, agents must warn their clients against fraud. If a roofer offers to waive the deductible and give you a “free roof,” don’t do it! Instead, find a roofer who will work with your insurance.

The Law on Roof Damage and Insurance Deductibles in Colorado

The Consumer Protection/Residential Roofing Bill (C.R.S 6-22-101 to 6-22-105) protects homeowners from scams. Colorado signed the bill into law in 2012, and it prohibits contractors from promising to pay or wave a homeowner’s deductible. Things like coupons, gift certificates, or rebates that match the deductible are illegal under Colorado law. Insurance companies do not have to consider the estimate from any contractor who promises to waive the deductible, and they could sue the contractor. In the end, the roofer could be the one liable for damages.

Beware of “Storm Chasers” 

Fraudulent roofing contractors will try to dupe homeowners with offers of free services after a big storm. These storm chases travel to places struck by hail. They go door to door, offering free inspections. They may even claim to be from the insurance agency. Some will do shoddy work then make off with the insurance money. So, insurance agents need to ensure their clients are well informed about these risks. Let your clients know that you’ll never send an inspector without calling first. 

Get a Contract

The homeowner and roofing contractor need a signed contract before any work begins. The agreement must clearly state that the roofer cannot wave the insurance deductible in part or whole. It also must outline the scope of work and materials such as:

  • Costs for know damages
  • Approximate service dates
  • Proof of liability coverage
  • Cancelation policy
  • Contact information

How to Avoid Deductible Scams

Information is key. The more you know about roof damage and insurance deductibles in Colorado, the more likely you are to avoid being tricked. Before hiring a contractor, homeowners should check with the insurance agency so they understand what to expect. In turn, insurance Agents can help clients find a trusted roofing contractor. For example, you can get honest, trustworthy work with Just Roofs and Gutters. We’ll work with homeowners and insurance agents to come to a fair cost. Call 719-374-8304.