Bert Roofing named 2016 Industry Award Winner

2016 NTRCA Golden Hammer Award Winner

The North Texas Roofing Contractors Association announced Dallas based Bert Roofing Inc. as a 2016 Winner of a “Golden Hammer Award” for “Outstanding Residential Project” in 2016. This is the seventh time Bert Roofing has won a Golden Hammer award for Outstanding Residential Project which is more than any other contractor.  The award is given for uniqueness and/or  technical difficulty on a residential property. The Award was presented February 25, 2017 at the NTRCA annual Awards Banquet which was held at the Perot Museum near downtown Dallas.

Inspire Slate Roof GAF EverGuard TPO

Inspire Slate Roof GAF EverGuard TPO

 

Project Overview

The project was a historical home in Highland Park. The gorgeous 1920’s Tudor with leaded glass windows had a 1950’s era tile that required special procedures to remove and dispose of properly. This was done with the help of Pacific Environmental and the supervision of the Building Department for the Town of Highland Park. Two vastly different roof systems were then installed on the steep sloped and low sloped areas.

Inspire Synthetic Roof Tiles – Aledora Slate

The homeowners decided to go with Inspire synthetic slates to blend in with the historic area of Highland Park. The Inspire product was as modern as can be with it’s Class A Fire Rating, Class 4 Impact Resistant Rating, and 110  MPH Wind Uplift Rating, but looked like it had been there forever once installed. These man made slates also come in at a fraction of the weight of real slate.

 

Picking Custom Color Inspire Slates

Picking Custom Color Inspire Slates

Special thanks to Dave Osborn, our local Inspire manufacturer’s representative who took the time to meet with the homeowners and help them select a custom blend color perfect for their home. The blend selected was a primary color of mist grey with ash grey and granite.

GAF EverGuard TPO – Low Slope Membrane

Like many historic homes on Beverly Drive or Swiss Avenue, there has been an addition to the original structure. The TPO system is the brilliant energy star white roof you see in the photo above. This is somewhat of a niche market for Bert Roofing as we have the experience and expertise in low slope roofing most residential contractors do not posses, but we cater to residential properties most large commercial contractors have no interest in.

 

We would love to help you with your project. Fill out the online form or call us at 214-321-9341

 

 

 

 

 

 

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UL 2218 Impact Resistant Shingles

Are Impact Resistant Shingles Hail Proof?

From North to Frisco to South of Dallas, our customers have always inquired if we have any hail proof shingles. We always tell them that there is no such thing as a hail proof shingle, but there are many options for Impact Resistant shingles. After they scratch their head we give them a little more information.

 

Impact resistant shingles are roofing products that have passed the 2218 test from underwriter’s laboratories.  For short this is referred to as “UL 2218”.   There are several different classes of products in a one through four rating system with UL 2218 Class 4 being the best.  While there are many 2218 products with different ratings, most that have passed the test are Class 4.

 

The test is conducted by dropping steel balls of various sizes and various heights on shingles and examining the results.  The Class 4 products survived a two inch steel ball dropped at a height of 20 feet.  This drop is done twice.  The shingle is then examined front and back for tears, punctures, and cracks.  While this is not a perfect replication of hail, it does replicate the destructive energy created by hail.

 

It should be noted that the test is done on new shingles and not aged shingles that may perform differently.   Shingles become brittle as they age and older shingles are far more susceptible to hail damage than new shingles.  Steeper pitched roofs are less susceptible than lower pitched roofs.  Underlayment, type and condition of roof deck, tree coverage, and many more all impact hail damage to a roof.  It is very common in a small hail event that only the very aged roofs up and down a block are replaced while the newer ones march on.

 

While impact resistant shingles are certainly not hail proof, they do have a much higher survival rate than typical shingles.  Over the years we have seen hail strong enough to break acrylic skylight domes and damage most shingles, yet the Impact Resistant roofs are in good shape.  The major hail storm that hit Lakewood in 2012 was large enough that it wiped out all roofs in the area including impact resistant shingles and equally  strong or stronger tile roofs.  What we often tell customers is that an IR shingle will likely survive the typical once every ten year storm most of us in the Dallas market experience, but definitely not a monster event like 2012.  Just remember that hail events similar to those in 2012 are very rare.

 

Tamko will no long manufacture Impact Resistant Shingles

Scott Anderson, our local ABC Supply rep forwarded a memo from Tamko which states that they were getting out of the impact resistant shingle market. The reasoning behind this decision was said to be recent insurance company assertions that a manufacturer is responsible for hail damage to a UL 2218 Class 4 roof.  As we explained above, impact resistant shingles simply mean that they have passed the UL 2218 test and nothing more. Tamko, like most other manufacturers, do not warranty any shingle, impact resistant or not, against acts of God such as hail damage.  Tamko went on to cite the potential cost and risk of litigation as the primary reason,  thus it made no sense for them to stay in the IR market.

 

Bert Roofing installs a wide variety of Impact Resistant Shingles.  If you are in the greater Dallas, TX area and would like a free estimate, please call us at 214-321-9341 or simply fill out the online form right.

 

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Gas Prices and Roofing Prices

How Closely Related are Gas Prices and Roofing Prices ?

Asphalt is the main waterproofing ingredient for many roofing materials including modified bitumen, felt, and the majority of shingle products.  Asphalt is a black sticky semi-solid form of petroleum.  Crude oil is sent to the refinery for processing, with gasoline being the main product and asphalt being one of many by-products.  In addition to the widely used direct ingredient of asphalt, gas is a huge indirect cost of roofing materials. Both raw materials and finished roofing products have significant transportation cost because of size and weight.  So the short answer is yes, gas and roofing prices are definitely linked.

Now slow down a little. While these prices are directly linked they move slowly. At the time of the creation of this post, February 2015, gas prices are significantly lower than the were in the fall, yet there has been no corresponding change. In fact we have received some notice of modest price increases for the spring.

So what is going on?

 

Here is what one of our wholesalers sent to the Bert Roofing office:

 

 

Why Shingles prices have not dropped like Gasoline!

A variety of reasons relate to the reasons the shingle prices are not dropping like gasoline.

Several years ago the refineries improved their processing of oil. They now yield higher amounts of fuel products than before which reduces the amount of asphalt being produced. Over the past two years the price of asphalt has increased as the availability has been reduced due to the improved refining process.

Another factor is the types of oil being used at the refineries have less asphalt in them further reducing availability. Much of the oil coming up for use today is lighter in asphalt than we once had access to.

Something that we often forget but remains an important factor is that road systems use 75-80% of the asphalt being produced. As manufacturers compete in a market that they represent a smaller usage, the pressure on pricing is further exaggerated.

If the government places emphasis on updating the road systems this year the value of asphalt could increase further.

We expect to see nominal increases this year. The asphalt issues continue to be the primary driver and could impact prices this summer. If oil increases this year the fuel factor could also impact the cost of roofing. This will be driven by the raw materials shipped in as well as finished goods delivered from the plants. Today this is less of a factor but can turn around very quickly.”

 

I agree with most of the above, but only to a limited extent.  The refineries were tweaked to produce more gas and less by-products a few years back when gas approached $4.00 per gallon a few years back around summer of 2008. That tweaking is something that is already priced into today’s asphalt. There is a good deal of business sense that the manufacturers don’t want their products to be price on monthly or quarterly up and downs. With their really large clients they enter into large contracts for the entire year. No manufacturer wants to renegotiate their largest contract downward when the small contractor is getting a better price than a Lowe’s or Home Depot. That will just never happen.

 

So we have seen a good drop in petroleum products with little change in roofing products.  That said I remember well 2008 when gas hit it’s all time average high around $4.10 per gallon. In 2008 shingles shot up like a rocket increasing to three times the January price by fall the same year. By 2009, gas price had fallen below the January 2008 price. If you guessed there was no real fall in roofing prices you would be correct.

 

Based on this history, I would not expect a drop.  The best we can hope for is keeping the increases in check.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Radiant Barrier TechShield

LP TechShield Radiant Barrier

Radiant Barrier TechShield Information Guide

What is radiant barrier and do you need it? What is TechShield? Does Bert Roofing install these products? He is our frequently asked questions on this and related topics.


 

What is Radiant Barrier?

On a warm summer day, say around 95 degrees, your attic may be pushing 150 degrees. It is hot in there, really really hot. So why is it so much hotter than the 95 degree temperature outside? You home absorbs energy radiating from the sun, the same energy the powers a solar panel. Unlike a solar panel that converts that energy into electricity, that energy becomes heat in your attic. A radiant barrier is a layer of material generally on the underside of your roof deck that acts as a shield to the radiant energy literally letting solar energy bounce off your roof top and back into the atmosphere.


 

What is TechShield?

TechShield is sheathing manufacture by Louisiana Pacific (LP) that has a layer of aluminum laminated onto one side creating a radiant barrier. Per LP, TechShield is original and leading radiant barrier sheathing. Installation is no different than a typical four by eight sheets of decking.  For the consumer this is great because the upgrade cost to radiant barrier decking is mostly material only and not a great expense.


 

How much can I save with a radiant barrier?

With so many variables such as the amount of insulation and the price of electricity, it would be a big guess for any roofing contractor to put a dollar figure on this (LP puts a figure of up to 17%).  We can tell you it will definitely lower the temperature of your attic during the summer months.  Per LP, summertime temperatures can be up to 30 degrees cooler by blocking up to 97% of the radiant energy.


 

 Are there other radiant barrier products besides sheathing?

Yes. Radiant Barrier can be added to the underside of an existing roof deck as a rolled aluminum product which is generally stapled on. There is also radiant barrier paint products that can be sprayed on the underside of a roof deck. The main problem with these retro fit methods are access. These are next to impossible to install on a low slopped roof and can be a challenge even in attics that have room to move around in.


 

How common is it to replace sheathing / decking when replacing a roof?

Once upon a time Dallas, Richardson, Plano and many other communities had scores of wood shingle roofs. All these wood shingles eventually get removed and new decking gets installed before new shingles are installed. Today, there are few homes with these legacy wood shingles. Wholesale installation of new decks is not common. It can be an expensive proposition to replace all the decking for the sole purpose of adding new decking with radiant barrier. Some properties that use cheap 3/8  inch decking could use a new roof deck.

Hoses that have a vaulted ceiling and no attic can benefit from upgrading decking. One property we replaced the decking on only the West side that most exposed to the summer afternoon heat.


 

What is SolarBord?

SolarBord is a radiant barrier sheathing manufactured by Norbord. It is a direct competitor to TechShield, but does not have the same name recognition as the LP product. There is little reason to have a preference between TechShield and SolarBord.

Sheathing with radiant barrier is often considered a commodity by the wholesalers and they will seldom have both products in stock at the same time. They buy which ever is cheaper and that constantly changes. There have been times we had a contract that called for TechShield and only SolarBord  was found anywhere in town. The opposite can be true as well. Consequently, when installing decking with radiant barrier we will use generic language so either product may be used on a project. If you want a specific name brand be very clear on this point as sometime the more common TechShield is thought of as simply radiant barrier and not a specific brand (Much like Kleenex is used is substitute for tissue paper).


 

Is Radiant Barrier Insulation?

No. Radiant barrier and insulation are different animals. Insulation prevents the transfer of heat from one space to the next. Insulation helps keep your home a constant temperature regardless of the outside temperature.  Radiant barrier keeps your house from absorbing solar energy and being hotter in the summer. Radiant barrier is much more important in parts of the country where cooling cost are the main issue.


 

Is Radiant Barrier Mandatory?

Our official answer is check your local codes and ordinances, but for the most part it is not mandatory. It is however a good thing and in most cases will pay for itself easily.


 

 

If you need an estimate on roofing and / or radiant barrier products, please call us at 214-321-9341 or fill out our online form.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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30 lb felt & 2 by 4s

Misleading Common Building Product Names 

 

 Lowe’s Home Centers Fined 1.6 Million over 2 by 4s !

Last month a Marin Superior Court Judge ordered Lowe’s to pay a 1.6 million dollar fine for misleading advertising. What shady practice did the building supply giant engage in?  Lowe’s had a Statewide sale of  2 by 4s in California and advertised this fact. The problem: 2 by 4s, the same 2 by 4s you would be directed to at any lumber yard in the United States, actually measure 3.5 inches by 1.5 inches.  2 by 4 is a common building term that has had a standard 3.5 by 1.5 measurement for around 50 years. Earlier times the actual measurement of a 2 by 4 was all over the map, just not 2 inches by 4 inches. Years ago Northern White Pine 2 by 4s were one measurement while the stronger Southern Yellow Pine was slightly smaller.  Today two by fours are a uniform 3.5 inches by 1.5 inches.

While this trivia about lumber may be new to some of you, it is as basic as can be to anyone in Dallas who has ever swung a hammer. Clearly the Judge in California thinks the old building term that is alive and well today is misleading. Today I looked at the Lowe’s website and the lumber description now reads “Common 2 by 4 by 8: Actual 1.5 inches by 3.5 inches by 96 inches”.  Home Depot has a similar description of the dimensions as well.

There is a long list of other lumberyard products that have this same difference in nominal measurement and actual measurement. In fact most all of them. Common 1/2 inch plywood can be either 7/16th or 15/32nds depending if the manufacturer is Werehaeuser or Louisiana Pacific.

30 lb Felt is not 30 Pounds !

Old school common building products are not limited to lumber. One of the most common in roofing are underlayments called 30lb and 15lb felt. Ages ago it was said that 30lb felt had a weight of 30 pounds per 100 sq ft.  The tremendous increases in asphalt and other oil and gas products have lead to a change in the formulas in which underpayments are made. Today the 30lb has nothing to do with the actual weight of the product and in fact many products no longer label it as 30lb felt but rather #30 felt.

Rewording contracts in construction.

It is possible that Lowe’s decided paying California off was easier than fighting, but going forward it seems obvious that being more precise with work orders in constructions may be necessary. Every house in America is built with some 2 by 4s in them. If California will challenge Lowe’s Ad it is only a matter of time until many other aspects of construction are challenged as well.  Generally Bert Roofing uses high end felts such as GAF’s ShingleMate or CertainTeed’s Roofer’s Select. Since there is 30lb felt and #30 felt if you use those products it is very important to be specific.

There are many many more building products with historic names that have the potential to be misleading or ambiguous. If you know some please add you comments below.  We would love to have some discussions.

 

 

 

 

 

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too many roof vents

Can A Roof Have Too Much Ventilation?

too many roof vents

too many roof vents

 

The short answer is yes.

The photo above shows a typical roof with three of the most common types of roof vents,  Ridge Vent (near), Turbine Vent (far), and thermostatically controlled electric power vent in the middle.  At Bert Roofing we use all three types with great success.  Each type can properly ventilate an attic. So what is the problem here?

Do not mix and match different types of roof Ventilation

In the photo above we see all three of the main types of roof vents. Problems arise when you use different types on the same attic space (notice I did not say same roof, we will explain that one in a moment). The ridge vent and the turbine vent are passive and rely on convection, hot air rising to work.  The power vent forces air at the top of the attic out.  When a power vent sits next to a passive vent, the power vent may draw air from that passive vent. In the photo above, the power vent will draw air from the ridge vent and the turbine vent. Essentially what is going on here is this poorly thought out system is drawing air from one part of the top of the attic to another. The end result is little to no ventilation of this attic despite the fact it has double the roof vents on it.

 

The roof in the photo had two power vents which by themselves was plenty of ventilation. The additional ridge vent and turbines made the situation worse.

 

A more complex issue is when you have different types of passive ventilation on the same attic such as ridge vent and turbines.  While this is no where near the same as the impact with power vents, it is generally best to go with one or the other and not mix these as well.

 

A roof with different attics that are not connected can have a different type of ventilation of each.

 

The Best Roof Ventilation System is Balanced

The photo above shows only exhaust vent which your roofer installs, but that is only half the equation. The best attic ventilation systems are balance with equal amounts of intake and exhaust.  The other half of the equation is intake.  Intake usually is in the for of soffit vents, little grills under eves of your house.  On passive vents you should have approximately the same number of square inches of intake as you do exhaust.  For most, the requirement is 300 to 1, meaning one square foot of ventilation is required for every 300 square feet of attic floor. That one square foot is then divided equally between intake and exhaust.  Even with all the same type of vent, you need to have them in proportion to your intake vents.

 

Bert Roofing installs all types of ventilation including ridge vent, power vents, and turbine vents. Please give us a call at 214-321-9341 of fill out our online contact form.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Most Common Roof Color

What is the most common shingle color?

The photo above is a typical North Dallas neighborhood with most of the homes built in the early 1980s.  You can easily see that the gray tone dominates.  This roof color is commonly called “Weathered Wood”.  Weathered Wood is somewhat the same color as an aged cedar shingle which is what was on most of these houses in the 80s and into the 90s before they were replaced for the first time with asphalt composition shingles.  Other colors are the upper right tan (called “cedar” or “shakewood”), lower middle blacks (call “charcoal”, “onyx”, or “sableblewood”). There is also a spot of brown (called “brownwood”, “barkwood” or “burnt sienna”).  The white roof is a low sloped commercial grade roof not visible at street level.

Many Variations of Weathered Wood

While weathered wood is easily the dominant color, there is actually a variety of weathered woods.  There are differences between each manufacturer’s interpretation of the color.  Both GAF and CertainTeed have two different weathered woods. They have their traditional weathered wood and a more variegated version (HD or High Definition in GAF and “Max Def” in CertainTeed).  Which one is right for you is a personal decision.

Driftwood is Essentially Weathered Wood

Owens Corning has the same weathered wood color that is dominant in the photo at the top of the page but they call their version of that color “Driftwood”.  The differences from one manufacturer to the next still exist, but driftwood in Owens Corning is essentially the same weathered wood.

Exact Color Match Difficulties on Roof Repairs

With so many different weathered wood selections (or any color for that matter) you can see how getting an exact shingle color match on a roof repair is very difficult. Now when you consider that most roof repairs are on older roofs, exact color match is just not always possible. Please let your Bert Roofing Representative know brand, age, and color should you know them when getting a roof repair.


 

Should you need a whole roof or just a repair, call us at 972-386-Roof or fill out our online form for your free evaluation and estimate.

 

 

 

 

 

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McKinney Hit By Hail March 27, 2014

Hail Rips McKinney Texas 

Thanks Pete Delkus for keeping us informed. The supercell hit McKinney and moved North East. Per the Storm Prediction Center 1.5 inch hail hit the McKinney area which is approximately ping-pong sized and considered sever. 

There are also reports in Fairview, Melisa, and Princeton.

Bert Roofing has been serving Mckinney and Collin County since 1988. Should you need your roof and entire exterior evaluated for possible damage, please call 214-321-9341 or fill out our online form.  

 

 

 

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Our Management Team

Meet The Bert Roofing Team

It is people that make up a business and knowing who they are is important. The entire core of the Bert Roofing team has been here for a very long time. We would be please to meet you.  Here is a brief introduction:

John Edward Bert II – President / CEO / Owner

John Edward Bert II, called "John Edward" or "Edward", is the third generation of Berts roofing in the Greater Dallas / Plano area. He is a co-founder of Bert Roofing Inc. and President and owner since the 2013 retirement of of John B. Bert and Dee Bert. Prior to his current role, he was the Chief Financial Officer since the late 1980s when Bert Roofing Inc. was formed. 

 

Nicole Bert McElwee – Vice President

 

 

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Shingle Warranty & Roof Lifespan

 

The Shingle Warranty & A Normal Roof Lifespan

Shingle warranty and a normal roof lifespan are not the same. Normal lifespan would be defined as useful life not impacted by an abnormal life shortening event such has hail damage. A roof normally wears primarily from ultra violet (UV) exposure. Normal lifespan of a roof is often significantly lower than the manufacturer's warranty period. Most "Lifetime" shingles will not make it 20 years in the Dallas – Fort Worth – Plano market (please note that the farther North you go UV is less and lifecycles may be longer). There will also be a great variation in useful life cycle between different Lifetime products as quality will vary greatly between different Lifetime products. Confusing? Why yes it is. 

Shingle Warranty Definition

A shingle warranty is a pledge and obligation from a manufacturer. If a product does not last a specific length of time, the shingle owner may receive some form of compensation for service time of the product not received from the manufacturer. This should be clearly differentiated from a guarantee that a product will last a specific period of time. 

Warranty Wars – History of Roof Warranties

For a very long period laminated shingles, also called dimensional or architectural, came with a 25, 30, or 40 year warranty that corresponded to the good, better, and best product options given by the manufacturers.  Sometime around 2000 one of the manufacturers decided to change the warranty on the three options to 30, 40, and 50 years. There was no significant advancement in quality, just an increase in the warranty. Now one manufacturer was selling a 30 year product for the same price as all the others were selling a 25 year product. Great for them right? Well not for long as all the other manufacturers followed. Just a few years later one manufacturer repeated the process and all their shingles went to a Limited Lifetime Warranty. And just like the time before, once GAF did it, so did CertainTeed, Owens Corning and many more. 

Now we live in the confusing world where we can offer our customers a choice of  a good "Lifetime" shingle, a  better "Lifetime" shingle, or a best "Lifetime" shingle. So now roofing contractors offer the public a wide range of products at a variety of prices all with the same Lifetime warranty!  Today homeowners are required to do significantly more research in order to make a properly informed buying decision. 

The 15 Year Rule

Over the years we have done many roofs on houses that are changing owners. Sometimes an inspection report will flag a roof as in need of replacement. A growing trend we are seeing is that a buyer can not find an insurance carrier to issue a new policy on the property because the roof is too old. The cut off we have seen is around 15 years. There are plenty of 15 year old roofs that really do need replacement, but there are also many that have a fair amount of useful life left. To make matters worse, there are even some mortgage carriers that have these exact same rules. 

 

Hope this has helped with this confusing issue of Roof Warranties. If you have questions or need a free roof evaluation in the Dallas / Plano areas please call us at 214-321-9341 or fill out our online form you can access from our front page

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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