If you’ve been in Arizona for a while, you probably remember how much it’s gown (and how fast). It’s amazing. So many people – so many new homes – each with a roof. Most of those are tile roofs. Indestructible right?
Most tile roofs look just fine from your sidewalk, but it’s not the tiles that keep our mighty Monsoons at bay, it’s what’s underneath them. Jeff Knudson, a roofer since 1975 and Owner of Roofstar Arizona, Inc., joins the gang to tell us and you the truth about how long tile roofs really last along with shingle roofs, foam roofs, so many types of roofs!
Driving in the Arizona Rain
Steve, ‘Captain Obvious’, pointed out the rain outside. But, be careful out there (Drive Friendly!) because the dark spots on the highway are oil and are slick. When it starts raining, the oil floats to the top. It takes a few minutes for it to wash away. So, put the phone away and pay attention. Give yourself distance to stop on the wet roads. Make sure your tires are inflated and have good windshield wipers. Use windex to clean off your wiper blades. Drop by Friendly if you’re not sure about yours.
With the rain outside, they had a bunch of calls about bad smells in the car. They talked cabin air filters. When you have moist, damp air flowing through that, it’ll stink. If you get that weird, moldy smell, get that air filter changed.
Extended Car Warranties: Are They Worth It?
Should you buy an extended warranty for your car? First, for new cars. Most cars come with 5/50 warranties. If you buy an extended warranty at that point, it won’t cover anything covered with the manufacturer’s warranty. What about after 4-5 years? Yes, do that. A typical transmission costs $4,000-7,000. That means you’re warranty is almost like making payments on that, it’s already paid for. Late model cars with computer, stereo/radio, heated seats, anti-lock brakes, cruise control, etc. can be extremely costly to repair. For example, Steve recently repaired a heated steering wheel on an Escalade: $2700! The labor was only $60. Steve had another client who bought a 1-year policy, and the warranty company ended up paying out over $9000 for both their transmission and engine! So, buy the warranty. Remember, the dealer adds points onto the price. So, get it elsewhere.
Roof Inspections, Maintenance and Repairs with Jeff Knudsen
They talked to Jeff Knudsen after the break. Felecia never wants to hear the inspector call out a roof problem (although Jeff sure does!). So, what needs to be done? What should we be looking for? If you’re roof isn’t leaking in the rain, then you’re probably in good shape. If you see a leak or a stain on the wall, take a knife and poke a hole in the drywall. Let the water flow out, so that you don’t end up with a giant hole in the ceiling. Tape a knife to a broom handle — don’t stand right underneath it.
People worry about mold when there’s a leak. Here in Arizona, mold is rare. If you’re concerned, get a mold inspector, not a mold remediator — they’ll find mold and sell you services. Hire an inspector, like Nick Alati of Alati’s Home Inspection Service.
How Long Does a Tile Roof Last in Arizona?
How long can we expect a tile roof to last here in the Valley? Overall, most of them last 20-30 years after the home is built. That depends on the quality of materials and installation, but mostly 20-30 years. At the point, it’s the underlayment that needs to be replaced, not the tile. These tiles will last 50 years. But it’s not the tiles that waterproofs the roof, it’s everything underneath the tiles.
What about shingle material? There are different types and treatments, but overall, it’s 20-30 years.
Do flat roofs have to be replaced every five years? No, they also last about 20. If they’re properly maintained.
What about tile profile, curved versus flat? Are they equally as good? Basically, the tiles are the same no matter the profile — flat, S, W. Flat tiles might create more issues due to restricting water flow into the roof valleys. That’s all.
Felecia recommends a seller get an inspection to avoid surprises. And most people are surprised to learn that there are problems on the roof — hotspots like missing tiles, areas prone to leakage. Jeff recommends getting the roof inspected every 2-3 years, just to avoid major problems.
The only maintenance items on tile roofs are broken tiles and debris in the roof’s valleys. Simple. So, keep your roof maintained.
Hire an Honest, Licenced Roofing Contractor Who Cares About Your Roof
Make sure your contractor, like Roofstar, is licensed and bonded. Otherwise, you’ll risk getting a shoddy job with no recourse. Don’t go with a handyman for large projects.
Steve’s known Jeff for a couple years now. Jeff is the owner, but he still goes to work in work clothes and boots — he loves roofs! His kids call him Ernst because that’s all he wears. He shows photos of the job, before and after, to instill confidence with his clients. He loves what he does. He started college as a music major and transitioned right into roofs. He’s always learning, reading and expanding his knowledge on roofs.
What kind of new materials are there for roofs? The codes here in Phoenix have changed for the better. The materials have also improved, especially the underlayments, which are inorganic and tougher. But, there’s a new shingle from Malarkey that is made from recycled materials, like tires and plastic bottles. They have granules that are made by 3M that absorb smog out of the air. When it rains, it then converts that pollution into a harmless byproduct that flows into the ground. It cleans our air! These look like most of the flat shingles and can be any color.
Jeff doesn’t want people to feel ripped off. That’s why he came up with his company’s motto, “We’ll tell you the truth about your roof!” He enjoys doing good for others and does that in his business.
Solar Panels on your Roof
What effect do solar panels have on a roof? Jeff has seen the quality of the solar panel structure improve radically, and he works with many good solar companies. Often, they have to work together to make sure the roof is sturdy enough to hold the panel. There are also these new solar shingles from Tesla’s Solar City. These have been delayed, and others are also trying this out. Maybe soon, our roofs will be solar power generators!
Foam Roof Coating in Arizona
Jeff is from Colby, Kansas. Steve once drove through there in a U-Haul. It’s in the middle of nowhere but is filled with the friendliest people! Steve had the best chicken-fried steak. He had a great experience there in Colby.
What’s the deal with flat, foam roofs. Seems like a bad idea? In most areas of the country, they’re not a great idea because of hale. But here in Arizona, it’s a very good waterproofer and insulator. The key is you have to maintain it. Every five to ten years, you have to put on a new coating. This can be costly. It’s hard to tell which coating is applied, but it’s important to get the good stuff — unless you like indoor rain.
Felecia shared a story of a client who had to wait 60 days for closing on a loan. Ugh! The banks! Go with a lender. Within 24-hours, Ryan got him qualified on his VA Loan. Banks and Credit Unions are not there to give you money. Work with a lender like Ryan.
So, with that deal, the roof was a mess! The owners claimed the roof was fixed. By whom? “Some guy.” Wrong answer. The VA will not approve that. Hire a licensed, bonded roofer who’s passionate about roofs!
Until next week, Drive Friendly Arizona!