Hurricane Proofing Your Roof

April 15, 2018

 

 

Tampa has been extremely lucky. Throughout all of the major hurricanes that made landfall in the state of Florida over the past 90 years, Tampa has escaped mostly unscathed. This unusual luck, as fortunate as it may be, has potentially created a sense of complacency for those who need a more wind-resistant roof, but have, for one reason or another, procrastinated in getting their roof remodeled. One only needs to look to our neighboring cities, or back to the 1921 Tampa Bay Hurricane to fully grasp just how dire of a necessity it is to make sure one’s home is prepared for the next major storm. Here at Premiere Builders, roof construction is one of our top specialties. The cost of the job and the materials you want to use are of the utmost importance for your decision making process when it comes to choosing a roof. We want your home to be safe during the next storm, so we’ve compiled some information we think is important for you to consider in advance if you are planning on remodeling your roof to be more hurricane resistant.

 

Determining Cost

 

Determining the cost of roof remodeling is often not as simple as some people imagine it to be. Many people think that they can calculate the cost of a roof remodeling job by finding out the price of a roofing material per square foot and then multiplying that number by the square footage of the house. They often think that all a contractor needs to give them an estimate is the square footage of the house and the cost of the roofing material. This is just simply not the case. There are many factors that determine the amount of labor that will be necessary to remodel a roof to be hurricane resistant, and surprisingly none of them have anything to do with the square footage of your home.

For starters, the square footage of your home does not equal the square footage of your roof. In order to determine the true size of your roof, and therefore the amount of roofing material you’ll need, you need to take into account several factors, such as the pitch of your roof, the shape of your roof, and any obstacles on your roof such as chimneys or ventilation systems. In order to accurately determine how much roof material you’ll need, a professional roof contractor needs to measure the roof for you. We provide free estimates for this service, as this will be a factor in determining the overall cost of a roof remodeling job.

Another factor that will determine the cost of a roof remodeling job is whether or not your roof needs to be stripped before a new hurricane-resistant roof can be installed. This is a labor intensive task that will increase the cost of the job. Sometimes older homes have had multiple roof remodeling jobs done, and they actually have more than one layer of roof. If these layers need to be removed, the additional layers will represent an additional increase to the cost of the total remodeling job as well. After a roof is removed, it may be revealed that there are structural anomalies that need to be repaired before the new roof is installed. If repairs of this nature are indeed required, it will be another additional cost you will need to factor into your budget.

As you can see, there are many factors that need to be addressed before one can calculate the total amount of roof material that will be needed. The task of choosing a roof material can be undertaken only once these factors have been addressed. The materials you choose will not only play an important role in the cost of the job, but will also play a role in the structural integrity of the roof, and therefore will determine the degree of resistance to hurricanes the roof will have. There are many different types of materials one can use to construct a roof, but they are neither equal in cost, nor in hurricane resistance. Below we address some of the various options for roof material, and explain what materials we think are the best, what materials are the worst, and why.

 

Materials

 

 

The most popular roofing material in Tampa happens to be asphalt shingles. The popularity of asphalt shingles is something that is found nationwide, however, it may be an enormous source of regret the next time a big storm wallops Tampa. Asphalt shingles are the least expensive roofing material, both in terms of material cost, as well as installation cost. Unfortunately, they are not very effective when it comes to hurricane resistance. The popularity of these shingles has been very kind to the people of Tampa for nearly a century. However, this is only because of the fact that Tampa has not suffered a major storm in nearly 100 years. It is not a matter of if a major storm will hit Tampa, but when. When the storm does hit, people who stuck to their shingle roofs are going to be sorry. The money they saved from having a shingle roof is going to be very little compared to the cost of remodeling a heavily damaged roof.

Using metal as the material for your roof offers the most resistance to damage from high-winds and torrential downpours. Metal roofs can be installed in different ways, depending on the type of metal used. Typically, metal roofs made of aluminum, steel, or copper are installed in the form of large panels that are welded together with soldering material. On the other hand, metal roofs that utilize lead or copper-asphalt can be installed in the form of shingles, which is something to consider if you find shingle-based roof design to be aesthetically pleasing. Using metal as your roofing material, however, can be quite expensive. A somewhat cheaper material that has shown to have hurricane-resistant properties in construction science is cement. Using cement as a roofing material can be still be quite expensive, however, and it is not compatible with all homes due to its very heavy nature. When it comes to hurricane resistance, however, both metal and cement represent excellent choices.  They may be more expensive than the cost of asphalt shingles, but they are nowhere near as expensive as the cost of repairing a roof that has been totally destroyed by a hurricane.

 

Conclusion

 

There is definitely a cost trade-off when it comes to having a wind-resistant roof. It really helps to think of it like an insurance policy. You may never need it, but in the unfortunate event where you do need it, having it really pays off. That is why we recommend investing in a hurricane-resistant roof before the next storm hits, even if it seems a bit costly in the moment. Here at Premiere Builders, we really care a whole lot about our community in Tampa. We don’t want to see anyone go through the heartbreaking experience of having their home damaged in the event of a hurricane. If the roof on your home is in need of remodeling, especially if it isn’t hurricane-resistant, please get in touch with us. We will always be available to offer a free estimate of the cost of a remodeling project. Don’t wait until it’s too late!

 

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