man in black jacket wearing yellow hard hat photo

The Top 20 Most Common Roofing Mistakes

When you need a new roof repair or replacement, you don’t want any mistakes. Some contractors rush through the job, while others might not have the experience to handle the task. If you want the job done right, you need to hire an experienced professional. These roofers know how to avoid mistakes. Here is a look at the top 20 most common roofing mistakes. 

Need professional and experienced roofing help in the Denver, CO area? Our team at Advanced Consulting is ready to assist you. We have the expertise to fix those roofing problems with your residential or commercial roofs!

1. Working With the Wrong Contractor

Whether you want to repair or replace your roof, you need an experienced contractor for the task. Bad contractors can wreak havoc on your home. In some cases, these contractors promise to complete the project at a small price. These contractors pose as professionals, but they are just preying on the public. After a bad storm, you might see them driving through neighborhoods and promising to fix a roof at a low rate. They use high-pressure sales tactics to close a deal. These contractors might see all the right words, but in reality, they don’t care about your home or safety. Find a contractor with the proper licenses and permits to work on your home. A professional and experienced contractor wants you to have a safe roof over your head. 

2. Failing to get a Roof Permit

man checking his notepad for a roofing permit

You might think that you can hire someone, and they will start working on your roof. However, in many communities, you need a permit before beginning work. These permits ensure that the roof is safe and that the project follows all of the local building codes. In Denver, you will need a permit for any work on your home, including the roof. Sometimes, if the contractor is unscrupulous, they will work without obtaining a permit. With that, the project could be placed on hold until the permit is secured. If you want to make sure that your roofing project goes on without issues, hire a professional and licensed roofing specialist. 

3. Not Following the Manufacturer’s Guidelines

Following directions is an essential step of any job. When you need a roofing repair or replacement, the manufacturer has instructions that need to be followed. Whether on the box or packaging, your roofer needs to check out this necessary information. Even the most experienced roofing contractors need to take note of these instructions. If you are working on the roof by yourself, never ignore any of those directions from the manufacturers. Not following the guidelines can increase the chance of damage and improper installation. Along with that, any improperly installed materials will void the manufacturer’s warranties. 

4. Not Considering the Roof’s Slope

Not all roofs are the same. What works on one home might not be the best choice for another. The slope of your roof will decide what materials you can use on your home. With those lower roofs, roll roofing might be a great choice. On the other hand, higher-pitched roofs need tiles and shingles. If you choose the wrong material for your specific slope, then your roof could be more susceptible to water penetration and other damages. 

5. Not Removing Old Shingles

Unfortunately, some contractors will place those new shingles over existing ones. While that is acceptable in some parts of the country, any professional roofer knows that is a big mistake. Industry standards require a contractor to remove all the old shingles and replace them with new ones. Removing shingles is absolutely necessary if you have any damage to the roof. New shingles on old ones can create a crevice where dirt and water can collect. These mistakes increase the likelihood of damage, leading to potentially expensive repairs. 

Related: How To Prevent Ice Dams & Reduce Roof Damage 

6. Misaligned Shingles

gray rooftop

One surefire way to spot a poor roofing job is misaligned shingles. When the cutouts are not vertically aligned or the joints are not on the same horizontal plane, those are signs that the shingles are misaligned. Not only does this make your roofing project look sloppy and unorganized, but it also doesn’t provide enough protection for your roof. Those misaligned shingles have gaps and cracks, which lead to potential water damage to your roof and home. 

7. Missing Shingles or Presence or Damaged Shingles

You should have new shingles installed on the roof with a roofing repair or replacement. The last thing you want to see is damage or missing shingles on a new install. If you spot those shingle problems, that is another sign of a poor roofing job. A professional contractor should be using new and pristine shingles. Under no circumstances should the roofing company come to your home with recycled or reused shingles. That might save you money, but they don’t offer the same level of protection for your home. Plus, it makes the project look amateurish. 

8. Improperly Set Shingle Overhang

To the untrained eye, you might not even notice the shingle overhang. Shingles should never stop at the edge of your roof. They are designed to hang over the roof, especially if your home has a drip edge. Some contractors will short the shingles or leave too much overhang on the roof. A professional roofer knows better. Too little overhand lets water seep into your home, while too much overhang can get damaged in a storm. 

9. Incorrect Shingle Exposure

All shingles follow the manufacturer’s recommended length for exposure between the layers. When the shingles are clustered together, it can shorten the amount of exposure. With that, the shingles are vulnerable to damage. On the other hand, when the shingles are too far apart, your roof is not getting enough protection, leading to more problems with water. An experienced contractor knows the correct placement for the shingles, so you don’t have to worry about any potential issues with your roof. 

10. Reusing Old Flashing

Flashing is a thin material, but it has a critical job on your roof. This component prevents damage to your roof, and it can help protect chimneys, skylights, and vents from leakages. Flashing redirects water to stop water damage in your home. A few roofers will try to reuse old flashing. In some cases, the flashing has retained its shape and visually appears in excellent condition. However, reused flashing sets your roof up for water leaks and damage. 

11. Unsecured Flashing

As you already know, the flashing has a very important role on your roof. It maintains the safety of your roof and makes the job finished with a professional touch. However, like all roofing components, you want to ensure that the flashing is installed correctly. Any overlapped, misaligned, or unfastened parts of the flashing can lead to plenty of trouble down the road. Unsecured flashing means that your roof and home are not protected against snow, ice, or rain. 

12. Incorrect Nail Length

Every style of shingles has a corresponding nail that must be used with that component. The length of the nail is crucial. When an improper nail length is used, those shingles are not secured, increasing the risk of them falling off your roof. Another concern is shifting shingles, which reduces the lifespan of your roof. The right-sized nails ensure that they will work well with the decking and securely hold the shingles into place. 

Related: What to Do When You Find a Roof Leak?

13. Poor Nail Placement

person hammering a nail on a roof

Roofing professionals have the experience to place those nails into the shingles correctly. One of the most common mistakes is improperly placing fasteners and nails when installing a new roof. Contractors in Denver, CO, understand that nail placement can expose your roof to the elements. When the nails are exposed, they will rust and develop holes in your shingles. Once again, that damage can make it easier for wind and water to damage your roof. 

14. Poor Installation Around Attic Ventilation

An attic is a vital part of your roof and home. You need proper ventilation in your attic to maintain the lifespan of your roof. Poorly vented areas can lead to moisture damage, which will eventually cause the shingles and tiles to loosen from the roof. Ventilation helps your attic areas to remain cool in the summer. When excess heat builds up, that can also damage your roof. Along with that, you might see higher heating and cooling costs as the attic’s insulation cannot regulate the temperature. A poorly ventilated attic is one of the most common causes of premature roofing decking and shingle failure. 

15. Mismatched Slate Coloring

mismatched roof coloring during a new roof installation

Slate roofs are beautiful. However, you need a professional in the Denver area to install them properly. One of the most common mistakes with this roof is finding slate plates that match. Slates do once in many different colors and shades. While you could have a roof with different colors, it will leave your home looking mismatched, spotty, and checkered. As you pick out the slate, check that the color matches the existing shade on your roof. Even with slate from the same sources, you could run into the risk of not having the same colors for your roof. 

16. Failure to Use Starter Strip Shingles

Eaves are the starting point for your roofing project. When you look at your roof, they will overhang on your roof. One of the most common mistakes begins at the start of the project. A professional roofer knows to use a starter section of shingles along the eaves and rakes edges. These starter strip shingles are not the same as those regular shingles. Instead, they are used to seal the first shingle along the eaves. When you don’t use a starter strip, moisture can make its way into the roof deck. 

17. Not Installing a Drip Edge

At the edge of your roof, you will see the drip edge. The drip edge has a very important job of redirecting water from the home and into the gutter. Water will seep under your shingles and damage your home without this edge. A few older homes don’t have drip edges, but many of those modern buildings must have them installed. An experienced roofer knows to install these drip edges, but some amateur contractors might forget about them. While you can save money by installing a drip edge, leaving them off of the roof is not worth the risk. 

18. Missing an Underlayment for Ice & Water Shielding

If you live in a colder climate, like Denver, you need underlayment for your roof. Some roofers will apply the new roofing materials directly on the wooden deck. Any home in colder climates needs underlayment to prevent water and ice damage. A layer of underlayment should be applied when any new materials are installed. That underlayment is a waterproof barrier that provides a foundation for your new roof. With that layer, your roof will enjoy a longer lifespan. 

Related: How Long Does Insulation Last?

19. Not Addressing Ice Dams in Colder Climates

ice building on a roof top

Ice damming is a common problem in colder climates. As the snow melts on the roof and then refreezes, it forces ice and water under your shingles. That can also add unnecessary weight to your gutter system and eaves. Proper attic ventilation can prevent ice dams. Adhesive ice and water barriers also protect the edge of your roof. Check your building codes. In some communities, there are specific regulations to prevent ice dams. 

20. Presence of Roof Stains

Finally, the last common mistake is the presence of roof stains. If a few shingles have a different color from the rest of the roof, it could be a sign of water leakage. Severe water damage will start to show up through the surface of your attic. A small stain can be easily repaired. However, numerous signs could be a sign of a bigger problem. You might need to replace the whole roof. 

The Bottom Line: What Advanced Consulting Can do For You

a beautiful home with a reconstructed roof

Now you know the most common roofing mistakes, you want to find an experienced roofer who can handle your repair and replacement projects. At Advanced Consulting, we work with you to discover your roofing problems and get them fixed for you. Our team can take care of those residential and commercial roofing jobs. We will get the job done correctly to ensure you have a safe roof over your head. 

Are you searching for the right contractor for your roofing project in Denver? At Advanced Consulting, we have a team of experts who can fix your roof so that it continues to protect your home or business. Contact us to learn more about our services. 

Scroll to Top