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Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Why Roofers have Ridge Wrong

Imagine yourself staked out over a large rock unable to move. This is what happens to ridge shingles. The material is bent, slightly increasing the surface area, allowing more exposure to the sun. The ridge also is exposed to right angle vectors of wind on it's three leading edges and Bernoulli on the ones not being hammered. There's also voids under the ridge covering laminate shingles. The voids on GAF Sequoia and Grand Canyon and Certainteed Presidential are quite substantial.
That's why Dallas roofing companies put 20 year thee tabs on heavy duty roofs, even class IV roofs, as the contractor did on 1502 Silverlake, McKinney. This is a crime. Even if hail doesn't damage the roof, the ridge, which weathers faster anyway, is an inferior product. Due to the exposure of the ridge it should be a superior product, not just equal.
On wood shingle roofs it is better to put a heavy shake ridge because the wood shingle ridge, a two piece shingle held together with two little staples and some small nails, will come off very soon. Roofing companies go so far as to install non fire treated ridge on fire treated shingles,a way to save a few bucks. I have seen pictures of woods roofs with the shingles intact but the ridge burned off. Treated wood roofs will not burn. We'll cover that later.
There's a wood roof on Union Bower, Irving, TX, that Lon Smith did a few years ago and the wood shingle ridge is falling all over the place. Looks horrendous. We did three class IV fire treated wood roofs in Las Colinas with heavy shake ridge. One, on Northgate for Mr. Buck Buckner, a great man who passed away recently, has shake ridge and another for Fred and Estelle Odell, a lovely couple we done work for for decades, on North Durango Ct. That roof is over five years old and not one piece is loose. Ha! Take that Lawn Smith.
Roofing manufacturers offer a plethora of ridge options. GAF alone has Timbertex, "Z" Ridge, Seal-a-Ridge, and Ridgeglass. Ridgeglass used to be a stand alone company represented by the very nice Steve Wilcox, now an independent rep for lots of roof stuff.
Ridgeglass made ridge for everybody's roofing in every color. It is beefed up with a piece of APP modified for impact resistance and an "in your face" appeal.
To get a System Plus warranty the designer ridge is an enhancement option but a necessity for a Golden Pledge.
Besides function there is the other side of the coin: beauty. The ancient Greeks laboriously debated the useful versus the beautiful. In roofing the option is different: crappy versus beautiful and useful. A good ridge is like making one of your weakest parts your strongest. Plus a distinctive ridge will set off a roof with an strong outline. Think of it as a good haircut. It makes you look better even though your face is still the same.
Add to the crummy 20 year ridge on the class IV 50 year roofing product a pneumatic fastener and you have a guaranteed wind damage situation in a few short years.
A "Z" Ridge on a three tab roof looks awesome but rarely will a bottom feeder find the crème de la crème. It's all about setting yourself up for failure or passing the buck to the next unsuspecting owner of the abode.
If your roofing contractor is not offering you ridge options then he is assuming you don't really care about your home. The same goes for valleys, felt, metal edge, ventilation, and the shingle itself.
These guys would put a three tab on a slate roof if nobody new better. Why not? One did it in McKinney. In fact they do it everyday.
Some of our customers elect to put their money into other parts of the roof because the neighbors did so. But if we agree to install a 30 year Timberline, don't tell you about the caveat on ridge, send out a 25 year Royal Sovereign and you complain about the inferiority of the ridge, then I have a conundrum. Customer Relation Handbook, page 1, paragraph 1: The customer is always right (if you don't tell him first).