5 Ways to Prepare Your Roof for Winter

Just like you prepare your vehicle for the snow, you should also pay attention to your roof when winter is on the way. Proper roof maintenance and preparation can extend the longevity of your roof and protect it from serious harm.

Here are a few ways that you can protect your roof and prepare it for the winter season.

Check Leaks, Flashing, and Vents

The area along the flashing is one of the most common spots for leaks to occur. You should check your flashing at least once a year to ensure that it is still in shape. Leaks may start off small but can eventually lead to big problems. Our suggestions:

  • To prevent mold and mildew from entering your home, consider shingle and flashing replacements.
  • Signs of missing shingles, poorly sealed flashing, and loose vents can all signal potential problems. Pay special attention to these areas.
  • The roof edge is the first line of defense against severe weather. Over time, damage to the edge makes it more vulnerable. Inspect this regularly to spot potential problems before they can occur.

Check Your Attic

When performing a roof examination, homeowners tend to fail to check the attic for problems. This can be an expensive oversight since heat can escape from your home if not properly insulated.

Be sure to check that your attic has evenly distributed insulation to keep the heat in and the cold out. Not only will this keep your energy bills lower, it will also prevent your home’s air from drifting under your shingles and causing ice dams.

Clear Debris 

You should clean your gutters of debris at least once or twice a year. Clear your gutters of leaves, branches, and dirt before the heavy rain and snow storms hit your home.

Clogged gutters can prevent rain and melted snow water from draining quickly and easily from your roof. Here is how you can clear your gutter of debris:

  1. Have a sturdy, extendable ladder.
  2. Scoop the debris from your gutter.
  3. Dump the debris onto a plastic tarp to keep your lawn clear.
  4. Flush the gutters with a hose after clearing the debris. 

Examine Roof Shingles

Ensure that your roof shingles are not cracked or missing granules. While shingles today are produced for durability, there are many factors that can accelerate the appearance of aging of your roof, including:

  • Curled shingle edges
  • Cupped shingle tabs
  • Roofing that looks old and worn out
  • Dark streaks

Schedule a Winter Roof Inspection

While making preparations for the changing seasons, make sure you take time out to examine your roof. There is so much preventative care that you can do on your own. If a problem arises that you cannot fix on your own, however, be sure to schedule an inspection with a licensed professional.

For more information on how to prepare your roof for winter, contact JBS Construction today for a free estimate for all of your roofing needs. We have locations throughout Milwaukee and the surrounding areas.

7 Questions to Ask Your Milwaukee Roofing Contractor Before Hiring

Your roof is sagging, there’s sunlight in your attic, and there are shingles missing from your roof. These are all signs you need a new roof.

But when you’ve had the same roof for years, it can be difficult to know how to start the repair process. That’s exactly why we’ve prepared seven questions to ask your Milwaukee roofing contractor.

worker repairing some shingles on a roof

1. What Milwaukee Roofing Contractor Company Do You Work For?

You’ll want to ask the roofing contractor more about their company. Get the exact name and location, and ask how long they have been in business. The older the company is, the more satisfied customers they may have.

2. What Kind of Insurance Do You Have?

If a worker gets hurt while on your roof, you’ll want to make sure they have workers compensation. If not, you could be liable for their injuries.

The insurance should cover the following areas:

  • Body injury
  • Products liability
  • Personal injury
  • Medical payments

Get waivers from all the workers that will be on your property during your roofing project. Have copies of all insurance policies, so you can make sure you are covered if an accident does happen.

3. Are You Licensed in the State of Wisconsin?

There are different roofing licenses in each state. Ask if the contractor working on your roof is licensed by the state of Wisconsin. This will speak to the quality of their work as well as their credibility.

4. Who Were Your Previous Clients?

Get a list of their previous clients and don’t be afraid to contact them. Get client references from older projects as well so you can get an idea of how their work is long term.

If you don’t feel comfortable asking directly, look up their reviews online. This way you can still get an idea of how good they are. Using sites like Angie’s list can be reliable for reviews.

5. Will You Be Working with Subcontractors for This Job?

A subcontractor is someone who will carry out work underneath a larger company. Find out if the company will be working with or uses subcontractors. If so, research the subcontractors separately.

Make sure they are insured by the company and have workers compensation insurance. If you don’t have the time to look into them, avoid working with subcontractors.

6. What Factors Will Go into My Quote?

Be sure to ask the roofing contractors what factors determine the price. This will not only help you get an honest quote, but it can also ensure you are working with an honest company.

Qualities to look for include:

  • the slope
  • number of layers
  • materials

Avoid companies that only give you one factor, such as the square footage of the roof. There are many factors they should take into consideration, such as how old the roof is and what roofing materials will be needed.

7. Will the Contractor Need to Come Inside My Home?

The answer to this question will determine if you are working with a quality Milwaukee roofing contractor. All roofers should have to come inside your home. Even if you don’t have an attic, a quality roofer will be able to check for signs of wear by looking at your ceiling.

Get in Touch With Us for More Information

There’s a lot that goes into roofing. Since it is one of the biggest parts of your house, you want to make sure it gets done right. Being equipped with these questions will help make sure you find a good contractor for your roof.

For more information on construction projects or your roofing needs, contact us.

5 Warning Signs You Need A New Roof

For most of us, the roof is something we never really think about. It sits on top of your house and keeps the outside world out, and depending on which materials go into it, it won’t need many repairs. So, it’s easy to forget.

But, when you need roof repair service or, even worse, replacing, it’s important to act soon before the problem gets worse.

roofer replacing roof

Today, we’ll be looking at five signs your roof needs repairing so you know exactly what to look out for.

Leaks: A Telltale Sign

The most obvious sign your roof needs replacing is finding areas where it’s leaking.

This kind of problem has a number of root causes, ranging from missing shingles to support damage and blocked gutters. This is a problem that can lead to associated complications with mildew, water damage and staining, and more.

You should regularly check your attic and inner ceiling for signs of leakages, especially after storms or heavy rain. This is a clear sign your roof needs repairing.

Mold, Mildew, and Water Damage

When fungi begin growing in an area that’s meant to be kept dry, it’s a clear sign there’s water there that you’re not aware of.

Look out for mold and mildew patches on your ceilings and walls. This often occurs in corners as well. If a situation does arise, you may want to look into fixing your insulation or plumbing, or into creating better ventilation in your home.

These are cheaper alternatives to replacing an entire roof, and most of the time, repairing will do just fine.

Sagging and Structural Problems

A warped roof is often the result of pooling water and incorrect drainage. Some signs to look out for include:

  • Cracks and stress fractures in the roof
  • Missing or peeling shingles
  • Heavy puddles gathered in specific areas
  • Visible drooping or sagging
  • Light coming in through your attic

Granules Being Shed

The granules in roof shingles are what give it its grit and structure, as well as helping it slough off water during rainy weather.

When inspecting your gutters, check for colored granules. These occur due to excessive rain, poor construction, or even just regular weathering over time.

Small amounts of shedding are acceptable, and even a large amount once or twice during a heavy storm is normal. Where it starts getting problematic is when the amount is regularly quite large. You’ll see it on the side of a roof where the shingles have lost much of their color in a uniform pattern. This is a good indicator that you may need a roof repair service.

Hail Damage

Milwaukee residents are no strangers to bouts of hail, which can do their fair share of damage to a ceiling. In most cases, hail damage is usually only enough to warrant a repair job. When falling ice cuts through your roofing, however, you may want to consider replacing the entire roof with something more durable.

Make sure to get a professional inspection before committing, either way.

So, Do You Need a Roof Repair Service?

Your roof is the most important part of your home. It keeps the outside out and your possessions protected. But it’s no good to you if it needs repairs and you don’t take care of the problem.

Want to learn more about improving your Milwaukee home with quality siding and exterior remodeling? Get in touch with us today, and let’s bring out the best in your home.

What You Should Do Before Hiring a Roof Contractor in Milwaukee

Whether you’re interested in a major cosmetic upgrade or just need some minor repairs, hiring a residential roofing contractor is a big (and sometimes expensive) decision. If you’re in the Southeast Wisconsin region, we’ve outlined what you need to do before selecting the person standing on top of your house.

house with contractors providing roof repair

Let’s get into it.

Different Kinds of Services

Reputable Milwaukee roofing companies offer a variety of services for their customers. They also know how to collaborate with you to give you exactly what you want. Typically, roofers perform the following tasks:

  • Inspect minor and major roof problems
  • Accurately measure roofs to determine appropriate quantity of materials
  • Cut and align roofing materials to the edge of the roof
  • Replace damaged plywood
  • Install vapor barriers
  • Install ventilation systems
  • Install shingles, asphalt, or metal
  • Identify and fix roof leafs

If you don’t know what you need, that’s okay, too! Consult with the professionals to determine the best solutions for your roofing problems.

Questions to Ask

When searching for the right person to take care of your residential roofing needs in Milwaukee, you want to be sure that you find someone who is competent and experienced. After all, this is someone who is tackling a major job. You don’t want shoddy or incomplete work.

Consider asking the following questions when meeting with different roofers:

  • What experience do you have with roofs like mine?
  • How long do you anticipate the project will take?
  • Do you have references who can vouch for your work?
  • What is the total cost?

When all is said and done, let your gut guide you in making the right decision. Was he polite? Did he seem confident and excited about the work? Or, did he just answer basic questions with one-word responses?

Reach Out to Past Customers & Referrals

Research shows that referrals still largely influence how we make decisions. And it’s no wonder. When people like someone’s work, they’re usually pretty happy to tell you. On the other hand, if they didn’t like someone’s work, they’re also pretty happy to tell you exactly what went wrong.

Here are a few questions to get you started when interacting with past customers:

  • Would you use this same roofer again?
  • How was communication between the two of you?
  • Did he complete the job in a timely manner?
  • How much did he stay within budget?
  • Was there any external damage or remnants (dropped nails, paint problems, damage to flowers or trees, etc.)?

You can also do a visual inspection of his recent work. Be sure to check out the individual shingles, as you want them straight and precise, neatly trimmed with the roof edge.

Does the overall job look professional? Checking it out yourself is one of the best ways to determine if this is the person for you.

Final Thoughts on Residential Roofing in Southeast Wisconsin

If you’re looking for an affordable, high-quality roofer, we’re here for you. Let us give you a complimentary estimate for any and all roof repairs.

We’re happy to help. Contact us today.

We Offer A Variety Of Roofing Materials For All Preferences

The team at JBS Home Exteriors knows how most homeowners desire a unique look for their home. The type of roof you choose says a lot about you and your personal design style. To stand out on your block, you choose a roofing material that makes a statement. To get the look you want, installed right, at an affordable price, look no further than JBS Home Exteriors, the roofing experts in Milwaukee, Waukesha, and Ozaukee Counties.

Most run-of-the-mill roofers don’t offer the variety of roofing materials that we can handle. That’s because many of these materials require experience and skill that other roofing companies can’t match. Partner with JBS, and you can have the confidence that we’ll get the job done right and done on time.

Here are some of the roofing materials we offer:

Cedar Shakes & Cedar Shingles

These popular choices have a natural, rustic look that happens to be environmentally friendly. Because they’re made from wood, they’re renewable, biodegradable, non-toxic, and recyclable.

With a 40-year lifespan, cedar is a roofing material that has stood the test of time.

Synthetic Cedar Shakes

Popular with those who want the look of real cedar shakes but want an even more environmentally friendly roof, synthetic cedar roofing is maintenance free and is resistant to mold, insects, and mildew. Synthetic cedar roofing also lasts longer than that made from real cedar, and typically comes with a 50-year warranty.

Slate Roofing

Lasting longer than any other roofing material, slate is easy to maintain and comes in a wide variety of colors. Stylish and non-staining, it also does not need chemical treatment the way some other roof types do. Some slate roofs even come with lifetime warranties.

Synthetic Slate or Faux Slate

This unique material is popular with some homeowners because it offers the look of rough edges and stone-like texture of natural slate for a fraction of the cost. Synthetic slate roofing often comes with a 50-year warranty.

Composition Shingles

Also called asphalt roofing, composition roofing is one of the most common types of roofing throughout the U.S. because it is durable, versatile, and can fit just about any budget. There are quite a few different types of composition shingles available, including architectural shingles, which are thicker and heavier than standard the standard 3-tab shingles found on many American homes. Composition roof warranties can range anywhere from 5 years to 30 years, depending on the type and quality of roofing selected.

Tile Roofing

Tile roofing is popular all over the world because it is versatile, long-lasting, environmentally-friendly, and extremely durable. In fact, it is resistant to fire, hail and wind damage. Tile roofs can be made with clay, concrete, metal or synthetic materials, each of which offers its own benefits. Depending on type, tile roofs often offer 50-year, 75-year and lifetime warranties.

Contact us today!

Interested in our roofing services for your home? For a FREE ESTIMATE, just give us a call at 262-255-3141 or click here to submit your request online. We’re eager to show you what we can do!