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How do you maintain a wood deck?

wood deck with patio furniture

What is the life expectancy of a wood deck?

Thank goodness winter 2021 is almost over and that means spring will upon us with summer soon to follow. So, do you have your deck maintenance plans ready yet? Yeah, here in Pennsylvania, it is probably still covered in snow, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get your plans in place. Deck board maintenance is important to getting the longest lifespan you can from your deck, so get that paper and pen out and start making a list what you’ll need in another month or less. 

How to maintain a deck will depend on the type of material used to build the deck. Even deck low maintenance material will still need some deck maintenance. For the purpose of this article, we’re going to approach it from the standpoint of wood deck maintenance. 

The wood deck is an affordable way for homeowners to extend their home’s interior to their backyard for enjoyment and entertainment. Typically, they are made from composite or fabricated wood, but proper wood deck maintenance is still required to get the longest lifespan possible. 

The life expectancy of a wood deck can average between 20 years to 25 years. Factors that play into the longevity is the climate and environment.  A moist climate, such as near the ocean or sea will have a shorter lifespan, average is 10 years, than a wood deck in the desert. The quality of materials used in constructing a wood deck will play a part in the longevity, as well the homeowner’s deck maintenance and upkeep. 

Should you pressure wash a deck?

Yes, pressure-washing as part of your deck maintenance will clean your deck effectively using only plain water.  Pressure washing your deck can also ruin it if it isn’t done right. Too hard and too much pressure can etch into the wood, creating splinters.  Here, we offer a few basic tips to pressure wash as part of your deck maintenance routine: 

  • Pressure Setting and Tip Choice: Select the appropriate setting and tip for your deck maintenance pressure washing, staring with the lowest pressure setting. For a soft wood, the setting should be between 500 to 600 psi (pounds per square inch) and for a hard wood, you can use up to1,200 psi. Fan the sprayer at 40 to 60 degree spread, rotating the tip. 
  • Power Washing: Start on an inconspicuous area and incrementally increase the pressure as needed without etching the wood. Engage the trigger, holding the wand two feet away from the surface. Slowly lower the want to one foot away and keep a sweeping motion. 
  • Optional: Chemical Brightener: If deck maintenance has lacked and the wood has darkened or has mildew stains, using a chemical solution made for brightening the wood will help. There are several products on the market that have sodium hydroxide. Follow the  instructions on the packaging and your wood deck will look almost new again! 

Should I stain or seal my deck?

Maybe you don’t have a wood deck currently, so deck maintenance isn’t an issue yet. Your deck plans are building one or having one built, so you want to get started right.  Is staining or sealing a wood deck the best way to start? 

The most common recommend by professional contractors is to use a combination stain and sealer, which is a wood sealer that has color pigment added to provide the stain results. This combination provides an advantage of added protection from water and weather damaging the wood. The stain part of the combination product minimizing the UV rays to keep the color from fading. Applied correctly, your deck maintenance will be easier. 

Can I leave my deck untreated?

There isn’t any law that a wood deck must be treated with paint, sealer, or stain, but professionals advise that you won’t get as long of a lifespan if it isn’t treated. A wood deck that is properly sealed and treated, and regular deck maintenance, can give you up to 50 years of beauty and enjoyment.  An untreated wooden deck will only give you 10 to 15 years, depending on the climate. 

someone powerwashing their deck

How often do decks need to be sealed?

With a solid stain, you want to reapply every four to five years. A sealer doesn’t color the wood, simply protects it from the moisture and minimizes the wood from rotting and splitting. Resealing every season should be a part of your routine deck maintenance.   

With the information we have provided in this article, you can now approach your deck maintenance with knowledge!  If you are planning on building a deck this spring, you now know what you need to do in terms of deck maintenance, you may wonder what is the life expectancy of a wood deck is if you choose that route.  As we stated earlier, if you treat your deck from the beginning with a stain/sealer combination product and keep your deck maintenance on a regular routine, you can expect up to 50 of enjoyment. Call (570) 266-8208 today for deck services in Wilkes-Barre, Dallas, and Scranton, PA!

What is Roof Restoration?

inox Chimney on the flat roof in the city

Learn More About Roof Restoration

When it comes to extending your roof life there are many steps that can be taken to achieve it. Depending on the age and material of your roof as well as the climate patterns of the region your building resides your roof may age more quickly than others. As such, roof life will fluctuate according to the influences surrounding the roof. At times, a replacement won’t be necessary, especially in cases where only minor wear and tear are on the roof. In these cases, a roof restoration is a good alternate option. Essentially, a roof restoration will be able to provide repairs and restorative abilities to minor wear and tear made to commercial roofs. It’s important to consult with a licensed roofer to see if this option is good for your roof. Get familiar with the concept of a roof restoration by reading below. 

What does roof restoration include?

A roof restoration will include cleaning, repairing minor roofing problems such as roof perforations or leaks, and repainting. A roof restoration is designed to be a cheaper option in comparison to a roof replacement and will extend the life of the roof until a replacement is eventually needed. 

How long does a roof restoration last?

A roof restoration will last a decade to fifteen years and can be reapplied at the end of its term. A commercial roof lasts around 20 years and a roof restoration is a good alternative to extend the roof life longer before a replacement is needed. 

Roof Restoration vs Replacement

A roof restoration is different from a replacement as it will reduce the amount of waste materials that would go to a landfill as seen with reroofing. Roof restoration will also cost one third as much in comparison to a roof replacement.  

How long does a roof restoration take?

A roof restoration will typically take around two to three days to complete with a qualified team. The time given with the job will also depend on weather conditions and the amount of work involved in the process so bear that in mind. With professionals, you can expect that disruptions will be avoided for your day to day schedule.

Worker on application Synthetic waterproofing PVC-P and TPO / FPO

Types of Roof Restoration

  • Acrylic
  • Elastomeric
  • Polyurea
  • Silicone

Does roof coating stop leaks?

A roof restoration will be able to seal a leak if the perforation is not too large. Essentially the material will be liquid applied to fill up minor wear and tear, then cure and harden to cover the leak. As applications are applied to the entire roof at one time, every leak will be sealed with a single application. 

Roof Restoration Process

A roof restoration will essentially provide cool roofing abilities to your roof as the materials placed on roof substrates will have the ability to mitigate high temperatures and reflect heat away from the roof’s surface. Reflecting rather than absorbing solar radiation will help prevent the heat-island effect where surface temperatures and overall ambient temperatures rise in the presence of man-made structures. Stopping UV light and reflecting visible light will have overall building temperatures lowered and maintained as the roof membranes are protected for longer roof life cycles. What’s more, a stable building temperature will mean that less energy is being consumed which lowers air conditioning costs overall. Lighter roof colors are essential to have reflective ability.

Roof Restoration and Painting

A roof restoration will come in either white or black colors which essentially can provide the look of fresh paint over a flat roof substrate.

Roof Restoration and Guttering

Depending on the type of roofing system that you have you may be able to update your gutters as well. This will typically be done separately from the roof restoration job, as such your guttering won’t be affected during the process of restoration.

Is roof restoration worth it?

A roof restoration is worth it for the business that wishes to prolong the process of getting a roof replaced. If the roof is in relatively good shape with occasional issues of wear or tear then a roof restoration will fix the issue. Depending on the roof material, the roof age, and climate zone your commercial roof may benefit from one or the other. Essentially, facility managers, roofing contractors, insurance companies and building owners will each influence the decision to reroof or restore.

Contact a Professional Roofer For Roof Restoration Today

Only a roof restoration completed with a qualified roofing company will give you the results you want for a secure and sturdy roof. Trained professionals will follow specific protocols and provide smooth applications that will have your roof looking uniform in its new roof coating. Make sure to have your roof inspected in order to gauge the materials, specifications, and conditions of your roof. A roof inspection will allow the roofer to see if a roof restoration is an ideal service to impart on your property. Have your roof increase it’s life with a roof restoration today.

If you’re interested in a roof restorationin Wilkes-Barre, Dallas, and Scranton, PA call (570) 266-8208 with Independent Construction! 

Who Does Snow Removal?

snow blocking home

Snow removal from your home

Well, it won’t be long you know. We’ll go from fun in the sun to snow removal.  Years ago, the only method was for you, or your kids, to get bundled up with long johns, warm clothes, big coat, gloves, and snow boot, then head outside and get busy with the shovel. Yuck. 

If you asked, “What is snow removal?”, and didn’t know how to remove snow, somebody would be glad to show you then you let you practice on their driveway and sidewalks. It is important to get that snow removed though. Why can’t you just let the snow stay until it melts? 

Number one reason is to prevent injuries from slipping and falling on the ice below the snow. Like the city and state use big snowplows for snow removal to keep the roadways safe cars, you need snow removal in your driveway and walkways to keep them safe for you, your family, and visitors.  

Second, in this part of the country, letting the snow remain instead of snow removal, it could be there for six months!  Not only the snow that is there from the first snow fall, but more snow will be coming, adding to it, getting higher and higher. 

Today, fortunately, there are easier ways for snow removal, you can even hire a snow removal service! If you grew up in this part of the country, you may be asking Who does snow removal services? Yes, there really are companies that do snow removal, for a price of course, and they actually have equipment to do the job, large or small.  

Today, using snow removal services for the season is much easier on the back, but there are other reasons that using a snow removal service is recommended. Amateurs at snow removal are clearing the snow away, but are they making sure the driveway and walkway are safe? Here are 5 reasons you need to consider professional snow removal services: 

  • Curb Appeal: A cleared driveway, parking lot, or walkway is more welcoming to customers and visitors. 
  • Accident Prevention: Doing it yourself or having family member or employee do your snow removal is a set up for injury. By hiring a professional snow removal service, you’re eliminating that possibility. A professional service will clear the ice under the snow too, whereas you, your kids or an employee won’t be as diligent. 
  • Specialized Equipment: To get snow removal done thoroughly, it takes more than a strong back and shovel. A professional snow removal service has specially designed equipment that allows them to remove the snow thoroughly and safely, no matter how high it accumulates. 
  • Completion: When you pay for professional snow removal services, they don’t leave until the job is done and your satisfied. If you’re not satisfied, they will have a guarantee. 
  • Lost Income Prevention: For a business, professional snow removal service will guarantee your parking lot and sidewalks are clear for customers. This part of the country, many customers will go to another store where they easier time to park and safer approach to the door.  

How do you get rid of snow fast?

If you now that snow is in the forecast, lay plastic tarps over the driveway and sidewalks, even over your vehicle’s windows. Then when you get ready to leave the next morning, you only need to allow yourself time to drag the tarp off to the side, shake the snow off and you’re clear for take-off! Isn’t it too bad that planes can’t use this snow removal method? 

What is used to move snow?

Keeping a bag if salt around is hand to de-ice sidewalks and ramps, but what about the snow? There are several different tools for snow removal, making it less daunting that it needs to be, just take a look what we found: 

  • Snow Shovels: Time honored and proven, snow shovels are the snow removal tool of all times. They dig, lift, push, and remove snow. With the myriad of snow shovels available today, no matter what approach you take, there is a snow shovel to fit your needs. 
  • Smart Snow Shovels: With a rotating handle, this is the snow shovel that can be adjusted to a position that meets your needs, making it easier on your back. 
  • Snow Shovel Attachments: Adding a longer handle to your existing shovel will give you extra hand space and better leverage, easing the back strain that comes with snow removal. 
  • Snow Pusher: No need to lift snow when you can push it!  A handy device that features a large scoop to push snow out. Ideal for snow accumulation six inches or less. 
  • Telescoping Shovel: What could be worse than being stuck in your driveway because of snow when you need to get to work. This telescoping shovel is the ideal tool to help you dig your way out of the snow out and not worry about your tires spinning in place. 
  • Brine Treatment: Snow removal is reduced by preparing the driveway and sidewalk surfaces before the snow arrives by applying a brine to them. 
  • Shop Broom: For a light dusting of snow, a shop broom works great as a snow removal tool or opt for the leaf blower! 
  • Snow Blower: No doubt, a snow blower is the snow covered part of the country’s favorite and most used snow removal too! 

What is the best snow removal equipment?

Well, next to the snow blower, it depends on two things: The size of are you need snow removal and how deep. These two are popular choices: 

  • Skid-Steer Loaders: These are flexible and used on vehicles that are popular for snow removal. Great for small, tight areas where the snowfall is heavy. 
  • All-Wheel Steer Loaders: A step up from the skid-steer loader with an all-wheel functionality. Easy to operate and idea for the larger areas with heavy snowfall. 

How long does it take to plow a driveway?

An average driveway is approximately 400 feet long and with an average snowfall accumulation, snow removal can take an hour or less. Three-fourth of the time is clearing the area by the road and the driveway opening there. The other twenty-five percent of the time is the straight stretch. 

snow removed partially a home

 Do snow plows damage driveways?

Well, they can, but you shouldn’t expect that to happen when you hire a professional snow removal service.  There are several factors that come into consideration when using a snowplow for driveway snow removal, and a professional service is experienced in those factors and now how to avoid them. 

Before that first deep snow covering, call around and get quotes on professional snow removal services. Ask for their rates, are they insured and bonded, and how far in advance you should book their service. Call (570) 266-8208 today for your snow removal needs in Wilkes-Barre, Dallas, and Scranton, PA.

How Do Green Roofs Work?

Monaco building roofs with green gardens on

Learn More About a Green Roof System

With all of the efforts made in providing more sustainable and environmentally rewarding roofing, perhaps the most aesthetically pleasing roof design can be seen with a green roof. Adding plants to your roof not only provides a unique look, it will also protect your roof and extend its life due to the many layers that come with them. A green roof holds many benefits over general roofing materials from lowering the amount of heat that comes through a building to providing drainage naturally from rain. If you’d like to learn more about the specifics of a green roof system contact your local roofer today. Until then, here is some general background information regarding green roof construction that may prove useful to you.

How is a green roof constructed?

A green roof is built of three layers that will fulfill several functions to decrease the height and weight of the overall building. There is a drainage, filter and vegetation layer.

Why have a green roof?

A green roof will be able to perform several functions that a regular roof won’t be able to have. It can absorb rainwater through it’s soil and various other layers, provide insulation, help combat urban air temperatures, mitigate the heat island effect and, provide a habitat for wildlife. What’s more, the choices of what you plant on your roof can fit with your tastes and preferences with a landscape end result that’s pleasing and unique to look at. 

Are green roofs sustainable?

A green roof is able to contribute to the sustainability of a building in that it largely reduces the need for the AC in the summer or insulation in the winter. In the winter the insulation will depend on the amount of moisture in the various layers. Since the layers are dry in the summer insulation is the greatest in this season and will reflect heat effectively. This combination during these seasons will reduce energy consumption and therefore monthly bills as well. Research has shown the life expectancy of a green roof is at least two to three times longer with a green roof due to the roofing material shielding the building from the harmful effects of rain, wind, and the sun.

How do green roofs reduce heat?

A green roof will be able to remove heat from the air through the process of evapotranspiration. They also act as insulators for the building due to the extra growing medium and vegetation. This will overall reduce the energy needed with the heating and cooling system of a building. In fact, according to a Canadian study, every six inches of an extensive green roof can reduce summer energy demands by 75%.

How long do green roofs last?

A green roof is able to last at an estimated life span of 40 years. It will be able to save about $200,000 across these years where ⅔ of this number would result from reduced energy costs. Depending on the design of the green roof, the geographic location, the building itself and its surroundings the economic benefits will range.

What is the difference between intensive and extensive green roofs?

An extensive green roof will only support a small selection of drought-tolerant plants with a shallow root system while an intensive green roof can accommodate a wide range of plants including small trees and shrubs.

residential green roof with plants and flowers

What can you grow on a green roof?

  • Herbs
  • Vegetables
  • Sedums
  • Succulents
  • Perennials
  • Native Plant Species
    • Trees
    • Meadow Grass
    • Flowers
    • Shrubs

Do you need planning permission for a green roof?

A green roof that is occupied or attached to one that is should have planning permission checked by contacting your council’s planning department. A green roof that will be on separate outbuildings or shed will usually be fine without it.

Do green roofs need maintenance?

A green roof will need regular maintenance dependent on the type of green roof that was constructed. An intensive green roof for example will need different maintenance based on the landscape design and planting scheme whereas an extensive green roof will only need minimal maintenance to make sure that any unwanted plant species don’t grow.

Get The Help That You Need With a Qualified Roofing Company

A green roof is a great way to benefit the environment while adding to the aesthetic appeal of a landscape. In order to find the right green roof system that best matches your plans and building specifications, it’s best to get into contact with a professional roofer. Only a professional can recommend the right design and plant species that will work best with your green roof installation. Inquire about a green roof today with the help of a qualified roofing company and enjoy a roof that is unique and enjoyable for all who look on it.

If you’re interested in a green roof in Wilkes-Barre, Dallas, and Scranton, PA call (570) 266-8208 with Independent Construction! 

Should I Repair or Replace My Deck?

A Man Washes a Deck.

Should I repair or replace my deck?

If you’re noticing problems with your deck like warped or soft wood or loose railings, you might be wondering whether you’ll need deck repair or whether it’s time to replace your deck. One question to ask: How safe is my deck? You may want to consider replacing your deck if you have a lot of repairs to be made, especially when those repairs add up to several safety hazards that could harm you or your guests. A few cracked or warped boards or ones that have begun to rot, might just require you to replace or repair those boards, and not the whole deck. 

On the other hand, if most of the boards are beginning to rot, especially near the house, replacing the deck is the safest option. Loose or wobbly railings, in particular, are very dangerous. Your deck railings should hold up to 200 pounds of concentrated weight. If they are unable to do so, your deck’s whole structure could be in peril and your guests at risk of injury. If your deck is more than 10 years old and in need of extensive repairs, it’s safer and often less costly to go ahead and replace it. The best way to determine if it’s time to replace the deck is to have professionals skilled with deck construction and repairs in Wilkes-Barre, Dallas, and Scranton, PA come to inspect it. You can find those professionals at Independent Construction. Book a service appointment by calling (570) 266-8208.

What is the life expectancy of a wood deck?

Typically, on average, a wood deck will last 10 to 15 years, as long as it is well maintained. Many decks now are made of composite materials that combine wood with synthetic fibers that are capped with vinyl shields. These types of decks can last 25 to 30 years and are less susceptible to issues like rot and mold growth. 

How do you repair a damaged deck?

Deck repair options can vary depending on the type of deck you have and the type of damage it has sustained. Older wood decks tend to require more repairs than composite decks. Regular maintenance and making minor repairs will extend your deck’s lifespan. 

Deck repair and maintenance tips

  • Regularly check the deck for loose boards and railings as well as popped nails. Remove the popped nails and replace them with coated screws. Make repairs to loose railings or have a professional repair them.
  • Wash the deck regularly with detergent and water to clean dirt that’s built up and rinse it thoroughly.
  • Stains from tree sap can be removed using mineral spirits.
  • Use a solution of bleach and water to clean mildew off the deck. Allow it to dry after flushing. If mildew recurs, you might have too much shade and may need to trim back bushes and trees.
  • Stain the deck to preserve the wood’s life and make cleaning easier.
  • Varnishes, shellacs, or other clear finishes should be avoided as they often peel.

How do you fix rotten wood without replacing it?

When you see rotten wood on your deck, your first thought about deck repair might be that you’ll have to replace the wood. While this might be necessary in some instances, you can also repair the rotted wood using a polyester filler. You’ll start by cutting away the rotted portion of the wood before coating the space with a wood hardener. You can then use a putty knife to press the filler into the space. After that, you shape the filler with a putty knife before adding a new layer of filler. Finally, you smooth the filler with a plane or rasp, sand it, prime it and paint it.  

Is it better to stain or water seal a deck?

Either staining or water sealing will help to preserve the deck. Stains are good for getting the deck the color you want it. You can also purchase a combination stain/sealer that has pigment added for color. Sealers add protection against weather and water damage, while stains will provide greater protection from the sun.

Repair deck that is peeling

If you have a painted deck, over time you may see the paint start to peel. This happens because the paint didn’t have a sufficient bond. It could be that the paint was of poor quality, to begin with, or the deck wasn’t cleaned beforehand so it didn’t adhere correctly. Moisture will also cause the paint to peel, so make sure to keep your deck dry. 

When repainting the deck, remove the old paint with a stiff brush or scraping tool, and then smooth the area by sanding it. Cleaning and drying the area is always essential when it comes to painting a surface. You can roll or brush on the paint and add a second coat, if necessary, once the first coat is dry.

A Painter Stains a Deck.

Deck repair in my area

Whether you have rotting wood, loose railings or some other problems, when you need deck repair in Wilkes-Barre, Dallas, and Scranton, PA look to the professionals at Independent Construction. We always provide exceptional service no matter what we do for you. Find out how we can help by calling (570) 266-8208.

What do you do if you Have Hail Damage on Your Roof?

marked hail damage

How do you Tell if I Have Hail Damage on my Roof?

Unlike hail on your car, hail on your roof is not necessarily the easiest damage to spot after the storm has passed. If it was small pebble or pea sized hail, you would likely have nothing to worry about, but if you knew the hail was or surpassed an inch in diameter then you should look for signs like:

  • Loss of granules
  • Cracks
  • Dents 
  • Missing pieces of shingles
  • Leaks

When looking for roof hail damage, one of the key details you are searching for is whether your shingles or roofing were damaged to the extent that you could suspect a leak in the near future. The long term effects of ignoring your roof after a hail storm can result in even greater damage than one could imagine. With shingled roofs, roof hail damage can break down your shingles when left alone over time, having the next gust of wind or storm blow shingles off then leave your home exposed to water damage. Metal roofs, while tougher, are not impervious. When dents are left alone in certain spots, a homeowner will see leak damage enter under their roof and hurt the layers as well as their attic. 

The best way to find roof hail damage on your home is to enlist the assistance of a trained roofer. The professionals at Independent Construction have an experienced eye in spotting the damages that come from hail beating down on each kind of roof and can help in that endeavor by offering services like hail damage roof repair as well as inspections to help determine the condition of your roof. Call (570) 266-8208 today to schedule one of our roofers to come out from our main location in Wilkes-Barre, Dallas, and Scranton, PA.

Why is Hail Damage Bad for a Roof?

Aside from being physically damaging to your roof, hail can be a detriment to your home when the correct precautions are not taken. While we’ve listed the signs to look for immediately after a hail storm, longer term signs should also be noted as well. These would come in the previously mentioned leaks, which are much more concerning for the homeowner in that they do significant damage internally when left ignored. Leaks can cause:

  • Frame rotting
  • Mold 
  • Mildew
  • Insulation devastation 
  • Ceiling damage

There is no underscoring the importance of catching roof hail damage when it happens simply due to how catastrophic it can be if left unattended. You do not have to necessarily go as far as replacing your roof after every hail storm, but you should place some importance into being mindful after each one due to the risk of deterioration if there is some damage that had occurred.

What does Hail Damage look like on Siding?

While roofing companies are not known for repairing siding on a home, damages that occur on this section of the home from hail damage can be an indication that you have received roof hail damage. Hail damages on siding specifically look similar to what you would see on the roof if they were the same material. You can spot cracking and dents that would indicate there had been impacted to some legitimate degree. Being that most homeowners choose wood for their siding, chipping and scratches can be features that indicate hail damages as well. 

Something to be aware of as well, the age of a roof or part of the home does not necessarily play into whether it will be damaged by hail. When hail exceeds in diameter of one inch, it tends to be large enough to impact anything and at least leave a mark. When you have a new roof, you should take as much caution as homeowners with old roofs, if not more because you do not necessarily know for sure if the roof has been built 100% without mistake until it has been tested.

hail damage check

Does Insurance Cover Roof Hail Damage?

Fortunately for homeowners, hail damage is generally covered in the homeowner’s insurance policy, but make sure to doubly check your own personal policy before filing a claim. Upon noticing damages outside of their control, the homeowner has around a year to file. We recommend doing so as quickly as possible due to that most insurance companies will find a way to dispute damages caused by leaks. Once again we recommend consulting your own policy, being that some insurance companies may be inclined to have a substantially smaller period of time they require. The information you would look for is what your policy includes and excludes. To this particular point, it all depends on the policy you had signed with the insurance company. Depending on where you are in Pennsylvania, you will want to have some sort of minor or major protection against hail and wind damages. Being a business native to Wilkes-Barre, Dallas, and Scranton, PA, Independent Construction understands all that you need for your roof and what policies are best to have the best living experience in the state. Call (570) 266-8208 today to schedule your roof hail damage repair or consult with our roofers the best insurance and care for your roof.

Leaking Roof and Water Damage

water damage to ceiling after rain leak

How a Leaking Roof Can Affect Your Property

Roof repairs are not uncommon after a storm has passed especially when a leaking roof has formed. A leaking roof can range from minor issues to more extensive ones if ignored over a period of time. That’s why it’s best to get into contact with a professional for a roof inspection so issues like mold or mildew don’t spread to surrounding areas that will further need treatment or repair. When you’re needing assistance with a leaking roof confer with your local roofing company for repairs. Until then here is some general information regarding a leaking roof that can be of use to you.

Why is my roof leaking?

A leaking roof can come about for a variety of reasons from improper roof installations to passing storms with impacts that have caused punctures. Yet if a roof is new and no storms have passed it can be that there is something wrong with the installation of the roof membrane or flashing. Other areas that are prone to causing a leaking roof are areas around the chimney or roof vents. Make sure that future materials are strong and installations are done according to your roof specifications to avoid a leaking roof.

How bad is a leaking roof?

A leaking roof can be a danger to items stored in an attic or other locations. Water can stain the interior ceiling, ceiling mounted fans, and lights, as well as damage paint and plaster on walls. 

How long does it take for a ceiling to dry after a leak?

Depending on the extent of wetness, a ceiling that’s been infiltrated with water with a leaking roof can take at least two weeks or up to four weeks to dry.

Can leaking ceiling collapse?

A leaking roof will have to have been caused by a sizeable puncture like a tree collapsing or have damaged waterlogged beams significantly to become a problem. A hole punched into the roof can allow water to drain and relieve pressure on the rest of the ceiling.  However, a leaking roof with water accumulating and pooling on the roof can enact pressures on the ceiling to where the roof can collapse.

What damage can a leaking roof cause?

A leaking roof can cause damages when chronic or leftover a short period of time. With heavy moisture in the air, mold can form in 1-2 days. Leaks that have been present for a while can lead to wood deterioration and weakened structures. Roof frames can rot which will need to be fixed soon by a professional roofer as structural problems will occur. Ceiling joists and walls can be damaged by stains and mold as well.

Can a leaking roof cause mold?

A leaking roof can cause mold growth as when moisture has built up enough and with certain conditions mold will form. There are two types of mold that a leaking roof can from, limited growth and systemic. Systemic is caused by mold growing throughout the areas when moisture has built up in the attic. Here the buildup is indirect as the leak itself will only affect a small area, the dampness in the air will cause condensation formation throughout the confined space. With limited growth, an attic will have enough ventilation to get rid of the added moisture caused by the leaking roof so in a sense mold growth is limited to the areas around the leak.

How long does it take for mold to grow from a leaking roof?

Mold growing from a leaking roof, according to the Environmental protection Agency as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, can begin from 24-48 hours following moisture accumulation. This is due to the fact that mold spores are able to be present in the air in multiple places so it won’t take them long to find water and settle in. 

Can a leaking roof make you sick?

A leaking roof itself won’t make you sick yet the conditions that are caused by heavy moisture in the air can as seen with mold and mildew can. Mold formation can occur anywhere from insulation, carpeting, to drywall, and can cause illness from someone just being around the mold.

Water damaged ceiling and wall, leakage in an old building

How do I stop my roof from leaking?

  • Replace Missing Nails From Vent Boots
  • Temporarily Patch Leaks Inside the Attic
    • Shingle
    • Plywood
    • Roofing tar
  • Replace Flashing & Missing Shingles

How do I stop my roof leaking in heavy rain?

When rain is present with a leaking roof safety must first come into the equation. You shouldn’t go up to a roof when it’s slippery and you don’t have the proper grip in shoes or clothes to support yourselves. Even professional roofers will wait after a storm to fix a roof. Remember that if you have an attic you can stop a leak from the inside until further help can be made after the rain has stopped. First, you’ll go to the attic and if there’s access clear the insulation off the wet ceiling drywall. Follow the leak back to the source of where it enters the roof. You may be able to see light peak through if it’s a particularly big puncture. In any case, you can make a temporary patch on the roof with shingle, plywood, or roofing tar.

Get The Help You Need With a Leaking Roof

No matter the circumstances your local roofing company will be able to assist you with leaking roof repair. A leaking roof can grow into a bigger problem if you allow moisture and condensation to build up which will lead to bigger repairs with mold remediation, rotted insulation, wooden beams etcetera. Getting in touch with a professional roofer will allow for proper roof inspections that will point out problem areas with solutions that will be provided to fix issues.

If you need help with leaking roof in Wilkes-Barre, Dallas, and Scranton, PA call (570) 266-8208 with Independent Construction!

What is single ply roofing?

flat roof with modified bitumen material

Single Ply Options

The description of single-ply roofing is common on commercial structures that have a flat or low-slope roof. It is made of plastic-derived material that has been compounded and made into flexible sheets membranes that are prefabricated in a factory with strict quality control.

For over 25 years, single-ply roofing has become the favored choice of commercial building owners and professional roofing contractors for several reasons. The first reason is the cost and the second reason is durability.  When single-ply roofing is installed accurately, it offers an intrinsic advantage with flexibility, high durability, and strength over other traditional flat roofing materials.

What does single ply mean?

A complete single-ply roofing system is created with membranes that are constituted primarily of synthetic polymer. The membranes are sealed at joints and provide a flat or low-sloped roof continuous waterproofing. With continuous support and insulation combined with this type of single-ply roofing that is up to +2mm thickness, it becomes a complete, durable roof system.

For the maintenance supervisor and the building owner, this is a comfortable, secure feeling to know that the building has the best roofing material possible.  The concerns and worries of leaks and other issues are put to ease once a professionally installed single-ply roofing job is completed. 

What is the best material for a flat roof?

There are two types of arrangement of single-ply roofing components: warm deck and inverted warm deck. This means that there are many combinations of system types and how they are attached to suit specific design conditions. The different membrane types available for single-ply roofing are:

  • Chlorinated Polyethylene:  Made from chlorination that is heat welded or solvent welded and is congruent with bitumen.
  • Ethylene Propylene Diene Terpolymer: A material that is naturally flexible is made stable with added carbon black and is joined with tape bonding and a special primer. It can be joined with other types of adhesives and is harmonious with bitumen.
  • Flexible Polyolefin: A polyolefin family of materials that is heat-weldable and based upon polypropylene or polyethylene. Sometimes, it requires preparing the lap over preceding to welding. Generally apt with aged bitumen directly and the membranes are recycled full circle into the same type or another product.
  • Polyvinyl chloride: The high-molecular-weight plasticizers make this a flexible PVC form that can be heat-welded or solvent welded depending on the product. This type of membranes and immediate contact with bitumen is normally not suitable unless a fitting weight of backing made of fleece is used to separate the two.
  • Thermoplastic Polyolefin Elastomer: A basic property of elastomers in the process of thermoplasts and shows a high endurance to UV and Ozone exposure. It is resistant to moisture and without. Laps are heat welded, bereft of fumes or smoke. Welding of seams is secured by a wide range of temperatures for various climatic conditions.
  • Vinyl ethylene terpolymer:  Combined with PVC, this material is made flexible with the blending of Ethylene Vinyl Acetate and can be heat-welded or solvent welded. It is fitting with bitumen.

Which roof type would a single ply roof membrane be installed on?

Single-ply roofing membranes are available in a variety of materials, each having the main characteristic of being installed in a single layer. Single ply roofing pros and cons are many, with the pros being the flexibility and UV radiation resistant in comparison with other products. They are fastened, glued, or directly installed in the insulation material.

For mechanically fastening, a steel or wood roof could be ideal, with the mechanically fastening recommend for use on all slope types with no limitations. This is the most recommended in areas that are hurricane-prone.

Other benefits of single ply roofing are:

  • More than fifty years of proven performance
  • Customer choice when choosing the method for applying the material
  • Fire retardant is Class-A
  • Come in black for heat retention or white for UV reflection
  • Installation is easy and fast        

As far as the cons of single ply roofing, there is not a hard-top layer for protection of the synthetic rubber from dropped tools or gravel. Without that protection, even loose screws could be pressed into the rubber membrane, creating holes that would damage the insulation and rubber, making the roof vulnerable to leaking.

Other issues that create cons for consideration of single ply roofing are the vulnerable of the seams leaking. EPDM covering may shrink and TPO covering becomes brittle and cracks.  The sun’s UV rays will reduce adhesives strength.

How do you install single ply roofing?

When it comes to installing single ply roofing, how to do it is best left to the experienced roofing contractors.  They have the manufacturer’s installation instructions for any type of roofing that they may be faced with. However, if you feel that you and your team can install single ply roofing, here are basic steps:

Prepare the existing substrate by cleaning it off or removing the existing roof.  Once you have completed this, place a cover board on top. The membrane will be adhered to by either ballasted, mechanically fastened, or chemically adhered to.

Both EPDM and TPO membranes will come in sheets in widths of 10-feet, 12-feet, or 20-feet that are rolled up. As you’re applying these sheets of membrane, you can simply roll them out, allowing the sides to overlap each other.  

newly installed flat black roof

How do you fix a single ply roof?

With single ply roofing, it is important to remember that the smallest gaps will allow water in and that will create a wider problem than the gap leading to water damage. Here is a brief step-by-step on patching a flat single ply roof. You’ll need a hot-air hand tool with an overlapping nozzle, a pressure roller, and a metal prod.

  • Make Your Patch: Using roofing membrane material, cut a patch out using a razor blade and place over the problem area with an overlap of 3 to 4 inches on all sides.
  • Clean: Next, clean the patch and the surface material, making sure they are free of any contaminants like debris, dust, or oil.
  • Weld: Using the overlapping nozzle on the hot-air tool, weld the patch to the surface.
  • Test: Once you have completed these steps, it is time to test the patch after a 10 to 15-minute cooling period. Using the metal prod and go along the edge to ensure you don’t have any gaps.  

Single ply flat roof build-up is popular for many reasons, as we have discussed here. While there are some concerns and cons about the reliability of a flat roof system with a single ply roofing surface, overall, it is the best roofing available. Contact a local roofing expert for more information on the options available to you and pricing.  Call (570) 266-8208 today for your single ply roofing needs in Wilkes-Barre, Dallas, and Scranton, PA.

What is Metal Roofing installation?

Green Metal Roof on an old Wood Building

Learn More About Metal Roofing

The design of homes and businesses are more and more incorporating the long-lasting and protective implementation of metal roofing. With various metal materials, colors and shapes available in the market these roofing materials also provide a uniquely modern aesthetic to any property. With their life spans of 50 plus years, they can last for decades. Additionally, with their many protective benefits, maintenance is rare and minimal. It’s important to get in touch with a professional roofer if you’d like to know more about specifics with metal roofing that would ultimately fit best with your particular property. Until then, here is some general information regarding metal roofing that may prove useful to you.

How Metal Roofing is Made

Metal roofing is made from various metal roofing materials from aluminum, copper, zinc, iron, steel and more. Sometimes you’ll see metal roofing materials strengthened with coatings that offer additional protection that would otherwise not be there with the base metal. Galvanized steel, for example, takes iron-steel sheets and coats them with zinc which can help prevent rust formation. Galvalume does the same yet it blends zinc, aluminum, and silicon to coat the steel and thereby prevent corrosion.

Are there different grades of metal roofing?

There are different types of metal roofing that will provide upgraded protection and the three primary ones are galvanized steel, galvalume, and weathering steel. 

What metal roof is best?

Metal roofing that is used the most due to meeting the needs of different roofs is aluminum, zinc, copper, stainless steel, and galvalume. A good place to start when deciding on what type of metal roof would be the best for your commercial or residential property is by seeing what the unique aspects will be of the structure as well as the climate of the area.

What gauge metal roof is best?

It’s important to realize that with metal roofing the higher the number in gauge the thinner the material will be. For residential roofing, a gauge of 29 is the minimum that’s recommended, although a 26 gauge will work well for most projects. With locations that have higher winds, hail, or other severe weather a 24 gauge is more advisable.

Does a metal roof keep your house cooler?

Metal roofing will have the ability to reflect heat and light due to their low thermal mass which means they won’t absorb and retain heat. This will allow for your HVAC to work with more ease so less energy will be used in maintaining stable temperatures. Essentially, metal roofing is an energy-efficient option that will lower monthly utility costs. What’s more, the ability to reflect heat will also mean low maintenance as premature wear is typically caused by sun damages on various roofing materials across the board.

man installing house roof rain gutter system

How do you maintain a metal roof?

  • Clean off any mildew, dirt, stains or other elements.
  • Clean out drains and gutters.
  • Remove leaves or debris in valleys or other dead spots.
  • Remove sticks or branches touching the roof’s surface.
  • Make sure metals or materials aren’t touching the roof.
  • Look for scuffs, scratches, chipping, flaking, chalking or fading.

Do Metal Roofs need lightning rods?

It’s a common misconception that metal roofs will attract lighting. However, they won’t draw in lightning any more than other materials or things on the ground. This misconception could be due to the known fact that metal itself is an electrical conductor, yet that ultimately has nothing to do with attracting lightning.

Does having a metal roof lower your insurance?

Metal roofing is looked at more favorably with insurance companies as research has shown that metal roofs are less likely to be damaged by storms or fires. This will mean the insurance company will be less likely to be called upon to pay an insurance claim. What’s more, homeowners insurance can offer discounts due to the addition of metal roofing. There are also other monetary benefits with metal roofing that can prove attractive to those looking to install the material so it’s important to look more into the matter.

What does metal roofing cost?

Metal roofing prices will typically fall between $5-$17 per square foot depending on the material and shape chosen.

Can I put a metal roof over shingles?

Metal roofing can be installed over shingles without tearing them off as long as local building codes will allow for it. (Some may even allow third layers of roofing materials.) This can add extra protection to the roof as well as save on the time of various processes involved with tearing off former roofing materials. 

Get in Touch With a Professional Roofing Company

Ultimately, if you require more advice on a metal roofing installation that will best fit with the specifications of your property it would be best to get into contact with a quality roofing company. They will be able to conduct roof inspections to see what kind of metal roofing material would work best with your property’s dimensions, design, and other factors. Metal roofing will be a great way to protect your home for generations to come! Increase the appeal of your property today by implementing a metal roof.

If you’re interested in metal roofing in Wilkes-Barre, Dallas, and Scranton, PA call (570) 266-8208 with Independent Construction! 

What is included in a roof inspection?

Shingle roof damaged and in need of inspection

Protect your roof with inspection

Whether you are getting a roof inspection for insurance or a roof inspection and repair, it can be a little worrisome for a homeowner. Why? Because it often ends up costing money. From roof repair, replacement, or homeowner’s insurance increase (or even policy cancellation). By having a roof inspection and gutter cleaning at the same time though, it can extend the life of your roof and avoid that worrisome insurance inspection.

Still, the whole process of a roof inspection leaves homeowners asking questions like, “Should I get a roof inspection?” and the answer to that is yes, once a year is the industry recommendation.

It is easy to assume that if you don’t have a leak, then your roof is okay. However, the wrath of Mother Nature, the climate, and the environment can wreak havoc on a roof. Your roof is more vulnerable than you may imagine, and a roof inspection by a qualified roofing contractor can catch the small issues. Any type of a flaw with a roof leaves your home open for potential problems. 

A roof inspection will find roof damage that you can’t see from the ground, and if caught in time, the repairs are much less expensive than a full replacement. This is a proactive maintenance step that every homeowner should take annually or after a hailstorm or high winds. 

How long does a roof inspection take?

A professional roof inspection will take anywhere from 45 minutes to a few hours, it is all dependent on the size of the house, the access to the attic, or attics, and any unforeseen issues.  The roof inspection checklist contains four facets:

  • The structure:  The roof inspection is looking for sagging, uneven roof planes, the condition of the fascia, gutter system, and soffit and the chimney and venting.
  • The materials: The roof inspection is looking for curled, loose, missing shingles.
  • Checking for any missing fasteners or flashing, algae, moss, rust, or stains. The inspector will look for shingle aggregate in the valleys and gutters. The inspector is looking for any deterioration or gaps around the vent pipe’s rubber boots and seals.
  • The interior: The roof inspection will include checking at the ceilings and walls of your home, the attic(s), looking or mildew, mold, rot, and/or stains that indicate possible roof leaks.
  • The workmanship: An experienced roofing inspector will perform a thorough roof inspection that includes examining the workmanship of the existing roof. Old, worn roofing and poor workmanship are the two major causes of roof leaks. This includes flashing that is incorrectly installed around roof penetrations such as the chimney, skylights, and plumbing vent pipes

How often should you have your roof inspected?

There are several factors in play that determine how frequently you should have a roof inspection performed by a professional roofing contractor, such as the type of roofing materials, and the conditions the roof has been exposed. The general guideline for roof inspection is:

  • Three years for asphalt, composite, or wood shingles
  • Five years for tile roofing

If a homeowner sees any visible damage, they should have a roof inspection done immediately.

roof damaged marked with chalk for repairs

When should I replace my roof?

A roof replacement isn’t always needed because of storm damage. Sometimes they simply reach their end of life, they are worn, beaten down by the climate and UV rays.  Replacing the roof is many times for preventive maintenance, but if you delay that step, you could be setting yourself up for bigger problems. Therefore, a regular roof inspection is recommended – to find those issues before they become a problem.

The warning signs that are telling you to get a new roof sooner than later are:

  • Bald spots where asphalt granules are missing.
  • Cracked or curled shingles.
  • Your roof has hit the 20-year birthday. Even though manufacturers give a 30-year warranty, it is almost certain that it is getting worn out by the twenty-year mark.
  • The roof looks aged, old and worn out.
  • Your neighbors are having new roofs installed. Homes in neighborhoods are typically built during the same timeframe, thus things are wearing out around the same time.
  • Dark stains and streaks from airborne algae. Not only does this look bad, but it is eating away at your shingles. If you have not had your roof professionally cleaned, that algae, the lichen, and mold are having a picnic and it is making your HVAC system work harder because it absorbs heat from the UV rays.

Your home is an important investment for you, and with that investment, it needs investments to keep it healthy and safe.  A routine roof inspection by you each month with a walk around for visual indications, and a professional roof inspection by a licensed roofing contractor once a year is always recommended, no less than every three years. Call (570) 266-8208 today for your roof inspection in Wilkes-Barre, Dallas, and Scranton, PA.