What to Do When Your Roof Leaks

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Imagine waking up on any normal weekday and starting your morning routine. Just then, you see it- a puddle of water in the middle of the hallway. You start going through the checks, not wanting to admit that your roof may be leaking. “The dog? Spilt water?” But then, a drop of water falls from the ceiling and lands right in the center of this puddle.

First things first, don’t panic. In times like this, it is best to keep a clear head and walk through the following steps once a roof leak has been discovered:

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Minimize the Damage. Immediately do what you can to protect the interior of your house. Mop up the existing puddle and then find a large bucket or container to place under the dripping water. Any furniture or electronic equipment surrounding the area of the leak should be moved away or covered with plastic.

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Beware of Bubbles. If the leak has begun to pool in the ceiling, it will create a bubble or bulge. It is best to release the built up pressure before it bring your entire ceiling down. Use the tip of a screwdriver or a knife to puncture the bubble and allow the water to drain out.

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Find the Source. Many leaks come from the following areas:

    • Where roof covering is damaged or missing
    • Where flashing around chimneys, vents, or other protrusions is corroded or pulled up
    • Where nails have come loose and left behind holes
    • Clogged gutters

For safety reasons, Gulf Western Roofing does not recommend that any homeowner attempt to get on their roof themselves. However, you can try to do an inspection from the ground to see if any damages are clearly visible. Having this information will be helpful when you call in a professional. If you believe that your gutters are clogged, we’ve created a how-to article for cleaning them, which can be found here.

Keep in mind that your roof may not always be the source of a leak. Damaged internal pipes have a tendency to cause leaks as well. An honest and trained professional roofer like Gulf Western Roofing will be able to tell exactly what the source of your leak is.

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Call in the Professionals. Before attempting to fix any roof leaks yourself please stop and read this article to learn why DIY is not good for your roof. As stated before, Gulf Western Roofing will be able to verify the exact cause of the leak. We will then take the necessary steps to handle it properly, giving you the peace of mind that your roof was repaired correctly.

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When you see or hear the telltale drip of water from your ceiling, don’t panic. Call on the experience of Gulf Western Roofing for your Florida roof repair. We are locally owned and operated, serving our customers with integrity since 1999!

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Top Ten Mistakes in Purchasing a New Roof

A roof that’s installed with modern materials and methods and then properly maintained will give you many years of hassle-free service. However, if you live in an older home or one that has been damaged by storm or neglect, it may be time to consider installing an entirely new roof.

But as with so many other large purchases, buying a new roof can be a costly and frustrating experience- especially if you don’t avoid making some of the missteps as so many other homeowners have. To help you avoid doing that, we’ve compiled this list of the ten most common mistakes made when purchasing a new roof.

  1. Shopping price only

The price of a new roof will vary depending on the size and location of your home. If you shop around for prices and find that a particular company is well below the average, there may be a reason. In short, cost alone doesn’t determine value; professionalism and quality workmanship should weigh just as heavily in any roof-buying decision.

  1. Buying from the company that can start the soonest

A company that is too quick to respond may not yet have enough business. There’s nothing wrong with being new to an area, but there may be other reasons the company is idle.

  1. Falling for any high-pressure tactics

As with any large purchase, buying under pressure is a bad idea. No matter how good the deal if you ’just sign now,’ don’t buy a roof from a company that insists you sign a contract before you’re ready. You should always demand the right to examine the contract at your leisure.

  1. Signing the contract just because you like the salesperson

Even though you may feel a certain comfort level with a certain salesperson, that shouldn’t drive your roof-buying decision. Remember, sales people are hired for their people skills; most of the time their job is to say to you whatever they need in order to get you to buy.

  1. Forgetting that a deal seemingly too good to be true probably is

While there are legitimate reasons a roofing contractor might offer steep discounts, be wary of those who are too inexpensive. If you’re offered a super bargain, make sure the contractor is using certified, code-approved, and legally obtained materials. Be sure there’s a warranty offered. Ask about hidden costs such as removal of your existing roof, etc. And be sure to ask about references.

  1. Purchasing based on warranty alone

The length of a roof warranty should not be the sole criterion for selecting a roofing contractor. The warranty alone does not necessarily provide assurance of satisfactory roof performance.

  1. Using contractors with no office staff

There’s nothing wrong with using a small mom-and-pop contractor, of course. But roofing properly is a large undertaking, so all other things being equal, a large support staff makes the process that much smoother.

  1. Mistaking advertising for quality

While it may be impressive that a contractor has put down money for an expensive and slick ad campaign, it’s more important that they can perform the work in a quality and professional manner.

  1. Hiring a friend to do the work

Unless your friend is a licensed and insured roofing contractor, this is a really bad idea. Even if your friend is known as a ‘handyman,’ has he ever installed a complete roof? Does he know which areas of the roof are prone to leaks? Does he know how to properly vent a roof? And most importantly, does he offer a warranty?

  1. Doing the work yourself

In spite of the fact that the big-box home improvement centers will try to convince you this is a snap, don’t believe them. On top of the issues we’ve already discussed, there are the obvious safety concerns; ask yourself whether saving a few thousand dollars is worth risking your health or your life. Professional roof contractors are trained in all aspects of installation and safety; even if cutting costs is very important to you, this is the one area in which you should absolutely never skimp.

 

If your home is ready for a new roof, or even if you suspect it may be, don’t fall victim to these, or any other mistakes. Instead, give one of Gulf Western Roofing’s knowledgeable representatives a call. We’ll always tell you the truth about your roof!

Hurricane Matthew

October 7th, 2016

As of the 11AM update from the National Hurricane Center, Hurricane Matthew was still moving up Florida’s northern east coast as a Category Three hurricane. The storm is expected to continue moving up the coast before weakening and turning out to sea near the Carolinas over the weekend. A Hurricane Warning is still in effect for the Atlantic coast from Melbourne north to North Carolina. All other watches and warnings for our coverage area have been discontinued.

Matthew’s remnants are expected to loop back to the south and west and eventually affect South Florida by the middle or end of next week. At this time, it’s uncertain just how much if any of a threat there will be; more on that later in the weekend.

Our Central Florida office is currently closed until 7:30 AM on Monday, October 10thAll phone calls directed to the Central Florida office will still be answered throughout the weekend.

Our Southwest Florida division is continuing business as usual.

We will continue to monitor the storm and update you with any changes that are made.

The Gulf Western Roofing supervisor overseeing your project will contact you as each phase of the Hurricane Response Plan is initiated. However, please feel free to call that supervisor with any questions you may have. If you are having difficulty reaching your supervisor, please call our main office at (800) 277-0647. You can also reach us at customerservice@lambcon.com or storm@lambcon.com.

Please find our Hurricane Response Plan Here
Please find our Hurricane Supply Check-list Here


October 6th, 2016

As of 11AM, Hurricane Matthew was located near Nassau in the Bahamas, where it has restrengthened to Category Four.

Matthew is headed toward Florida’s east coast, where it is expected to either make landfall this evening, or stay just off the coast until Saturday. Damage is expected to be severe and widespread; for this reason the National Hurricane Center has coastal and inland Hurricane Warnings in effect from Miami northward into South Carolina, an area that includes the Florida cities of Melbourne, Orlando, Daytona Beach, St. Augustine, and Jacksonville. Tropical Storm Watches and Warnings are strill in effect for most of Florida’s southern tip and west coast.

Our Central Florida division is currently in Phase III of the Hurricane Response Plan.
Our Southwest Florida division is still suspending all loads and deliveries but is otherwise continuing business as usual.

We will continue to monitor the storm and update you with any changes that are made.

The Gulf Western Roofing supervisor overseeing your project will contact you as each phase of the Hurricane Response Plan is initiated. However, please feel free to call that supervisor with any questions you may have. If you are having difficulty reaching your supervisor, please call our main office at (800) 277-0647. You can also reach us at customerservice@lambcon.com or storm@lambcon.com.

Please find our Hurricane Response Plan Here
Please find our Hurricane Supply Check-list Here


October 5th, 2016

As of 5 PM, the National Hurricane Center has placed counties along Florida’s East Coast from North Miami-Dade northward through Volusia under a Hurricane Warning, and counties up to the Georgia/South Carolina state line under a Hurricane Watch. A tropical storm warning remains in effect for the Upper Keys, as well as the southern tip of Florida from Miami west to around Marco Island, while the west coast of Florida from Marco Island to Cedar Key has been placed under a Tropical Storm Watch.

Our Central Florida division will be in Phase III of the Hurricane Response Plan by this afternoon. This means all in-progress installations will cease, all roof-loaded but uninstalled tile will be securely bundled or wrapped, all other remaining roof components (insulation, rolled goods, etc.) will be secured to the roof, any materials stored outdoors will be secured, and all jobsites will be cleared of any remaining roof debris.

Our Southwest Florida division has currently suspended all loads and deliveries but will otherwise continue business as usual. As usual, we will continue to monitor the storm and update you with any changes that are made.

The Gulf Western Roofing supervisor overseeing your project will contact you as each phase of the Hurricane Response Plan is initiated. However, please feel free to call that supervisor with any questions you may have. If you are having difficulty reaching your supervisor, please call our main office at (800) 277-0647. You can also reach us at customerservice@lambcon.com or storm@lambcon.com.

Please find our Hurricane Response Plan Here
Please find our Hurricane Supply Check-list Here


October 4th, 2016

At their 11:00 AM update, the National Hurricane Center issued a Tropical Storm Watch for Florida’s east coast from the Middle Keys north to the Broward County/Palm Beach County line, and a Hurricane Watch for the east coast from the Broward / Palm Beach line north to the Volusia County / Brevard County line.

Due to the change in trajectory of Hurricane Matthew our Central Florida division is currently in Phase I of the Hurricane Response Plan. This means all jobsite and rooftop deliveries will be suspended except as needed to complete key areas, roof installation will continue so that as much roof-loaded material as possible is secured, and our customers will be notified of the suspension of deliveries. We expect to be in Phase II of the Hurricane Response Plan by tomorrow and we will continue to keep our customers updated throughout the course of the storm.

Because the Southwest Florida area will remain largely unaffected, we will continue doing business as usual in those areas.

The Gulf Western Roofing supervisor overseeing your project will contact you as each phase of the Hurricane Response Plan is initiated. However, please feel free to call that supervisor with any questions you may have. If you are having difficulty reaching your supervisor, please call our main office at (800) 277-0647. You can also reach us at customerservice@lambcon.com or storm@lambcon.com.

Please find our Hurricane Response Plan here.


October 3rd, 2016

Florida Governor Rick Scott has declared a state of Emergency for the entire state of Florida due to the change in trajectory of Hurricane Matthew. Gov. Scott’s emergency declaration notes that, “based on the current forecast, the state’s entire east coast from Monroe to Nassau counties could experience tropical storm force winds, beach erosion, rip currents and heavy rain. This is a slow moving storm and could impact Florida as early as Wednesday and last through Saturday“. Our plan is to conduct business as usual tomorrow. However, we will be sending you regular updates throughout the day beginning early in the morning.

In the event that the storm becomes a greater threat, the Gulf Western Roofing supervisor overseeing your project will contact you as each phase of the Hurricane Response Plan is initiated. However, please feel free to call that supervisor with any questions you may have. If you are having difficulty reaching your supervisor, please call our main office at (800) 277-0647. You can also reach us at customerservice@lambcon.com or storm@lambcon.com.

Please find our Hurricane Response Plan here.


September 30th, 2016

Gulf Western Roofing is continuously monitoring Hurricane Matthew. At this time, the storm is forecast by the National Hurricane Center to remain off the coast of Florida. As a result of the current storm trajectory, Gulf Western Roofing will continue doing business as usual.

We will continue to monitor the storm closely and notify you if any changes in trajectory occur.

In the event of an approaching storm, the Gulf Western Roofing supervisor overseeing your project will contact you as each phase of the 2016 HurricaneResponse Plan is initiated. However, please feel free to call that supervisor with any questions you may have. If you are having difficulty reaching your supervisor, please call our main office at (800) 277-0647. You can also reach us at customerservice@lambcon.com or storm@lambcon.com.

Gutter Cleaning and Maintenance

Leaves and debris have a tendency to build up in your gutters and downspouts. When not cleaned out, this debris prevents water from flowing freely and can cause damages to your roof and fascia board.

So how often should you clean out your gutters and downspouts? AT LEAST once every year, but it would be a good preventative maintenance habit to do so during the spring and then again in the fall. Because fall is here, we’ve offered some helpful tips for tackling your gutter clean out:

  1. First things first- safety is the most important. Make sure that your ladder is the right size and that you and the ladder are properly tied off.
  2. Start with the areas near a downspout.
  3. Remove the large debris first
  4. Flush out the gutters by running a hose at the end opposite of the downspout.
  5. If water is not draining, the downspout may be clogged. Try using a hose attachment with more pressure or use a plumbers snake tool to clear the blockage.

We understand that cleaning your gutters is a daunting task. It can also be very dangerous if you’re not comfortable on a ladder. To avoid the risk, call your premier Florida roofer, Gulf Western Roofing. In fact, our Roof Assurance Maintenance Program (RAMP) includes a gutter and valley clean out with the purchase of our white or blue key levels. We’ll be able to clean your rain gutters quickly and safely, keeping your roof protected from rainwater.

What’s That Stuff Growing on My Roof?

Most people think it is black or dark green mold, but actually, it is a prehistoric bacterium called Gleocapsa Magma. Gleocapsa Magma is the cyanobacteria responsible for the black and dark green stains often seen on roofs. It is transported to roofs primarily by wind, rain, insects, and animals.

In addition to causing unsightly streaks and stains, these bacteria can also wreck havoc on your roof. The growth of Gleocapsa Magma is most accurately described as colonization. These bacteria grow on and within tiles and shingles, dissolving and extracting the mineral components. Overtime, Gleocapsa Magma begins to break down the contents of your tiles or shingles by feeding off the minerals embedded in them. This negatively impacts the structural integrity of your roof and has also been known to increase air conditioning bills and lead to more frequent roof repair and reconstruction.

Unfortunately, Florida’s climate makes the growth of these bacteria very common. The good news is, there are a few options for protecting your roof from damages caused by Gleocapsa Magma:

  1. In the short run, pressure washing can be the least expensive. For a little over $100, you can pay someone to get on your roof every so often to remove the bacteria. However, these results will typically only last 6-12 months. We wouldn’t suggest letting just anyone on your roof to do the job either. It is always best to hire a licensed and insured roofing contractor to pressure wash your roof. That way you know your roof will be cleaned in a safe and professional way without damaging the roof materials or using harsh chemicals.
  2. Roof-A-Cide® is a non-toxic algaecide that can be easily applied to your roof after cleaning. Although Roof-A-Cide® is a bit more costly than pressure washing, when applied properly by a trained professional installer, it provides guaranteed protection for at least two years. Not having to pressure wash for two years can end up saving you money and can protect your roof from the damaging affects of constant pressure washing.
  3. nansulate-with-and-without-moldAlthough more costly upfront, Nansulate® Crystal’s 10-year warranty and energy saving benefits can end up being the most cost effective option for preventing Gleocapsa Magma. Crystal is a thermal insulation coating that provides energy saving insulation, UV protection, mold and moisture resistance. Customers for over a decade report payback from energy savings in 3-5 years. Click here for more information on the benefits of Nansulate Crystal.

 

Each of these options can also be purchased as an additional item with any of our Roof Assurance Maintenance Program (RAMP) packages. The purchase of any additional menu option will reduce the cost of the program. Whichever option you choose, you can count on the experts at Gulf Western Roofing to provide you with the most reliable service!

What’d that Roofer Say? Roofing Terminology Defined

Have you ever wondered what a roofer meant by a ‘hip’ or ‘valley’? Are you confused by the difference between a ‘rake’ and a ‘ridge’? Have you always been curious as to what a ‘gable’ is?

As with specialists in most industries, roofing contractors have developed their own lingo over the years for ease of communication. Doctors, artists, lawyers, and even diner workers use words and phrases that are unique to their line of work simply because it makes things go faster.

For instance, it would be both tediously repetitive and a waste of time for a supervisor to ask his crew to, “please install an asphalt-impregnated mat of interwoven organic and inorganic fibers into that depressed angle formed by the meeting of those two adjoining but differently-faced roof planes.” No, it’s far easier to say, “Guys, put some felt in that valley.”

Gulf Western Roofing is currently in the process of adding and maintaining a full glossary of roofing terms to our website. The next time a roofer talks about a fishmouth, gambrel, or a cricket, you’ll know exactly what they mean.

Importance of Roof Maintenance

Home ownership is one of the most expensive investments you will make in your lifetime. Why not take care of your home so that it lasts you longer? Your roof protects your family and most of your other assets.

In order to restore your roofing system to its optimal performance, it’s necessary to have a maintenance strategy in place. Studies have shown that a roof that is not regularly maintained will only last about half of its expected service life. Gulf Western Roofing and Sheet Metal’s Roof Assurance Maintenance Program (RAMP) was developed to help thousands of homeowners extend the life of their roof while preventing costly repairs or re-roofs. Having a scheduled maintenance plan in place to inspect the condition of your roof and act at the first sign of deterioration is vital to extending the life of your roof and saving money.

Our RAMP is an exclusive, low-cost solution to many long-term problems that can arise on your roof. Homeowners have the choice between the red, white, and blue key level options. Each level provides a bi-annual inspection of the interior and exterior of the home. After each inspection, the homeowner will be given access to their own online portal where they’ll find photos and a report of the inspection. Should any damages be found, the cost of the maintenance program will apply toward the cost of repairing the damages.

Along with what’s included in the maintenance package of their choice, homeowners can also select from an à la carte menu which includes roof pressure cleaning as well as a roof treatment of Roof-A-Cide® or Nansulate® Crystal, which both provide your roof with exclusive algae-free warranties. Can you imagine not having to pressure clean your roof for years?

As a premier member of our RAMP, you are considered a priority customer, meaning in the event of a storm, your call will take precedence. And if you decide to move before the program’s expiration date, the program will stay with the home and be transferred to the new homeowner. Our RAMP can even be given as a gift to your friends and family members to maintain their homes!

To learn more about the benefits of RAMP and what’s included in each package, visit http://gulfwesternroofing.com/wordpress/maintenance/

Preparing Your Roof for a Hurricane

During a hurricane your roof can be exposed to winds in excess of 155 mph. These winds have the potential to pull off roof shingles, tiles, or even the underlying roof deck. This is why we suggest checking the condition of your roof BEFORE a storm happens as well as after. A well-maintained roof is your best bet against hurricane winds.

Have Your Roof Inspected
Gulf Western Roofing does not recommend that any homeowner attempt to get on their roof. With our years of roofing excellence in Florida, Gulf Western Roofing is uniquely qualified to check the condition of your roof. From this inspection, we’ll be able to tell if there are any damages that must be attended to before the storm.

Fix Any Loose Shingles or Tiles
To reduce the chances of losing shingles or tiles by high winds, it is best to give attention to any missing, damaged, or loose shingles or tiles as these will increase the likelihood of water penetrating deeper into the roof.

Secure Any Yard Furniture
Your furniture and yard decorations can easily become flying projectiles that could damage your roof. We suggest tying them down or moving them indoors to the so they don’t get loose and damage the roof.

Survey Fascia and Soffit Boards
Take the time to walk the perimeter of your property and survey the fascia boards and the soffit boards. Fascia boards are located just below the metal trim of the roof and soffit boards are located below the roof overhang areas. Any signs of rotten wood in this area may indicate a potential problem during a hurricane. Making sure these roof areas are repaired will help secure the structure from possible wind damage at the eaves.

Trim Any Trees That Overhang the Roof and Trim Dead Branches off All Trees
High winds can break even the largest of tree limbs as easily as snapping a toothpick in half. It may seem obvious to trim the trees that overhang your roof, but it is also a good idea to have all off the trees surrounding your home trimmed just in case.

Purchase a Tarp and Store as Needed
After a storm, roofers run into a major supply shortage. Tarps are a rare find during this time and unfortunately they are a major necessity. Your best bet is to purchase tarps before the storm that way you are prepared.

Clean Debris From Valley and Gutters
Clearing all leaves and debris from roof areas and gutters will allow rainwater to flow them and prevent water from backing up and entering your home.

5 Steps to Choosing the Right Roofing Contractor

Making the best choice for your roof maintenance begins with hiring the most qualified roofing contractor. That’s why we’ve put together this step-by-step guide to choosing the most reputable roofing contractor for the job.

Do an Internet Search

These days, the Internet makes it hard for crooks and scammers to get away with treating their customers poorly. Websites like “ripoffreport.com” allow customers to warn others about any rip-offs or scams that may have occurred to them. Also look through any social media or search engine reviews of the company and see if the contractor has a Better Business Bureau (BBB) rating. Being an A+ BBB company means that the business is operating in a trustworthy manner and will put forth the necessary effort to resolve any customer complaints.

Collect References

These days, most companies will include job photos and customer testimonials right on their website. Take the time to review this information to see if this contractor is the right fit for you. If you own a tile roof, yet all the photos on a roofing website present shingle roofs, then chances are this contractor may not specialize in your area. Don’t be afraid to ask the company to present references of their own either. It may be beneficial to call and speak to some of these references before settling on the right roofer.

Ask Around

Talk to your friends, your family, and your neighbors to find out which roofing contractors they trust most. Reading customer testimonials and reviews online can be helpful, but talking to someone that you know and trust about their own personal experience may help you in learning useful information that may not have otherwise been presented to you.

Obtain all Necessary Information

Always make sure that you are hiring a licensed and insured roofing contractor. Roofing is one of the most dangerous jobs. With that in mind, you do not want to be responsible for the medical bills if someone is injured while working on your property. You have every right to ask your roofing contractor for their license and insurance information.

Speak to an Expert

It’s true; we’ve all encountered at least one or two shady salesmen at some point in our lifetime. You know which ones we’re talking about… They hardly take the time to explain anything, they present you with false information, and they’re in all too much of a hurry to take your money and run. Make sure the company you’re dealing with takes the time to explain the process to you, goes over the contract details with you before making you sign, and stays in touch with you throughout the project. Knowing exactly what you’re getting for your money is important.

Always take caution when making big decisions for your home. Being able to trust your roofing contractor will make the process go that much smoother. Gulf Western Roofing prides itself on good customer service. We stand by the fact that we’ll always tell you the truth about your roof. If you’re in need of a Florida roof repair or re-roof, take the time to learn more about Gulf Western Roofing!

 

Why Should You Consult a Roofer When Moving?

If you’ve ever had to do any roofing repairs or replacements, you know just how costly they can be. When looking for a new home, it is best to include a “quality roof” on your list of must-haves. Otherwise, you should ask the sellers to either replace the current roof before closing, or ask them to drop the price beyond the cost of a new roof.

Oftentimes a roof may look worse than it actually is. It is possible that the roof just needs to be cleaned and is in need of a few quick repairs. However, keep in mind that it is possible for a seemingly simple roofing project to turn into an expensive endeavor.

Unfortunately, the cost of a roofing project is dependent upon the square footage of the roof and the materials used. Therefore, it is almost impossible to determine a general estimate on the cost of a roofing project. If at all possible, the best thing to do before committing to a price with the seller is to collect a few quotes on the roofing work that needs to be done.

First, contact the seller and make sure that it is acceptable to have a local roofer come out to do a roof inspection before you purchase the home. Once the roofer does an inspection, they should be able to help you make your decision as to whether or not you should purchase the home. As always, Gulf Western Roofing will tell you the truth about your roof. You can trust us to give you an honest inspection and work with you to get the job done correctly.

We understand that moving is hard enough, but catching costly issues before closing on a new home would be highly beneficial to you and your family in the long run.