To get the job done right, hire a professional roofing contractor. With this investment, it's crucial that you receive trustworthy support-

and the know-how and breadth of services needed to complete the work.

So before you sign a contract, here are a few things you should check for. 

Does the contractor: 

  • Have a good reputation? Look for references. Call them.

  • Have adequate insurance? 

  • Thoroughly inspect your roof? Including flashing, chimney, soil sacks, other roof penetration, deck, plus attic.

  • Provide a written estimate? With an accurate description of the work to be performed, plus work that may have to be contracted.

  • Explain the components of the roofing system?

  • Check existing ventilation for proper circulation?

  • Explain the importance of ventilation? Improper ventilation will damage shingles and can invalidate the manufacturer's warranty.

  • Explain the reasons for tearing off versus nailing over the existing roof? 

  • Know, explain and comply with local building codes? 

  • Apply underlayment to the wood deck? 

  • Apply shingles according to manufacturer's specification? 

  • Use proper fastening techniques? Four fasteners for each shingle-six in high-wind areas. Fasteners should penetrate 3/4" into the deck.

  • Commit to supervise the job during all phases of work and inspect it completely when finished?

  • Thoroughly clean up your roof and around your property when finished?

  • Clearly explain both the workmanship and manufacturer's warranty? Are defective shingles replaced for prorated replacement cost, or original cost, with labor additional?

  • Offer additional warranty coverage? 

  • Use quality roofing materials? Check warranty plus UL fire and wind resistance ratings. 




  • Deck: The surface installed over the support framing members to which the roofing shingles is applied.

  • Drip edge: A non-corrosive, non-staining material used along the eaves and rakes to allow water runoff to drip clear of underlying construction.

  • Eave: The overhanging lower edge of your roof

  • Felt: Fibrous material saturated with asphalt and used as an underlayment or sheathing paper

  • Flashing: The protective layer around your chimney's base

  • Gable: The upper portion of a side wall that comes to a triangular point at the ridge of a sloping roof

  • Gable Roof: A type of roof containing sloping planes of the same pitch on each side of the ridge. Contains a gable at the end.

  • Hip: The peak of your roofline going downward

  • Rake Edge: The side of your roof's slope

  • Ridge: The peak of your roofline along its top

  • Ridge Vent: Ventilation that is applied underneath your roof's ridge

  • Undereave Vent: An opening for the passage of air through your roof 

  • Valley: The portion of your roof where two slopes intersect

  • Water-Resistant Underlayment: Water-resistant protection beneath your roof's deck and shingles



Additional Terms


  • Bundle: One package of shingles

  • Square: 100 square feet of shingles 

  • Starter Course: The first row of shingles applied to base of your roof








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