Roofing new roof and gutter replacement, gutter replacement, seamless aluminum

Roofing new roof and gutter replacement, gutter replacement, seamless aluminum

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Expert: Stan Skarbek — 4/26/2006

Question

We have a 23 year old shake roof that we are considering replacing with shingle. I’ve received 3 bids so far for the same type of shingle (Certainteed Presidential Shake because we like the look). Two of the bids (contractor A and B) recommended replacement of the gutters at the same time as the re-roof. The remaining bid (contractor C) specified that the gutters look ok and we would just need to recondition them by cleaning them and repainting the gutters. Our gutters are 23 gauge galvanized steel. It is not seamless and it appears to have been painted in the field. There is some rust in the gutters but we are unsure as to the extent (contractor B stated that it was worn, contractor C stated that it was in good shape — our roof inspector said there was some rust). Contractor C estimated that our gutters could last another 10 years if we repaint periodically.

My questions are

1) is it customary to replace the gutters when reroofing?

2) if we choose not to replace the gutters, how much of an additional cost over typical costs would it be to replace the gutters later on after the re-roof?

3) contractor C stated that because we might need to replace the gutters later on, for additional ease of gutter replacement, when he re-roofs, he will pull the plywood back from the edge of the roof a bit and just apply the shingles all the way to edge to make it easier to access the gutters for replacement. If we were replacing the gutters at the same time as the roof, he would apply the plywood all the way to the edge plus some additional work (not sure what). When questioned about whether this would make the roof less waterproof, he stated that it is the shingles that provide weatherproofing, not the plywood. Is this standard practice and would it compromise the integrity of the roof?

4) If we do decide to replace the gutters, what should we specify — seamless aluminum or seamless steel? From your comments to previous questions, it seems that seamless is the way to go, but if we had to choose, which type of metal would be preferable? Can we request a heavier gauge alumninum to minimize dents? (We may need to lean a ladder occasionally against the gutters so I’m concern about strength).

I’m in the San Jose area. Two of bids are around the same amount ($13,500) for the reroof (contractor B and C). Contractor A submitted a bid of $19,500 for the same type of material. All bids are for Presidential shake. I understand that Presidential shake is more labor intensive but I’m surprised at the price discrepancy. Am I paying for the installer’s expertise at this point? Btw, Contractor A bid is markedly higher for other shingle material also (Elk Prestique Plus). Is this because of labor costs?

One last question :-) What is your opinion on the energy star Elk cool color shingles? Does it really keep the house cooler or should we just stick with the Presidential because we like the look and make sure our roof is well ventilated? I am concerned that going from shake to shingle that our house will get hotter due to the shingle material. All three contractors specified that they would add eyehole vents (what are those?) for increased ventilation and that was included in the bid prices. Do vents compromise the integrity of the roof?

Thanks so much for your help.

Answer

Hi Virginia,

The difference in price to have the gutters replaced during the reroofing process or having it done later is usually around $100 to $200, depending on the shape of the roof and the length of the gutter. That means it’s not a serious mistake if you decide to replace the gutters in the future.

I prefer the seamless gutter because it’s dramatically cheaper the the traditional galvanized metal gutters. The galvanized gutters need to be painted, inside and out, but the seamless gutters have the color of your choice bonded to the metal when the metal is made. The metal comes on a long roll and it’s formed into the shape and length you need, at the job site. So you’re saving money on the gutter itself and you’re saving money because you don’t have to paint the gutters.

With seamless gutters you have a choice of Aluminum or steel. I prefer the steel. On a typical house the cost is $100 to $150 more than the aluminum, but the steel is just a bit tougher so that you can usually lean a ladder against it without cause dents. It’s not nearly as firm as the galvanized metal gutters, but I think it’s tough enough.

If you have rust in the gutter, that means you’re just like 95% of the homeowners in the Bay Area. The question is whether it’s surface rust or if the rust is eating through the metal. If it’s not obvious, you can easily determine this with a piece of sandpaper. Where you see the rust, sand it down. If it’s just surface rust, with just a little sanding you’ll have removed all of the rust. If the rust is eating into the metal, then after just a little sanding it will be obvious that it goes deeper.

If the gutters have surface rust and if the joints are still soldered, then the gutters probably don’t leak. If the rust is eating into the metal, then your only real solution to keep the gutters from leaking is replacing the gutters.

Of course, the downside of leaking gutters is that it’s inconvenient if the leak is over a walkway or over the driveway. It’s not a matter of the roof leaking or damage being cause to something behind the gutter. So it’s not being irresponsible if you decide to put that expense off for a few years.

I love the look of the Presidential shake, so I agree with you. I’m not a fan of the cool colors and I doubt that there is really much benefit from them. The much bigger issue is that everyone’s first impression of your home is when they drive up to your house and the roof is a large part of that first view. You want the color that enhances the over look of the roof. So make your decision on roof colors based 100% on what looks good. Your good ventilation is the attic will keep the attic cool.

There’s no problem with what the contractor is going to do,keeping the plywood back about an inch, to accomodate future gutter replacement. Functionally it will be just as good. The shingles will dip down slightly, where they enter the gutter, but that’s not very noticeable and it’s not a problem. If you’re concerned about how that will look, as that contractor for the addresses of a couple houses that were roofed that way and you can check it out.

The Presidential shingle is quite a bit more than the 50 year Elk shingle. Usually $1800 to $2200 for an average size house. There are a few reasons, if you’re interested, I could explain it for you. But the price for the same shingle shouldn’t be $6000 different. You should ask each contractor why the price is different. It may be that you have two layers of roofing to tear off and two of the contractors didn’t notice the extra roof. It could be that the high priced roof includes gutters and the other bids don’t. It could be that the one contractor is hoping to retire after doing your job :o)

By the way, I think you mean "eyebrow vents", not "eyehole vents." Those extra vents will ventilate the attic to keep it cooler. The vents don’t hurt the roof at all.

Well you had a pretty long list of questions, but I think I responded to all of them. I hope that helps. Feel free to follow up in the future.

Your roofer with a keyboard,

Advertisement

Expert: Stan Skarbek — 4/26/2006

Question

We have a 23 year old shake roof that we are considering replacing with shingle. I’ve received 3 bids so far for the same type of shingle (Certainteed Presidential Shake because we like the look). Two of the bids (contractor A and B) recommended replacement of the gutters at the same time as the re-roof. The remaining bid (contractor C) specified that the gutters look ok and we would just need to recondition them by cleaning them and repainting the gutters. Our gutters are 23 gauge galvanized steel. It is not seamless and it appears to have been painted in the field. There is some rust in the gutters but we are unsure as to the extent (contractor B stated that it was worn, contractor C stated that it was in good shape — our roof inspector said there was some rust). Contractor C estimated that our gutters could last another 10 years if we repaint periodically.

My questions are

1) is it customary to replace the gutters when reroofing?

2) if we choose not to replace the gutters, how much of an additional cost over typical costs would it be to replace the gutters later on after the re-roof?

3) contractor C stated that because we might need to replace the gutters later on, for additional ease of gutter replacement, when he re-roofs, he will pull the plywood back from the edge of the roof a bit and just apply the shingles all the way to edge to make it easier to access the gutters for replacement. If we were replacing the gutters at the same time as the roof, he would apply the plywood all the way to the edge plus some additional work (not sure what). When questioned about whether this would make the roof less waterproof, he stated that it is the shingles that provide weatherproofing, not the plywood. Is this standard practice and would it compromise the integrity of the roof?

Roofing new roof and gutter replacement, gutter replacement, seamless aluminum

4) If we do decide to replace the gutters, what should we specify — seamless aluminum or seamless steel? From your comments to previous questions, it seems that seamless is the way to go, but if we had to choose, which type of metal would be preferable? Can we request a heavier gauge alumninum to minimize dents? (We may need to lean a ladder occasionally against the gutters so I’m concern about strength).

I’m in the San Jose area. Two of bids are around the same amount ($13,500) for the reroof (contractor B and C). Contractor A submitted a bid of $19,500 for the same type of material. All bids are for Presidential shake. I understand that Presidential shake is more labor intensive but I’m surprised at the price discrepancy. Am I paying for the installer’s expertise at this point? Btw, Contractor A bid is markedly higher for other shingle material also (Elk Prestique Plus). Is this because of labor costs?

One last question :-) What is your opinion on the energy star Elk cool color shingles? Does it really keep the house cooler or should we just stick with the Presidential because we like the look and make sure our roof is well ventilated? I am concerned that going from shake to shingle that our house will get hotter due to the shingle material. All three contractors specified that they would add eyehole vents (what are those?) for increased ventilation and that was included in the bid prices. Do vents compromise the integrity of the roof?

Thanks so much for your help.

Answer

Hi Virginia,

The difference in price to have the gutters replaced during the reroofing process or having it done later is usually around $100 to $200, depending on the shape of the roof and the length of the gutter. That means it’s not a serious mistake if you decide to replace the gutters in the future.

I prefer the seamless gutter because it’s dramatically cheaper the the traditional galvanized metal gutters. The galvanized gutters need to be painted, inside and out, but the seamless gutters have the color of your choice bonded to the metal when the metal is made. The metal comes on a long roll and it’s formed into the shape and length you need, at the job site. So you’re saving money on the gutter itself and you’re saving money because you don’t have to paint the gutters.

With seamless gutters you have a choice of Aluminum or steel. I prefer the steel. On a typical house the cost is $100 to $150 more than the aluminum, but the steel is just a bit tougher so that you can usually lean a ladder against it without cause dents. It’s not nearly as firm as the galvanized metal gutters, but I think it’s tough enough.

If you have rust in the gutter, that means you’re just like 95% of the homeowners in the Bay Area. The question is whether it’s surface rust or if the rust is eating through the metal. If it’s not obvious, you can easily determine this with a piece of sandpaper. Where you see the rust, sand it down. If it’s just surface rust, with just a little sanding you’ll have removed all of the rust. If the rust is eating into the metal, then after just a little sanding it will be obvious that it goes deeper.

If the gutters have surface rust and if the joints are still soldered, then the gutters probably don’t leak. If the rust is eating into the metal, then your only real solution to keep the gutters from leaking is replacing the gutters.

Of course, the downside of leaking gutters is that it’s inconvenient if the leak is over a walkway or over the driveway. It’s not a matter of the roof leaking or damage being cause to something behind the gutter. So it’s not being irresponsible if you decide to put that expense off for a few years.

I love the look of the Presidential shake, so I agree with you. I’m not a fan of the cool colors and I doubt that there is really much benefit from them. The much bigger issue is that everyone’s first impression of your home is when they drive up to your house and the roof is a large part of that first view. You want the color that enhances the over look of the roof. So make your decision on roof colors based 100% on what looks good. Your good ventilation is the attic will keep the attic cool.

There’s no problem with what the contractor is going to do,keeping the plywood back about an inch, to accomodate future gutter replacement. Functionally it will be just as good. The shingles will dip down slightly, where they enter the gutter, but that’s not very noticeable and it’s not a problem. If you’re concerned about how that will look, as that contractor for the addresses of a couple houses that were roofed that way and you can check it out.

The Presidential shingle is quite a bit more than the 50 year Elk shingle. Usually $1800 to $2200 for an average size house. There are a few reasons, if you’re interested, I could explain it for you. But the price for the same shingle shouldn’t be $6000 different. You should ask each contractor why the price is different. It may be that you have two layers of roofing to tear off and two of the contractors didn’t notice the extra roof. It could be that the high priced roof includes gutters and the other bids don’t. It could be that the one contractor is hoping to retire after doing your job :o)

By the way, I think you mean "eyebrow vents", not "eyehole vents." Those extra vents will ventilate the attic to keep it cooler. The vents don’t hurt the roof at all.

Well you had a pretty long list of questions, but I think I responded to all of them. I hope that helps. Feel free to follow up in the future.

Your roofer with a keyboard,


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