Total Pro Roofing wins Consumers’ Choice Award again!

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Total Pro Roofing is proud to announce we have received 2018 Atlanta’s Consumers’ Choice Award for roofing.  The second year in a row!

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Jena Carver receiving the 2018 Consumers’ Choice Award on behalf of Total Pro Roofing on January 31, 2019.

“For over 25 years, the Consumers’ Choice Award has been considered a business seal of excellence. For recipients, the award not only constitutes the crowning achievement of their efforts, but also represents the knowledge that they have earned the trust and loyalty of consumers.”   Total Pro Roofing was honored to accept this award on Thursday, January 21, 2019 at the Cobb Galleria in Atlanta, Georgia.

The evening’s activities included a cocktail reception, dinner, and a fantastic speaker.  The evening’s program opened with greetings from the Consumers’ Choice team and was followed by keynote speaker, Rene Godefroy.  In attendance from Total Pro Roofing was co-owner Jena Carver and team member of the year: Matt Covington.  A wonderful time was had meeting other recipients and enjoying the evening.

Total Pro Roofing - award - CCA2018

To receive this recognition, Total Pro Roofing was nominated and then passed through a voting process with Atlanta consumers.  Once selected, a company must pass an ethics review with a regulatory law firm based in Ohio.   It is at this point the Consumers’ Choice Award gives their seal of approval. No more than 3 businesses are selected as recipients per category.  We are proud to be recognized as the best of the best!

A very special thank you to everyone who voted for us!   We truly are appreciative of everyone who took the time to select us.   You can learn more about the Consumers’ Choice Award here:  https://consumerschoiceaward.com/

 

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Jena Carver and Matt Covington in attendance for the 2018 Consumers’ Choice dinner in Atlanta on January 31, 2019.

 

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Keynote speaker for the evening: Rene Godefrey.

Total Pro Roofing in Roofing Contractor Magazine

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Total Pro Roofing received recent press coverage in the nationally distributed Roofing Contractor magazine, twice!

The recognition is related to the company “Roofs for Troops” initiative that gives back to veterans who have served our country.

Total Pro Roofing’s first appearance with Roofing Contractor magazine was on the front page of their online edition:

Total Pro Roofing, of Grayson, Ga., recently replaced a roof for a U.S. military veteran as part of its annual Free Roofs for Troops program.

SPC Charles Mathis served in the U.S. Army during Operation Desert Storm. These conditions meant 140-degree temperatures, chemical attacks, air strikes, artillery raids, loss of life, and enemy prisoners of war that included children under the age of 12. Like many he served alongside, the aftermath of serving in such a hostile environment had a lasting impact on Mathis, who needed a new roof.

Total Pro Roofing started a Free Roofs for Troops program in 2016 to give back to veterans of the U. S. military. It provides free roof replacements for those in need by using a portion of the profits on every paid install. Help is needed to spread the word for future veteran applicants to be aware of this program.

“Total Pro Roofing’s goal is to replace roofs for veterans several times a year and even more frequently as the future allows,” said Owner Jason Carver. “As a private company providing this service, this program is entirely self-funded. Total Pro Roofing is grateful to the customers, the partnership with Active Heroes, a non-profit organization geared towards veteran suicide prevention, and all who have helped put Total Pro Roofing in the position to give back.”

The article is available for viewing here: https://www.roofingcontractor.com/articles/92944-total-pro-roofing-donates-roof-to-us-army-veteran-in-georgia

 

We were thrilled to open the November 2018 issue and see further coverage in conjunction with our Roofs for Troops program.
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You can read the full article from the November issue of Roofing Contractor magazine here: https://www.roofingcontractor.com/articles/93223-roofing-industry-honors-veterans-year-round

 

 

Further information is available on our Roofs for Troops program at this link: http://www.totalproroofing.com/roofs-for-troops-total-pro-roofingatlanta-roofing-contractors/

 

Don’t Be Duped! How to Choose a Contractor

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We recently came across an ad in a community mailer for a roofing company offering “10% off any other company’s written estimate”.  It certainly got our attention, which means it is time to share some insider knowledge about how to choose a contractor.  That huge discount sure sounds great at the surface level, but that should be warning sign number one as a company you might want to examine carefully before hiring. In this industry, We see a LOT of shenanigans. Hopefully this post will help educate you before hiring someone to perform work on your home, and some of the things you need to look for up front.

Let’s go through common advertising claims:

 

“Licensed and Insured”

As a homeowner, you should always ask to see these items.

Licensed: There is NO state license for roofing in Georgia. (Scary isn’t it? Your roof protects your entire home!) More than likely, the roofing contractor is referring to their business license anyone can purchase at their local city hall for around $100. Don’t believe us?  Find a friend and place your bets before asking the company to produce their license.  Only a small percentage of companies are participating in a voluntary program that you can learn more about here: Georgia Roofing License Info

Insured: A Certificate of Insurance is a one page sheet that proves insurance for a business. Beware of companies that attempt to pass off other company’s policies as their own. The business name you are hiring should be in the box for “Name of Insured”, not down at the bottom as a certificate holder. This link will help you understand more of what you are seeing on the certificate, including where to look for dates that show the policy is active: How to read an insurance certificate.  Don’t hesitate to reach out to the producer to confirm the policies are still active and not cancelled due to non-payment of the company’s insurance premiums.   You really want to make sure they have General Liability and Workers Compensation.  Other policies such as Commercial Auto and Umbrella show a further commitment  to responsibility.

 

Years of Experience

Claims like “25 years of experience” are often indicators of a new business, not a claim of how long they have actually been in business. Otherwise, they would say something like “serving your area since 1992”. We did a quick Georgia Secretary of State Corporations search on the company with that ad we mentioned earlier, and sure enough, they started their business 6 short months ago. You can quickly search and be an educated consumer at this link: https://ecorp.sos.ga.gov/BusinessSearch

Time in business really does matter! Many roofing companies advertise labor warranties that are in excess of the time they’ve even been in business. Any successful company will have had their share of warranty calls, that just the nature of any business, but time is the true testament to a thriving company and their understanding of the true claims to their warranty.

 

Reputation

Googling a company’s name online and searching for reviews are very important. You’ll want to look at sites like: Facebook and Google as these will more than likely have a larger review pool and better snapshot of a company. Yelp is another good resource, but they tend to hide reviews from users who are new or have only reviewed a few companies. That can skew the ratings a bit. The BBB is a great resource too for checking complaint history.

 

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This is the fun one. When a company advertises massive discounts or “We will beat any competitor by X dollars”, it is another red flag. When a home improvement / construction / roofing company advertises something like that, they knowingly are misleading their customer. There is always the chance they will come into many cases where they will have to turn business away. (In other words, dishonesty to get a customer in the door.) This is a big indicator of everything this article is trying to shed light on.
Putting it bluntly about some of the quotes on the market: There are a lot of startup companies out there. Many operate out of their home, aren’t properly insured, don’t do proper work to code, and don’t have an established record of business. Unfortunately, these type of companies pop up over night and quickly disappear because they attempt to do and price work that they are not properly prepared for. We know this because we are often called to correct their work.

 

Be an Educated Homeowner When you Choose a Contractor!

Here at Total Pro Roofing, we love an educated homeowner! A solid and well-built roof is something you deserve to sleep soundly under. We are happy to answer your questions and are proud of our reputation, history, and continued growth. Give us a call and let us surpass your expectations: 770-624-1009

There is a National Skilled Labor Shortage in Skilled Trades

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Did you know: For every 4 or 5 leaving skilled trades, only 1 is entering?  This is a staggering statistic.  Ask anyone in the skilled trade fields and they will agree that good, skilled labor is hard to find in construction, plumbing, electric, welding, etc.  For years, our youth has been told that the answer to a solid career is at a University.  That isn’t the case anymore. Read on for information and ways to explore and talk about skilled trades with today’s youth.  (If you’re reading this in March/April 2018, head over to our Facebook page for a fun art contest for the kids that helps start the conversation! Link: https://www.facebook.com/TotalProRoofing/posts/1917249818346638 )    

A College Diploma Does Not Guarantee a Job.

The market has become saturated with job seekers holding a coveted diploma and competition among them is heavy for white-collar jobs.  21 year-olds are disappointed to learn that $50,000+ starting salaries for a business degree are less common than they thought.  Graduating students find themselves with debt from student loans and entry level jobs closer to minimum wage and often not in the field they studied.
 
 

Technical Schools and Skilled Labor

There’s good news though!  In Georgia, there are organizations like CEFGA (Construction Education Foundation of Georgia), a non-profit, leading the way with 20 day Construction Ready programs for adults and their K12 pipeline program for our youth. (Link: www.cefga.org)  You can also learn more about Georgia Trade Five (formerly Go Build Georgia) which lists additional resources: http://www.georgiatradefive.com/   For those interested in entering the roofing field, much of the educational opportunities come in the form of apprenticeships, but there are programs available.  The National Roofing Contractor’s Association has a ProCertification program beginning Summer 2018. You can learn more about it here: http://www.nrca.net/ProCert-Training.
 
 

Empowerment & Opportunity

A recent statistic is that by 2025, 75% of the workforce will be Millennials.  It is a safe assumption that the majority of these individuals will be driven more towards technology-based jobs.  Those that think outside the box and gain a construction skill will not only have the empowerment on how to build that figurative box, but will be able to fill it with exponential amounts of opportunity. Technology skills are still needed in all fields, but those who know how to create and work with their hands are the ones who are facing the most opportunity as more companies find skilled labor roles harder to fill.
 
 

Shape the Future and Start the Conversation

Help our youth begin to look at skilled trades with a fresh view.  Help them start to think about how buildings are constructed and the materials and tools it takes.    Talk about all the inner workings of a building – plumbing, electricity, support beams, etc.   Have them try to draw a blueprint or design the layout of their perfect home and then add details on how they would run wires and pipes. Look at all the angles on many of the hip roofs constructed today. (They certainly aren’t as simple as a barn roof anymore!) For roofing, talk about how shingles and even underlayment need to be laid so that water flows off correctly for the complex facets, like in a valley.  These conversations are vital as we instill value into the skilled trades as a respectable and well-paying career option.

International Roofing Expo 2018

International Roofing Expo 2018
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There are over 450 booths represented on this floor plan from the IRE that cover all elements of roofing and roof technology.

The International Roofing Expo is considered by many to be the biggest and best of all roofing conventions. Established in 1955, it was the national conference for the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA). This was the first year Total Pro Roofing attended, and we have to say that we agree too! Hosted in a different city each year, the IRE took New Orleans by storm for February 6-8, 2018. (Prior cities have included locations like Las Vegas and Orlando.)

 

Events this year kicked off with a community service day, a yearly tradition at the IRE to serve the local community of the hosting city.  New to this year’s events, the NWIR (National Women In Roofing) hosted an Education Day on Sunday, February 4th, followed by a Mentoring and Networking Reception on Monday, February 5th. (Now in it’s second year, the NWIR strives to promote women in this industry. You can learn more about this fantastic group here: http://nationalwomeninroofing.org.) Also on Monday was a first time attendee reception hosted by the NRCA (National Roofing Contractors Association) which allowed attendees to meet many members of the NRCA staff that they might communicate with throughout the year.  The National Roofing Contractors Association is the driving force behind education in our industry and membership allows access to an incredible amount of training and information for companies investing in growth and wanting to show their commitment to excellence.

 

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International Roofing Expo 2018 Keynote Speaker: “Dr J” Julius Erving.
Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday were a whirlwind of official International Roofing Expo events. The mornings were filled with fantastic education sessions on a variety of industry topics beginning at 7:45AM at the Ernest N Morial Convention Center.  Topics ranged from leadership to technical elements and were designed for attendees across a variety of job roles in roofing.  “Dr J” Julius Erving, of basketball fame, greeted everyone Tuesday as the keynote speaker.  He brought a message of perseverance and drive.

 

Expo hours began daily at 11AM as the educational sessions wrapped up and featured over 450 exhibitors.  Scattered throughout the day, there were also expo floor demonstrations and additional education sessions. Products ranged from traditional roofing materials to solar panels and technology from drones to measurement augmented realities.  My friends, roofing has come a long way and we are firmly planted in the 21st century! Official numbers have not been posted, but last year drew 11,000+ attendees to Las Vegas, so it is probably safe to say attendance was approaching those numbers as well for this year in New Orleans.

 

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Jena Carver (on right) joins other ladies at the National Women in Roofing event at IRE.

Total Pro Roofing highly recommends this event to anyone in our industry.  The networking across all elements of roofing was incredible and it was a fantastic experience to put many names to faces from across the country.  It was inspiring and a great way to kick off the new year as the spring season ramps up.

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Jena Carver and Jason Carver waving “Hello” at Beacon’s event at IRE.

Is your Georgia roofing contractor REALLY licensed? (Hint: There is no Georgia Roofing License requirement!)

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Did you know that there is no official Georgia Roofing License? Yikes!  There is good news though:  The RSMCA (Roofing and Sheet Metal Contractors Association of Georgia) is leading the way to change with their voluntary licensing program. Total Pro Roofing is proud to be an early adopter and has obtained the “Low and Steep Slope” designation.

 

“Licensed and Insured”

You see it every day on roofing trucks that pass by and on their websites: “Licensed and Insured”.  It sounds great, but that “license” probably isn’t what you think they are talking about.   Many specialty trade contractors hide behind that phrase to make it seem like they have qualifications that they don’t have.  If you ask to see a copy of the roofing license, you will probably be presented with their business license.  If you have never obtained a business license before, it is as simple as walking into city hall to fill out a short application and to pay a fee.  Certainly not the technical type of construction license many homeowners assume!

RSMCA Georgia Roofing License Voluntary Program - Total Pro RoofingWhen you consider that your roof protects all the contents of your home or business, it is a pretty big deal that someone can just install a roof with no type of oversight or knowledge check.  It also makes it that much more difficult for a property owner to discern among quotes for quality workmanship, business reputation, insurance, and financial ability. A licensing program serves to screen companies for these things.

 

Proposed Legislation Wants to Protect Consumers

The Georgia HB 301 summary lists the real risk bluntly: “This bill is intended to protect Georgia homeowners and businesses, who are regularly victimized by “fly-by-night” roofers.  Often from our neighboring states, all of which have strict licensing requirements, they come to Georgia because our lack of regulation allows them to prey on the unwary.  After every natural disaster in our  state,  whether  a  hurricane  on  the  coast  or  the  recent  destructive  tornado  in  Adairsville,  unqualified  roofers  descend  on  Georgia  to  take  advantage  of  the  victims,  making  easy  money  doing  shoddy  work,  or  taking  deposits  and  doing  no  work  at  all.    Like  our  surrounding  states,  it  is  time  Georgia  stopped  these  unscrupulous  operators  by  imposing  the  same  type  of  licensing  we  require  of  plumbers, electricians, contractors, and other construction trades.”

 

21 States Already have Roofing Licensing Requirements

Needless to say, there has been a push among reputable companies to bring a Georgia roofing license to the state.  They want to join the following 21 states that already have licensing requirements: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina*, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Utah, and Virginia. (*Only for roofing jobs worth more than $30,000).  Source: National Association of State Contractors Licensing Agencies.

 

Georgia Roofing Voluntary Licensing Program

The Roofing and Sheet Metal Contractors Association of Georgia has established a voluntary licensing program.  Their website states: “The RSMCA Georgia Licensed Roofing Contractor program was developed to increase consumer protection and secure the public confidence in the roofing industry by elevating the roofing contractor’s knowledge, skills and professionalism through voluntary self-regulation.”  A roofing contractor can obtain licenses for low slope, steep slope, or both categories combined.  It also serves to qualify contractors for financial ability, proper insurance, business licenses, withholding and employer identification numbers, and references.  You can learn more about this voluntary program here: https://www.rsmca.org/page-1221326

 

Total Pro Roofing would like to issue the challenge to fellow Georgia roofing companies: Lets join together in elevating our industry and showing our client base this is a trade they can be confident in.   Join us in obtaining your Georgia roofing license.

 

Learn more with the following resources:

Georgia Roofing “Specialty Trade” exemption.    Link:  http://sos.ga.gov/index.php/licensing/plb/46/exempt_specialty_contractors.   You can reference “shingles and shakes” listed on the attached document which also names a variety of other trades that are exempt: http://sos.ga.gov/admin/files/49_TraditionalSpecialtyContractors.pdf

 

For those interested in reading more about state licensing attempts with Georgia House Bill 301, information can be found here:   Summary:  https://www.rsmca.org/Resources/Documents/RSMCA%20HB%20301%20-%20Roofing%20Contractor%20Licensing%20-%20Bullet%20Points%202013.pdf Full text: https://opb.georgia.gov/sites/opb.georgia.gov/files/related_files/site_page/HB%20301%20Final%20Combined%20%28PUBLISHED%29.pdf

 

Total Pro Roofing wins Best of Gwinnett, Again!

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Total Pro Roofing - Best of Gwinnett 2017A very big THANK YOU to all who voted for Total Pro Roofing to win Best of Gwinnett for the second year in a row!  There are over 800,000 people in Gwinnett County and your votes have made us a favorite Grayson, Duluth, Loganville, Snellville, Peachtree Corners, Suwanee, Berkeley Lake, Buford, Dacula, Lilburn, Norcross, Sugar Hill, and Lawrenceville Roofer. It is an honor to be selected again in 2017.

 

Every year, Best of Gwinnett, #lovegwinnett, and Gwinnett Magazine search for the best businesses in a variety of categories.  Look for the digital release of this year’s issue to be released on Valentine’s Day with all the details.  You can find it here: www.lovegwinnett.com.

 

With all the love going around, don’t forget your roof! Nothing says “I love you!” more than a home that is safe and protected from the elements. Don’t risk the heartbreak of broken/brittle shingles failing. (Especially if your roof takes a direct hit from Cupid’s arrow.)  Springtime storms are just around the corner, and now is the time to prepare and get those leaks taken care of.  Scheduling an inspection is quick.  Just give us a call at 770-624-1009 or fill out a web form here on our site.   We look forward to providing great service and earning your vote for next year’s Best of Gwinnett search!

 

 

Total Pro Roofing Receives 2017 Consumers’ Choice Award

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CCA2017_Color“For over 25 years, the Consumers’ Choice Award has been considered a business seal of excellence. For recipients, the award not only constitutes the crowning achievement of their efforts, but also represents the knowledge that they have earned the trust and loyalty of consumers.”   Total Pro Roofing was honored to accept this award on Thursday, January 11, 2018 at the Atlanta Marriott Marquis in Atlanta, Georgia.

The evening’s activities included a cocktail reception with close-up magician Peter Morrison before the doors were opened to dinner.  The evening’s program opened with greetings from the Consumers’ Choice Award team and was followed by keynote speaker, consultant, and author Ryan Jenkins.  Mr. Jenkins provided fascinating information on Millennials and how they are shaping the workforce.  In attendance from Total Pro Roofing were co-owners, Jason Carver and Jena Carver.  A wonderful time was had meeting other recipients and enjoying the evening.

To receive this award, Total Pro Roofing was nominated.  Nominees then pass through the voting process with Atlanta consumers.  Once selected by voters, a company must pass an ethics review with a regulatory law firm based in Ohio.   It is at this point the Consumers’ Choice Award gives their seal of approval.  Depending on the category, no more than 3 businesses are selected as recipients.  We are proud to be recognized as the best of the best!

A very special thank you to everyone who voted for us to receive Atlanta’s Consumers’ Choice Award for 2017.   We truly are appreciative of everyone who took the time to select us.   You can learn more about the Consumers’ Choice Award here:  https://consumerschoiceaward.com/

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A glimpse into the evening’s event. (Photo credit: Duane Stork Photography, www.dstock.com )
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Owners Jason Carver and Jena Carver with Total Pro Roofing’s Consumers’ Choice Award. (Photo credit: Duane Stork Photography, www.dstock.com )

 

 

Your Roof and Selling your Home

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The time has come and you are selling your home.  Now it seems like all those little repairs you have been putting off aren’t so little anymore. Suddenly, you notice your roof and realize it is looking pretty rough compared to the neighbor’s. What do you do now?

 

Sometimes it could be a case of just faded shingles with granular loss from age, especially if you’ve had no leaks. (You’ll need to take a peek in your attic to look for signs of water stains on the underside of the roof decking.) Most of the basic 3-tab shingles that are aging out now were rated at 20-25 years. If you know the age of your roof and it is in the upper teens, be prepared for a buyer to bring a new roof request into play.  As a shingles age and become brittle, repairs become increasingly difficult.  Repairing an aging roof typically won’t match visually because of fading.  Unfortunately, color options for shingles aren’t as plentiful as paint colors.

 

What if you’re missing shingles? What if there is storm damage up there? You will want a roofing professional to examine the damage first to prevent filing an unnecessary claim, but you might be a candidate for an insurance replacement. A good hail indicator? Check your gutters for dings.  With 2017’s Hurricane Irma coming into North Georgia, many homes still have unaddressed wind damage. Often, wind damage isn’t quite as visible because shingles can be lifted just enough to remain on the roof, but have a broken seal creating leak opportunities.  Wind and hail damage are one of the most common causes for homeowners needing a new roof.   The benefit is that the out of pocket cost is just your deductible and the insurance company picks up the balance. (A far better alternative to paying full price with all the other expenses that you encounter getting your home ready for the market.)  Total Pro Roofing is experienced with claims processing if that’s the proper route for your needs.

 

Caution-HOA-approval Wanting to appeal to the largest buyer pool, you make the decision to replace your roof.  (A 2016 study found that 71% wanted a move-in ready home.  Source: PRNewsWire.com. It can also prevent closing delays and further negotiations once your buyer has your home checked out by an inspector.)  What now? We recommend looking at the homes in your neighborhood.  Pay attention to the popular colors and shingle styles.  You’ll likely notice architectural style shingles on many of the newer roofs.  (This dimensional shingle not only has better curb appeal, but can also help to mask structural imperfections in an aging and settling home.)  Just like you can attract a wide range of buyers with neutral interior wall color, the same can be said for picking a roof that complements the neighborhood colors. Your decision might be even easier if you have an HOA. If that is the case, you might find your choices are already narrowed down to 3-4 color choices, sometimes less.

 

At Total Pro Roofing, we are happy to inspect your roof and offer guidance with repairs as you prepare your home for the market. We have replaced and repaired thousands of roofs and can help provide insight on shingle style and color trends as well. Give us a call at 770-624-1009 or email us at: [email protected] to schedule an appointment.

Wind Damage and Your Roof

lifted shingles from wind damage

Wind can cause major damage to roofs, especially older 3-tab shingles. When wind catches shingles, it damages the seal, lifts shingles, creases them, and can even blow them off the roof completely.  Any wind damage to a roof should be cause for concern, because moisture can now begin to work its way into your home or business which means costlier repairs.

 

missing shingles marked during an inspection
A chalked roof with missing shingles after an inspection.

Some wind damage can be seen from the ground.  Here is what to look for:

  1. Shingles that are lifted.
  2. Shingles that are creased and flipped back
  3. Shingles that are completely missing. You will see the gap (often darker from the un-faded shingle below it) or even black patches of exposed felt.  Felt is just a safety net for temporary water proofing while a roof is being installed.  It can be torn by hand and does have holes in it from roof installation.
  4. If you see exposed wood on your roof, you need to act even more urgently as water damage risks are greater due to the absent felt underlayment.  Moisture is absorbed into the wood and will work its way through your attic, insulation, ceilings, and drywall.

Wind damage isn’t uniform.  One slope of your roof can be pristine, while another can be damaged from high winds towards it.   Neighbors can also have varying amounts of damage if their home is sheltered by surrounding trees.  (We see this increased protection with hail damage as well, but those homes have a higher risk of a tree falling on them.)

 

Not all damage is visible at ground level and requires inspections.  Shingles can be loosened, flipped upward, and then returned to their usual position in a single storm, but the damage is done.  Future rain then penetrates under the shingles and water damage increases.  Wind can also push debris under the flapping shingles.

 

Repairing wind damage really is an urgent item.  Your roofing system is designed to protect your interior, and a fault in your roof means that you are exposed to eventual interior repairs from water damage and mold exposure.  The good news?  As a storm damage item, these types of roof repairs and replacements are covered by your homeowner’s insurance.  Our representatives are trained in this process and are happy to explain further.

 

If you suspect you have wind damage, please contact Total Pro Roofing for an inspection at: 770-624-1009.   Learn more about us at www.totalproroofing.com or by clicking the links above.  We are an accredited BBB member with an A+ rating, fully insured, and were proudly voted Best Roofer for Best of Gwinnett 2016.

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