For your roofing contractor to understand your needs and provide what you want, you have to be able to communicate effectively. You also have to know the right questions to ask so you can determine if your roofer has your best interests in mind and will do the job right.
Interviewing Roofing Contractors
The right contractor will answer the following questions to your satisfaction. Be sure to ask them before you sign any contract. You can view Owens Corning’s complete Contractor Expectations Checklist on their website; it may be a good idea to print it and take with you when you meet with prospective contractors so you don’t forget anything important.
1. Are you an Owens Corning Preferred Contractor?
This isn’t a requirement, but if you find an Owens Corning Preferred Contractor, it means they’ve met many stringent requirements in the roofing industry. If a contractor is part of this exclusive network of roofing professionals, it means they
- Carry all required licenses and insurance (local, state, and federal)
- Are in good standing with the Better Business Bureau (BBB)
- Use the latest technology and stay current with industry standards
- Can offer a warranty (from Owens Corning) with lifetime workmanship coverage
- Carry at least one million dollars in general liability insurance
2. Are you going to thoroughly inspect my roofing system?
Whether it’s time to replace your roof or the contractor will be repairing damage, they should perform a thorough inspection first to assess the current state of the entire roofing system, including the attic and any penetrations in your roof, like vents or chimneys.
3. Will you install underlayment?
Underlayment provides an extra layer of protection for your home. It’s placed underneath the shingles, over the wood decking. If you experience a heavy rain or an ice or snow storm and moisture makes its way under your shingles, your underlayment will help keep it from leaking into your home and causing serious damage. Read “Anatomy of a Hedrick Roof” to see how all of the main roofing components must work together to keep your home safe and sound.
4. How does my roofing system work?
Your contractor should accurately and thoroughly explain how each of the components illustrated in the article we just mentioned work together to create a fully functional roofing system. Hearing your roofer explain how it all works will help you make more educated decisions (and give you more confidence in your contractor’s abilities).
5. Will you ensure my roof is adequately ventilated?
Your roofing contractor should check the intake and exhaust ventilation systems to ensure humid air is continuously being removed from your attic and cool, dry air from outside is replacing it. Without these systems working properly, moisture can build up inside your attic and under shingles, leading to damage and potentially invalidating your roofing warranty.
6. Will you explain how the warranty works?
Asking this question can clear up any possible confusion about how your warranty works and who to call if you have any problems. Ask what it will cost to replace any defective shingles and whether you have to pay for labor. Also ask if your roofer will follow all of the manufacturer’s specifications; if they don’t, it could affect your warranty.
Hedrick Construction is an Owens Corning Platinum Preferred Contractor.