Cedar or Shingles: What’s the Better Roofing Option?

Cedar Shake Roof

Are you currently in the market for a new roof for your home? There are many different roofing options that you can choose from, but two of the most popular types are asphalt shingles and cedar shake. If you are trying to decide which of these options is the best choice for your home, let’s take a look at the advantages of each to help you make the best decision.

Asphalt Shingles

Asphalt shingles have been used on residential homes for about a century now, and they have become one of the most common types of roofing for homeowners. Simply take a look at the homes in your neighborhood – no doubt that many feature asphalt shingles. Shingles are one of the most affordable options for roofing and are available in a variety of different styles. Easy to install, these shingles will provide your roof with the protection that it needs. As long as shingles are properly installed and fastened, they can last for two decades or longer with only minimal maintenance required.

Cedar Shake RoofCedar Shake

Cedar shake roofing has also become very popular for a number of reasons. Cedar is a very beautiful type of wood, which means that cedar shake roofing will serve as a decorative feature of your home once it’s installed. Cedar shake roofing is also very durable and resistant to even the worst weather and storm conditions. While cedar shake generally comes at a premium compared to asphalt shingles, it will last significantly longer and will also make your home more energy efficient, providing better insulation than other roofing options. That means you will recoup some of the initial upfront costs of installing cedar over time.

Regardless of whether you opt to install shingles, cedar shake or another type of roofing option like slate, metal or rubber, Roofing by Bruce can get the job done for you. We can speak with you about the different roofing material options that might be best for your home or business and provide you with complete tear off and installation of your new roof. All of our projects are backed with our knowledge and expertise in roof installation that means you can trust the safety and protection of your roof for years to come. Call us at 570-424-7250 to schedule a roofing consultation today.

Roof Inspection: How Often Should You Inspect?

They always say that it is a blessing to have a “roof over your head,” and that is certainly true, but what happens when that roof fails? The answer is nothing good.

Roof InspectionYour roof protects you, your family and your belongings from the elements and it must be cared for properly so that it can continue to offer shelter for years of use and abuse through rain, wind, snow, hail and more. Even a small leak in a roof can lead to major issues, so it is important that you keep it well maintained and in good condition. How can you know if your roof is in need of repairs, though, with it largely out of sight? Regular roof inspections.

Having your roof inspected professional is a first step in making sure that your roof is in good shape and ready to weather any storm. As a general rule, you should have your roof inspected twice every year – once in the spring to assess any damage from the winter snow and ice and again in the fall to ensure that your roof is prepared to handle the next cold season. These times fall between the hot extremes of summer and the bitter cold of winter, and give you an opportunity on either end to make improvements or repairs that might be needed to prepare you for the season ahead.

Roof inspections are necessary because the elements regularly impact it. There doesn’t have to be a major hail storm for your roof to take a hit. Your roof’s exposure to regular sun, rain, wind and temperature fluctuations will eventually lead to wear of shingles and degradation of the roof membrane over time, requiring regular repairs and maintenance to prevent issues from worsening.

Performing inspections at these regular bi-annual intervals is also important simply for your ability to detect problems. Roofing issues can often be hidden until they aren’t, such as a slow leak that has allowed mold to grow in your attic for years but never been detected until staining appears on your ceilings. You can’t repair problems you aren’t aware of, and you don’t want to let even the smallest threat to become a major issue down the road.

When you or an expert inspects your roof, it is essential that you check for any and all warning signs or roofing issues. Be sure to caulking and sealant around skylights or chimneys, look for missing, broken or blistering shingles, inspect chimney caps for damage and even look inside at the attic space for any signs of mold. Beyond the two annual visual inspections, you should also have a formal moisture survey done at least once a year to ensure that mold does not become a major issue.

If you want to get a roof inspection by a company that you can trust, then look no further than the experts at Roofing by Bruce. We will provide a full review and give you a comprehensive report with our findings. We can also make repairs, perform maintenance work and – if needed – perform full roof replacements. Don’t put your dwelling at risk. Call us today at 570-424-7250 to schedule an inspection appointment this spring.

Fascia: What Is It and Why Does It Matter

Fascia plays a very important role in the overall well-being of your home’s roof. But unless you’ve experienced a problem with your roof in the past, there’s a pretty good chance that you don’t actually know what fascia boards are or what purpose they serve when it comes to your roof. It’s important for homeowners to learn more about fascia boards and what they do so that they can identify any early signs of issues and avoid the problems that can come from faulty, rotten or failing fascia.

Fascia BoardsFascia boards are located below the edge of your roof, and they run along the entirety of your roofline. These are the front-facing boards that give your roof a finished look and to make your roofline aesthetic clean and even. Many homeowners even paint their fascia boards to match the color schemes of the rest of their houses or roofs, providing a more complete look to the home.

But this is far from the only reason for fascia to be installed in the first place. In addition to making homes look great, fascia boards are also used to offer support for a home’s gutters and drainage. Without fascia, the gutters and drain pipes wouldn’t have a place to attach to. These boards also seal the edges of the roof frame work, preventing strong winds from driving snow or rain into the substructure. They also prevent birds, squirrels or other animals and insects from gaining entry, keeping your roof area moisture and pest free.

Fascia boards can be damaged as a result of inclement weather, downed trees and more. They can also weather and wear, leading to rotting or weakened boards, which can make supporting gutters impossible. We offer fascia board replacement and other roofing repairs and new roof installation. We would be happy to give your roof a look and make any necessary repairs. If you suspect that your fascia has been compromised, reach out to Roofing by Bruce at 570-424-7250 today to find out about our fascia repair services.

Rubber Roofing: Advantages for Your Business

Winter is in full swing, but soon spring will be upon us, exposing your roof for the first time in months and allowing you to see how well it fared the cold and snowy season. If you find that your roof is in shambles after a season exposed to ice and snow, you may be able to make piecework repairs, but it may be better to replace your roof altogether. If you’re thinking of replacing your worn roof or if you’re constructing a new building, one leading option to consider is a rubber roof.

Rubber Roofing A perfect option for structures with a low sloped or flat roof, rubber roofing offers a range of benefits for commercial and industrial structures. To start, rubber roofing is incredibly easy to repair. Unlike many traditional roof styles, where you may need to tear up worn tiling before placing new material down, you can simply cut out worn or damaged areas of a rubber roof to make quick and easy fixes to your roof.

Rubber roofing is also a great option for another reason: cost. Rubber roof materials are typically much less expensive, both at installation as well as during maintenance and repairs. It also is incredibly waterproof, meaning you will have a far reduced concern about water penetration than you would with tar or shingling. Finally, rubber is also a very durable and long-lasting option, as well, with roofs often lasting 30 years or more before needing to be replaced. This provides you with a reliable roof that will last for decades.

The professional team at Roofing by Bruce can handle the roofing installation, maintenance and repair needs at your business in East Stroudsburg or elsewhere in the Pennsylvania Poconos. Our team can assess your situation on site, advising you on your options and providing you with a quote for your needs. Call the Roofing by Bruce team today at 570-424-7250 to learn more or to schedule an appointment for an estimate.

Soffits: What Are They and Why Do They Matter?

Today we’re going to look at the reasons soffits are so important. Before we get into that, though, let’s back up and clear up something more important: What really are soffits?

Soffits A soffit is the area between the outer wall of a house and the overhang of the roof. It is usually made of aluminum and vinyl. Most of us see and benefit from the presence soffits on a daily basis, but not many of us know their name or why they are important.

While it may seem that soffits exist to help make a roof edge look more complete, their purpose is actually more than simply aesthetics. While they can be decorated and painted to enhance a home’s look, they also provide an important finishing touch to a building. Without soffits, rafters and structural beams would be visible and exposed from below. This could allow these foundational innards of the roof to be exposed to the elements. An open rafter is much more likely to become rotten, mold ridden, water damaged or simply worn down.

Soffits also protect you and your family from unwanted wild animals that might otherwise decide that your roof and attic area might be a nice place to live. Soffits prevent raccoons, squirrels, bats and birds from entering your attic and setting up a home. A well-constructed and closed soffit can save you the money you would have otherwise spent on animal control. In addition to keeping pests out of your attic, soffits also facilitate efficient attic ventilation, too. These simple overhang areas do so much more than provide a finishing look, providing a combination of important function and home design.

Soffit installation and repair is one of the many services offered through Roofing by Bruce. By keeping an open line of communication with our manufacturers, our workflow is fast and reliable. We cover soffits, fascia, flashing, ridge vents and flat and low sloped roofs and can handle anything from minor repairs to major replacements. To find out more, give us a call today at 570-424-7250.

 

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Why Does Gutter Pitch Matter?

Are the gutters on your home pitched properly? No, we’re not asking how well they sing, but instead if they’re angled at the correct pitch to ensure proper drainage.

Gutter Pitch As long as the gutters are still hanging on your home and collecting water when it rains, you probably think that they are doing their job. But the truth is that the pitch or slope of your gutters might be off ever so slightly, and as a result, you could be at an increased risk for strained gutter connections, standing water problems or other concerns – and you might not even realize it! It’s why having your gutter pitch checked every so often is a good idea.

The pitch of your gutters refers to the downward slant that they take in the direction of the downspout that dictates how quickly water flows through them. If they aren’t sloped enough in a downward direction, rainwater will often pool inside of your gutters and stay there until there’s enough water in them to allow it to start spilling over the sides. But if they’re sloped too much, it will cause rainwater to rush through your gutter system too quickly. Since the rainwater can’t accumulate properly if the slope is too steep, water can splash over the edge and lead to water spilling along your home’s exterior or down the foundation.

In both of these situations, the water running off the sides of the gutters instead of down through your downspouts means that you will often find water pooling near your home. This water can eventually cause damage to your foundation or work down into your basement, causing flooding and water damage. Even in a best-case scenario, you’re likely to have stagnant water sitting in your yard that could be a breeding ground for insects or damage your landscaping.

The good news is that you can prevent all of these problems simply by having your gutter pitch inspected. Roofing by Bruce can take a look at your gutters, check the pitch, and tell you whether or not you could benefit from having your gutters repaired, replaced or simply repitched. You might not be thrilled by the idea of spending money on your gutters when they look fine to the naked eye, but you could end up saving yourself quite a bit of money by checking your gutter system and making sure that everything is working as it should. Contact Roofing by Bruce at 570-424-8891 today to schedule an inspection of your gutters.

Freeze Frame: Window Frame Materials Could Be Zapping Your Heat

Window Frame MaterialsHeating your home in the winter can be a real challenge when the temperature drops down below freezing. And it can be especially challenging when you have windows with frames that don’t hold heat in and insulate your home as well as they should. In fact, you could be losing a significant amount of heat and driving your heating costs up in the wintertime if you have certain types of window frames in your home.

Many people have window frames that are made of aluminum or metal and they are, by far, the worst kinds of window frames to have in the winter. These types of frames conduct heat very quickly and do not insulate your home very well. Metal window frames can be sapping warmth from your home, making your heating system have to work harder – and burn more fuel – to keep your home warm.

Composite frames, which are made out of composite wood products, and wood frames are both better options than metal frames when it comes to holding heat in. These window frames also offer a nicer aesthetic look much of the time, but come with the drawback of expanding and contracting depending on what the weather is like outside, which can cause heat loss throughout the day and night.

The U.S. Department of Energy recommends that the best option for homes in cold-weather climates is fiberglass or vinyl. These styles of window frames create a complete seal and can be filled with insulation to offer greater resilience from the conditions outside. They are thermally superior to other options and will offer the greatest performance in even the toughest winter conditions.

If you are thinking about replacing the window frames in your home to combat the cold this winter, Weather Tite Windows & Siding can help you do it. We specialize in window and siding repair and would be more than happy to check out your current window frames to see how you can preserve more of your heat in the future. You could start saving money immediately with window frame repair or replacement and drastically improve the comfort level in your home in all seasons. Call us at 570-424-8891 today to schedule a consultation.

Best Roofing Materials for Snowy Climates

Metal RoofWinter has officially reared its ugly head, and we know what comes next – more freezing temperatures, heavier falling snow and gustier winds. When these elements make an appearance, you want to be sure that your home is protected with a stable and reliable roof. So what type of roofing materials are the best choice for winter climate? Let’s look at three of the leading options to consider for your roof to stay safe and warm during the winter season and all year long.

Metal Roofs

If you want a roof that will stand the test of time and be able to hold off even the toughest winter weather, then metal roofs are a sure thing. These roofs can withstand the weight of heavy snowfall and stand up to high winds. Many metal roofs also include snow guards and some modern options can be fitted with heating cables for extra protection against snow.

Metal roofs are also known to last years longer than traditional shingle roofs. The only downside is that not all homes can accommodate a metal roof into their aesthetic looks, but if you can make it work then they can be incredibly beneficial.

Asphalt Shingles

A vast majority of homes are covered with asphalt shingles and for a good reason. These shingles are incredibly affordable which makes them the go-to choice for many homeowners. They are also durable and versatile, and they hold up to just about every type of weather, including snow, wind and even small hail. Best of all, they actually cost the least to repair and maintain. However, the lifespan for shingles is much shorter than some other roofing options – 20 to 30 years, typically – which can mean needing to replace the roof more frequently than when using other roofing materials.

Slate Roofs

Although you may not see them all too often, slate roofs have been historically proven to withstand harsh winter conditions. The first slate roofs were used in born in Colonial New England, and some are even still in use today, notes Roofing Tutor. They have remained a favorite option for homeowners looking for different roofing options that are durable and capable of withstanding years of use. Slate roofs are also a more attractive option, especially for larger or older homes, so you can create a great look while adding excellent protection.

Get Your Sturdy Roof With Roofing by Bruce

A roof is only as tough and sturdy as the team that installs it, and with Roofing by Bruce, you are hiring the best. We can do it all. We install new roofs, make repairs on existing roofs, and even do inspections to ensure that your roof is in good condition. If you know a new roof is in your future or you have an issue with your roof this winter, let our experts help. Call us today at 570-424-7250.

Add Heating and an Attractive Look With a Gas Fireplace

Gas FireplacesWinter is coming, and with it come shorter days, longer nights, overall much colder temperatures. If you find yourself feeling chilly during the winter, one way to keep yourself warm – and add a little aesthetic value to your home – is with a brand new gas fireplace! There are a lot of reasons why you should consider adding a gas fireplace to your home this winter. Take a look at a few of our top reasons why gas fireplaces are a great addition!

Easy to Vent

Gas pipes are easy to install to vent your gas-burning fireplace. Unlike installing a new wood-burning stove or traditional fireplace, you don’t have to install a whole new chimney for a gas fireplace as they don’t require a standard chimney to vent. The only thing you might need to install is a small vent pipe, which is a fraction of the cost and installation of adding a whole new chimney.

Great for Spot Heating

If you have a family with small kids or you’re entertaining guests, a great benefit to a gas fireplace is spot heating. If the kids are cold after coming in from sledding, they can come in and quickly stand in front of the hot fireplace to regain a little feeling. Or if you’re chilly while entertaining company, you can fire up your fireplace! Add a little extra heat to any room of your home with a new gas fireplace.

No Electricity Required

Even if the power is out, your gas fireplace will still work. That means that even if a serious snow or ice storm causes a blackout, you’ll still be able to light up the fire and keep the family comfortable until the power returns.

It Looks Attractive

Most fireplaces add a certain quality to a living room. They usually open up a room and make it feel a little bit bigger than it really is. Adding a fireplace can add a little something to the overall design and feel of a room. Plus, by adding a new fireplace, you can add appeal to your home and even increase the resale value – a double benefit if you’re looking to list your home!

Learn more about the benefits of a gas fireplace or discuss having one installed with the experts at Brookside Hearth & Patio today. Give us a call at 570-424-7250 to schedule an appointment to learn more today.

‘Snow’ Big Deal: Understanding the Actual Weight of Snow on Your Roof

Snow on Roof Winter means snow, and here in Pennsylvania it can mean a lot of snow. This snow, particularly if it is wet and heavy, can mean problems for the roofs on buildings and homes. Fortunately, there’s a calculation that’s done when building roofs that takes snow into account.

The East Stroudsburg area receives nearly 40 inches of snow each year, according to Sperling’s Best Places. As this snow piles up on roofs, it can become very heavy. In some cases, the snow load may exceed what the roof can safely support, which can result in costly structural damage to the building.

Roof snow load is calculated using a formula to determine how much the snow weighs per square foot. This formula is used when designing roofs to ensure that the materials used and construction methods can support the additional seasonal weights, but this same formula can give you an idea of how much the snow on your roof actually weighs.

The formula starts with the ground snow load, which can be determined by carefully collecting snow from the ground to be weighed. Snow in the Pennsylvania area can weigh 30 pounds per square foot or more. Wet snow, or repeated melting and freezing cycles, can increase the weight per square foot, although typically more snow blows off on a roof.

The second step in the formula is to consider the exposure of the roof. Values are assigned based on whether the roof is completely exposed or is sheltered by trees or other structures. The more exposed your roof is, the more snow will be carried away by wind and the more sun will strike your roof after the storm clears, improving the speed of melting.

The third step involves calculating the thermal factor for the roof. The thermal factor will vary depending on whether the building is heated or unheated. Last, you must calculate the roof slope factor. Roofs with a steeper pitch are able to withstand more snow because the snow tends to slide off the roof quickly.

The roof snow load can be calculated by multiplying 0.7 x Ground Snow Load x Exposure Factor x Thermal Factor x Roof Slope Factor.

The easiest and safest way to make sure your roof will be safe this winter is to contact a roofing professional. Having your roof inspected periodically is the only way to be sure it is in good condition and ready for winter weather and is the best way to identify early signs of structural issues or leaks that could allow moisture to get inside and damage your structure.

At Roofing by Bruce, we know what winter is like in Pennsylvania. We can perform an inspection on your roof and alert you to any potential issues before they become a larger problem. Contact us today by calling 570-424-7250 to learn more about our services or to schedule a roof inspection for your home or business.