roof with gutters

It’s Spring! Time to Inspect Your Roof.

It’s been an exceptionally mild winter in Maryland, and it looks like we’re in for an early spring!  Get out and enjoy the warmer weather and the early spring flowers and foliage— just don’t forget to take stock of your home and property while you’re out there.

Just because Marylanders didn’t have to deal with a blizzard during the winter doesn’t mean your home— especially the often-forgotten roof— wasn’t affected. Even if winter’s rain and winds didn’t cause your roof serious damage, you should still do a walk-around to catch any minor issues that could cause greater damage down the road.

General Wear and Tear

Start your spring survey by checking for things like rust on your gutters or areas of your roof that seem to be sagging. These tend to be large areas that are easy to spot from the ground.

Gutters and Downspouts

No matter how clean your gutters were when you winterized last October, chances are rain and wind have filled them up again with dried-up leaves and other debris. Clean, functional gutters are the key to your roof’s drainage system. Efficient water run-off protects your soffits, siding, and shingles from damage, so make it a priority to unclog them completely.

After you’ve cleaned out the visible debris from your gutters, move on to an equally important part of your home’s drainage system— your downspout. Try using a hose or a plumbers snake for hard-to-reach areas.

Once your gutters and downspouts are clean and clear, check your roof’s drainage system for additional damage, including missing fasteners, holes, and areas that may be sagging.

Inspect the Shingles

No matter what they’re made of, the shingles that cover your roof are critically important to the integrity of your roof. Save “walking your roof” for the professionals, but you can usually see the following issues with your roof easily from the ground:

  • Missing Shingles. Have these replaced immediately. A missing shingle can result in a weak spot in your roof, causing it to leak and exposing it to damage like rot and mold.
  • Buckling Shingles. If the framing underneath your shingles retains moisture, the shingles on top can shift or buckle. Replace these right away, as they have the potential to tear or crack, causing serious damage to your roof.
  • Curling Shingles. Shingles that have been installed improperly will begin to curl at the edges. Have these fixed promptly to avoid further damage.
  • Blistering Shingles. When moisture gets trapped inside a shingle, a blister develops that can easily burst, causing damage to the roof’s infrastructure. Unlike most problems with your shingles, blistering can be hard to spot from the ground. Consider arranging for an annual, professional inspection to catch any blisters that may have developed on your roof’s shingles.
  • Stained Shingles. See any streaking or stains? Either of these usually means that your roof’s ventilation system is damaged, or there’s a leak somewhere else. Even if you’re an accomplished DIYer, think twice before tackling this repair. Contact a professional roofer.

Evaluate for Mold

If you catch mold or mildew early— before they seep into your roof’s foundation— simple remedies like zinc or lead control strips usually contain the problem. If mold has spread, or is covering a large area, call a roofing professional to contain the problem. Don’t delay, as mold that spreads to the interior of your home can be dangerous to you, your family, and your pets.

Trim Branches

Overgrown vegetation and hanging tree limbs threaten the integrity of your roof. This is a much easier job in the spring when trees are just beginning to “leaf out”, as opposed to summer and early fall when they are likely to be in full bloom. Keep them trimmed back if you have the knowledge and the equipment. If not, don’t take a chance— there are professional services that can take care of this for you at far less risk to your life and limb. (Cutting back branches will also reduce the amount of time you spend cleaning leaves out of your gutters in the future.)

Check from the Inside Out

Go into your attic and look up. If you can see any light anywhere, you have a hole somewhere there shouldn’t be. Assess for any water damage and mold/mildew growth. Mold and mildew have a particular smell, so survey with that sense, too— even if you don’t see anything, that telltale smell might mean something is amiss that you can’t see. Call the professionals for a more thorough inspection

Some people may be able to work through this list on their own. However, many will prefer to call in the professionals. Bringing in the experts can make the process more efficient and thorough. At PJ’s Roofing, we have the expertise and experience to provide you with a comprehensive inspection, followed up with any repairs needed. Call us today and start a tradition of an annual roof inspection.

roofing replacement

When You Need to Replace Your Roof: Take It From the Top

Owning a home is a big part of the American Dream— not to mention a solid investment in yours and your family’s future— but becoming a homeowner isn’t just about saving for your down payment and paying your mortgage in a timely manner for the next 30 years. It’s also about safeguarding your investment— perhaps the biggest one you’ll ever make— through a regular home maintenance schedule— including replacing your roof when needed.

How Much is This Going To Cost Me?

While it’s certainly fair at this point to ask, “How much is a roof replacement going to cost me?” the answer has to be, “That depends.” Not all roofs are created equal, and not all roofers charge the same price depending on the home’s geographic location and the complexity of the job.  Keep in mind that a roof replacement quote typically includes the removal and disposal of up to two layers of old shingles. Additional materials needed may also include a felt underlayment, ice-and-water shield, nails, ridge-vent, and roof flashing details such as valley, drip-edge, gable, and chimney flashing and caulk.

In some cases, the cost of materials may also include permitting, ordering trash removal or a dumpster, wood planks and boards, and the cost of plywood. Some contractors include their overhead in the cost of labor, while others calculate it separately.

Assuming a single-story house with a hip and/or gable combination roof measuring roughly 1700 square feet, the cost of materials for a basic 3-tab, 25-year shingles roof would be roughly $150 to $200 per square, all in.

Are Composite Shingles All the Same?

If you’re like the vast majority of U.S. residents, your home has an asphalt, or “composite” shingle, roof. Made from fiberglass mat, asphalt, minerals, and stone granules, composite shingles make up nearly three-quarters of residential roofing in the country. There are three primary types of asphalt or composite shingles:

  1. 3-tab shingles are lightweight, affordable, and can last a couple of decades under the right conditions. Although they lack some of the aesthetic qualities of architectural and luxury shingles, their exposed layer is notched (usually into three tabs) to give a more decorative appearance. “Blow off” can be a problem, but 3-tab shingles may be a good choice for homeowners on budget in certain, less vulnerable areas of the country.
  2. Architectural or dimensional shingles are strong, durable, and multi-dimensional in texture and appearance, lasting 30 years or more. You can expect to pay a bit more for 30-year architectural or dimensional shingles. The most popular asphalt shingle in use today, architectural shingles are a bit thicker and longer lasting than basic 3-tab shingles, offering a better value to homeowners under demanding conditions.
  3. Luxury Shingles are an excellent design alternative to slate and shake roofs with extra layers that provide protection against tears, impact, and blow-off in vulnerable regions. Depending on your contractor, your home’s location, and the accessibility and complexity of your roof, selecting luxury shingles— also known as “premium” or “50-year architectural shingles”— can represent a significant increase per square foot over other composite materials. (Keep in mind that no asphalt shingle roof will last for 50 years despite the label— 30 years of service from a roof is considered excellent from an asphalt roof.)

Depending on your home’s location, how easy it is to access your roof, the kind of asphalt shingle you choose, and the type and complexity of your roof (including the number of special features like skylights, chimneys, dormers), your cost of a composite shingles roof could range from as low as $3.00 to as high as $7.50 per square foot.

In the market for a new roof? Talk to PJ’s Roofing. We’re Frederick’s experts in composite asphalt shingles, and all other types of roofing material. We’ll help make what can feel like an overwhelming proposition more manageable by asking the right questions and working within your budget.

copper roof on md home

Replacing Asphalt Shingles with a Metal Roof

Keeping tabs on home maintenance is one of the best ways to preserve its value. When you find a problem, keep in mind that– regardless of upfront expenses– addressing these issues before they degrade far enough to cause further damage will also end up being economical in the long run.

So if it looks like 2020 is the year to replace your deteriorating roof, the first question you should ask yourself is “Do I stay with the existing roofing material, or try a different option?” For example, despite its higher initial cost, metal roofing is likely to save you time and money over the years. Compared to asphalt shingles that typically last 15-18 years, metal roofing has a lifespan of 60 years or more and requires only minimal maintenance. A metal roof also reflects heat, making it more energy efficient than a traditional asphalt roof.

If you’re intrigued by the benefits of metal roofing over traditional asphalt shingles, there are a few things to keep in mind. When you get the quote, remember that you’re buying a higher-end, more durable product that requires a more complex installation. There are other factors that will play a role in determining the cost of your new metal roof including:

Location. A new metal roof with identical specs in an expensive market like Washington, DC or northern Virginia is likely to cost 30-50% higher than it would in the middle of the country.

What’s Your Square Footage? Contractors measure roofs in square. One square is equal to 100 square feet. Typically, the greater the square footage of your roof, the less you will pay per square foot. Surprisingly, very small orders (200 square feet or 2 squares of custom-sized sheet metal panels) can be very expensive.

Design type matters. Another significant (but fortunately more controllable) factor to determining metal roofing costs is the type you decide upon. The least costly metal roofing option, corrugated or ribbed steel, could run $6.00 to $8.00 per square foot installed, depending on the gauge of the metal and the type and quality of the paint finish required for your climate. A metal shingle roof could cost between $8.00 and $13.00 per square foot installed, while a standing seam metal roof may be $10.00 to $16.00 per square foot installed.

How complex is the installation? If you have a complex roof with chimneys that require flashing, many angles, dormers, sidewalls, and/or skylights, sidewalls, your installation will be higher.

What type of metal do you want?
Steel is a common and acceptable metal for roof fabrication. For most residences and buildings in the Frederick area, we recommend:
– G-90 Galvanized or “hot dip” steel with a zinc oxide coating and Kynar paint finish is the most affordable option. Interlocking steel shingles and tone-coated shingles and tiles are typically made from G-90 galvanized steel.
– Galvalume to fabricate residential, standing seam panels. Galvalume steel provides longer-lasting protection against rusting and corrosion than does galvanized.
Aluminum provides longer-lasting protection from corrosion, and is generally considered a more durable option than steel for use in coastal areas.
– Aluminum shingles start at around $9.00 per square foot including trim.
– Aluminum standing seam panels are fabricated and cut to order. Expect an initial base cost of around $12.00 per square foot.
Copper and Zinc are premium quality metals whose price depends on the weight and thickness of the shingles or standing seam pans. Installation is more complex and expensive, especially when dealing with 16-20 oz. copper standing seam panels, which require soldering.

When properly designed and meticulously installed by an experienced PJ’s Roofing crew, a metal roof can reduce energy consumption, providing cost savings and immediate return on your investment. Choose from a broad spectrum of materials, colors, finishes, and gauges give you the look and performance you expect. At PJ’s Roofing, our experts are ready to help you select a new metal roof that will be perfect for your home.

home with roof in md

What’s Trending? Roofing Styles & Materials for 2020

Unless you’re in the construction business, you may not be aware that roofing styles and materials trend just like fashion, music, and topics on Twitter. In fact, every year, roofing styles and materials fall in and out of favor– and 2020 is no exception.

If it’s time for you to consider a roof replacement for your home, your best bet is to reach out to a local roofing company who can advise you on the best solution for your practical and aesthetic needs. In the meantime, think about these options for roof replacement styles and materials to get an idea of what you like and find attractive:

Roofing Styles

  • Flat – This may be the simplest and often the least expensive type of roof to build, but there are considerations that can’t be skipped. Because it won’t drain well, a flat roof needs to be expertly waterproofed. For those in urban areas who wish to turn their roofs into more livable surface area, a flat roof design would be a great choice.
  • Shed – Like a flat roof, a shed roof is a single plane. However, a shed roof is slanted– higher on one side than the other– which allows for far better drainage than a flat roof.
  • Gable – A gable roof is another style of roof that is relatively easy to build and suitable to many different climates. A two-sided configuration that both slope down from a central ridge, a gable roof creates space for an attic and additional insulation. A vented gable room doesn’t collect debris like fallen leaves, nor does it allow snow or ice to accumulate.
  • Hipped – Picture a central ridge from which two long sides and two shorter ones slanting downward. Because its eaves can be configured to provide shade to western and southern windows, the design of a hipped roof is ideal for warmer weather. Its wind and moisture resistance also makes it a good choice for climates where there are frequent rainstorms.
  • Pyramid – A pyramid roof is similar to a hipped roof, except a pyramid is topped by a sharp peak instead of a flat ridge.
  • Mansard – Another variation on a hipped roof, there are two slopes to this unique style of roofing. The lower slope contains dormer windows, and is much steeper than the upper slope. Mansard roofs are especially useful for those who want to maximize their living space, as this style allows for an additional story under the roof.

Roofing Materials

  • Asphalt Shingles – Easily the most often-used residential roofing material in the US, asphalt shingles are an easy-to-install and economical option. Fiberglass or an organic material like cellulose can be used to reinforce asphalt shutters to provide greater strength and longevity without altering their appearance.
  • Clay and Concrete Tiles – Clay tiles can be flat, scalloped or ribbed, and are extremely durable. Because they are very heavy, they should only be installed professionally. Like clay, concrete tiles are durable, heavy, and add interest and texture to a roof, but they are also less expensive.
  • Metal Roofing – When it comes to weather resistance, metal roofs are at the top of the list. Metal shingles and panels are available in stainless steel, aluminum, copper, and zinc.
  • Wood Shingles and Shake – A popular choice for hundreds of years, wood shingles and shakes turn an attractive, subtle shade of gray with exposure to the elements. Shingles are typically cut by machine; shakes have a more roughly-hewn look, as they are usually cut by hand.
  • Slate – Available in traditional shades of green, grey and black as well as exotic purples and reds, slate roofing brings a unique elegance to roofs of all types.

PJ’s Roofing Donates Time to Renovate Frederick Rescue Mission’s Rescued Treasures Roof

Over the weekend of November 16th and 17th, PJ’s Roofing donated time and material to rebuild the roof over the Frederick Rescue Mission’s Rescued Treasures building. Prior to the renovation, the roof had to be covered with a tarp to keep water from leaking through, but even this method didn’t fully work. We were able to provide a structurally sound roof for the building and ensure the leaks become a thing of the past!

The Rescued Treasures building was in dire need of a new roof that kept water out.

A big shoutout goes to ADS Trash for lending us a dumpster for this project. The area was kept tidy (by construction standards) because of this generous contribution!

PJ’s Roofers worked hard over the weekend to give this building the upgrade it deserved.

Rescued Treasures exists to provide free clothing, coats, shoes, backpacks, sleeping bags and linens for those experiencing homelessness or just have needs. Those served include students, veterans, the disabled, the elderly, the working poor, and those who are homeless.

Rescued Treasures also provides the opportunity for job seekers to shop for clothing for a new career. PJ’s Roofing was honored to be a part of this important renovation. We are always happy to give back to a community that has supported us year after year, especially when we can make such a difference for those in need.

vote for PJs Roofing

Thank You For Voting For PJ’s Roofing!

We would like to thank everyone who voted for us as Frederick Magazine’s “Best Roofing Company in Frederick”! Stay tuned to this blog to see how the results turn out!

PJ’s Wins Best Roofing Company For 5th Consecutive Year

Breaking news! For the 5th year in a row, we were just named Best Roofing Company in Frederick and we couldn’t be happier!

We would like to thank EVERYONE who voted for us in the Frederick News Post’s 2019 Best of the Best Awards! Thank you so much and we look forward to a great 2020!

standing seam metal

Roofing Trends That Can Help Revitalize Your Home

Once you have lived in a home for some time, it’s easy to just overlook its faults and see it the same way you’ve always seen it. However, homes change over time, and portions of your home are certainly not in as good of condition as they were years ago. One area to pay particular attention with regard to aging is the roof. As the years go by, and Mother Nature takes a toll, the condition of your roof is going to degrade.

If you are ready to do some work in an effort to revitalize your home, consider the trends below.

Playing It Safe – With Regard to Color

Rather than trying to turn heads with the color of your residential roof, the current trend is to stay a little closer to the middle of the road. That means keeping the tones rather neutral, with something like a grey or light brown to blend in nicely into the surrounding environment. The precise color you select for your new roof will obviously depend on a number of factors, such as the look of your home as a whole, the landscaping you choose, and even the aesthetic offered by the rest of the neighborhood. It’s certainly okay to pick something that stands out a bit, but if you are interested in keeping with current trends, you’ll remain somewhat on the conservative side of the palette.

Keeping It Minimal

This next trend matches up closely with the first point we made, as neutral colors can be seen as a minimalistic choice. In addition to the color, other decisions that can keep you on the minimal side of the ledger include avoiding intricate designs, bold lines, etc. Opting for a clean look is something that will serve you well not only in the short term, but also in the long run as trends evolve over time. Keeping things simple is rarely going to be out of style, so even when other trends come along, you will remain proud of the roof you have chosen.

A Focus on the Environment

Finally, the last point we are going to touch on is a trend that everyone should hope will stick around for the long run. The use of environmentally-friendly roofing can not only do favors for the world around us, but it can also do a great job of protecting your house. One piece of the sustainability puzzle involves using materials that can be sourced in an eco-friendly manner, and also can be replenished over time. Also, roofing that does a good job of insulating a house can be helpful to the environment, as less heating and cooling energy will need to be used to maintain a comfortable temperature inside. One of the best options on the market today with regard to environmental impact is metal. A metal roof offers excellent energy-saving performance, it can last a long time, and it will look great, as well.

dirty roof gutter

Roof & Gutter Cleaning – Best Practices

As a homeowner, you know that maintenance is inevitable. Even the highest-quality home will need to have ongoing maintenance performed to remain in proper working order. One task that you should not overlook is roof and gutter cleaning. Your roof is the first line of defense for your home against all kinds of weather conditions, so keeping it in good condition is essential. Let’s take a look at some of the key points to understand related to roof and gutter cleaning.

Safety is Always #1

No matter what, the focus of your efforts when cleaning your roof and gutters should be safety. There is no need to put yourself at risk when trying to perform this maintenance task. If you don’t have the right equipment – such as a sturdy ladder – or if you are at all uncomfortable with heights, simply hire someone to do the work for you. Paying to have your roof and gutters cleaned is not particularly expensive, and it will be worth it if it means avoiding doing work that you aren’t comfortable with. Only proceed with doing your own work when you are confident in your abilities and know you have the right equipment for the task at hand.

Remove Debris Carefully

Assuming you feel confident in doing this work yourself, get started by taking the debris off of your roof and out of the gutters and downspouts. Things like leaves and small branches may have landed on the roof from nearby trees, so gather them up and dispose of them properly. Allowing debris to remain on your roof can cause problems in the long run, as it will gather in the gutters and prevent water from running away properly. Unless you have numerous large trees around your home, cleaning up the debris should be a relatively quick and straightforward task.

Address Moss Problems

In some areas, moss is a significant problem on roofs. When a roof has plenty of shade, and cool and damp conditions are present, moss can thrive. It might not look too harmful at first, but moss can do damage to your roof over time if allowed to remain. However, while you might be tempted to scrape it off, that’s not the right approach. Instead, use a moss killing product which can be applied directly to the moss so it will die off on its own. If you were to scrape the area affected with moss, not only might you damage the roof, but the moss would be likely to just grow right back.

An Overall Review

While on the roof, take a careful look at the condition of the surface to determine in any repairs are necessary. Hopefully, you’ll find that your roof is in good condition and doesn’t require any further work, but it’s always smart to check. If you do find one or two spots that need to be addressed with a repair, bring in a professional so you can make sure it is done right the first time.

house with metal roof

Six Modern Trends in Metal Roof Replacement

To the layperson, it might seem like the construction industry moves rather slow. After all, if you are just looking at buildings from the street once they are finished, they don’t look much different than they did years ago. Within the industry, however, nothing could be further from the truth. There are always exciting new trends to monitor, and amazing new materials and techniques to put into action. In this article, we’d like to shine some light on six trends in the world of metal roof replacement.

Keep It Clean

One of the trends you’ll notice if you look around at other metal roofing jobs is a shift toward simple, clean aesthetics. More and more, the projects that are being completed are using straightforward designs without much extra ‘fluff’. This style allows the natural beauty of the metal roof to shine through without interference from unnecessary design features.

Sustainable Products

This is a trend that extends far beyond the metal roofing industry. People are quickly becoming conscious of how their decisions impact the natural world around them, and plenty of buyers are demanding products which are sourced in an environmentally-friendly manner. Also, those same buyers are looking for products that can help reduce the amount of energy that a home uses on a day to day basis, further reducing their overall impact on the globe.

Light Tones

There are plenty of colors available to you when you opt for a metal roof, but you might not feel like making too much of a statement with a bright shade. Instead, you could do like many others and pick something light that will still add visual appeal to your home while not drawing too much attention.

Match It Up

Keeping with the discussion on colors, you could also opt for a single shade throughout the roofing project, including gutters and trim. It’s traditional to use different colors for each of the roof, gutters, and trim, but that tradition seems to be shifting. A single color for all three offers an interesting look, and it just might be a look that you enjoy.

Going Bright

Okay – so above we mentioned that one of the trends is to use light tones, and that’s true. At the same time, other homeowners are feeling like being a bit bold, and those projects tend to be finished with bright metal roofing in any number of various shades. If you do decide to pick a bright color, make sure the project will be approved by your homeowner’s association (if you have one) before you go ahead with the job.

More Than Roofing

You may decide that you like the look of your roofing so much that you actually want to use it on more than just the roof. Believe it or not, this may be an option. If you are doing more than just a roofing project, consider employing the use of your metal roofing on one or more of your walls to create an interesting visual feature.