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Spring Is the Perfect Time for Interstate Roofing Maintenance

Why Spring?

As the warm weather approaches and we can finally get outside again, your roof maintenance may be the last thing you want to be thinking about. In reality, spring is the perfect time to get it handled before the rush of summer activities. The winter months take a hefty toll on a roof, whether it’s heavy rains, freezing temperatures, ice, or snow, they all have the potential to cause serious and costly damage.

Getting your roof assessed and repaired early and regularly will take a load of stress off you when the glory of summer is fading out and time starts running short before the rains arrive. As summer sets in, you might discover it can be challenging to find an available professional, or you may have a very long wait. When it comes to the roof over your head, it’s better to be proactive and contact Interstate Roofing for an inspection and repair assessment.

Why Choose a Professional?

There are myriad reasons for hiring a professional to inspect your roof. Superior knowledge and experience mean they have the ability to identify issues that a layperson just might not recognize as a problem. They are skilled at identifying peripheral problems, such as issues with a gutter system, chimney, or structural support, and a professional will have all the necessary and appropriate safety equipment and protocols for repairs. Probably the most obvious safety aspect of working on a roof is the fall potential, and if you have a multi-level roofing situation, this could mean a substantial distance to the ground.

Most homeowners aren’t really DYI roofers, and for good reason. Roofing may seem straightforward on the surface, but there is a tremendous amount of knowledge and expertise that may mean the difference between a roof that lasts the life span of the manufacturer’s estimate, or one that fails, potentially causing water damage to the interior. A professional will know what and where to look to ensure that your roof is working as it should. Even a small leak can cause thousands of dollars in water damage, wood rot, mold, or more.

If you’re a strict do-it-yourselfer, you’ll need some additional information on roofing problems to look for when performing your own roof inspection. Most importantly, if you have an emergency, a prepared professional is going to get that handled effectively and efficiently. Luckily, the Interstate maintenance team is on-call 24/7 for those urgent situations.

What Is Interstate Roofing Maintenance?

Experts recommend having annual roof inspections to evaluate the condition of your roofing materials. Each year, your home is subjected to rain, snow, ice, hail, and wind, and sometimes it can happen all in the same day, so it isn’t surprising to have seasonal physical damage, moss or algae growth, missing vent covers, or improper guttering, each of which can affect the life of your roof. Also, your roofing materials manufacturer may have specific maintenance guidelines that must be followed in order to keep your product warranty in good standing, so make sure you get those details from your roofer.

In general, annual roofing maintenance includes a visual assessment of the roof and then getting any missing or damaged shingles replaced immediately. As mentioned earlier, an experienced professional from Interstate Roofing could also identify less noticeable issues, such as missing granules, curling, cracking, and lifted flashing.

If you have a chimney, the contractor will notify you of any cracked or loose bricks that should be replaced, of loose or cracked mortar that should be addressed, and of any flashing issues. A falling brick or chunk of your chimney can require additional, costly repair.

After the exterior inspection, a professional roofer may also look at your attic. This isn’t common with a standard roof maintenance contract but can be done when issues are identified. Additionally, water stains on the ceilings, bulging or bubbled paint, and mold or mildew are signs that there’s a leak that must be addressed. Finally, your inspector can make recommendations relating to tree branches that may hang over your roof creating problematic shady areas or areas where a branch has the potential to cause friction wear and tear if it can connect with your roof during windy weather.

Roof Cleaning

Once the required repairs have been completed, it’s time for the clean routine. It’s not advisable to have your roof washed each year. If regular maintenance is performed (keeping the roof free of dirt, debris, and moss), you should never have to wash your roof. If a roof isn’t regularly maintained, sometimes the only thing left to do is to remove the moss by pressure washing. “Wash your roof” may not be something that even occurs to you, and for most people, it’s just too risky or physically challenging to be working on a roof. Not to mention, a power washing turned up too high can damage the roof more significantly than the moss you’re trying to get off. Our team of experienced professionals has the proper safety equipment, tools, and techniques to get the job done in the safest way.

A thorough roof washing will include removing all leaves and debris, clearing the gutters and tops of spouts, rinsing the shingles, installing a pesticide (in some cases), and providing recommendations to maximize your roof’s performance. It’s also a good idea to water and protect your landscaping before your roof maintenance begins.

Interstate Roofing maintenance includes gutter cleaning for a very simple reason: a poorly functioning gutter can introduce pathways for water to seep into your structure and ultimately cost you time and money. Your professional roofing maintenance should include checking that the gutter is properly secure, appropriately sloped, clear of any debris that might prevent drainage, and free of rust or cracks.

Maintenance Costs Less than Damage Repair

Roofing maintenance isn’t something to take lightly. Roof maintenance could cost as little as $400. if neglected, small damages can cause big problems in the long run, and replacing an entire roof can cost you $10,000 to $50,000, plus. This is a pretty good incentive to start early and recognize that roof maintenance isn’t a job for a neighborhood college student home on spring break with a power washer. Incidentally, this can cause more damage than good, so take the time to develop a relationship with a roofing expert you can trust.

Interstate Roofing has 30 years of experience in Oregon, and we have a dedicated crew to deliver the high-quality roofing options our clients deserve. Most roofs last about 20 years in the Pacific Northwest. so keeping it in optimal shape is in every property owner’s best interest. Contact Interstate Roofing to schedule your professional maintenance today.

5 Steps to Take After Storm Damage to Your Roof

Your roof is the first line of defense for your home or business. A sound roof gives peace of mind throughout the seasonal extremes of midsummer heat to the occasional winter storms in Portland, Oregon. A well-maintained roof also adds to your home’s curb appeal and benefits your property value. If your home doesn’t weather a storm as well as you hope, you may have storm damage that needs to be addressed to ensure your home is both safe to occupy and to prevent long-term effects like leaks and mold.

Homeowners in Portland, Oregon, need a knowledgeable, reliable service provider who can deliver high-quality roof repairs, especially in an emergency such as storm damage. Interstate Roofing is a locally owned Portland, Oregon, roofing specialist on-call 24/7 with technicians who are specially trained to find and repair leaks. Knowing what to do immediately after a storm can help you restore your building and peace of mind so you return to normal life as soon as possible. Here are five steps to take after storm damage to your roof.

1. Assess the Damage

When the storm ends and it’s physically safe to venture out of your house or building, take time to look over your roof and check for obvious signs of damage. This might be as subtle as divots left by hail to something more significant, such as missing shingles or a hole left by falling debris. You may also see bent flashing or exposed underlayment.

You’ll also want to take a look inside your house for signs of potential roof damage. Look for wet walls or water spots on the ceiling. All of these are signs of storm damage and need to be addressed immediately to prevent a larger issue from developing, such as water leaks into your house or mold from trapped moisture.

2. Document the Damage

As safely as possible, take pictures or video (or both) of the storm damage to your roof and any other areas of your house affected, both interior and exterior. Documenting the damage as close to the time of the storm as possible will be important for filing an insurance claim. It can be helpful to get different angles and even different distances as well. You really can’t over document, so take a lot of pictures.

You can also make a log of the storm by saving relevant news reports. While you will want to ensure your property is safe after a storm, it’s important to not make major changes or do major clean-up before you document everything. Preserving the damage means the claims adjuster will have the best opportunity to assess the situation with the clearest picture of what happened.

3. Secure the Damaged Area

For major damage that you cannot clean up right away, call your insurance company immediately to start the claims process. Then work with a professional to safely mitigate the damage. Even if the damage is minor, you will need to make sure that you take steps to secure the damage and protect your home from larger issues that might occur when damage is left unrepaired or unseen. This could mean tarping a hole and cleaning up debris from your yard or cleaning up interior damage to your house caused by the storm.

Take extra caution as you secure the damage and call emergency services or your utility company if you come across downed powerlines or other hazards.

4. Check Your Homeowner’s Insurance Policy

After you’ve assessed the situation and documented the storm damage, take a moment to review your homeowner’s insurance policy. Every policy is different and reviewing it will ensure you understand what is and isn’t covered, on what timeline you need to file your claim, who to contact to start the claims process, how they handle the damage inspection, and how the repair could be handled. Some insurance companies will have established relationships and will schedule everything for you. Others may put more on you the policyholder. Knowing what to expect can be helpful as you navigate the claims process. This is also a good time to verify any warranties that you may have for your roof.

Once you start the claims process, be sure to document your conversations (a simple note on your smartphone could work), photos, receipts you’ve incurred along the way, and dates of everything you file for future reference. Keeping everything organized and in one central location will make your communication with the insurance company and claims adjuster easier to manage. Ask questions along the way and don’t move forward until you ensure you understand everything.

5. Work with Professionals

When you’re ready to make repairs after storm damage, you will want to ensure you work with a professional roofing contractor. Some insurance companies will have an established relationship with a contractor they will direct you to, which can streamline the repair process and timeline. Other insurance companies may allow you to choose a contractor that meets their standards and can do the work within the amount covered by the policy. In this case, if the budget exceeds the policy, you would be responsible for covering the difference.

When you have the freedom to choose, research professional contractors who specialize in roof repairs, have an established history of quality work and are fully licensed and insured. Ask about certifications, inspections, and local building codes. A professional will not only know this information but gladly walk you through the pieces necessary so you can understand what is happening and why. Since 1988 Interstate Roofing has focused on customer service, quality, and safety, growing from a one-man operation to an award-winning full-service company with strong relationships throughout the Portland-Vancouver metro area. Our in-house transportation operations give us the flexibility needed to accommodate emergencies when they happen. We’d love to work with you when storm damage affects your roof. Give us a call anytime.

 

Summer Is the Perfect Time for Roof Repair in Portland: Do You Need It?

What does it mean when the weather turns beautiful, the kids are out of school, and the smell of barbeque is wafting down the street? It must be summertime in the Pacific Northwest—and that means it’s also the perfect time to consider repairing your roof. In fact, you may have already Googled “roof repair Portland, Oregon,” recently because you’ve started thinking about whether or not your roof might need some TLC.

The warm-weather months are the ideal time to get serious about these types of improvement projects, so let’s look at some of the factors that might determine whether you need to repair your roof.

The Importance of Roof Inspections

Your roof protects your home and everything inside of it from rain, sun, snow, and wind, so it’s especially important to maintain and keep it in good working condition. Because your roof is a complex structure that’s exposed to nature’s elements every single day of the year, there are numerous issues that can come up. And when it comes to your home, an ounce of prevention is most definitely worth a pound of cure. Or, in other words, regular maintenance is good for both the appearance of your home and your wallet. Dealing with any needed repairs sooner rather than later will end up saving you money in the long run.

Roof damage can be obvious, like the quintessential drip-drip of water into a bucket due to a leaky roof, or noticing damaged or peeling shingles. It can also be subtle, so you’ll need to be on the lookout to be able to recognize the signs of damage. This could mean doing an inspection of the roof anytime there’s extreme weather or if your roof is getting old. Even if your roof is on the newer side and the weather has been fair, it’s still a good idea to pay attention and prevent any minor problems from becoming bigger. When inspecting the roof, remember to look at the exterior and the interior. Roof damage can happen anywhere.

Specific Signs to Look For

When checking the outside of the roof, there are a few warning signs that indicate a need for repairs. The first is the visible presence of discoloration and water spots, which are small areas of water damage that will eventually warp shingles and the exterior finish. It’s especially important to pay attention to where the roof and the exterior walls meet. Damage can certainly create visible distortion in this transition area, so you should be able to detect any signs of a problem.

Similarly, make sure to check around the chimney, vent pipes, skylights, and other objects that are in contact with your roof, as these areas are subject to wear first. Visible signs of wear to shingles or damaged flashing should be taken care of immediately, and usually minor roof repairs will fix the situation. Either way, it’s best to have these areas looked at by a professional as soon as possible to avoid leaks.

While inspecting your roof, make sure to also look at the gutters. One sign of a damaged roof is the presence of small granules resembling black sand clogging up the gutters. These granules likely come from shingles that are either damaged or have been exposed to the elements for too long, and it’s a good indication that you should also look at the shingles themselves. They might be breaking down due to weather or the lack of proper ventilation from the inside. Are the shingles curled at the ends? If they are cracked or curling, it means they’re nearing the end of their lifespan. Missing shingles also mean you need roof repairs, because they should be replaced as soon as possible.

To monitor roof damage that’s happening on the inside, make sure to pay attention to the attic space and rooms closest to the top of the house. If there is significant water damage, it will begin to warp the ceiling and walls of the rooms below. You might notice small—or large—spots of brown staining on the ceiling or on the insulation in the attic. Homes with hardwood floors may also start to see drops or puddles of water in the middle of the room. If you notice the decking or rafters in your attic are sagging downward instead of remaining straight, they may be wet from leaking moisture; this can usually be managed with repairs if the issue is localized.

Another thing to look for while checking the interior is outdoor debris inside of your home, as this can mean there’s a hole somewhere in the roof. Speaking of holes, if you can see any streams of light coming into the attic or any other room underneath the roof, it’s an opening that could also let water in. This is usually a sign that your roof needs immediate repair so as to avoid additional damage to both the interior and exterior of your home.

I Need Roof Repair! Now What?

If you’ve discovered that roof repair in Portland is something you’ll be searching for due to coming across any of the above warning signs, pause for a moment and congratulate yourself for being a responsible homeowner who is staying on top of their roof repairs (no pun intended).

Next, consult with a seasoned professional such as Interstate Roofing that can help you take care of the issue, sooner rather than later. Remember that summer is the perfect time for roof repairs in Portland, so you’ve picked the right time to do it. You can ensure your home will be protected from the elements once the autumn and winter weather returns.

Dealing With Disputed Roof Damage Claims

Don’t give up hope if your insurance claim for roof damages is denied. With a strong appeal, you still have a chance to win.

If you’ve recently received the news that your insurance company won’t be covering your roof damages, don’t panic just yet. While most policies will honor repairs that go beyond normal wear and tear – think major damages from storms or vandalism – getting the compensation you deserve isn’t always as simple as filing your claim on time. Fortunately, you do have the right to appeal. If it’s clear to you that your roof repair bill should be covered, don’t be afraid to fight back.

Why Good Claims Go Bad

While they have a reputation for being tough, most insurance adjusters go into their field because they want to help people rebuild their lives when disaster strikes. Denying claims isn’t something they enjoy, but just like you, they’re held to strict standards by their employers. From negligence to insufficient evidence to contract exclusions, there are many reasons why first claims get denied. Some denials may be final, but many others can be corrected with a little extra work on your part.

The good news is that you’re entitled to a detailed explanation why your claim isn’t being accepted. If you find the language confusing, call your provider for more information. Remember that when you know exactly what went wrong, you have a much higher chance of winning your appeal.

Tips for Getting Your Denial Overturned

1. Learn the terms of your contract inside and out. The more you understand about your policy, the more leverage you’ll have when communicating with your insurance company. You can get a head start on understanding insurance law in Oregon here.

2. Keep in contact with your agent. Most insurance agents are more than happy to help their clients get through the appeals process. Just remember to always be polite and open to new ideas. If you feel like your agent is concealing information or just not being helpful, consider hiring an outside consultant. Attorneys can be helpful, but because they often break up the direct link between you and your insurance company, their services should generally be seen as your last line of defense.

3. Pay for a professional report. When your roof repairs fit the profile of what should be covered under your insurance plan, including a professional damage assessment in your claim file is a great way to strengthen your case.

Looking for a professional roofer? Contact us online or give us a call directly at 503-684-5611to learn more about our roofing services in Portland, OR.