I recently had my roof replaced. The job consisted of tearing
off two previous layers and replacing them with felt and architectural
shingles. The roof is good sized but simple, with a low pitch and no
valleys. The job was done by a large local company with a good
reputation (Abel Roofing in Columbus, Ohio).
The job looked fine from the ground, but when I got up on a
ladder to paint I found the last couple of shingles above the gutter
curved with sort a ski jump effect with a little valley where water
would collect. I called the company and a guy came out while I wasn't
home. He managed to get a few nails in the drip edge which improved
the situation a little bit but it looks like a problem to me.
The problem is caused by the fascia board riding proud of the
sheathing a bit. This was not apparent with the old roof. The roofer
wants me to pay him to remove the gutter and move the fascia down
flush with the sheathing, I think it should have been done when the
shingles were off. It would have been no more than a twenty minute job
with a circular saw or reciprocating saw to saw it off then. It didn't
have to be pretty as it would be covered by the drip edge and
I think they were negligent not to fix it while the sheathing
was bare. Instead they just covered it up and hoped no one would
notice. What do you think?
As a contractor you have to see it from his point of few. It may not have been
that noticible with two layers of shingles on your old roof. If it wasn't in
the contract he wouldnt do it anyway. Some people get pissed if you do one
extra thing that brings cost over the estimate. I agree with you it would have
been simple to fix before the new roof was put on but they probalby didnt
notice it or thought you didnt have a problem before so you wouldnt now.
The guy that should come and fix it is the guy that put the fascia board on to
high. I know I know he is long gone. Another typical contractor trick ! LOL!
If it is actually puddling water behind the rise I would have it fixed. He
should still be able to raise the drip edge high enough and prop it up and trim
the excess fascia without having to remove the gutters. It will be a little
tricky but with a long blade on his saws all he could do it. Or you could.
since there seems to be two sides on this issue, maybe you can
cut a deal with the guy, say you pick up half the expense and the
contractor picks up the other half. he's not without blame and
yet not completely responsible, either.
In reading this thread I wonder if the OP is an absentee homeowner or landlord,
and/or if the roofer, while competent, may have taken the tack of "oh, well, not
in the contract, finish the job; move on".
My roofer talked to me about his work (I had an addition with some question as
to construction), gave me an estimate but made clear that he can't see exactly
what's going on until everything is off, discussed things as he went along. I
knew the price for a straighforward job; I knew that we may have to confer on
more work. (It turned out to be a straightforward job.)
Same thing when he does a siding job next year for me. He'll give me the price
for a straightforward job. I'll be there when he opens things up in the corner
where I've had carpenter ant problems in the past, and we'll confer on what wood
should or should not be replaced. That'll of course be extra.
I dunno - I've gotten to the point with this guy that I don't get competitive
estimates anymore. I've done that for past jobs; he always came in about
middle, and he's meticulous almost to a fault. Did my whole bathroom
renovation, only one in the house, taking it down to the rafters to floorboards
to studs and back, and left it so that there was only one evening I couldn't use
it. I mean, I don't think the guy has it in him to do a bad job. I get his
estimate for my financial planning. Everyone should find a contractor like this
But the exterior painter, whom I chose through competitive bid out of four,
talked with me about stuff; heck the driveway paver talked with me about stuff,
and I've only had these contractors for one job.
Why didn't the OP and roofer talk about the job??
The roofers should have pointed out the issue at the time the shingles
were removed. Also, I would expect a roofing company to include a
roof inspection especially if tar paper is removed. It's water under
the bridge, but you need to have the situation fixed right. Maybe
Abel will give you a break in getting it repaired properly--try being
assertive rather than aggressive (or passive) about it. Most
companies will do what's reasonably necessary to please a customer.
I'm curious how all this turns out.
I have had a couple of dealings with Able Roofing (I am also central
Ohio) and both were positive. However I agree that somewhere along the
line, the problem should have been noticed and you should have been
notified, at least if it were enough to actually cause a problem.
Now, while you have some complaint with Able, you should have an even
bigger complaint with the original contractor or built it that way.
Thinking about it, the original contractor is the one that is really at
So a roofer that came out and did exactly what he was contracted to
do should be held accountable for a mistake made by a builder many
years in the past? In this instance, the roofer may have not even
noticed this problem, or thought that it has been this way since it
was built it must be OK. While I would have mentioned it to the
homeowner if I had seen it, you cannot expect a roofer to be
responsible for not doing something that he was not contracted to
do! And you cannot hold them responsible for a condition that they
did not create.
Talk to them and see what can be done. It is not that hard to
repair even with roof already on.
I disagree. Puddling is a defect in a roof that will cause leaks and ruin
the shingles. And I know of at least 3 brick jobs with nothing under the
brick. The held several years... long enuf for the builder and mason to be
long gone. Poor workmanship is an epidemic.
Even though this condition has existed since the house was built at
least 2 roofs in the past and no such damage has occurred? Remind
me never to work for you,.... I have already spent thousands of
dollars in lawyers fees to get paid for work that I did for people
like Art. I have won in every case. You see, I know what I am
doing. And I do it right. That is just not good enough for some
If the problem had actually been pre-existing and you had done the work, I'm sure
that you would addressed the problem with the owner long before your job was
complete. So there would have been no reason for either party to require lawyers.
That is correct. That said,... the roofer that did this job SHOULD
have discussed it with the owner. He is not required by law to do
so. He is not bound by any contract to point out existing
conditions to the owner to see if the owner wants them repaired. If
he continues to act this way, however,...he may not be in business
The owner should discuss this with the roofer and see if a
reasonable solution can be reached. If it were me, and my roofers
had missed this, then I would be willing to correct the problem for
what I would have charged if I had noticed it during the course of
the work. Not because I am required by law to do so, but because it
is good business practice.
I hope that you can see the distinction here.
I think you will find that most judges will likely disagree with your
opinion. The roofer is the professional and is supposed to have
expertise to know how to do what the homeowner is contracting for,
which is a sound new roof. He is the expert up on the roof, not the
homeowner. He is expected to do the job correctly, not proceed to do
new work over something he uncovers which he should reasonably know
needs to be fixed or it will lead to a faulty job. The homeowner
contracted and paid for a sound new roof, not to have someone merely
go through the excercise of wasting time and materials nailing
shingles that will later fail prematurely, because the contractor
didn't act professionally.
Suppose upon removing shingles, a roofer finds that two sheets of
plywood are rotted. Following your logic, it's ok for him to just
proceed to shingle the roof without saying a word, knowing it will
fail. Or you take your car in for brake service and tell them you
want new front pads. Upon inspection, they find one caliper is
seized. Is it OK for them to just force a new set of pads on and send
the customer on their way because that's all that was contracted for?
Any decent contractor would note any new defects uncovered and if the
homeowner won't agree to a sound solution, then he would get a release
to that effect in writing. And I can't believe there are actually
people that think this behavior is ok. Does everyone want to be
The owner should discuss this with the roofer and see if a
Incorrect analogy. Damaged sheathing is a defect that is readily
discernable and did not get built in to the home. The defect in
question was how the house was built. It had existed from day one
and was not damage caused by water leaking or other acts of god or
nature, but the construction of the home. Could the roofer have
possibly believed that since the home was built this way that it
could possibly have been a design feature?
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