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Roofing

Tree Branches VS Your Roof

Tree Branches VS Your Roof

Can Tree Branches Really Damage My Roof?

After bad storms and tornadoes, you’ve probably watched the news and seen roofs caved in by toppled trees. But it’s much more common for a single branch to wreak havoc on your home, and you might be surprised how. Branches can be putting your home in danger for more than one reason when they grow too close to your roof.

1. Branches could fall.

Gravity is the law that never changes: if there’s a branch hanging above your roof, it’s going to fall one day. Better to cut it down and control when and where it falls than to pay the price when you least expect it.

Be sure to cut down a branch using all the right safety equipment and precautions. The idea is to prevent property damage, not cause it.

2. Animals can access your roof.

A tree branch is like a one-way ticket from the ground straight onto your roof. From there, critters like squirrels, raccoons, rabbits, and possums can have a field day. Don’t be surprised to wake up to scratching in your attic one morning because a raccoon family invited themselves in.

3. Moisture can accumulate.

Branches that shade your roof or lie on top of it will prevent moisture from evaporating quickly–meaning moisture soaks into your roof. Over time, this moisture causes rot and decay of your roof, which will ultimately lead to leaks and higher energy bills as air escapes.

4. Leaves can clog your gutters.

Gutters exist for one reason: to take water from your roof and send it as far away from your house as possible. That way water doesn’t leak down into your foundation or rot away your siding.

Gutters clogged with leaves will eventually overflow with rainwater, sending water cascading down your siding, where it will leave ugly stains, rot the siding, and slowly cause your foundation to shift and become unstable.

5. Branches can scratch and damage your shingles.

Most shingles nowadays are made of little asphalt granules. These shingles will lose granules gradually over time from rainstorms, sun exposure, and dust. But they can also be scraped off your roof by tree branches. When the wind blows branches across your roof, your shingles get worn down much faster than usual, putting your roof at risk for leaks or shingles that fly off during a storm.

All in all, tree branches near your roof cause nothing but trouble. It’s always best to cut them down before they turn into a real problem, and if you don’t feel comfortable with a saw you can always call a professional to take care of it.

Building A Roof

Building A Roof

Do you know what your roof is made of and how it has been affixed to the top of your house?

On an ordinary day, we do not think about our roof until there is an issue such as a leak.

When your house was built, it was framed into the shape that you see today. On top of the framing or rafters, sheets of plywood are attached which is then referred to as the roof deck. This will be the area that the roofing material such as shingles will be applied, but before the shingles come out, there are some other steps when building a roof.

We all know that water is the mortal enemy of the roof. Roofs are designed to keep water in the form of rain, sleet, hail, and snow away from your home and also designed to withstand wind that can pick up the shingles and render them useless. To help with that, a roof is designed in layers. The layer that goes onto the roof deck is a piece of felt, a thick material that intercepts water that may get past a damaged shingle. Next goes the drip edge, strips of aluminum or galvanized steel that helps block the wind and rain from the edge of the roof surface in addition to helping to maintain a tight seal.


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Now it’s time for the shingles. Shingles can come in all colors, sizes, and shapes. They can be made of slate, wood, metal, and even recycled tires. By far the most popular shingles are made of asphalt. These shingles have been used for over a hundred years and are beloved by many because they are easy to install, easy to repair, have a great warranty, and are by far the cheapest option available. These shingles start with a felt mat that is then impregnated with asphalt. Granules are then added to the outer layer that helps to prevent UV light damage as well as giving them their unique look. These shingles are placed on the roof deck over top of the felt layer and nailed to each other and the roof deck. A factory applied adhesive that is heat sensitive then allows the shingles to be further attached to the roof and they become self-sealing with the summers hot sun beaming down on them. A roof is only as good as the sum of its parts. Everything overlaps to work together to resist the weather, shedding water, and resisting wind. If a piece of the roof is compromised, it could mean weather gets into the house causing interior damage.


If you are interested in a quote to see what your roof will cost for replacement, give Greenawalt Roofing a call at 717-898-6000 to schedule an appointment with one of our sales representatives.

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WITH GREENAWALT ROOFING, YOU CAN EXPECT AN HONEST ASSESSMENT AND FREE ESTIMATE!

A Failing Roof

A Failing Roof

Our roof isn’t something that we think of often. In fact, we rarely even look at our roofs and usually only become aware of them when we discover a leak in our ceilings. Greenawalt Roofing offers these helpful signs of a failing roof in order to help you save yourself a lot of trouble and expense in the long run.

If your roof is over ten years old there are telltale signs you can look for to spot problems before they damage your home and your wallet. Most of those signs are obvious if you glance up at your roof at least once a month. Algae is very common in humid, warm climates and appears as dark streaks on the shingles. It can impair the integrity of your roof and damage the shingles that protect your home over time. If you live in a damp climate and need a new roof, algae resistant shingles are available.

You may notice curling shingles or ones that are bent or twisted. This can be caused by poor ventilation or because the original work crew did not fasten the shingles correctly. If you have missing shingles they may have been improperly fastened when they were installed or loosened by high winds during a storm.

If you have a new roof you might notice fine grains, like sandpaper grit, coming out of your downspouts after a rain. This is normal, but if your roof is older it may mean your roof is failing. You might also notice buckling, which might appear as a raised line on the roof when viewed from the ground. Buckling can be caused by felt backing that is not properly applied or by a lack of ventilation.

Look at your ceilings, too. Water spots usually mean your roof is leaking. Look in your attic, if you have one, to see if you can spot the leak. If you’re lucky the leak might be caused by damaged flashing around the chimney but if not you may need a new roof. Humans can have symptoms of a failing roof, too. If you or your family has a lot of colds or chronic fatigue it may be due to inhaling mold spores from a failing roof. If you notice any of these signs and symptoms of a failing roof, call Greenawalt Roofing at 717-898-6000 to schedule a free roof replacement estimate today!

Take Your Home Exterior Up a Notch

Take Your Home Exterior Up a Notch

If you noticed your home looking worn out or if you’re ready to make your house stand out in the neighborhood, there are several ways that you can take your home’s exterior curb appeal to the next level. The improvements that you make to your home’s exterior are more than cosmetic. They will also raise the value of your home while making your house the best looking one in the area.

Check out these smart home exterior upgrades that also look great:

Roofing

If you want to make a dramatic change to the look of your home, replacing your roof shingles is a fantastic way to give your house an upgrade. Whether you choose traditional asphalt shingles or choose some of the innovative new roofing products that are on the market right now, changing the color of your roof will make your house look new. If you have noticed that your shingles have dark green algae streaks or if you have seen a few that are curling or coming lose it’s the perfect time to give your home a style upgrade with new shingles.

Siding

Another way to give your home’s curb appeal a boost is to put new siding on your home. While your roof protects your home from the elements, the exterior walls also play a key role in shielding your home and typically do so through the use of siding. The number of siding choices and materials have advanced beyond just aluminum siding with a growing variety of affordable vinyl and polymer siding options for every house. Because of the many types and wide variety of colors and styles, siding plays a key role in the aesthetic appeal of your home.

Doors/Windows

Windows and doors are an important part of your home. Their job is to let in outside light, provide access to the outdoors and protect your home from the elements. They affect the aesthetic appearance and curb appeal of your home. A bold entry featuring a distinctive exterior door paired with a unique window style can be used to make a bold impact.

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These improvements are a great way to invest in your home. But, none of them are very DIY friendly. Call the experienced professionals at Greenawalt Roofing at 717-898-6000 to schedule a free estimate for upgrades and improvements that will boost the value of your home as well as the curb appeal.

Common Spring Roofing Problems

Common Spring Roofing Problems

Spring is the perfect time to enjoy the beauty of the outdoors. It’s also a great season to do some preventive maintenance around your home, including your roof. Problems with your roof can lead to widespread damage in your home that necessitates costly consequences.

Here are a few roofing problems you may encounter this year.

Damaged Gutters

Extreme weather takes a toll on your gutters. If your gutters are clogged or leaking, we recommend investing in a replacement. Various factors like temperature changes and strong winds can contribute to your gutters’ deterioration.

Persistent Leaks

Persistent roof leaks are common in the spring, and are among the top causes of water damage in homes. Avoid extensive damage to your home by turning to a professional like Greenawalt Roofing for emergency tarping services. 

Animal Lodgings

The physical damage your roofing system sustains usually shows up in the form of loose shingles and a damaged chimney. These create breeding grounds for insects and small animals like birds and squirrels. Over time, the added weight of these critters and their nests can damage your roofing system. If you notice any animal activity, you can contact wildlife control for expert assistance.

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Greenawalt Roofing can provide you with the right roofing solutions to these problems. Call us today at (717) 898-6000 to learn more about our products and services. You can also request a free estimate for a full roof replacement or hail inspection at time of call. We serve Lancaster, PA and the surrounding areas.

Roofing Obstacles

Roofing Obstacles

A roof is something you need to keep the integrity of; to keep your home intact through each season of weather you need the job done right, by the professionals.

Professionals not only know how to approach and work on a roof safely but they are trained in getting around all of those roofing obstacles that many of us have on our roof. Think vents, skylights, chimneys, solar panels and the like, all things that will disrupt the pattern of the roofing material you choose and all things that will need extra attention when it comes to keeping that roof moisture proof.

Vents are an integral part of any house. They allow air in and to circulate around your house all while not allowing rain or snow to enter. There is even a vent on the roof for the sewage line that takes the old used water out of the house. It is on the roof to allow all the pipes the gift of gravity as there is no greater vertical drop on a house than one that originates on the roof.

Whether you have a working fireplace or not, you may have a chimney on your roof. They are obviously needed if you do have a fireplace, but some choose to let the chimney remain after the fireplace is long gone for that cozy cottage-y feel, adding character to the house.

Skylights are another popular obstacle on the roof, especially for those rooms that don’t have big windows or anywhere the homeowner wants more natural light. They instantly brighten any space on the inside but pose a problem on the outside—on the roof—when it comes to roofing around them.

With the push to be more environmentally friendly, solar panels are also popping up on a lot of roofs. They harness the power of the sun and use that to power the house itself. Again, they sit on the roof and have to be handled with care when re-roofing.

Any roofing obstacle will have to have the addition of flashing around it to work with your shingles to get that watertight fit. Greenawalt Roofing knows what they are doing with any and all roofing obstacles that come their way, just another reason why it’s best to give us a call for any job, large or small.

Updating Your Home's Exterior

Updating Your Home's Exterior

Your home exterior says a lot about your personality, and if you feel the character of your home doesn’t accurately reflect your own, then you can completely change, update, and revamp the look of your house with exterior remodeling. Redoing the outside of your house is a big job and requires a lot of decisions regarding materials, style, architecture, and design, so there are some important things you should keep in mind when planning your remodel. And in case you’re not sure where to start, here are three important rules to consider when you decide it’s time for an exterior update.

1. Don’t Stand Out Like a Sore Thumb

If you were to look around your neighborhood right now, you’d probably be able to pick out a few elements that pop up over and over again in different houses. These are themes, and every neighborhood will have its own unique design themes. When you’re updating your home’s exterior, you don’t have to make your house look identical to your neighbor’s, but you also don’t want it looking entirely dissimilar.

For instance, if all your neighbors have painted their homes in muted Earth tones, then your home would stand out if you opted to repaint it bright pink. Similarly, if all the homes around are century homes in a traditional style, your house would be very conspicuous if you modernized the exterior. You can still express your own style and individuality through your exterior remodeling, but try to keep the look and style of the rest of the community.

2. Understand How Siding Will Change the Look of Your Home

Siding doesn’t just protect and insulate your house: it makes a statement. The material and siding style you choose can completely change the look of your home, and picking one siding over another will produce very different results for your exterior remodeling. When it comes to siding materials, here are a few of your choices:

Vinyl siding is affordable and low-maintenance, it cannot be painted over, and it’s available in a variety of styles, including shingles, board and batten, and dutchlap.

Fiber cement siding is resistant to fire, wind, termites, and rot, it looks like wood but is lower maintenance, and it can be textured to look like brick, stone, and other materials.

Steel is low maintenance, fire resistant, durable, and imparts a very modern feel to any house.

3. Look to Your Environment for Design Ideas

The geography and surroundings of your house should inspire the look and feel of your home exterior design plan. For instance, you can’t go wrong by opting for stucco siding and terra cotta colors if you live in the heart of canyon country. Similarly, blues and greens are great paint choices if you live near the ocean. Or, if you live in the country, imagine how at-home your house would look with stone siding and design elements that reflect the hills. By using nature and geography as your guide, your house won’t look out of place in its surroundings, and this will make your home welcoming and inviting.

Home exterior remodeling is a big project, and there are lots of things to consider before you start work. For more information about your remodeling options, design and style choices, and material possibilities, contact Greenawalt Roofing to schedule your free estimate today!

Choose the Perfect Shingle Color for You!

Choose the Perfect Shingle Color for You!

A new roof isn’t something you invest in every year, which is why you want to make sure that the one you choose—the shingle type, style, and color—will be suited to your needs and preferences.

1. Choose the Right Type of Shingle

One of the first things you’ll have to decide is what type of shingles you want for your roof. Greenawalt Roofing has the option between Certainteed Landmark shingles and TAMKO Heritage shingles.

2. Select the Style of Shingle and Features That Will Be Best

Factors to take into account include:

  • Appearance: How much dimension do you want your shingles to have? Architectural shingles are designed to provide a shadow effect that gives your roof an ultra-dimensional look.

  • Algae Defence: If you live in an algae-prone area, look for shingles that feature built-in guards against discolouration.

  • Fire Protection: To keep your home and everything in it safe, your shingles should have a Class A fire rating (the most effective against severe exposure).

Don’t forget to think about environmental conditions as well. If you live in an area that tends to get buffered by high winds or dumped with snow, your shingles need to be ready to stand up to the challenges Mother Nature has in store for them.

3. Find the Ideal Color

After you know the type and style of shingle you want, it’s time to choose the color. It sounds simple at the start, but don’t be surprised if this is the hardest part of the process:

  • Think about Your Home’s Aesthetics: While one type of shingle might work on a Tudor-style home, you might find that it clashes with other fashions (like Ranch or Colonial).

  • Don’t Forget Curb Appeal: If you might be selling your home in the next few years, going with a neutral color for your shingles is a good way to keep your roof current. Don’t be afraid to add some flare with a more striking pallet, though, if that suits your home’s overall personality.

  • Survey Your Neighborhood: Does one of your neighbors have a roof that catches your eye? Ask them what type of shingles they have and who installed them. Knowing what your neighbors have can also make it easier to figure out what unique routes you can take if you want your house to stand out.

Keep in mind that if your home is part of an association, there might be rules in place surrounding appropriate shingle colors.

In addition to speaking with your roofer about what will look best on your home and roof, you can also use online tools like the Certainteed Colorview or TAMKO StyleSelect. These tools help you explore different color combinations before visualizing them on your own home.

Whatever type and color of shingles you choose, the key is to find ones that are well matched to your home and will deliver lasting performance for many years to come.

Important Parts of Your Roof

Important Parts of Your Roof

Most homeowners know how important their home’s roofing system is, but few actually know what makes it work, specifically, the integral parts of the roof that play a role in safeguarding your family from the elements. There are three major keys to a successful roofing system.

1. Roof Decking

The deck of your roof is the base on which every component is laid. It’s essentially the “foundation” of the entire structure. Material for the decking varies. The most common is oriented strand board or plywood, but newer homes have decking made of other materials, such as concrete, polystyrene, and even metal.

2. Underlayment

The underlayment is another integral component of your entire roofing system. This one is installed directly on top of the decking and, as its name suggests, under your asphalt shingles. This is usually made of a durable paper, and it serves as a secondary leak barrier that prevents moisture from entering the inside of your roof if it manages to go through the shingles.

Problems with the underlayment are serious due to its position under the roof surface. It’s often included in the roof replacement process since a new roof requires a new underlayment as well.

3. Flashing

Flashing is a common sight on sloped roofs, located on the front edge, corners, and ridges. These thin metal strips protect the most vulnerable parts of the roof from water damage. These components are one of the first things to look at when you’re doing a roofing project as they tend to wear out much faster than the rest of the roof. Timely replacement of roof flashing can prevent more expense roofing issues.

As your trusted local roofing company, Greenawalt Roofing will make sure the most integral parts of your roof are in good condition throughout the year. Call us today at (717) 898-6000 to schedule your free roof replacement estimate! We serve homeowners in Lancaster, PA and the surrounding areas.

Skylights & Sun Tunnels

Skylights & Sun Tunnels

Skylights and sun tunnels are a perfect way to bring natural light into your home or building. Not only does a skylight or sun tunnel bring daylight indoors but is also energy efficient. In order for the skylights and sun tunnels to be beneficial they must be installed correctly. Our sales representative will walk you through the variety of styles and sizes that fit your room or space that needs to be brightened up.

 
 

In order for the skylights and sun tunnels to be beneficial they must be installed correctly. Our sales representative will walk you through the variety of styles and sizes that fit your room or space that needs to be brightened up.

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Living Room: Velux skylights with blinds allow full control over the light in your living room, from sunny and inviting gatherings to theater-like dimness on family movie night. Controlling the light as needed also helps control the electricity bill.

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Kitchen: Choose "Fresh Air" skylights to release warm, moist air and clear out cooking odors. Light from above adds natural daylight without eating up your cabinet space and provides balanced lighting for delicate cooking tasks.

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Bathroom: Choose Velux No Leak Solar Powered “Fresh Air” Skylights for beautiful natural light and relaxing fresh air that won’t compromise your privacy. An easy remote control allows you to open the skylight to release moisture accumulation when you shower. And with no electricity requirements, it beats any bathroom fan.

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Bedroom: Sleep under the stars, wake up to plentiful sunshine or drift off in total darkness. Choosing skylights with blinds such as the Electric “Fresh Air” Skylight allows total control over the light in your bedroom without sacrificing privacy. And with blackout blinds, you can block the light – 98% to be exact – for light sleepers in need of deep sleep.

Hallways: Just because they don’t always have a view doesn’t mean hallways and stairways don’t need natural light. Choose Velux Sun Tunnel Skylights to funnel daylight through a reflective tunnel to illuminate the spaces below. 

Benefits of Installing Velux Skylights & Sun Tunnels:

  • Adding natural light to your dark spaces

  • Electrical remote control options

  • Lower energy cost with free lighting and venting; allows warm air to escape cooling off your home

  • Can visually expand interior space making small spaces feel bigger

Interested in getting a quote?

 
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Call Greenawalt Roofing at 717-898-6000 or fill out an estimate request form to set up an on-site consultation to bring daylight into your dark room or space today!