How busy do you want your roofer to be?

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In my on-going search for a roofing contractor, I ran into a neighbor (who I know to be pretty anal about her house) and she told me whom she had choosen. "He's not the cheapest, but he's not the most expensive." The price she told me seemed about right based on what she said she needed. (She's got leaks, rotten wood, etc.)
Now, the three contractors that I already got estimates from said that I'm looking at 2 - 4 weeks for them to get started.
So I called this other guy today to set up an estimate and he asked me when I was looking to have the job done. I asked him what his schedule looked like and he said that he was trying to fill a few days *next week*.
Now, I know that there can be cancellations etc. but when someone is that readily available, alarms go off. My gut tells me that I want my contractor to be reasonably busy.
Obviously, I'll put more weight towards what he says when he talks to me about what I need and how he'll do it, but the fact that he's ready to start climbing ladders next week has me a little concerned.
Should I be?
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On Fri, 20 Apr 2012 11:53:27 -0700 (PDT), DerbyDad03

I wouldn't worry too much about it. I got a squeak in a wheel bearing last week & my mechanic, a guy who usually makes appointments a week or two in advance, asked if I could bring it in right then.
He's got a 3bay garage & his is usually empty- but 5 people had canceled [actually one canceled, 4 were no-shows] that morning. He read me off the jobs-- none of them were likely to have cured themselves.
He said he's been busier than normal-- but with 5 times the number of cancellations and no-shows. Sign of a bad economy? Who knows.

I'd put the most stock in what a customer says about him. Next I'd trust my gut when talking to the guy. Maybe you're just lucky like I was. I've been going to my mechanic for 25 years and this is the first time he said- bring it right in. [unless it was an emergency]
Jim
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On 4/20/2012 1:53 PM, DerbyDad03 wrote:

After a hail stom here they contract out jobs. They sure f_cked up my chimney and supposedly the company had a good rep. They even wanted to put a cheap sign in my yard....a$$holes.
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On Apr 20, 3:42 pm, gonjah <gonjah.net> wrote:

What the H does any of that have to do with the question I asked/
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On 4/20/2012 9:56 PM, DerbyDad03 wrote:

How busy do you want your roofers to be?: "Not *too* busy" would have to be my answer. Perhaps I should have spelled it out. Here, even the good ones contract out their business when they are too busy.
Seems like a straight forward question. Do you want to rephrase?
The answer is completely innocuous. If you feel it has no bearing just ignore it.
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DerbyDad03 wrote:

Look.
You're putting way too much thought into this.
Roofing contractors are lucky if they know how much unskilled labor they are going to have tommorrow let alone next week.
Roofing has got to be the most fly-by-night industry there is, with a high percentage of transient workers.
You should just select and order the materials yourself from your local wholesaler (shingles, tar paper, ice-guard if so needed for your climate) and have it delivered to your rooftop, and then select a roofer based on how much they quote - given they just have to bring nails, hammers and people.
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You are kidding right? You *have* to be.
I have a hammer. I have nails. I have people. If it's only about the price of labor, why don't I just do it myself?
Oh yeah...maybe it's about quality of workmanship, know-how and someone to call back if there's a problem.
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DerbyDad03 wrote:

No. I'm not kidding.

Many people do that (do it themselves).
The biggest issue is having a few extra people to get the job done in under 2 or 3 days.
Contrary to popular belief, most DIY's don't have access to 4 or 5 "friends" who are willing and able to put down their keyboards for a few days straight and get all roughed up and bruised to help tear off and put up some shingles.

Now I ask - you're kidding - right?
This is roofing we're talking about. It's not rocket science.
And if you were any kind of man, you'd be up there on your roof with them - performing your own examination and being critical of their work WHILE THEY'RE DOING IT. Maybe even give them a hand, moving bundles around, helping with the chalk lines.
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On 4/21/2012 9:24 AM, Home Guy wrote:

I'm not following. Any decent contractor would want you to watch, but help? I don't think so.
If I understand correctly, roofing companies can contract out jobs but they still need to supervise the work. If they get way too busy they can't even do that effectively. The company I hired supervised "some" of the work they contracted out but the part that wasn't supervised leaked.
FWIW: I'd suggest "not" getting the work done after a bad hail or wind storm. Check the company out at the BBB and get references.
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gonjah wrote:

That's exactly what I did when I had my roof done about 6 years ago.
I was up there, practically like one of the crew. About the only thing I didn't do was any nailing.
I had about 8 sheets of decking replaced - mostly the sections that formed the eaves. When each sheet came off, I had my shop vac up there and I vacuumed out the junk that was there (which included a few dried up squirel carcasses).
With the decking sections removed, I took pictures from various angles for documentation so I could refer to them later when I did any soffit or attic work. These pictures show how the varous trusses and joists run, some vent lines and even some electrical wiring that would have been a pain for me to trace from inside the attic when it was closed up.
I also re-arranged the insulation and the eave-baffles to insure good air flow. I added additional insulation where I found it was lacking.
I've also helped a few friends and family do their roofs over the years. It's got to be one of the simplest jobs that a homeowner can do (from a "fussy" or meticulous point of view) while being some-what physically demanding.
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On 4/21/2012 10:03 AM, Home Guy wrote:

:-)
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"Somewhat physically demanding" being the understatement of the century, if you're someone like YT who doesn't deal well at all with hot weather. Bring lots of water up there with you and some gatorade as well. Trust me on this one.
My last house had a metal roof and that made me very, very happy. I made a few minor repairs where some edging got damaged in a heavy snowstorm, but that was it.
nate
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wrote:

did 2 on the farm one summer when I was 14 and it darn near killed me.
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On Apr 21, 9:58 pm, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

summer roofs lay better, smooth and likely the shingles stick down better to.
i know for a fact cold weather is a bad time to install roofs.
and black is a poor color choice in most places.
it causes excess roof heating, making homes with or without AC hotter, and black shingles have shorter lives
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wrote:

All true. I went with dark gray instead.
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Ed Pawlowski wrote:

No.
Spring and fall are better times to put up shingles vs summer (from the pov of the comfort and exertion of the installers). You don't want to handle and walk on shingles in the heat of summer.
The shingles will stick just fine once they get hot (and they will eventually get hot once summer rolls around) and they will "smooth" out over time (not that I buy the idea that they can somehow be laid anything but flat and smooth regardless the temperature).
I agree that black is the worst color to have for shingles (because of heat) followed by the very lightest colors (because of staining).
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They need to get hot fairly soon after they're laid, though, or they may not flatten out. You risk the whole job until it does get hot enough to seal them.

I don't see *any* light colored roofs where I live (either AL or GA). Most newer houses do use black or a very dark brown. You see, the dirt is red. ;-)
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" snipped-for-privacy@att.bizzzzzzzzzzzz" wrote:

I suggest that anyone seriously following this thread read this:
http://www.donan.com/assets/files/selfSealingAsphalt-TechBulliten1-sealStrip.pdf
================Owens Corning “Your shingles contain strips of asphalt sealant that require direct warm sunlight for several days in order to seal properly."
GAF “All self-sealing shingles, including GAFMC’s, must be subjected to warm sunlight for several days before full thermal sealing can occur."
What does this mean?
The precise amount of time a shingle must be exposed to a certain minimum temperature before it should seal properly is unclear.
However, it is clear that the industry has great concern about installing self-sealing asphalt shingles in cold weather for fear that they will not seal down in time to prevent otherwise avoidable damage, or that they may never seal as designed, as experience suggests.
Consider the dilemma – self-sealing shingles can’t seal down unless they’re exposed to sufficient heat for a sufficient amount of time. This heat will only be present in many parts of the U.S. and Canada in late spring, summer, or early fall. However, it is common sense that roofs are installed year round; therefore, it is also common sense that many asphalt shingle roofs are installed during a time of year when they have little to no chance of self-sealing. In turn, unless the roofing contractor takes laborintensive hand-sealing precautions, these roofs are then unsealed and susceptible to wind uplifting, creasing, or possible blow-off – damages that are likely to occur during non-severe weather and which are not attributable to a manufacturing defect.
There is both good and bad news.
The good news: When warm weather eventually arrives and the shingles get warm enough that the sealant strip malleates and tries to bond to the overlying or underlying shingle, they might seal properly. The bad news: Since the shingles were exposed to the elements for perhaps several months prior to warm temperatures, and were therefore drying out during that time (an inherent quality of all asphalts), they may or may not ever reach the full amount of adhesion the manufacturer intended. =================== I had my roof put on in October, in a climate similar to Detroit, Toronto or Buffalo. My shingles were architectural shingles (more heavy than the standard 3-tab). They sealed just fine.
Even on what you think is a cool day -> if it's sunny and not too much wind your shingles will get nice and warm (and will flatten out and seal properly). This is the sort of weather that you're going to want to install them at anyways.
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On 4/22/2012 8:58 AM, Home Guy wrote: ...

If'en they actually get direct sun; meanwhile the side that doesn't may well not be warm enough at all...and here's a reason so many roofers will choose the dark color specifically for the warming effect whereas a light color will reflect a far higher percentage of the incident radiation and may not get warm enough. The homeowner then pays the price of higher cooling bills and earlier wearout from the hot weather--"you can pay me now or you can pay me later".
--
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On 4/22/2012 7:57 AM, Home Guy wrote:

What I'm doing next time is getting the southern exposure done in as white as possible and the north in whatever color the wife wants. From the street you can only see the north side anyway.
I know this idea has been kicked around before, but has anyone here painted shingles with anything like SnowRoof? I've used on flat roofs and duct work. The mfg site says nothing about shingles IIRC.
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