Did I Get Screwed By an Incompetent Roofer? Need Advice

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I just had my house reroofed yesterday. It already had two layers of shingles on it. So, it was necessary to remove all of the old asphalt shingles before putting the new ones on. I have given the contractor about half of the money as a deposit, but I haven't given him the other half yet. The two issues I have with the job he did are:
1. He roofed right over the swamp cooler legs instead of removing the legs and then putting the roofing underneath them. Now I have little teepee like or vulcano shaped mounds made out of bent shingles going up around the legs along with gobs of some sort of roofing sealer plastered all around legs. When the day comes that I have to replace the swamp cooler, I'm obviously going to have to tear off part of the shingles and then do some sort of a repair job. He also did the same thing with my satellite dish antenna. So, I'm never going to be able to get it off either without tearing off some shingles, etc.
2. Removing the Shingles made a helluva mess in my yard. I did raise a lot of Cain with those guys before they left in order to get most of it picked up, but there is still some left and there are also pieces of shingles in the rain gutters. The normal method of cleaning up was obviously to use a rake and then any pieces that weren't picked up by the rake were left for the homeowner. The problem is that this leaves one helluva a lot of asphalt shingle pieces in my yard that range in size from a dime to a dollar and even larger. In addition, there's no way to be sure that all of the nails have been picked up. So, you never know for sure if a child, for instance, could wind up with a nail in his foot someday.
My two questions are, do I have legitimate complaints about the workmanship and even if the roofer lifts the legs of the swamp cooler and takes the antenna off and does it right will the patchwork repair job he does on the shingles be acceptable?
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mg wrote:

Cleanup is a matter of degree. Any roof job is going to leave a few pieces of old and new roof as well as a number of nails around. It is just part of that kind of work. It sounds like yours was worse than it should have been. As for the swamp cooler, I really don't know what good practice is for that kind of issue. I have never had a house that had that kind of problem.
I suggest you start by reviewing any kind of contract you may have signed or they may have given you. See what it says.
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wrote:

As far as cleanup goes, most roofers in these parts will lay a tarp on the lawn below the roof. This is a better-faster-cheaper way to deal with tear off mess.
Just running the shingles up the legs of the swamp cooler sounds shoddy to me. I guess in hindsight you should have asked him how he would deal with it. I would certainly think the best way would be to get the new shingles under the legs, but I'm not familiar with them so can't say what the standard practice is.
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On my recent reroof job the contractor jacked up the air conditioner support frame sufficiently to shingle under the mounting. I would expect that this is the normal and preferred practice.
SJF
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marson wrote: ..

That is the way my recent hail damage re-roof was done, but it does not totally eliminate clean up or offer 100% The guys who did the job were careful. They also did a after removing the taps clean up and followed up with an industrial magnet to catch additional nails, but even with all that there were a few nails and scraps left behind. I might add that the gutters were clean when they left, but a few days and rains later, they had some scraps and nails in them.
I agree that good workmanship means it should be clean when they are done, and I consider what that crew did was clean when they finished. As my uncle always said, "Only God is perfect." He of course never tried to be God. :-)
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After I seen the difficulty involved with trying to clean up pieces the size of a dollar and smaller and the problem with the nails, that was the first question that came to mind. Why didn't they use a tarp of some kind? It would certainly take less time to lay the tarp down and pick it up again, than it would to do a half-way decent job cleaning the area by hand.

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The cleanup should be more thorough. Ask them to do a better job and to have them use a magnetic broom (basically a long magnet on wheels), that will pick up any stray nails and keep your lawn mower from hurling projectiles and chewing up the blades.
Your other point is not a valid one. You do _not_ want a roofer disconnecting equipment. Nothing good would ever come of that. If you wanted the shingles under the equipment it was your responsibility to contact the appropriate people for that sort of work and have it completed before the roofer arrived.
Ripping off a few shingles to expose the connections when you do eventually need to replace that stuff, is no big deal. Rather trivial, actually.
R
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snipped-for-privacy@worldemail.com (RicodJour) says...

Yeah, what he said! A roofer is a roofer. He's sure not going to re-aim your satellite dish or repair your swamp cooler if it springs a leak.
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I agree. They are roofers, not swamp cooler technicians.
Done "properly" (to your specs), you have have to hire a swamp cooler technician to REMOVE the swamp cooler. Then the roofer would do his job. Then the swamp cooler guy would return and REinstall the machine.
Done this way, the roofing job price would go up like your cable TV bill.
As for the mess, I suspect the OP got as good a clean-up as he'll get after having complained about it.
We had a HORRENDOUS hail storm 10 years ago. Baseball size. (no joke) I retrieved a couple "stones" from my bathtub as they came right through the skylight.
Hordes of "roofing gypsies" descended on our community, leaving in their wake all manner of workmanship ranging from good to total trash.
I waited a year before our LOCAL (well reputed) roofer got to my house while virtually everyone else on my block had theirs done by traveling roofers.
My original, 7-year-old roof was torn off and replaced by this craftsman while we were away on a week's vacation.
The old man from across the street came over to compliment my job. He observed that I got a MUCH better job than he did and that the clean-up after my job was MUCH better than what he had gotten.
Indeed: I probably found no more than 3-4 nails and a couple 50-cent-piece-size chunks of shingle at the end of my downspouts after the next, hard rain.
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Swamp cooler "technician"? They're not rocket science, or even refrigeration units, for that matter. Tom
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A CSCT. A Certified Swamp Cooler Technician.
:)
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Emoticons do allow for some sarcasm, don't they? Tom
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The cleanup should have been better from what you describe. It is impossible to contain every scrap of shingle and nail when you do a tear off even with tarps but a good faith effort is expected.
So far as the cooler and antennae are concerned, it should have been moved before roofing but no way is that the responsiblilty of the roofer to remove your equipment unless specifically requested.
The roofer may show up on the job not knowing exactly what to expect. The person who bid your job may not be on the crew. Typcially they just do the job and leave without even interacting with the homeowner.

don't have time to stop to ask you or anyone else why it hasn't been moved. So, it you don't move it then you have to have it in the contract if you want the roofers to move it.
An acceptable patch can be made in both cases, no problem. It should be just as good as new when patched. I do not think you can hold the roofers responsible for this extra work unless it was in the original contact.
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shingles to store somewhere, this way if you move your dish or have the cooler replaced you will have matching shingles to patch the roof. It is always a good practice to have some extras of tiles, shingles or anything that could be hard to find in the future, to have around for repairs or damage replacements.
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And store the replacement shingles outside, out of the package so they will bleach at the same rate as the shingles installed on your roof.
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That would be sort of difficult to do, I think, since I would have to have them spread out somewhere for many years. That's a good point, though. In 10-20 years the shingles aren't going to match any how, even if they were exactly the same before they aged.
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That sounds like great advice. Thank You!
As it turns out, I did replace the swamp cooler a couple of years ago. So, it will last quite awhile. They do eventually rust out, however. I'm not sure if one will last 30-years (the advertised life of the shingles), though, even if well cared for.
I would guess DirecTV has upgraded their dish antennas about 3 times in the last 10 years. So, I'm not very optimistic about not having to replace the dish.
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mg wrote:

Hint: Don't put the new dish on the roof. Mount it on a fence post or a metal post sunk in concrete in the yard. TV antennas need to be high, a dish? No.
Having the dish within arm's length helps with snow removal. You can also more easily move it if tree growth interferes.
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I would love to do that. Unfortunately, my neighbor to my south has a solid wall of tall trees on the north side of his property. So, I had to put the antenna near the peak of my roof on the south end of my house to get clearance.
I read somewhere that it helps to spray cooking oil (Pam) on the dish to prevent snow buildup. I've done that with mine and I don't have much trouble with snow. I'm not sure if it's actually because of the Pam, though.
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wrote:

Don't these signals go through trees?
Rabbit ears work, and I thought the satellite frequencies were higher than UHF.
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